Local fairs and festivals converged during Aug. 17 to 20, marking an apex weekend in the Sunshine Coast’s cultural calendar. As book aficionados gathered at the 41st annual Sunshine Coast Festival of the Written Arts, campers and rockers congregated in Wilson Creek for the 8th annual Rogue Fest.
Meanwhile, the Sunshine Coast Writers and Editors Society extended their Art and Words festival, hosting book sales and author readings — serenaded by a bevy of local bagpipers — at the Seaside Centre. Mere blocks away, Sechelt’s Hackett Park was festooned with dozens of booths for the annual Artisan Fair organized by the Sunshine Coast Arts Council.
All this in addition to regular Music in the Landing (Gibsons) and Slow Sundays (Roberts Creek) performances.
Dashing from a grunge gig at Rogue Fest to a Writers Festival reading, the Coast Reporter’s arts correspondent observed that his clutch of neck-worn festival name badges were constricting his windpipe. He took comfort knowing that if he suffocated, headlines would report the discovery of an easily-identified body.
All organizers, volunteers and artists deserve special recognition for packing such a weekend so prodigally.
Sounds like Sechelt
It’s the penultimate weekend of the Sechelt Summer Music series in Hackett Park. On Saturday, Aug. 26, from noon to 2 p.m., two great acts ascend the wood-framed amphitheatre.
Stephan Lacasse, a singer-songwriter living in Roberts Creek, made the move to the Sunshine Coast after years singing in bands in Toronto. His influences include rock, pop, and folk, which shape his music into a style that’s uniquely his own.
After Lacasse, Captain Fantasy performs. The group describes itself as “xwesam’s own and only Ween tribute band,” keeping alive the music of American rockers Gene and Dean Ween.
Gazebo and beyond in Gibsons
As the end of August nears, music continues to flow as part of the Gibsons Music in the Landing Series.
On Friday, Aug. 25 at 7 p.m. at the harbour gazebo, Estelle Honeywell and Friends perform, playing songs that centre around love and the ocean.
On Saturday, Aug. 26 at 3:30 p.m. in Winegarden Park, the Groove Syndicate sets up shop. The high-energy Syndicate features Peter van Deursen on the mighty Hammond B3 organ, Graham Ord on saxophone, Budge Schachte on guitar and John Rule on drums.
At 6:30 p.m. that evening, The Empty Streets play at the Winegarden amphitheatre, sharing new indie roots music that features a distinctive sweet, dark sound.
Jumping into Roberts Creek
In Roberts Creek, Slow Sunday (Aug. 27) presents music, friends and fun in the park behind the community library.
This weekend, the Beachcombers Ukulele Group Singers perform starting at noon. BUGS is followed by folk-rock quartet Mel & The Other Guys. Bellows & Strings (Anna Lumiere and Noah Ord) play until 2 p.m.
At 2 p.m., a super-group of musicians (Carnival Paradiso) plays gypsy-carnival-Fellini style movie and parade music, featuring Graham Ord (sax), Anna Lumiere (keyboard and accordion), James Law (percussion), Noah Ord (fiddle) and Heather Anderson (trombone).
Bellows and Strings (Noah Ord and Anna Lumiere, violin and accordion) makes another special appearance this weekend: the mother-son duo will play on Saturday at the Artisan Market in Lower Gibsons from 12:15 p.m. This weekend represents their last concerts of the year, and a final opportunity to be transported through music to Paris or Buenos Aires.
In addition to Slow Sunday in Roberts Creek, Carnival Paradiso plans another appearance at 11 a.m. in Madeira Park (also on Aug. 27). The concert will mark the inauguration of Madeira Park’s new Tranquility Garden behind the not-for-profit-run EarthFair Store.