Who doesn’t love the sounds of summer? Don’t get me wrong, I like a claustrophobic basement venue with the crowd pushed up against the stage as much as the next person, but give me some lush grass upon which to lounge and a scenic backdrop and suddenly just about any music becomes an agreeable groove. That’s the only plausible explanation for me having been to like a dozen Michael Franti concerts over the years. In Park City, Deer Valley does the outdoor concert thing better than anyone. The resort’s Snow Park Outdoor Amphitheater is an amazing venue, and it routinely hosts a diverse lineup of shows that caters to some fairly broad tastes. The 2022 schedule is here, but the great shows come with a few unfortunate changes.
Let’s start with the good news. There are two different concert series at Snow Park this summer, and they’re both promising some great shows. The first is the Utah Symphony’s 18th Annual Deer Valley Music Festival. The Utah Symphony’s incredibly talented musicians team up with a rotating cast of visiting acts to play everything from Disney Music—on July 8—to Aretha Franklin tributes—August 5. Highlights for this summer include the July 23 show with Boyz II Men and a July 30 show with Guster. Yes, that Boyz II Men. The one with “I’ll Make Love to You,” “End of the Road” and “One Sweet Day.” They’re all nearing 50 now, though, so we can probably just call them “II Men’’ at this point. I don’t know if Guster elicits quite the response from you, but for people my age who spent significant time on the east coast, Guster is a time machine.
The other series at Snow Park this season is the Grand Valley Bank Community Concert Series, which is presented by Mountain Town Music and hosts free shows on Wednesday nights from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. There are three shows remaining this summer, on July 6, 13 and 20, with great local and national touring acts. You’re encouraged to bring and enjoy a picnic dinner.
Now onto the bad. You’re no longer allowed to bring your own alcohol to the shows. Instead, booze can “conveniently” be purchased at the venue. In short, Deer Valley changed their business model to apply for single-event permits with the DABC for concerts so they can sell beer, wine and liquor instead of allowing the BYOB free for all. While not a huge deal, the community feels the sting each time a local perk gets a little less affordable. Either way, I’ll still be out there in the grass enjoying the tunes and recommend you do the same.
What About The State Room’s Deer Valley Concert Series?
Yes, there’s another conspicuous absence in this season’s lineup. The Deer Valley Concert Series partners with The State Room to bring incredible shows to Snow Park, but this year’s shows have been nixed because of the “construction schedule for our on-mountain capital investments,” according to a Deer Valley statement. Thankfully, it’ll be back for 2023 because I don’t think we can handle any more alterations to our summer concert plans, especially if they’re in service of corporate skiing conglomerates.
Complete details and tickets are available at Deer Valley Music Festival’s website.