Days the music died: 8150 one of many Vail music venues that have come and gone
Music venues big and small have come and gone throughout the relatively short ski-town history of the Vail Valley. Here are a few of the more recent ones to give up the ghost.
• August 2002 — Cassidy’s Hole in the Wall in Avon closes. Owner Glenn Heelan originally purchased the burgers-and-beer joint in 1992 and expanded it to a two-story, 8,000-square-foot restaurant and sports bar featuring weekend musical entertainment, pool tables and walls of televisions.
• May 2003 — Club Chelsea’s lease is terminated with the announcement of the demolition of the Vail Village Inn, making way for the Vail Plaza Hotel, now The Sebastian Vail. Owners Judy Alexander and Betsy Bradley opened Club Chelsea in its original location on Bridge Street in February 1996, touting it as a place where local musicians could meet and collaborate. Due to plumbing problems at the Bridge Street site, the club was moved to the Vail Village Inn in July 2002 before ultimately closing.
• March 2005 — Sundance Saloon located at 675 W. Lionshead Circle closes.
• April 22, 2007 — The final performance is held at 8150, a music venue that was located in the Crossroads building, which was demolished to make way for Solaris Residences. The show was a rendition of The Band’s famous concert film “The Last Waltz,” with more than 20 Colorado musicians taking the stage for five hours of music.
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• October 2011 — Finnegan’s Wake Irish Pub in Avon closes after operating for 6½ years in the former Cassidy’s Hole in the Wall site. The space is now home to Montana’s Smokehouse, which hosts live music on Friday nights.
• April 2012 — The Club closes. Shakedown Bar now exists in the underground spot at the top of Bridge Street, with live music almost every day throughout the ski season.
• 2013 — The Sandbar in West Vail closes. Previously The Menu and the Jackalope, the Sandbar site has been home to the Vail Ale House since 2013. New owners purchased the Ale House in January 2017 and are hoping to continue to host live music at the venue.
• 2015 — Vail Underground closes. Site of the original home of Club Chelsea, the downstairs venue at 304 Bridge St. in Vail Village, with its entrance just below The Red Lion, underwent a multitude of upgrades and names over the years, including Fubar, Ski Bar and Whiskey Jack’s, prior to the short-lived Vail Underground. In December 2015, the former crew of The Club took over the spot and re-christened it Bridge Street Bar, home to live music almost every night of the week.
• July 2016 — Samana Lounge closes. Local musician Scotty Stoughton created the venue in 2004, and it quickly gained national and international attention as an intimate, friendly club that hosted the likes of Coolio, Bassnectar, Karl Denson, Drew Emmitt, DJ Greyboy, Cyrill Neville, EOTO, Stanley Jordan, DJ Mark Farina, The Scumfrog, MartyParty and more. The downstairs location is now home to Bridge Street Lockers.
Other notable venues that have closed
• Sheika’s in the Gasthof Gramshammer in Vail Village.
• The Rumpus Room in Edwards is now the home of Vail Dermatology.
• Kaltenberg Castle Royal Bavarian Brewhouse in Lionshead Village once played host to bands such as G. Love and Special Sauce alongside its large steins of beer.
• Trail’s End in the Lionshead Mall was famous for its end-of-season “Drink the Bar Dry” party that saw bands such as Shakedown Street play.