Dennis Awe Joins George Gray and the Elvis Experience Band at the Salute To Seniors

~ By Eileen Doherty, MS ~

Denver, Colo. – Dedicated fans near and far know that this year the great rock n’ roll legend, Elvis Presley, would have turned 80 years old.  A celebration of “The King’s” birthday was held at Graceland, his famous residence in Memphis, TN on January 8, 2015.  The Colorado Gerontological Society will hold its own celebration of “All Things Elvis” this year at the 26th Annual Salute to Seniors.  The event takes place at the Colorado Convention Center on Saturday, April 18, 2015.

Hold on to your hats as George Gray and the Elvis Experience Band offer a true-blue Elvis Tribute Concert with music, costumes and charisma reminiscent of “The King” himself!  Joining the Salute to Seniors event from Greeley, Colorado, home base for the band, the concert is scheduled to hit the stage at 12:30 p.m. in perfect tune with the event’s “Viva Las Vegas” theme.

A staple event in Denver, the 26th Annual Salute to Seniors takes place on April 18, 2015 from 9 am to 4 pm at the Colorado Convention Center, Denver.  The Salute will be hosted by Denver Human Services.  Colorado Access will serve as the Executive Sponsor of the event.

Lead singer George Gray brings back the memory and excitement of the world famous performer.  Together George and his band recreate an authentic Elvis concert where they perform the hits that millions loved.  The audience will feel like they went back in time as they enjoy the personality, humor and passions of this incredible performance.

George Gray looks, sounds and dresses the part of the “King of Rock ‘n Roll.”  Members of his large band include: George Gray, Lead Vocals; Mike Usher, Drums; Joe Peterson, Lead Guitar; Bill Sterck, Bass; Russ Johnson, Keyboards and Vocals; Mike Bond, Piano; Charlie Spillman, Trombone and Vocals; Brian Sharpe, Trombone; Dave Wertz, Trumpet; Miles Roth, Trumpet; Michael MaGruder, Sax; Jess Ramirez, Vocals; Kathy Horning, Vocals; Shelli Kelly, Vocals; Carl Horning, Sound Engineer.

Performing on the Las Vegas stage, the musical dynamo Dennis Awe is bringing the dazzling showmanship to the Salute to Seniors stage with the opening act on a Lowry Organ with the same entertainment style he brought to the MGM Grand, Caesar’s Palace, The Showboat Hotel, The Imperial Palace Hotel and the Sahara Hotel.  Dennis has extensive television experience ranging from appearances on “The Ed Sullivan Show”, “Today Show”, and “The Tonight Show”.  He provided organ music for soap operas such as “Young Dr. Malone”, “From These Roots”, “Dark Shadows”, and games shows such as “Beat the Clock”, and “Who Do You Trust?”  Dennis is America’s #1 Organ Video and DVD Concert Artist.

Following the concert, attendees are welcome to meet and greet George Gray for autographs and photo opportunities beside a genuine pink Cadillac.  Salute attendees will also enjoy a chance to meet Nick Andurlakis, the Chef who helped to create the famous “Fools Gold Loaf” sandwich for Elvis in Denver.  According to Nick, Elvis loved Nick’s peanut butter, jelly and bacon sandwich so much that he once sent his private plane to Denver for the sandwich.  Nick hand-delivered the sandwich to The King himself as his plane sat on the tarmac at Stapleton International Airport.  Chef Andurlakis will be on hand at the Salute to Seniors with taste samples of the famous sandwich that he still serves at his restaurant, Nick’s Café in Lakewood.

Approximately 100 Sponsors and Exhibitors will be on hand to provide attendees with food samples, entertainment, information and resources for older adults and their families.  Continuing to live independently in one’s own home is of utmost importance to many older adults.  Finding resources and ways to continue to live as independently as possible by talking with home care experts, housing counselors, and home repair consultants.

Throughout the jam-packed day, baby boomers and older adults can talk with hundreds of experts who know about Medicare, health insurance, and financial services.

Along with the resource fair, there will be a health fair on site and plenty of entertainment, games, food and fun for Salute-goers.  In addition to the Elvis Tribute Concert, Mark Weidhaas, past President of the Society of American Magicians, will take the stage with his Magic: Impossible show full of magic, illusions, mind reading and more.  In true Las Vegas style, a Contortionist Act, featuring contortionists from Aerial Cirque Over Denver, will be on hand with gymnastic feats to wow the audience.  To end the day of entertainment, the Joe Peterson Orchestra will perform with glitter, glam and music that will make you want to dance in the aisles.

Other attractions include a Las-Vegas style Wedding Chapel, where attendees can snap a “selfie”, a golf for fun exhibit, an impressive display of Elvis-era cars provided by Forney Museum of Transportation, Bingo and much, much more.

Admission is free.  For a full schedule of events, visit  Registration is suggested at or call 1-855-880-4777 to ensure adequate seating and food samples.

For more information contact the Colorado Gerontological Society at 303-333-3482.

Salute to Seniors Entertainment Schedule

9:00 am Doors Open

9:00 am – 4:00 pm Health Fair (courtesy of Optum, Inc)
Includes Blood Pressure Checks, Blood Sugar Checks, Cognitive Screens, Health Advisor
9:00 am – 4:00 pm   City of Denver Strip featuring city services, games and more.
9:00 am – 4:00 pm   Golf Display
9:00 am – 4:00 pm   Viva Las Vegas Wedding Chapel: Picture Perfect “Selfies”
3:30 pm   Grand Prize Drawing for an Overnight Stay in Blackhawk
4:00 PM   Doors Close

9:00 am – 4:00 pm   Elvis Era Car Exhibit (courtesy of Forney Museum)
9:00 am – 4:00 pm   Elvis Presley Bingo
10:30 am -2:30 pm   Fool’s Gold Loaf Sandwich Tasting (courtesy of Nick’s Café, originator of the Sandwich for Elvis on his frequent visits to Denver
1:30 pm-2:30 pm   Elvis 80th Birthday Celebration at the Pink Cadillac with autograph signing, photos, and Fool’s Gold Loaf Sandwich Tasting
3:30 pm   Grand Prize Drawing for Elvis Presley Cuckoo Clock (plays “Hound Dog” on the hour)

9:45 am   Schmitt Music Extravaganza with Dennis Awe, Organ Virtuoso
10:30 am   Magic: Impossible with Mark Weidhaas, Magician – Colorado Springs
11:30 am   Aerial Cirque Over Denver
12:15 pm   Mayor Michael B Hancock
12:30 pm   George Gray and the Elvis Experience Band
2:45 pm   Joe Peterson Orchestra

Eileen Doherty

Eileen Doherty

Eileen Doherty, MS has been the Executive Director of the Colorado Gerontological Society since 1982. She has almost 40 years of experience in education and training, advocacy, clinical practice, and research in the field of gerontology. She is an adjunct instructor at Fort Hays State University teaching non-profit management. She can be reached at 303-333-3482 or at

Leave a Reply

Warning: A non-numeric value encountered in /home/customer/www/ on line 499