@redshoetapper or pap in chatzy room has been kind enough to share his memories with all of us here at Fans of Scotty. I'm glad you were able to have this "once in a life-time experience". Thank you for taking the time to do this for us - I felt like I was right there in the room with you. Donna
Recently I was fortunate enough to win two tickets to a private Scotty McCreery concert. This “Secret” Scotty concert was hosted by Great Country Radio WGTY 107.7 FM in Gettysburg PA. The concert was held Sunday October 7, 2012. Beginning with a reception and light fare at 11:30AM with Scotty performing at 12:30PM. The audience was limited to 200 people and was held at the Historic Gettysburg Hotel's Grand Ballroom. Scotty sang 10 songs in fifty minutes, and it goes without saying that, he killed each one. He is a great singer with a wonderful mellow voice. He has great stage presence for a young performer and the audience loved him.
My journey to this Scotty event began on Monday September 17, when I heard that WGTY was hosting a private Scotty concert and they were giving 2 tickets to 100 lucky listeners. All you had to do was listen for a snippet of Scotty singing each hour from 6 AM till Midnight; be the 7th caller to be the winner. Sounds simple enough but reality was otherwise. I called hour after hour for days, a couple of times I was number 4 but mostly it was a busy signal. Finally on Friday I had just left my senior center and was making my way home with my bride when I heard Scotty's snippet. Of course my cell phone was in my jacket and I had to fumble around for it; found it and hit the send key. Much to my surprise I was caller 7. I'm glad I was stopped at a stop sign or I might have driven off the road. I'm usually not an overly exuberant guy but I was thrilled beyond words. I could not believe it and the DJ had to reassure me that I had won. I got a lifetime dose of country music that week. They sent me a letter with instructions on the time and place of the concert. The wanted to keep this information as confidential as possible. I suppose for security and crowd control. Later that day my neighbor calls to tell me that her cleaning lady heard me on the radio!! Of course I had to tell my two daughters, who are over 4o, to share my excitement. They were happy for me and said “Dad we only remember you liking John Wayne? What's up with Scotty?” I said “right Scotty McCreery and John Wayne the standard by which all others are measured.” :-)
Waiting two weeks for the concert seemed like a long time but finally Sunday October 7, 2012 arrived. I had a fitful night sleeping kept waking up thinking it was time to go. Finally, dwn came I prepared for the big event. Trimmed my mustache and those pesky nose hairs. Scrubbed my arm pits with a vinegar treatment to prevent any excitement odor and got all slicked up like I was going to church. Promised the bride I would not do anything to embarrass her and we set off to Gettysburg. Although we were instructed to arrive no later than 11:30 AM, I always like to get to events early to reconnoiter the facilities. We arrived in Gettysburg at 9:30AM. The bride was good about it and held her comments. Of course we were not the first people there. After we found the Grand Ballroom I was able to see how the program would be laid out. The ballroom is a large rectangular room and they had erected a small stage in the middle. And had 12 to 14 rows of banquet type chairs set up in front of the stage in two sections. There were more than enough seating for the 200 guests and I believe all of the seats offered a good view of the stage. We waited around talking with some of the other early birds and by 11Am the reception area was pretty crowed. The radio station provided a vegetable platter but it was left mostly unmolested. The hotel had a cash bar and I noticed a few folks got cokes and some other assorted adult beverages. But most of the people just waited patiently to get in to the ballroom and get the show on the road. During this time I was able use the hotel's wifi and sent out a few tweets. I tweeted Scotty and asked if he could sing a song from his Christmas album.
The crowd was made up of both genders and a wide range of ages. Old ones like me, middle age, young adults and children. I'd say most of the folks we talked to were Scotty fans although some were double minded folk and liked other performers as well and some just won tickets and were there. I think they left as Scotty fans. It was a little hectic getting into the ballroom because there are always some folks that want to buck the line. The radio station checked my drivers license against the letter they sent to each winner. This took a little time but it prevented a mad rush into the ball room to get front row seats. We were among the first people into the room and we got two good seats in the last row with a clear view of the center stage. My bride has lost the hearing in one ear so she is sensitive to loud music so we picked these seats. Everything was going smoothly, we were seated we had the option to stand and had a commanding view of the entire room and the stage.
