A flyer from a show we played in the outdoor courtyard of a ‘haunted hotel’ in 2004. I remember that the town was known for its ridiculously low speed limits, and that speeding tickets were their main source of civic income. The booker warned us to be mindful of the posted limits all the way from the freeway offramp to the venue. It was strange and ominous to pull into town so slowly in a huge white van. Although we were there to play music, it felt more like an impeding drive-by.
We had some time to kill before we played, so we wandered around the town looking for something to do. We found an old-timey soda/candy shop that had one teenage girl working behind the counter. She seemed totally unfazed and uninterested by 8 musicians shuffling through the door. I asked her if anyone else had come in today - “you’re the first.”
I couldn’t exactly put my finger on it at the time, but Boulder City had a very strange quality. It felt like a well-kept ghost town, where either nothing, or something that nobody wanted to talk about, had happened. Maybe it was all an act to lend credibility to the ‘haunted hotel’. Maybe it’s a haven for witness relocation candidates. Maybe it really was just a slow spot on the map.
We stopped for gas on the way out and pulled up next to a bunch of kids hanging out in the back of a pickup truck. “What is there to do around here?”
They looked at us as if WE were the ghosts.