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The sound of music

Craig Concert Association hosts annual membership drive

Michelle Balleck

Ticket sales

Craig Concert Association 2009-10 season membership costs:

Adult: $35

Student: $10

Family: $70

For tickets or more information, call Julie Dempster at 824-5251 and leave a message.

The best deal in town.

That’s how Julie Dempster describes the Craig Concert Association’s membership drive taking place this month. The association’s season membership puts tickets at $7 a piece for adults, making it a steal for good entertainment, she said.

“Even given tightening budgets, we still need entertainment. We still need a release from the stresses of our lives,” Dempster said. “There is absolutely nothing more amazing than seeing a live performance. It’s fulfilling and entertaining in a way that’s more than anything on a screen could be.”

The annual spring membership drive calls area residents to pay for all five of the 2009-10 season performances at once.

Dempster said this adds up to big savings.

Each concert costs $20 to $25 a piece at the door. A season membership costs $35 for adults, $10 for those 18 and younger, or $70 for a family.

“The continued support of our membership and sponsors allows us to offer these performances at such a bargain,” concert association President Faye McKune said in a news release. “People would pay at least twice as much to see one professional artist in a large metropolitan area, not to mention the expenses saved on travel, lodging, meals and parking.”

The 2009-10 season, which runs from October 2009 to May 2010, includes a variety of acts voted on by the association’s board.

Dempster said the group, after previewing audio and video tapes, tries to best identify performers who would be best enjoyed by attendees.

This year’s picks are:

• Home Free, a young a cappella group touted as a “fusion of comedy and four-part harmony.”

• Acclarion, a Canadian accordion/clarinet combination that plays classics, popular tunes and original compositions.

• Men of Worth, a duo that brings humor and vocal talent along with its Celtic instrumentals.

• Circus Incognitus, a one-man show featuring acrobatic feats and the message “don’t give up when all goes wrong.”

• Riders in the Sky, a Grammy-winning Western music group that’s a favorite of concert association members.

Dempster and her husband take their two children, ages 8 and 11, to the performances as a fun night out together.

“I take my family to it because it’s here in town, but they are world-class performers,” Dempster said. “A lot of people don’t realize how lucky we are to have these performers here.”

Dempster sees the performances as a way to expose her children to people from other parts of the country and world.

“Since we’re so isolated, it brings the outside world here,” Dempster said. “It’s inspiring them to see the world beyond their front door.”

Plus, she said the local shows provide more of a personal touch than others might.

“You think you’re just going to go and listen to music. No, they actually come out and interact with the audience,” Dempster said. “You get to meet them in person after the show.”

In addition to the Craig shows, season memberships include a number of concerts in other cities – Glenwood Springs, Grand Junction, Delta, and Rock Springs and Cheyenne, Wyo. – thanks to a reciprocal agreement between the communities. A full schedule of performances arrives with season tickets later in the year.

Dempster said the association, which is a nonprofit organization, spends about $25,000 each year bringing acts to Craig. The association’s efforts are made possible by business and family sponsorships of the program.

“Those sponsorships are very key to rounding out our budget so we can bring more higher cost performers here,” Dempster said.

Such sponsorships keep season memberships reasonable so residents can enjoy professional entertainment close to home, she said.

“We enjoy those nights out together. It’s a special event,” Dempster said of the family-friendly shows. “You just get to be taken away from the worries of the world for a couple of hours.”

For more information about the Craig Concert Association, to purchase a membership or become a sponsor, call Julie Dempster at 824-5251 and leave a message.


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