Julian Dance and Back Country BBQ

Summer gets going with a traditional hoedown, at Menghini Winery.

UP-THE-MOUNTAIN MERRIMENT: No one would ever take the beach to task, for stealing the thunder of mountain and desert towns on the whole start-the-summer party front. We do absolutely want to take our fun down to the water's edge come the end of May, to don our swimsuits and big hats and drink something flavored with watermelon or peach. But the hamlets located further inland throw their own summer-style shebangs, too, parties with a distinct and often traditional flavor, parties that serve as a nice complement to all of the beach-close bashes. Julian, that Gold Country burg known for its apple-y ways come autumn, is also a queen of summer fun. Look the late-in-June Gold Rush Days, and the soon-after-that Fourth of July parade, which is just about as sweetly small town as sweetly small town gets. But there's another quintessential hoedown that comes before those gatherings, on the summer calendar, and it only requires that you a) buy a ticket, of course and b) love to chow down on savory, saucy meatstuffs and c) dig dancing to twangy, guitar-laden, rootsy rockin' get-up-and-move music. It's the...

JULIAN DANCE AND BACK COUNTRY BBQ: Do you have boots that stomp well? And a crinoline and skirt made for swirling? Then make for Menghini Winery on Saturday, June 13 where three acts are set to make strummable music to swing by. Those bands? The Bastard Sons of Johnny Cash, Freight Shakers, and Shotgun Wedding. Tickets? They're twenty bucks in advance, with another fiver on top of that if you buy yours there. Are kids invited? Yep, it is described as family friendly, so if you have a young dancer in the family they should be on that dance floor. How long has this one been around? Nearly a decade. Call it a mountain-style -- or "back country," if you will -- way to get the summer going, with boot-raising tunes and meaty eats in the mix. Beach, you're still major in the warm weather department, but some merrymakers simply like taking the good times to a higher elevation.

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