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By Lindsay Nichols
A little north of the Fort Collins city limits lies a watering hole that is the perfect bike ride from town (the Poudre River bike trail practically takes you right to the front door). It’s Bar SS, in the town of LaPorte, and it offers the opportunity to take advantage of the magical Fort Collins trio: beer, biking, and music. (An added bonus to those that pedal to this homegrown music destination? Once you get there, mention to the bartenders that you rode your bike and you’ll get $1 off of every local micro-brew pint that you buy.)
Bar SS has featured live music from time to time for years, but they’ve kicked it up a notch recently, and now, nearly every night of the week, a live band of some sort can be found on either the inside or the outside stage. And not only is entertainment provided, but the price is right. All of the shows at Bar SS are affordably priced between $5-$10.
The laid-back atmosphere of Bar SS draws a lot of locals from LaPorte who can be found throwing darts, playing shuffleboard or ring toss, or just chilling out and throwing back a few cold ones. During the summer, with the increase in bike traffic and live music, the clientele changes a bit and fills with more people who call Fort Collins home. The driving force behind the northern migration? The patio at the bar is a gem: If you catch it during the afternoon sunset you’re sure to keep coming back!
Jodi Boyce, mandolin player for the bluegrass band Lonesome Traveler (which plays at the bar once a month for free) is taking the reins on booking the music, and she’s doing an awesome job.
“When it comes to selecting the bands, we’re really focusing on Americana, roots and bluegrass in style; everything from honky-tonk to rockabilly to singer/songwriter,” Boyce says.
She’s aiming to put Bar SS on the map as a “destination place for people to come and play and listen to music. The patio is a wonderful spot,” she says.
No argument there!
On Wednesday nights, Bar SS features an “open mic night” – a chance for local musicians to showcase their talents. If you’re interested in putting yourself out there, arrive early to get your name on the list (sign-up starts at 6:30pm; music starts at 8pm).
This month, the Bar SS schedule is packed with music. One of the shows coming up is on Friday August 5, when the Atomic Duo from Austin, Texas will be gracing the stage. These two musicians, Silas Lowe on mandolin and Mark Rubin on guitar, hail from the Austin-based trio Bad Livers. With this new project, the duo is focusing on meaningful political songs that reflect the state of our current economy. Their aim is to give voice to Americans that feel repressed, disenfranchised, and betrayed by their country in light of the recession, foreclosures, job loss, oil spills and coal mine disasters.
Don’t miss this opportunity to see a great band and learn more about a fun, down-to-earth venue that is surprisingly close by!
Bar SS is located at 3311 West County Road 54G in LaPorte, CO, right off of North Overland Trail. The best way to find out about upcoming shows and drink specials is to “Like” Bar SS on Facebook or visit their website at bardoubles.com. Riding your bike? Take the Poudre Trail – it’s a fast, beautiful and safe way to get to the venue. Download a free, PDF-format bicycle trail map at fcgov.com to see exactly where this path starts and ends.