WOW. What an Epic freakin Weekend In Pictures this was! Two concerts, hot summer weather, and so much action packed fun! We have to start my Epic Weekend In Pictures with Thursday night, seeing country superstar Thomas Rhett. A week ago I was contemplating going to the show because I've always heard that he's terrific live. Bethel Woods is an one hour twenty minute drive from me without traffic. It can be a late night on a school night. I was talking about the show with my friend Artie, and he volunteered to drive. I've only been to Bethel Woods twice, and the most recent time was seven years ago. With him volunteering to drive, this made me feel much much better. Even tailgating hanging out was fun. Then I ran into work wife Shawn and our friends while on my way to a porta potty. Talk about a small world, right as I was making the long walk trek their State Shuttle parked and I heard someone yell "Hey Steve!" I did a double take. The chances of me running into them I thought were slim since we were among over 16,000 people. LOL. Small world.
We got a really decent spot on the lawn at Bethel Woods. If you're facing the stage, we were bottom left on the lawn basically, or as they call it at Bethel Woods, Section 1. Over the last couple of weeks, a song from Thomas Rhett has really grown on me, it's called "Beer Can't Fix." You can see the video by clicking here. It's just such a positive, inspirational upbeat song with a slight Tiki Bar kind of vibe to it. I've always liked Thomas Rhett as a person, and as an artist I'm really starting to love him. This was one of the best concerts I've ever seen. Seriously. Over my 20 year radio career I've been lucky to see hundreds of concerts, and always frequented them growing up 12 minutes from Great Woods in Mansfield, Massachusetts (who knows what they're calling it officially these days, lol.)
Thomas Rhett's Dad is a country singer Rhett Akins, and you can tell Thomas has been a student of the game his whole life. He did a fantastic job with both all of the big and little things with great attention to detail. Even though I only knew a few of his songs, the rest are so catchy you find yourself dancing and singing along to them anyway. Okay, fortunately not so much dancing from me, but you get the gist. Getting to take my friends Artie, Margie and Kyle made a great night even more phenomenal. There aren't many better things than being able to help your friends smile.
Thomas Rhett is a concert I highly recommend, even if you aren't a country diehard. He absolutely lived up to the hype. Speaking of living up to the hype, our ride home. WOW. You always remember some of your foggiest rides home in your life, right? This was definitely one of the top ones. Intense fog. I didn't get home until almost 2 in the morning. UGH.
Friday I was in the mood for a much more mellow night, lol. I had to pace myself before Rock Ribs & Ridges (RRR) at The Sussex County Fairgrounds in Augusta. Fortunately Friday night was fun with my friends Steve and JG, it went much later than I anticipated but all good. When you're with friends just busting on each other and laughing, it's really amazing how fast time can fly by you.
Friday night, my work wife bestie Shawn invited me to join her and some of our friends at the Crystal Springs Vista 180 Pool. This is one of my favorite places ON EARTH! It's so beautiful, peaceful and relaxing. With your gorgeous view of the water overlooking Wild Turkey Golf Course, and then the mountainous valley right behind that? You cannot go wrong! I always call it both my happy place and heaven on Earth. The team there is always so helpful and top notch. I'm so beyond blessed to have a vacation oasis just 10 minutes from where I live in Vernon on Campus.
Saturday we beat the heat at the pool. I was honestly out in the hot sun too long probably. 11:30-4:00 wasn't one of my wiser decisions, fortunately with sunblock I voted early and often!
Saturday afternoon time to enjoy Rock Ribs & Ridges presented by our friends at Franklin Sussex Auto Mall. Despite the blistering heat and sunshine, you could see smiling faces and happy people all over The Fairgrounds. Borasio from 103.7 NNJ and Max 106.3 was the celebrity emcee all weekend long and he did a great job. Emceeing might look easy at times, but believe me it is far from it. It takes great practice, attention to detail, talent, and sometimes a little bit of luck too. He did a fantastic job. Seeing Artemus Pyle hug him on stage was so cool. Artemus Pyle Band were all down to Earth good dudes. It was fun being on the stage too. The comedic part was as I was leaving the backstage area, security went crazy on me. Many of my friends have asked "didn't they know who you were?" I said no, when everything backstage is so loud and chaotic, it's not even worth it. I didn't have the credentials, they were just doing their jobs. When they figured out who I was later, we all had a great laugh about it. I remember texting Borasio saying "B, security just escorted me out of the backstage area!" He texted back "WHY? What did you do?" I texted back "I was leaving!" The barbecue ribs I had were absolutely fantastic. Blazin Branco are definitely the guys I'll be seeing next year at Rock Ribs & Ridges. Artemus Pyle Band was fantastic! Great food, awesome music, it doesn't get better than that!
Sunday I was able to enjoy more pool time at Crystal Springs Vista 180 Pool. It was a great time especially with the weather being approximately 90 million degrees or so. I had so much fun with Shawn, Maria, Michelle, Liz and Nancie. I went straight from there to Boonton to attend a celebration for my friend Vicki who passed away last week. She and her family are all such sweethearts. It was both an unfortunate reminder that tomorrow isn't promised for any of us, and also that we can major positive influences in people's lives. I'll always remember how Vicki made me, and everyone else lucky enough to be in her world feel. RIP, my friend.
I then made a pit stop at The Cottage. My freezer was empty, and I was too lazy to go grocery shopping, so I did a Meat Lovers Pizza to go. That should last me a bit LOL.
Overall we had a wonderful weekend. I hope you had a great weekend too. Time to start planning next weekend, when I'm Shipping Up To Boston, first time since March. I can't wait to see my family!