Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Bellevue bops with the best

Labor Day festivities to hit south valley

Express Staff Writer

Jeremiah James and the Gang will headline the Music in the Park show on Friday. Photo by Dana DuGan

Festivities in downtown Bellevue will begin to heat up on Sunday with its annual Labor Day Parade and activities on Sunday, Aug. 31.

The Old Frontier Gang Shoot-out will take place at 12:30 p.m. followed by the parade on Main Street. During the parade, which starts at 1 p.m. and throughout the day, the Italian restaurant Milana's will have sidewalk party, beginning at 11 a.m. with Keith Waller of the Frost Heaves entertaining on guitar and song.

After the parade, Music in the Park will begin with legendary Idaho country musician Muzzie Braun, the Hailey-based hep-cat folkies Finn Riggins, and the Jeremiah James Gang. Jeremiah James is an Idaho singer/songwriter with a new take on an old style. He calls his music a "blend of honky-tonk, folk, Americana, acoustic roadhouse, and country." The Jeremiah James Gang are regulars at Pengilly's in Boise, and most weekends at the Kasino Klub in Stanley. Besides James, the band consists of Rob Hill on bass, Shakey Dave Manion on lead guitar and pedal steel, Tony "Digger" Lemon on fiddle and Ben Brault on drums. They most recently played at the Northern Rockies Folk Festival in Hailey to enthusiastic crowds.

On Monday, Sept. 1 the music will begin at 10 a.m. and continue until 7 p.m. Bands include the Old Time Fiddlers, Up A Creek, Frost Heaves, The Kim Stocking Band, Public Radio and Steam Powered Airplane.

Hailey based band Up A Creek plays a lively brand of Americana type folk-rock. The Frost Heaves are a folk oriented trio, also based in Hailey. The Kim Stocking Band may be one of the most beloved of bands in the Wood River Valley. Public Radio is an acoustic string band that plays traditional, folk, and popular music all with an up-tempo bluegrass feel.

Steam Powered Airplane is a four-piece bluegrass band based in Jackson Hole, Wyo. The band plays lots of traditional acoustic instruments including the occasional dobro and telecaster.

The band is made up of Tucker Smith on banjo and guitar, Uriah Price on mandolin, Jon Degroot on guitar and Cody Walters on upright bass. They've played functions such as the Wake Forest University homecoming and the Grand Teton Music Festival's Music in the Hole. The band opened for Bruce Hornsby & The Range and the Del McCoury band. They have also played gigs with John Densmore of the Doors and Mike Gordon from Phish.

Rounding out the full-scale party atmosphere there will also be more than 75 antique and art vendors from all over Idaho, several food vendors and fun children's activities to enjoy while being serenaded by great country, folk and bluegrass music.

This event has grown over the years to become one of the more family friendly and lively must-do activities of the Labor Day weekend.

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