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Downtown Music Block Party

Pray for Snow: Food, bands and a bonfire at Downtown Music.

By Julianna Clay
Posted // October 19,2010 - Calling all ski and snow bunnies: Bring your own beer, lounge chairs and a pair of old skis to burn to the Pray for Snow Party, brought to you by Downtown Music.

It’s the fifth time Downtown Music is throwing an event of this magnitude. Last year, the event drew more than 200 people, but the organizers hope they’ll have a much higher turnout after upping the ante by adding new sponsors, including Hardcore Tattoos, Discreet outdoor apparel and the Alta and Snowbird resorts.

Downtown Music owner Matt Wolfe, who also owns outdoor-oriented website, says the idea for a fall block party originated with him wanting more exposure for not just his companies, but for the local bands who rehearse at Downtown Music, as well. Downtown Music has been renting rooms to local artists since 1982.

“We are a family business that has been around for 30 years,” Matt says. The space boasts 67 units, 55 of which are used by local bands to practice for gigs or just hang out.

Out of the 55 bands, seven are lined up to play at the party: Aerial, Rattlesnake Shake, Downfall, Flor de Palma, Fractal Rock, The Anti Matter and Merit Badge. But the lineup may change, Wolfe says, because “there’s always a last-minute scramble with the bands.”

Two of the seven performing bands are fronted by Downtown Music veteran and Harley enthusiast Michael Hernandez—hard rockers Aerial and Rattlesnake Shake, a Motley Crue tribute band. Hernandez has been practicing at Downtown Music with Aerial since 1986.

“It’s a great facility,” Hernandez says. “It gets kids out of their parents’ basements, and bands who didn’t have a place to work in.”

The space has been described by many as a tight-knit community where everybody knows one another and borrows from each other. Aerial’s guitar player Kurt Johnson’s son is also in Aerial, and Johnson also plays in Downfall, another Downtown Music band.

Hernandez also has a third band that practices at Downtown Music called Cattle Drive. “All three have participated in the block parties, as well as other events,” he says.

This time around, Aerial will be playing an all-original set, and Rattlesnake Shake will be playing (in full regalia, of course) Motley Crue classics like “Shout at the Devil,” “Kickstart My Heart” and “Girls, Girls, Girls.” “We usually have a few [girls] dancing on the stage for that song,” Hernandez says.

“People are more than welcome to bring their own meat and lounge chairs,” Wolfe says. He’ll have hot dogs, soda and giveaways, and he says guests can bring old ski or snowboarding equipment to burn in the bonfire.

“It will be a sort of sacrifice to the snow gods.”

Downtown Music
833 S. Main
Saturday, Oct. 23
5 p.m.-Midnight
Free, All Ages

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Posted // October 22,2010 at 10:00

Everyone relax! No we will not really be burning skis we will just be burning wood. Trust me we all see the air quality in the winter as we are coming out of the canyon. Why would we want to be a part of that.

We do ask that everyone bring a pair of old skis or gear to donate (sacrifice) if they have some.

Pray for Snow!!


Posted // October 22,2010 at 16:18 - Glad to see you've changed your minds. I thought you might.


Posted // October 22,2010 at 09:46

I know Matt and I'm pretty sure he's joking. Maybe you should all go down there and protest. Tell Matt I sent you.


Posted // October 19,2010 at 10:55

“People are more than welcome to bring their own meat and lounge chairs,” Wolfe says. He’ll have hot dogs, soda and giveaways, and he says guests can bring old ski or snowboarding equipment to burn in the bonfire.

Sounds like the Tea Party Express, if you replaced "ski and snowboarding equipment" with books and honor.


Posted // October 26,2010 at 13:10 - WTF does all that mean, euro1? You call us twats and wankers and red necks and then make some assissine comment about how you're going to join us burning skis after we've ruined our country? Drink and comment much? If you are a genuine Brit, you might be speaking German if red necked, twatish, Yank-wankers (Americans) hadn't dropped the plow and picked up a gun. Asshole.


Posted // October 23,2010 at 13:39 - twahts what the matter witha bunch of yanks throwing some planks on a fire we'll do it with you when you've wasted your country you apathetic wankers and red necks


Posted // October 19,2010 at 08:46

Please don't burn your skis or boards at this event. That's stupid. Donate the equipment you don't want, instead.

Ski's and boards are made from various polymers and composite materials that should never be burned. Burning them will result in releasing toxins into the atmosphere and we have enough of that to go around as it is, especially in this filthy valley.

It surprises me that this idea made it this far. May as well throw a few tires on the fire while you're at it.


Posted // October 19,2010 at 15:09 - That's a good point, Mamba, and I agree that the behavior you described is pathetic. I'd also assume that many of the people wanting to burn gear at this event will complain when the air turns to sludge this winter. I know that burning gear at this event won't alter air quality overall, not permanently, but it does set a precedent with people that doing stupid things like this is okay. Besides, there must be plenty of kids around without the funds to purchase gear themselves that would love to have it. I'm sure they'd appreciate receiving the gear to use rather than watching it go up in plastic-fueled flames.


Posted // October 19,2010 at 12:45 - I guarantee you that the people who would promote burning their skis and snowboards as some kind of seasonal pagan sports ritual did not work to make the money to pay for those skis and snowboards. When my sons were younger teenagers, the rage among their friends was to just break whatever it was your parents had just purchased for you if you wanted a nicer model or a different color or cooler graphics. And I think it bodes very poorly for our futures to have a generation of little shits who even take the fucking time to think that way. Disgusting!


Posted // October 19,2010 at 11:15 - KJ, destroying something that you do not want anymore that is still usable is not sacrifice. It is wasteful. In this case, wasteful and dirty. You want to understand sacrifice? Collect your x-box and games, favorite board and boots, favorite beenie (bet you wear one in the summer you enjoy), and $300 dollars cash and toss that into the flames.


Posted // October 19,2010 at 11:10 - Thanks, Jesse. I just can't seem to stay away. I tell myself it's because I am weak but I do enjoy the electronic company of certain SLWeekly writers. Gonna come in one day with a good bottle and meet you folks. I like the lyrics you provided. Very appropriate.


Posted // October 19,2010 at 09:21 - sacrifice. giving something up to get something else. skis probably wont burn anyways, where else you gonna see 'em burn???


Posted // October 19,2010 at 09:21 - Hey Hayduke, welcome back! Insightful comment. I wondered about that also. It reminds me of that John Hiatt song, "Perfectly Good Guitar." First verse and chorus: He threw one down from the top of the stairs; Beautiful women were standing everywhere; They all got wet when he smashed that thing; But off in the dark you could hear somebody sing: Oh it breaks my heart to see those stars, Smashing a perfectly good guitar, I don't know who they think they are, Smashing a perfectly good guitar.