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River Days to be a ‘Storeyed’ affair

Liz Phillips
Special to The Aspen Times
Singer/songwriter Nina Storey performs Saturday at Basalt River Days. (ninastorey.com)
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The ninth annual Basalt River Days returns Friday and Saturday with a new location and a musical lineup that features the return of Nina Storey.

The annual festival moves to Lions Park in downtown Basalt, bringing activities and a host of free musical acts, headlined by Boulder singer/songwriter Storey, who packed the park at the very first River Days eight years ago with her blend of blues, pop, funk and rock. She performs at 1 p.m. Saturday in Lions Park.

River Days opens at the Riverwalk Patio Stage on Friday at 4 p.m. with Basalt Battle of the Bands winning trio Lynx. Annie Schwener and Nicco De Plata follow with an acoustic guitar set. Doc Eason and his Merry Magicians take the stage at 5 p.m. Then, it’s over to Lions Park for the Old-Time Celtic Megaband, featuring contra dance caller Andrea Early.

Similar to a square dance, a contra dance involves a caller teaching each dance before it’s performed to the music. Dancers of all experience levels are welcome. Forty string players from across the valley comprise the Megaband, originally created as a tribute to the late Tracey McLain for the Tracey’s Day benefit earlier this summer.

Saturday’s music begins with The Heart of Rockies during the Lions Club breakfast from 8:30 to 10 a.m. Main stage entertainment begins with Celebrate the Beat at 10:15 a.m., then Earthbeat Choir at 11:45 a.m., following the 11:30 a.m. parade in downtown Basalt.

Bread and a Bottle, a foot-stomping Celtic band, follows Storey’s show. Jimmy Dykann and Dan Forde perform at the Riverwalk Patio from 12:30 to 2:45 p.m. At 3 p.m., Don and April Paine – formerly of the Last Minute String Band – take the stage.

The Pete Kartsounes Band brings an eclectic mix of blues, folk and bluegrass to the Main Stage in Lions Park at 4 p.m. Kartsounes, a Telluride Brews and Blues Festival award winner for the past two years, is working on a new CD with the likes Drew Emmitt and Sally Van Meter, among others.

Bobby Mason and the All Stars finish out the night. Participating musicians include Bobby and Hayden Gregg of Starwood, Micheal Jude and John Michel of Take the Wheel.

Other River Days events, including the traditional the Kiss the Trout competition, the Basalt half-marathon, a fly-casting competition and pie-baking contest, all take place on Saturday.

For a complete schedule of what’s going on and when during the festival, go to http://www.basaltriverdays.com.


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