A kid at heart.

My bedtime is early—as in, the same time as my toddler-age nephews, 8 p.m.—and it always has been, even as a teenager and young(er) adult. I suspect this is the reason why I’ve always felt uncool.

But when I am listening to the latest albums by the Whizpops and the Salamanders, I feel very cool. These two bands were an obvious choice to feature in our Back to School issue.

The Salamanders’ Cowboy Andy brought Missoula’s kindie (kiddie + indie) rock scene to my attention. This genre, as described by Wikipedia, is children’s music that “melds the sensibility of the singer-songwriter with themes aimed at kids under 10.” I would add: “and appreciated by adults who are kids at heart, and even having the added benefit of making these adults cool.”

The Whizpops’ Ranger Rick’s Trail Mix Vol. 1 and Bubbles by the Salamanders have been the soundtracks to my summer, and their fun, upbeat, positive, educational lyrics remind me how important being a kid is—regardless of actual age.

J.M. Barrie, writing in “Peter Pan,” literature’s most famous forever child, writes, “I suppose it’s like the ticking crocodile, isn’t it? Time is chasing after all of us.” But just because time chases us doesn’t mean we have to let it catch us. Walt Disney said it best:

Growing old is mandatory, but growing up is optional.

And the best benefit about having two of the best kindie rock bands jamming out in my backyard? Their gigs wrap up in time for my bedtime.

Read all about the Whizpops on page 28 and the Salamanders on page 24.

Cover Blurb

Garden City Montessori Elementary students Eliza Scranton, Susanna Scranton, Hailey Milyard, Myla Chambers, and Resi Chapman are excited about the 2017-18 school year. The school offers outstanding private Montessori education at the preschool, kindergarten, and elementary (grades 1-4) levels. Learn more at GardenCityMontessori.com. Photography and Photo Editing by Pamela Dunn-Parrish