After all were seated, Scott Donato WGTY's Program Director took the stage to introduce Scotty. He mentioned how they wanted to have Scotty earlier but due to scheduling it was not possible. He had some nice positive things to say about Scotty, one of which was that Scotty was responsible for revitalizing American Idol. (I agree with that comment).
Scotty's band came out Matt the guitar player the drummer and key board player. I don't recall all their names. They have a sound man also.
At last Scotty came out (12:35pm) Scotty sang 10 songs and performed for 50 minutes. This venue was arranged in such a manner that we were all close to Scotty. He was up front and personal. One could close their eyes and imagine that Scotty was in your living room. Scotty came out and sat on his wooden stool for the entire program. He had on a reddish pink shirt that had a light plaid look. Between numbers he commented on various things like the weather being cold, being in Hershey with Brad on Saturday and of course the pretty young PA girls being special. They all loved that. Scotty also mentioned that his mother Judy and sister Ashley were in the room with us. We all turned to look. :-) One young lady had made a sign that she held up a few times. The room layout did not lend itself to jumping up etc because there really was no room to do so and we were so close to Scotty you did not have to. A lot of the folks new the words to his songs and you could see them singing along. The crowd was courteous and well behaved.
Scotty began with Walk In The Country and continued on with You Make That Look Good, I Love You This Big, Write My number On Your hand, Do You Love Me, Dirty Dishes, Letters From Home, The Dance, The Trouble with Girls and he concluded with a rousing rendition of Water Tower Town. Each number was followed by thunderous applause and after Water Tower Town We all gave him a standing ovation. During WTT I was amazed how many people new the words and sang along especially the kids. It is an upbeat tune. For lack of a more eloquent statement about the show “Scotty Killed it.”
The Historic Gettysburg Hotel is built on the site were Abe Lincoln worked on his speech and Gettysburg is noted for its “ghost” sightings. When Scotty was singing WTT I looked down a darkened hallway and imagined I saw old Abe doing the Texas Two step. Haha
At the conclusion we were all given a surprise treat; Scotty would be having a Meet and Greet for any and all of us. IF anyone left I did not notice them leaving. The concert ended at 1:25 pm. We finished our meet and greet by 2:30 The location of the meet and greet was in a meeting room off of the ball room. We had to form a long line and snake around the outer walls. Each person got a Autographed 8x10 picture of Scotty and Mike Scotty's tour wrangler/manager would take a picture of you with Scotty. We all enjoyed that. I was taken with how genuine and gracious Scotty, his mom Judy and sister Ashley were to his fans. It takes a lot of patience to shake hands smile and be friendly to a large group like Scotty did. I noticed that Scotty was especially courteous to the younger children. It was during this time that we had the chance to chat a little with Mrs. Judy and Ashley. They are troopers! They have a way of putting one at ease. If I had to shake that many hands I'd have called for hand sanitizer. Also since we were near the end of the M&G line I noticed that more than a few of the Hotel staff wanted to meet Scotty and have a. picture with him. I thought that was a nice tribute to Scotty and his popularity.
Scotty told me that He and his family were flying home after the event was over because I asked him where Big Loretta was parked I wanted a picture. I have no idea how his band transports their equipment. I assume they were heading to Nashville. I think that's where they are from
There were a lot of happy folks at this concert and especially the youngsters and at least one old man. Of course to be fair my bride enjoyed the day as well.
This was a once in a life time experience. To be so close to Scotty as he performed is something that rarely happens and for me, unfortunately, it is not likely to happen again anytime soon. If any of you that read this get a chance to attend an event such as this DO NOT pass it up
I often wonder why a 71 year old grandfather to 6 would be so taken with a 19 year old country singer. My family teases me, my daughters say Oh! dad thinks of Scotty as the son he never had. I don't know what the reason is. He is a great singer and a wonderful person. However it is what it is I'm a die hard McCreerian and that's that.
My one regret is that the pictures I took did not turn out so good. If I can get them in shape I'll post some.
Come follow an old man on twitter @redshoetapper or pap in chatzy rm.