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‘Parrot Heads’ Turn Out for Jimmy Buffett at Belly Up

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buffettSAN DIEGO – Thursday evening was a big night at one of San Diego’s oldest and best known clubs. Hundreds of fans packed the Belly Up in Solana Beach to see Jimmy Buffett perform. San Diego 6 went out to talk to some of the “Parrot Heads” who began lining up hours before the concert began.

“We party with a purpose is our motto. It’s just kind of what he stands for, you know helping each other,” said self-described Parrot Head Gail Folsom. Like many of the fans standing in line, Folsom had seen Buffett many times. But never in a place like the Belly Up. Buffett typically sells out stadiums that seat tens of thousands. The Belly Up holds a total of 600 people. “I’m really excited cause this is like the closest I’ll ever be to Jimmy Buffett I think,” Folsom said.

Most of the fans in line already had their tickets to the concert. They were the lucky ones because this concert sold out within a matter of minutes. Still, there were some fans like a couple celebrating their 10th anniversary who were looking for tickets at the last minute. They acknowledged that their chances of getting any were slim. And there were others like David Lippe. He had a ticket, but he gave it to his mother in law, the selfless act of a true Parrot Head. “He got one for me. Is that the kindest thing?” said Karen O’Connor. Lippe laughingly answered saying, “It’s called babysitting for life.”

The Belly Up has been around since 1974 and it’s no stranger to big celebrity appearances. Two years ago, none other than Britain’s Prince Harry stopped in for a drink. But on Thursday night, it was all about Buffett and like other longtime fans who’ve seen him many times, for Joe and Maryann Riccardi, seeing him in a place the size of the Belly Up was a first. “We’ve seen him in a lot of bigger venues, but never in a place this small and this close to our home. So, it’s pretty cool,” said Joe Riccardi.

So, why would Jimmy Buffett play a relatively small venue like the Belly Up? One concert goer told San Diego 6 the answer to that question was simple. He loves his fans.

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