Not your parent’s disco: Vail Valley Silent Discos to debut during Burton US Open
New business bringing silent discos to the Rocky Mountains
Silent discos have been gaining popularity across the country, and in 2020 they’ll be a regular happening in the Vail Valley.
Vail Valley Silent Discos puts on events where people dance to music listened to on wireless headphones, often with different musical themes depending on the channel tuned into — think ’80s vs. ’90s; Michael Bowie vs. Michael Jackson; Grateful Dead vs. Phish. Silent discos can pop up at breweries, bars, festivals and private events, among other locations.
“We’re stoked to bring the party to Vail,” said Zach Gilliam, founder of Vail Valley Silent Discos.
The kickoff event for Vail Valley Silent Discos will be Saturday, Feb. 29, at Mountain Art Collective in West Vail — a perfect spot for a silent disco, art class or other community offerings. The theme will be Shut The Funk Up, Gilliam said, “just groovy stuff people can vibe to.”
Gilliam, a teacher at Ski & Snowboard Club Vail as well as a member of The Runaway Grooms, is spending his first winter in Vail. He helped open a silent disco business in Memphis, where they offer 500 headphones. In Vail, Gilliam has 150 headphones.
“It’s boomed. It’s been awesome — great parties, good events,” he said of the Memphis silent discos. “That doesn’t really exist up here for the most part.”
The Birds of Prey World Cup ski races at Beaver Creek in December featured a silent disco, but not from a Vail Valley company, Gilliam said.
While Vail Valley Silent Discos will add to the nighttime scene in the valley, Gilliam said silent discos attract people of all ages. They are usually a three-hour event, kicking off at 9 or 10 p.m.
“We get all kinds of people, it really just depends on the event,” he said. “We’ve definitely thrown events with all ages.”
Gilliam landed in Vail for the winter after spending a year in Central America. He said his plan was to come to Vail to “hibernate” for the winter and work on a new album to record back in Nashville.
“I thought I was going to come out for the winter,” he said, “and now I think I’ll be here indefinitely.”
“We’re just going to throw down,” Gilliam said. “There will be a bunch of people in town and it’s going to be a good time.”
If you go …
- What: Shut the Funk Up silent disco
- Where: Mountain Art Collective, Vail
- When: Saturday, Feb. 29, 9 p.m.
- Cost: $25
- More information: Visit http://www.vailvalleysilentdiscos.com/