Music on Main defines the summer season in Bozeman.
by Tyler Gobin
Music reverberated off the buildings as the smell of wood-fired pizza drifted through the crowd. The sun sunk behind the brick buildings of Main Street, casting a shadow to cool down the street. People young and old filled the air with a steady hum of chatter as we made our way through the crowd. In front of the stage at Main and Bozeman, everybody was energized and dancing as the Young Dubliners projected their Irish sound through the crowd. Another quintessential Music on Main — not to be missed and an iconic element of summertime in Bozeman.
Starting in late June, when the weather becomes (somewhat) more predictable, locals crowd into three blocks of downtown Bozeman, where bands entertain, food vendors satisfy, and sponsors showcase their swag.
The 2019 lineup does not disappoint, and the crowds have only grown as the summer progresses. So far, each week has seen a tremendous turnout, with Mother Nature’s surprising cooperation. And the night the Young Dubliners played was no exception.
It began with me urging my reluctant roommate to get up and head downtown. Grabbing our bikes, we pedaled toward the sound of music. As we drew near, we could feel the energy building. It seemed as though the entire town was migrating by car, bike, or foot toward the pulsing musical vortex.
The crowd was a melting pot of ages, incomes, and attitudes; the smell of noodles and pizza permeated the air. Walking among the masses, an irrepressible smile overtook my face. It seemed the whole crowd had a little snap in their step, a thrill to their voices, and a glow to their smiles.
Much of this euphoria, I found, was people’s appreciation of a fun social culmination to a great summer day spent outdoors. Among other anecdotes, I overheard a couple guys describe their adventure to Ross Peak — it included a bike ride to the saddle where they dismounted and set out on foot toward the summit. They climbed up, struggled down, and loved every moment of it. Now they were here, dancing and laughing and raising beer cups to an incredible day in the Bozone.
For my part, I ran into people from both work and school, and also made completely new friends. Before I knew it, my roommate’s reluctance had changed to boundless enthusiasm, and I could barely keep up with him as he mingled and danced around the street.
There’s an unspoken agreement among Bozemanites that everyone must go to Music on Main at least once — the idea being, it’s the people who make it great, so it’s one’s civic duty to attend. Now in its second decade, the event has become a summer staple for locals and visitors alike. Kudos to the Downtown Bozeman Association, which organizes the event, and to you — the people of Bozeman — for making Music on Main such a success.
For more information, visit downtownbozeman.org