The Steamboat summer music scene is in full swing. Whatever your favorite genre, you’ll find music from rock to classical and everything in between in Steamboat this season.

Free Summer Concert Series

One of my favorite things in the summer is a leisurely bike ride from our mountain home to the free shows at Howelsen Hill. This summer’s lineup is impressive, and Friday’s season opener, Tribal Seeds of San Diego, rocked with rootsy reggae.

Getting to the show is half the fun. Take a magical late-afternoon bike ride along the Yampa and weekday stresses and schedules fall by the wayside. The sun’s rays sparkle on the water, tubers float and bob on the waves, sipping their cares away, while bikers whiz past with smiles on their faces. Everyone was feeling the sweet welcome of Friday afternoon.

It’s nice to leave time for a few stops with friends along the way. There are plenty of places for a pre-show cocktail and bite to eat downtown. You can also find food and drink vendors galore at the concert venue and catch the opening band.

Courtesy of one of the generous concert sponsors, Rocky Mountain Remedies, we enjoyed Tribal Seeds from the VIP tent. Mambo Italiano catered delicious treats. Yummy lemony orzo pasta, meatball sandwiches, Italian sausage and if you haven’t tried their cannoli, put it on your list. Orange zest and chocolate chip deliciousness made up the cream filling. We might have had three, but who’s counting?

All Things Classical

We traded shorts and flip-flops for a dress and button-down for the the Strings Music Festival opening classical concert Saturday. This summer’s festival orchestra kicked off the summer season with Baroque selections chosen by Music Director Michael Sachs. Sachs is principal trumpet in The Cleveland Orchestra and also delighted the crowd with a solo performance of Neruda’s Trumpet Concerto in E Flat Major.  

Festival orchestra members traveled to Steamboat from famed orchestras such as The Los Angeles Philharmonic, The Cleveland Orchestra, The New World Symphony and The Metropolitan Opera Orchestra to name a few. The result: a polished, cohesive sound and a night of resonant music by Handel, Neruda and Bach. The Brandenburg Concerto number 3, led by guest conductor John Macfarlane, was my personal favorite.

Steamboat Symphony Concertmaster Teresa Steffen Greenlee and Strings Executive Director Elissa Greene at the Strings Pavilion

Musical Highlights This Week

Check the Steamboat Today and the Strings website for the many musical happenings this week. Don’t miss Bruce Hornsby and the Noisemakers at the Saturday, July 1, free show at Howelsen Hill. Tuesday, June 27, at 11 a.m. see the youth concert Princess Fearless Trio at the Strings Music Pavilion. Wednesday, June 28, at 7 p.m., Strings is having its music student and teacher appreciation night with “A Night in Prague: Czech Chamber Music” free to students and teachers. You can also see the Kamila Quartet play a free show in the Yampa River Botanic Garden park this Thursday at 12:15 p.m.



Jessica Berg is a freelance writer and Suzuki Violin teacher. She first moved to Steamboat after college in the mid ’90s and, after a long hiatus, is happy to call Steamboat home again. She runs a private violin studio out of her Steamboat home and teaches violin with Boulder Suzuki Strings. She holds a degree in magazine journalism from Ohio University and loves blogging about mountain life.

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