Five For…Dancing?

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It would be easy to blame the euphoria I felt throughout the Five For Fighting concert at Deer Valley’s Snow Park Outdoor Amphitheater on the incredible gourmet picnic basket, the delicious red wine (and let’s be real, people), the salted caramel brownie on a stick. But not everyone had that particular delicacy and the euphoria of the evening was a shared audience experience. Because, you see, we were all on our feet dancing for most of the evening.IMG_7949

Nobody ever accused Five For Fighting’s John Ondrasik of being a purveyor of dance jams. Yet, there is something to be said about a performer whose energy is so infectious, whose lyrics are so heartfelt and whose talent is so worthy of celebration, that the crowd can’t help itself.

In fairness, the crowd was pretty excited before Ondrasik and his talented band members took the stage. Not only were we treated to two opening acts, one of them was Park City’s own Austin Wolfe. Locals are very proud of Austin—she competed on the most recent season of American Idol and made it to the top 15 female performers on the show. No lesser a star than Harry Connick, Jr. told her that she not only had the talent to be a star, but she had a cool name to boot. Still in high school, Austin has the stage presence of someone much older and a voice that can handle everything from standards to pop. On this night, she even got to sing “Happy Birthday” to her mom—we were fortunate to be seated just a couple of rows ahead of her proud family.

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And then, out came Five for Fighting. Before long, we were all singing along to his hits. Some of us (okay, Jeff and I and the fun woman just behind me who kept high five-ing with me as we danced) sang along to some of the lesser-known songs. In so many ways, it felt like an intimate party. John told a lot of great stories and he teased us for dancing to his not-dance-jams. He and the band played their hearts out. John told us we were his favorite crowd; he may say this to all the crowds but he told us that he doesn’t. And the thing is, I believed him. All three of the acts that night, Jesserae, Austin Wolfe, and John Ondrasik, had connections to Park City and Deer Valley. Jesserae, told us his family has a vacation home in Heber City and skis at Deer Valley. Austin Wolfe is a home-grown local and John Ondrasik told the crowd how much his family loves their ski vacations at Deer Valley Resort and how he plays in the Luke Robitaille hockey tournament at the Park City Ice Arena every year during the Sundance Film Festival. Like many of the audience members who aren’t lucky enough to live here full-time but who are lucky enough to visit here, often these performers consider Deer Valley a part of their hometown crowd.

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John solidified his connection to the crowd when he truly let whatever shred of his remaining “guard” down at the end of the show. “We were going to play two more of our songs, but you guys clearly want to dance, so we picked out some other songs—some party songs,” he announced. “But I forgot some of the lyrics, so you have to forgive me for reading some of them off the iPhone.” And that’s how we all came to sing along with the band, as they played Simon and Garfunkel’s “50 Ways to Leave Your Lover.”  It all felt so…familiar. Perhaps, in part, because he was foisting the mic into the crowd, giving solos to people at the stage’s apron—and I realized I’m not the only person in the world who thinks I am singing on key. In between songs, John had to hand off the phone to his drummer, “What’s your code? It locked up? Can you look up the lyrics for the next song?”

It takes a special guest to make the host crowd feel more welcome than when they walked into the venue. But it turns out this was just part of the magic of the evening. That, and the salted caramel brownies on a stick. More on those soon, I promise.

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Sunday, September 24, 2017 at Deer Valley Resort. | Video Credit: Instagram User @scottusa ... See MoreSee Less

Vincent Paguirigan, Helen Hayes and 23 others like this

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Leon AllbrightWhere is that

7 hours ago

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Kim Wohleking-FernandezThat snow is for real!?

7 hours ago   ·  5

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Sarah BulverThat is beauty!!!!'nnnn

6 hours ago   ·  1
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Melissa BaileyMichael Bailey this is why they have moose on everything there 😂 still never saw my moose

7 hours ago   ·  2
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Jacob VincentRuth Arbagey apparently we needed to be at deer valley today!

7 hours ago   ·  2
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Meg McKownSuzanne Mckown Seeeee...Park City has all the cool animals too! Haha

7 hours ago   ·  1
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Dan PhelpsCourtney, could be a good season...

7 hours ago   ·  1

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Lisa Borgfeld WhiteGwenn Beaver, what a difference a week makes!

