It's a holiday homecoming for Lacy J. Dalton and her fans as she takes the stage at the Piper's Opera House this weekend.
The singer/songwriter and arguably Virginia City's most famous resident is performing a benefit concert there Nov. 28 in support of the landmark building.
And she's invited some friends to help celebrate her return.
"It's a magical place to play," said Dalton, who is equally well-known here for her work to preserve wild horses through her Let 'Em Run Foundation. "We'll have some special guests, including a very special opening act that's going to be a surprise."
Joining Dalton on stage will be her band, The Dalton Gang, including band leader Jimmy Norris on drums, bassist and vocalist Craig Owens and Jimmy Jackson on guitar. Joining them will be guest artists Dale Poune from the Comstock Cowboys on mandolin and rhythm guitar and Rene Best on electric and acoustic guitar.
The mystery singer/songwriter from Santa Cruz, Calif., who just put out her first CD, will open in a 20-minute set for Dalton and the band.
"I don't think she's known here, but people are going to love her," said Dalton.
After the show, Dalton will sign CDs, including copies of her latest CD, The Last Wild Place Anthology. And she said she hopes to have copies available of the Comstock Cowboys latest effort, an inspirational album called I Was Never Alone, which Dalton sang on.
Dalton, who just returned from playing with the Ruby Mountain Symphony at the Elko Convention Center in Elko, said she may do two more benefit concerts in the spring, one to help the Carson City Symphony and another to raise funds for her Let 'Em Run Foundation.
"It's a very critical time with the wild horses right now," said Dalton. "We're asking the federal government to put a moratorium on gathers right now."
In the meantime, fans can see Dalton and her gang at Piper's and other upcoming events, including the Genoa Cowboy Poetry & Music Festival in Genoa on May 1. A schedule of her appearances is available at her Web site, www.lacyjfdalton.com.
If you go:
What: Lacy J. Dalton and The Dalton Gang in concert
Where: Piper's Opera House, 1 N. B St., Virginia City
When: Nov. 28 at 7:30 p.m.
Cost: Tickets are $25 in advance, $30 at the door and can be purchased at www.lacyjdalton.com or by calling 775-847-0433 or 866-422-1956 or the Comstock Wild Horse and Mining Museum at 775-847-9453.
Details: Visit Dalton's Web site at www.lacyjdalton.com.