Buffett fans washed away by the rain - Omaha.com
go logo
article photo
article photo
Chris Wade of Omaha smiles with his island hat while tailgating in the rain before the Jimmy Buffett concert outside the CenturyLink Center Omaha before his concert on Saturday.(REBECCA S. GRATZ/THE WORLD-HERALD)


PARROTHEADS

Buffett fans washed away by the rain
By Kevin Coffey
WORLD-HERALD STAFF WRITER


Video:

Update: 5:30 p.m.

Heavy early evening rains kept all but several very dedicated groups from tailgating before the Jimmy Buffett concert.

Those that remained in parking lots huddled under tents and around warm grill fires.

All of the other revelers packed into nearby establishments such as DJ's Dugout, the Old Mattress Factory and the Hilton Omaha.

The Hilton lobby bar was so full that Parrotheads spilled out into other areas of the lobby on chairs, couches and benches where they sipped beers. The FIshheads played to a massive crowd at the Old Mattress Factory and Buffett music blared at DJ's Dugout, where there was not a single open table.

The rain also caused an outdoor party at the CenturyLink Center sponsored by local radio stations and the arena to shut down early. It was scheduled to last until 6 p.m., but when a reporter walked past at 5 p.m., it was already mostly dismantled.

* * *

Saturday was a gloomy, rainy spring day in Omaha,but inside the tent at the Old Mattress Factory, it may as well have been in the Bahamas.

As a cover band played Buffett songs and other similarly-styled tunes by Alan Jackson and Zac Brown Band, fans formed a conga line, tipped back cocktails and danced with friends.

Lynne Hawk showed off a picture of her and Buffett, which she took the night before at the Hilton Hotel bar. Buffett was very gracious, but quiet, she said, and took pictures with a few others.

Over at CenturyLink Center parking lots, rain kept away some tailgaters. In the early afternoon, some smaller lots were empty and none were full, though dozens of RVs and cars were in the lots. When a little rain came down, some stuffed games and grills back into their cars and others took shelter under tents they had set up.

Charcoal grill fires could be smelled blocks away and, despite a gloomy day, the party went on with fans dressed as pirates and parrots. Some flew an American flag and others a Jolly Roger and others brought sand and palm trees, but almost all of them were blasting Buffett music from car stereos or big speakers.

Decked out in grass skirts, leis and rainbow-colored hats shaped like parrots, Lisa Strasheim and her friends sipped cocktails, grilled hamburgers and waited for 10 to 20 more to join them. Her group had secured a coveted corner spot in the parking lot at 8:30 a.m.

They were worried about the weather, but figured they'd relocate to the Old Mattress Factor, where they could get more food and booze, if the weather got bad enough.

“We do have an evacuation plan in place,” Strasheim said with a laugh.

She and her friends work at Alegent Health Center in the neonatal care unit and they run an organization called Parrotheads for Premies. Almost all of them had seen Buffett in concert before, some as many as nine times.

“But the tailgating is the real experience,” said Peg Baker.

They also hoped to spot Buffett. Sometimes, they said, he comes and walks around the tailgaters and they use the footage during the night's concert.

"We've been trying to talk up security whenever they come by," Strasheim said, chuckling.

VIDEO Omaha: Watch Buffett fans endure the rain in Omaha

Contact the writer: Kevin Coffey

kevin.coffey@owh.com    |   402-444-1557    |  

Kevin covers music, whether it's pop, indie or punk, through artist interviews, reviews and trend stories. He also occasionally covers other entertainment, including video games and comic books.

Read more stories by Kevin


Contact the Omaha World-Herald newsroom


Copyright ©2014 Omaha World-Herald®. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, displayed or redistributed for any purpose without permission from the Omaha World-Herald.

Latest Stories

How to win a $4,300 ‘Walking Dead #1' comic while also doing something nice
How to win a ,300 ‘Walking Dead #1' comic while also doing something nice

A local comic book shop is once again raffling away a pricey issue for a good cause.


Tommy Lee Jones made a Nebraska western, and here's the trailer
Tommy Lee Jones made a Nebraska western, and here's the trailer

"The Homesman," an upcoming western from writer/director/actor Tommy Lee Jones, looks like something close to a sure thing.


Nebraska family and town depicted on the big screen in 'Heaven is for Real'
Nebraska family and town depicted on the big screen in 'Heaven is for Real'

Imperial family feels Colton’s inspirational story got heaven-sent production and reverential handling


Missing 3-year-old boy found in claw machine at Lincoln bowling alley
Missing 3-year-old boy found in claw machine at Lincoln bowling alley

He was uninjured and playing happily with the stuffed animals in the machine.


Norfolk man restoring Johnny Carson's childhood home
Norfolk man restoring Johnny Carson's childhood home

It’s been a long time since Johnny Carson slept in the tiny upstairs room in the modest little house at 306 S. 13th St. in Norfolk.
Carson was born in Iowa and moved to Norfolk with his family in the 1930s. They lived in at least one other house in Norfolk before moving into to the white, wood-frame structure on 13th Street.


South Omaha bar will reopen this week with new look, Skee-Ball
South Omaha bar will reopen this week with new look, Skee-Ball

The Brass Monkey will reopen its doors this week.


11 Nebraska-set movies that were filmed elsewhere
11 Nebraska-set movies that were filmed elsewhere

Here are 11 dirty, rotten lies.


Iowa music fest 80/35 announces Conor Oberst, Dr. Dog and more
Iowa music fest 80/35 announces Conor Oberst, Dr. Dog and more

Conor Oberst will headline 80/35 music festival in Des Moines, and the Bright Eyes frontman will be joined by Ziggy Marley, Best Coast, Dawes and more.


Omaha is really in Kansas, new evidence suggests
Omaha is really in Kansas, new evidence suggests

Here's further proof that East and West Coasters don't know a whole lot about "flyover country."


Caravan’s steampunk ‘Fantasticks’ to pitch its tent in Iowa
Caravan’s steampunk ‘Fantasticks’ to pitch its tent in Iowa

The Nebraska Theatre Caravan’s national tour of “The Fantasticks” is nearing home turf this week after three months on the road coast to coast.


 
Search
Movies Opening this week

Movie showtimes and theater listings






Read this!








VIDEOS

Tonight in Prime Time
© 2014 Omaha World-Herald. All rights reserved