Summer might not officially begin until Thursday, but Laramie has a chance to kick off the season early with a downtown street dance today hosted by the Blue Sky Group.

The Blue Sky Group — a collection of businesses spanning fields as diverse as carbon sequestration and the restaurant industry — is celebrating its anniversary in a public way, President and CEO John Pope said.

“This festival is our way of celebrating 20 years of building companies in Wyoming,” he said. “It also lets us help all the staff, customers and other people that have supported us along the way.”

The Blue Sky Summer Festival runs from 5 p.m.-midnight today on Grand Avenue between Second and Third streets — a stretch of downtown also used for street dances during the annual Laramie Jubilee Days celebration.

Members of the public of all ages are encouraged to join for a night of dancing to the tunes provided by J. Shogren Shanghai’d, the Woodpile, Static Nebulus, the Whiskey Slaps and Bas Mati.

The Cavalryman Steakhouse — a Blue Sky subsidiary — will provide food and drinks for sale, and the Double Dub’s food truck will also sell food throughout the night. The Laramie City Council gave the Cavalryman permission to transfer its liquor license to the dance area for the duration of the festival, allowing participants 21 and older to enjoy beer and other drinks.

Buskers and booths will also be present, introducing attendees to the causes and companies affiliated with Blue Sky.

The Blue Sky Group was founded in 1998 and is still headquartered in Laramie, though it now operates businesses as far away as Texas and Australia.

“We started eight companies here in Laramie and the support we’ve received has been broad and deep, from outfits like the University (of Wyoming) to entrepreneurs and investors to the business community and the overall community,” John Pope said. “People have been very supportive.”

Sarah Pope, a UW student and the CEO’s daughter, has been helping plan and promote the event.

“It’s just a way to kick off summer in Laramie,” she said. “We’re celebrating entrepreneurs, music, food and artists with a street dance, just trying to say ‘thank you’ to Laramie and Wyoming for helping support Blue Sky and all its subsidiaries.”

Admission is free, while food and drinks are available for purchase. Email Sarah Pope at for more information.

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