Photo by Shawn O’Brate
Lance Smith serenaded the crowd at Shoshoni Hot Summer Nights with covers of some famous rock ballads, and an original piece.

Shawn O’Brate

SHOSHONI – This past Saturday was the second edition of Shoshoni’s Hot Summer Nights this year, with the first one being an extremely large 3-on-3 basketball tournament earlier this summer. 

While the last Hot Summer Nights looked quite different, especially in sheer numbers, this second event of the year focused on the celebration of music and bringing people together to the city’s new park right off the main road in Shoshoni. 

Multiple bands performed, beer gardens served ice cold drinks, the basketball court was open to the public, and a fun treat was available to everybody with at least one dollar in their pocket. 

That ‘treat’ was the opportunity to dunk Shosoni’s Chief of Police and recent town clerk, Christopher Konija, right in front of the whole town. 

The dunking happened throughout the evening concerts, with all four artists getting up on the newly constructed band stand which included Lance Smith, Lost In Time, Shanna Whitaker and Brandon James. 

“This music festival is also to help feature local bands and get them a platform to come out and perform,” Konija said after getting dunked in cold water, “our main goal is to provide people a chance to come together, enjoy each other, talk with each other and just have fun.”

People from all over Shoshoni and Fremont County sat around the band stand and listened to local artists sing while food vendors like Gary’s Rojo o Verde served Mexican food and the beer garden served all sorts of drinks. 

Sadly, one of the main headliners for the show, Amelia Presley, was injured in a car accident near Wheat Ridge, Colorado the day before the Hot Summer Nights concert but luckily the organizers were able to find some more local talent to fill in for Presley’s spot.

Saturday’s Hot Summer Nights marked the second of three events for Shoshoni, the first revolving around basketball and family-fun sports. This second one revolving around live, local music. But the third one, which takes place on September 3rd–just two days before Labor Day–will be quite possibly the largest event in Shoshoni all summer. 

“We’re going to have a host of different vendors, an outdoor swap meet type venue with a car show,” Konija said about the third Hot Summer Nights, “we’ll have Fremont County Cornhole with a cornhole tournament, the dunk tank will be there, slides, water activities, just a whole variety of different activities for people in town, people in Fremont County and people who are just passing by.”

After this second Hot Summer Nights event shined a light on some of Fremont County’s “hidden gems” as Jordan Whitener, one of the main organizers, said the Mayor of Shoshoni had nothing but praise for the two people that put it on and the event itself.

“Jordan and Chris are very civic-minded people,” Mayor Joel Highsmith said, “everything they do they do it to help improve the quality of life in Shoshoni.”

If you missed your chance at the first or second Hot Summer Nights don’t forget to put a circle around the weekend before Labor Day, not only for the third of these events but also the final Shoshoni Speed Trials that take place on Sunday, September 4th. On that day the town will see some of the fastest cars in the county try to beat the clock and set records down one of Shoshoni’s main roads. 

More information can be found on the Shoshoni Hot Summer Nights Facebook page and Cross Roads of Wyoming Speed Trials Facebook page, as well as through City Hall where Mayor Highsmith and Officer Konija work which can be reached by phone at 307-876-2515.