Saturday, February 14, 2009

A Longmont Hidden Treasure: The Bertolin Barn

Located about seven miles northeast of Longmont is the Bertolin Barn, which is a gem of a place to see live music. I had mentioned this venue last year when it first opened with a different name, and I finally got to see a show out there. Halden Wofford and the Hi-Beams brought their brand of honky-tonk there last night to a packed barn. (Halden is also an author and illustrator of a book reviewed here a few years ago).

The Hi-Beams on stage at the Bertolin Barn:

Jim Bertolin is the banjo player in the Stanleytones, and he built the barn partially out of materials moved from a Longmont historic barn, located at 9th Avenue and County Line Road. You can read about its construction and history here.

The view from the Barn's neat balcony, during intermission:

Some notes if you're interested in attending a show out there:
  • It's BYO; bring a smaller cooler if you'd like. Some folks bring a bottle of wine and some glasses. Bring a driver, of course, if you BYO.

  • Their permit only allows a certain number of events a year, so there won't be shows every weekend. Check the schedule.

  • It seats about 140, and there is a dance area to the left of the stage. The sound is perfect! It fills the barn nicely but it's not too loud.

  • Families of all ages are common, in the audience.

  • There is a small concession area, that sells popcorn among other things.

  • Again, likely because of the permit, shows start on time there (7:30 yesterday evening) and they finish around 10:00, with an intermission.

I do think Longmont has a dearth of live music venues and options, and that we are far behind our neighboring towns of Lyons and Loveland in this area. On the positive side, I did read recently about the Dickens Opera House, and we're very lucky to have the Bertolin Barn in our neighborhood.