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Cyndi Palmer: County cup overflows with excitement

Cyndi Palmer
A Face in the Crowd

Things just keep getting more exciting around Grand County as the lineup for live musicians and events continues to grow. In fact, there were so many items going on this upcoming week, there weren’t enough pages to feature everyone.

Winter Park Ski Area is hosting one of the biggest events with Mary Jane’s Birthday Bash and Chef’s Cup, and if you love Mary Jane like Grand County residents do, you’ll be sure not to miss the festivities. The Cup showcases some of the most fascinating culinary creations by local chefs while musician Sheryl Renee will perform for the evening’s guests. Renee and her four-piece rhythm section features sounds embracing the styles of jazz, rhythm and blues, pop, soul and inspirational

music.

Highlights for the Big Bash celebrations on Saturday and Sunday include tons of activities at Mary Jane, including live music by Hunker Down at the Club Car, ice bar out on the deck, and lots of swag for partygoers. There’s also a parade and snow sculpture and Mary Jane look-alike contests throughout the Fraser Valley – a full schedule is listed inside this edition of All Access.

The Sofa Kings, who didn’t make the features this week, are also gearing up to put on quite a show a Buckets Saturday. Long-time local member musicians Robbie Gonzalez, Mark Burg, Tom Camillo and Terry Tompkins are creating stand-up music “that has a jazz sensibility with a funk groove – very representative of what has been called acid jazz, or jazz funk,” Camillo said.

Band Salem also returns to the area to put on some big shows, and they also deserve a mention. In between performances at the XGames, Jan. 26, in Aspen (including an after-party show with De La Soul at the Belly Up on Jan. 27) and the U.S. Freeskiing Open at Copper Mountain (Feb. 1) the band is stopping by the Winter Park Pub for a free concert, starting at 9 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 30. Salem features Todd Anders Johnson and his socially conscious funk, Afro-Cuban jazz and with their selfless projects around the world.

One of the most interesting things for me is finding out what local musicians do when they aren’t on stage.

Stories are circulating regarding guitarist Matt Holliday who succeeded after he was dared to eat the entire contents of a massive container of cheesy poofs in five minutes. Friends who witnessed the event said he surprised everyone when he was able to hold it all down and that his face was covered in that neon orange color afterward. It all sounded like good fun – as long as those talented fingers fared OK. Perhaps he will tell you the whole story if you see him playing at Devil’s Thumb’s Ranch House Restaurant on Friday or Saturday.

Items that had to be rescheduled this week include the January murder mystery dinner with Vickie Johnson at the Bears Den and Paws Pub in Grand Lake. The next mystery dinner is scheduled right after Valentine’s Day. The Gateway Inn has also called in to say its cribbage tournaments have been put on the back burner until further notice.

Other news making its rounds – the opening of a new restaurant in Tabernash. David McKnight and Jonathan Larson are working on the project with Untamed Chef Al Sapien as their consultant designing the menu and kitchen.

The restaurant, to probably be called The Tabernash Tavern, is firing up to offer food that will be popular with locals and possibly a chalkboard menu to facilitate changes.

There’s also talk of the mid-range eatery reintroducing a steakhouse to the county, as well as the possibility of hiring Tabernash resident artist Katrina Larson (who painted the no-longer-existing Shed mural) to create a work of art on the building’s west side.

The restaurant is set to open by this summer.

Food for thought: “Chaos is a friend of mine.” – Bob Dylan.


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