Wednesday, August 6, 2003
Steamboat Springs Wednesday night, under a pink and gold sky dotted with colorful balloons, the revered band Los Lobos performed at the base of Howelson Hill, drawing a diverse crowd to its Latin-infused music.
One of six groups brought to Steamboat Springs to perform at the Free Summer Concert Series, Los Lobos attracted a varied audience, and everyone appeared to be having a good time.
Many residents said they came to the concert to socialize and catch up with old friends.
"I enjoy being able to refresh old friendships," said Neal Callsen, a local who said he rarely missed a concert. "It's the only place that you can do that anymore."
Parents also have discovered the concerts make great family outings. The field in front of the stage was littered with several multicolored strollers and blankets.
"It's fun to come out here midweek and bring along the kids," said Mike Beurskens, who came with his two sons -- Charlie, 6, and Willie, 3.
While free concerts usually draw a crowd, Wednesday night's large attendance can be attributed to Los Lobos and the band's music.
Teacher Jennifer McCannon said she wouldn't have missed the concert "for the world."
"We've been listening to Los Lobos for years," she said.
The four-member band started playing more than 20 years ago and has amassed a loyal following of fans.
Between songs, one member asked if anyone was from their hometown of East Los Angeles.
A loud roar resounded from the crowd.
Tourists attended the concert to enjoy a unique Steamboat tradition.
"We wanted to hear the music and enjoy it," said Ladora Hoff, who is visiting from Hanover, Pa.
It seems that the appeal of most of the concerts is a combination of socializing and good music at no charge. Wednesday night, however, the music was the main motivator to attend, and Los Lobos didn't disappoint.
"It's not usually about the music, but tonight it is," Marisa Lazraus said.