Mountain Fair wear and after-party, cowboy music in Rifle, and a familiar face flies in Glenwood |

Mountain Fair wear and after-party, cowboy music in Rifle, and a familiar face flies in Glenwood

April E. Clark
Steppin’ Out with April
The Appleseed Collective, an Americana folk jazz group from Ann Arbor, Mich., plays at 4 p.m. Sunday at Carbondale Mountain Fair and later at 8:30 p.m. at Steve's Guitars. From left, Andrew Brown - guitar and vocals; Katie Lee - banjo and vocals; Brandon Worder - violin, mandolin, and vocals; Vince Russo - washboard/percussion and vocals; Ben Rolston- upright bass.
Promotional photo |

This weekend, tie-dye will be as easy to spot in Carbondale as Wrangler jeans in Rifle.

Fashion has its own mind on the Western Slope.

The beauty of the Carbondale Mountain Fair is that most everyone gets in on the fair-wear fun, including the funky little mountain town’s finest. Peace keepers don tie-dye. Dedicated fairgoers sport their favorite vintage fair T-shirts. Carbondale kids of all ages display artistically painted faces and festive hats to get in the fair spirit. The common greeting when seeing friends, “Happy Fair!” can be heard all weekend long.

I’ll be ending mine telepathically.

The Mountain Fair fashion trend is best exemplified at the KDNK beer tent. There teams of friendly volunteers dress in common themes to pour Colorado-brewed New Belgium microbrews and ice-cold mojitos made with fresh mint, which is home-grown in Carbondale. Beer tent sales support the Carbondale Council on the Art and Humanities’ (CCAH) year-round programming and community arts efforts.

These mojitos are mixed for a good cause.

Personally, I like to wear a sun-blocking cowboy hat and flowing skirt to twirl when dancing near the stage. There aren’t really fashion dos and don’ts at Mountain Fair. Anything goes, just as long as people stay decent and have fun in what they’re wearing.

Wranglers are always welcome.


I like meeting people I always keep learning about, no matter how many years I’ve know them. Caleb Dean is that one those guys. I knew he was a singer-songwriter raised in Glenwood Springs. In knew he started a family band, The Whittingtons, and played in the valley for many years, and that he was childhood friends with a former editor of mine, Dale Shrull. One thing I didn’t know is he was born in Indiana. That’s close to my heart since I’m also a native Hoosier. Along with the valley, Nashville is now his second home. He moved his sons there to help launch careers in the country music business. Today at 7 p.m., the Caleb Dean Band performs for the Centennial Park Concert Series in Rifle. The free concert features music and food for purchase. Add free mini golf for the kids, and that’s a fun family Friday night in the park.


The weekend’s annual Mountain Fair isn’t officially over until a band rocks it out into the night on Sunday at Steve’s Guitars. The Appleseed Collective, a bluegrass-blues western swing Dixie band formed in 2010, has the honors of closing down Steve’s party on Fourth Street this year. After the music at Sopris Park ends, head downtown for the Mountain Fair after-party. They are playing first for free at Mountain Fair at 4 p.m. then at Steve’s for a paid show, $15 at the door. Visit to learn more about the band before meeting members in person. Because that is likely to happen in Steve’s intimate musical atmosphere. Or maybe at Mountain Fair.

Friday, Saturday and Sunday

When I think of many of my most beloved childhood literary favorites, “Peter Pan” always comes to mind. The story of Peter and friends brings back the innocent feeling of never-ending imagination and young dreams that can actually come true. Starting Friday and running through the weekend, the five-year-old Stage Door acting troupe presents its high-flying version of the traditional kids’ classic in “Peter Pan Jr.” I’ve heard young actor Shane Burr is one actor to catch in one of three – or maybe all – shows at the Jeannie Miller Theatre at Glenwood Springs High School. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and shows start at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. (doors at 1:30 p.m.) Sunday. Tickets are available online and at Treadz in Glenwood Springs, and at the door. More info is at

— April E. Clark thinks she may have Peter Pan Syndrome. She can be reached at

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