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Park City Ski Team is set to rock with benefit shows

MATT JAMES Of the Record staff

Looking for a concert in the next few weeks? You might talk to the Park City Ski Team. The organization will present two shows in the next two weeks, with the Motion City Soundtrack playing on Friday, Jan. 6, and Robert Earl Keen coming to town on Wednesday, Jan. 11. Both shows will play at Harry O’s. A portion of the proceeds from each of the shows will benefit the ski team.

Dave Galusha, the director of the team, said the events allow the organization to draw a diverse crowd to its fundraisers.

"If you look at all our fundraisers, we have the ski swap you can reach everyone with that Then we go with the other end of the [price] scale with Jans Winter Welcome and the golf tournament. Then the concert idea came out and we were holding our breath to see if that would work."

"We’ve shown that that’s successful," he concluded.

Last year, the ski team presented its first show, a concert featuring Keen and Motherlode Canyon Band. According to Galusha, the well-attended evnet was a hit, drawing a wide range of people and earning the organization about $30,000. With that in mind, having another show seemed logical.

"We have Robert Earl Keen coming back on the eleventh," said Galusha. "He enjoyed coming to Park City so much, he said, ‘If you want to have me back, I’ll do it.’"

So the ski team, signed Keen up for another show. But then another opportunity arose.

"We’ve been involved with this [Keen concert] for a long time," said Galusha, "and then we got contacted about whether we’d like to be a stop on this MTV2 contest tour."

The team decided not to let the opportunity go to waste and said yes; MTV2 tapped Motion City Soundtrack for the gig. The punk-pop rockers will bring an earnest, modern brand of music to Harry O’s for the event.

"With this concert, MTV is bringing in the band and we’re hosting it," said Galusha.

The concert, which is presented by MTV2, is part of the MTV2way contest, for which MTV2 is sending a group of winners to Park City to see the concert, meet with the band and spend a day on the slopes.

The only problem? The boys from Motion City Soundtrack are boarders. But Galusha said, with a chuckle, that while the band might not fit perfectly with the ski team the organization was happy to host the event.

While Motion City Soundtrack offers some MTV-ready rock, Robert Earl Keen will bring a West Texas twang to town. Keen’s brand of country music focuses on sharp lyrics, a storytelling tradition and fairly simple, traditional musicianship.

For that concert, MTV2 won’t be in the house, instead, the ski team will promote the concert in a different way.

"The thing other thing with the Robert Earl Keen concert is that we were approached by the Chamber/Bureau about whether we’d like to be involved with this Date Night Park City event," said Galusha.

The event, he said, is designed to bring people up from the Wasatch Front. The ski team is currently working with businesses including hotels and restaurants to set up some promotions.

"We’ve been thinking that if it was marketed right, it wouldn’t just be with the ski team," said Galusha.

Rather, he noted, the Keen concert could form part of a package for interested concert-goers.

Ultimately, Galusha said he’d like to see the same sort of success the team saw with its concert last year. He said that again, Harry O’s had donated its facilities for the ski team at no charge, and that like last year, the ski team could receive about two-thirds of the proceeds from this show.

So the team only needs the public to come, and with music that will appeal to anyone from a 21-year-old boarder to a middle-aged dad, plus community support, the organization should be able to draw a crowd. After all, the concerts won’t just offer some songs, but a chance to support the ski team cause.

Tickets to Motion City Soundtrack are $20 in advance and $25 the day of the show. There are $40 "Super Tickets" available too, which include a signed CD and VIP section seating. Tickets to Robert Earl Keen are $25 in advance and $30 the day of the show. VIP passes, which include a reception with Keen, plus a signed CD and VIP seating, are available for $100. To purchase tickets or for more information, call 649-8749.


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