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Light at the End of the Tunnel summer concert series kicks off at Old Oak Coffeehouse

Saturday, April 24 marked the first of five concerts hosted by The Old Oak Coffeehouse on 2nd Avenue in Niwot. According to its website the event is, in part, to celebrate that "the pandemic is beginning to show signs of ending and there is Light at the End of the Tunnel."

While Old Oak hosts a few events with different musical acts, this concert showcases the House Blend Band, made up of owners Michael Tomich, Patty Machen and Paris Tomich, as well as friends John Lawrence and Andrew Bunin.

Saturday's event was jovial--people greeted their friends, children ran around and dogs greeted each other and humans as well. When the music kicked off, some 10 minutes after the 4:30 p.m. start time, Tomich joked that the band was just going to play the same song over and over again due to lack of practice, much to the amusement of the crowd.

Instead, the band played a variety of music, covering artists such as Aretha Franklin, The Doobie Brothers, Fleetwood Mac, and Cyndi Lauper. Each band member seemed excited to perform--smiling throughout and taking breaks in between musical numbers to thank the crowd for coming, often offering jokes in between.

"Thank you all for coming out, thank you for listening, thank you just for being together, it's great to see everyone," Machen said. At one point, she also took to the microphone to remind attendees that even though COVID restrictions have loosened up, that masks and distancing were still encouraged.

Some social distancing was already worked into the setup of the event--tables were spaced out and the inside of the shop was closed so that the "employees have enough space to safely do their jobs." Given the fairly large turnout, there were some pockets of people in closer proximity to each other. The turnout was so big that Paris commented that she was impressed she had to, "turn around to see everybody."

The night was popular, the coffeehouse constantly had a line of hungry customers and the street was crowded enough that it almost seemed like life before COVID. A number of people had been vaccinated and some were greeting their friends with that news. One attendee, Andy Grolnick said, "It's exciting to be vaccinated and get outdoors and hang out. That alone is great."

Amy Grolnick also said that the opportunity to support local Niwot business was another reason she was excited to attend.

The opportunity to hang out and support businesses was a common theme among people. Longmont resident Olivia Snow said with a smile, "I come to all the Niwot crazy things, I grew up here." Her mother and fellow concert goer Tracy Snow added, "We live here in town, we love the coffeeshop, we love Patty and Michael...It's fabulous that they're able to do this outside and have this event that makes everyone come out and feel normal again."

Some people didn't plan to attend, but when they came across the crowd, stuck around to enjoy the music. Lindsey Sherman said, "We came down to have dinner and didn't know there was going to be live music and it was a great treat and surprise." Brett Sherman said that while this was their first concert, they'd absolutely come back because "they're doing a great thing."

To stay up to date with the coffeehouse and their events, visit:

Information can also be found on Facebook at: The Old Oak Coffeehouse.


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