Theme nights, jigging and concerts ahead for winter festival
HANNAH CLARK, CONTRIBUTOR
Grab your sashes and moccasins — Western Canada’s largest winter festival is starting up soon. And it wouldn’t be Festival du Voyageur without the tunes.
“We have 140 acts coming this year,” said Ginette Lavack Walters, executive director of Festival. “Lots of local talent and some coming from outside Manitoba. Shred Kelly from Vancouver is coming, and Les Hay Babies are coming out from New Brunswick.”
Another new band on the snow scene is Rosie & the Riveters, a female folk quartet from Saskatoon. They’ll be on stage Feb. 13 and 14 with their retro sounds.
“We call it ‘vintage-inspired folk,’” said band member Alexis Normand. “We combine the sweetness of the Good Lovelies mixed with the soul of Mahalia Jackson, and the approach of The Andrews Sisters.”
This is the first time the group will play at Festival, but it’s definitely not the first time they’ve heard of the Manitoba winter party.
“We’ve heard a lot about the festival, and we’re really excited to play,” said Normand.
And though the theme of Festival might seem like maple syrup and beards on the outside, the schedule shows a few sub themes.
“The theme nights will be things like singles night with game shows that people can take part in,” said Lavack Walters. “Across the Board Café is also doing a theme night, and we’re also doing a karaoke night.”
Some old favourites are back, but with a twist. The Snowshoe Trail is being expanded to include a Moonlight Walk — a guided tour that will end with a round of Caribou liqueur.
Keeping with the demand for shopping local, Festival du Voyageur will include Market Days, two days where local artisans will be invited to showcase locally made and sold goods.
Festival du Voyageur runs all day from Feb. 12 to Feb. 21.