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For couple, 1975 Chicago concert at SPAC was only the beginning

For couple, 1975 Chicago concert at SPAC was only the beginning

They returned Tuesday night to where they met
For couple, 1975 Chicago concert at SPAC was only the beginning
Wendy and Roger Epting at SPAC on Tuesday night.
Photographer: Michael Hochanadel/For The Daily Gazette

“I liked what I saw through my binoculars,” said Roger Epting at SPAC, recalling the long-haired blonde girl he’d spotted at a Chicago show there on Aug. 18, 1975.

Back again to see Chicago at SPAC on Tuesday, he didn’t need binoculars to spot that girl. Wendy, his wife of 38 years, was right beside him.

Back in ’75, he’d come to see Chicago with two friends while Wendy Clement had come with a girlfriend, hoping to check out the new girlfriend her ex-boyfriend had brought to the show.

RELATED: Hits kept coming at Chicago-Doobie Brothers SPAC show

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Roger went closer through the crowd, to check out Wendy. He introduced himself and asked for her number. “I saw a crushed Pepsi cup on the ground, and I wrote my number on it with my lipstick,” she said Tuesday.

Roger phoned. They went out.

They married, raised a family and moved to Florida.

When they planned a visit back here this week, their son gave them tickets to see Chicago and the Doobie Brothers on Tuesday as an anniversary gift, also tickets to Rod Stewart and Cyndi Lauper last Saturday.

On Tuesday, Wendy and Roger sat on the same sloping lawn where they’d met at a Chicago show 42 years before; looking at the same stage where both had graduated from high school: Roger from Burnt Hills, Wendy from South Colonie. They recalled all the shows they’d seen over the decades, first alone, then together. Each had paid just $10 to see their first Chicago show. “Yeah, but I’ve been paying for it ever since!” Roger joked as Wendy laughed with him.

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