Sunday, March 7, 2010

Soiled Doves, Pirates and lots of Irish Music!

Just to prove that this is a working trip to Denver, I thought I would shoot some pictures of the show too. Here the Mister is extolling the virtues of a visit to North Platte, while I am out strolling with my camera.
Our friends from Harlan County are back once again. A beautiful corner of Nebraska that I highly recommend.
If you have never visited Northwest Nebraska, you are seriously missing some beautiful country. Toadstool park, Fort Robinson, the beautiful Pine Ridge country... Much different than you will see anywhere else in the state. Diversity is what makes Nebraska so special.
Probably the single most popular Nebraska booth at the show, Ogallala and Lake McConaughy. The number of people asking "You got water in that lake?" was significantly down this year, replaced by "How high is the water?" To answer those questions, the water is up about 14' from last year at this time, which was up about 9' from the previous year. So yes, they have water. From what we overheard, all of the McConaughy boat ramps will be in service this summer. To Orla's credit, she did not strangle the person who complained that there wasn't going to be enough beach.
Our booth is extremely popular as well, although those who show the most interest are considerably shorter than those at other booths.
We don't mind, though. Mom and Dad, Grandma and Grandpa are always eager to please the kids and bring them to North Platte to see the REAL railroad.
We did get to spend plenty of time on the 16th Street Mall, one of our favorite places in Denver. Here we got in on the filming for some project. Don't know what it was for, but there were cardboard signs placed throughout the area with the different slogans panhandlers might use to get you to empty your pockets. And then there were the sombreros... I'm sure it was extremely creative.
This weekend in Denver is the second round of the Colorado Crossroads Junior National Qualifier and Crossroads Select Tournament.Over the two weekends, Feb 27-Mar 1 and Mar 6-8, 952 teams will converge on Denver from all across the U.S. Figuring 10 girls on each team, along with several parents, coaches, etc. that is well over 10,000 people visiting the area just for this tournament. At our hotel there are teams from Florida and Texas. The restaurants do tend to fill up, but the girls are all very well behaved, and the restaurants do a fantastic job. As you can see, they really bend over backwards to cater to this large source of extra income.

And now on to the real fun. If you like Irish Pubs and want to find them in a city you're visiting, you simply have to go to the Irish Beer Finder website. Even in cities I have visited before, and thought I had found all of the great pubs, it has shown me even more. In a round about way, we found out that the Potcheen Pirates and The Young Dubliners were performing at The Soiled Dove through the Irish Beer Finder.
Whatever kind of music you like, if you see that your favorite artist is performing at The Soiled Dove, I recommend that you get your tickets! It is a wonderful venue. There is a restaurant on site, and the Dove itself has a great bar, complete with a snack menu.
There isn't a bad seat in the house. The Mister and I were originally seated on this level, but when we decided that our 50 year old bones would be safe on the floor, we moved down there to join in the fun. Potcheen Pirates is a high energy, extremely fun and obviously popular local Irish band. I have some tracks that I heard on Songhenge (a members-only site, hosted by Marc Gunn. If you like celtic music, you MUST join - we are lifetime members! And don't forget, Marc is our April 23 House Concert performer!), and now I will definitely have to download some albums from iTunes when I get the chance. I wonder if they do house concerts?The Potcheen Pirates were the perfect opening band for the Young Dubliners. What a concert they put on. Even though they had played in Arizona previously, they proclaimed this concert the official kick-off of their Saint Patrick's day tour.
The Pogos and Jigs got kind of lively on the floor, but outside of a few kicked shins and stepped-on toes, it was all in good fun. Except for the poor young couple whose life was obviously in melt-down, and who were escorted from the premises by security, everyone had a good time.
I must confess here. I had not heard the Young Dubliners before. Not sure I can really call myself a celtic music fan with that confession, but rest assured I am correcting the error of my ways and will be downloading their Irish Sessions and Saints and Sinners albums from iTunes at the first opportunity!
If they're performing near you, get your tickets immediately, and don't plan to just sit during the show. Get up and get as close to the stage as possible, make some new friends among their very loyal fans and fully enjoy the experience.
Fortunately, our Saint Patrick's celebration isn't over yet. We already have tickets for Miles from Dublin on Thursday at the North Platte Community Playhouse. And there will be some fun stuff posted tomorrow about our Irish Pub Crawl in Denver.
Check back tomorrow or so for the next installment. Thanks for stopping by. The coffee is always on.

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