7 hours ago   ·  1

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Ged CarringtonHeather Sherry see they have moose in Utah lol

6 hours ago   ·  1

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Michela SeehusenShirley Hartlauer are you guys missing Utah yet???

7 hours ago   ·  2
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Alicia MoranAmanda Sanford, this is what we got today.

6 hours ago   ·  1
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Jessie JohnsonBeautiful ❤️❤️💜💜❤️

6 hours ago   ·  1
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Brenda Perry-KerrI wish I was there!!

7 hours ago   ·  1
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Patricia Davis LahnMy neighbor... just checking in(lol)

7 hours ago   ·  2
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Marie Benson PitilloAwesome!!! Can't wait!

7 hours ago   ·  1
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Sarah Kaul PettigrewI am so in love!

7 hours ago   ·  2
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Angie MattinsonBeautiful!!!

6 hours ago   ·  1
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Jill Catalano TrosoSnow already!!!!

7 hours ago   ·  1
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Eric PikeWow so early

7 hours ago   ·  1
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Janet Bissell MooneySooo beautiful

7 hours ago   ·  1
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Jeff NesslerThat's the smaller one, when we were up there on Saturday my wife had the bigger one walk right in front of her yeah that scared her

7 hours ago   ·  1
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Meredith Amelia BerlyColin Alexander Berly hey you who keeps up with deer valley's weather on a regular basis is it snowing this much there???? Already????

7 hours ago   ·  2

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Martha BurlesonAwww,,,How pretty! My daughter n family lives there in Park City,,,I just visted them few weeks ago,,,,Love Park City,,,We even lived there in Utah awhile...Snow was Always beautiful....

1 hour ago
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Suzie GordonOh yes mam! Snowed all night and all day!!!

4 hours ago
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Carey O'Malia GrossWe are so lucky to call this home with these neighbors!

4 hours ago   ·  1
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Today’s #DeerValleyMoment. | Photo Credit: @scottusa ... See MoreSee Less

Today’s #DeerValleyMoment. | Photo Credit: @scottusa

Mitchell Rowen, Pilar 'n Billy Cayton and 23 others like this

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Amy DavidsonJudi Zarrella is it really snowing there??? I was seriously looking into moving that way..... but snow in September?!?!?!?

7 hours ago

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Eric AlexanderI swear only a week ago I was standing there drinking a cold beer and it was 70 degrees

10 hours ago   ·  2

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Jeff HallAnd to think, last week it was brown pow and perfect cycling conditions.

11 hours ago   ·  1
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Ed MccallOh Mother keep it coming, no more hot weather!

9 hours ago   ·  1
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Regan EdwardsMy 3 month countdown to Deer Valley is ON! ❤️👏Christopher Flint, I'm all about that base!

13 hours ago   ·  1
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Suzie Gordon...and it's still snowing now!

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Jennifer StebenGoing to be another great season!

9 hours ago
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Tasha Spencer AgnewSimon Agnew, the countdown is on!! White stuff....yay!!!! 🎿⛷

12 hours ago
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Ed KliczewskiOMG Scott Scott Kliczewski, check out Park City!

8 hours ago   ·  1

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Melissa BremauerSue Wood yes yes yes!!! I have booked dinner for NYE at Cena, all confirmed 💃💃

9 hours ago

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Steve DawsonAnde Dawson need to sort out our plans

13 hours ago
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Angee Palmer DeanI'm so not ready for snow. We need to have fall first.

4 hours ago
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Wendy ChiojiI love this.

10 hours ago   ·  1
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Melissa Jane Ruberts GusemanNot yet, please

8 hours ago   ·  1
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Jeffrey HainesWinter is coming...

13 hours ago   ·  1

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Todd WallaceIt will be melted by next week.

8 hours ago
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Judi Zarrella

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James RazerLove to see this in the snow!

9 hours ago
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Tina WeyersWow look at all that snow!

9 hours ago
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Staci HugginsSooooo, not right!

6 hours ago
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Rick KolminHere’s to nice powder all ski season.

6 hours ago
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Karen GrossmanAwesome!

10 hours ago
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Cindy CreteauToo early😬

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Raquel Aliceayayyyyyyy!!!! 💙💙💙💙

5 hours ago
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John ThompsonSee you 2/25/2018!

13 hours ago
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