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Art Beat: Higgledy Piggledy casts a spell, Hackett Park artisan fair is this weekend, and more

What's coming up in the arts and culture scene on the Sunshine Coast
A young parade participant poses during the anything-goes Higgledy Piggledy Parade at Creek Daze on Aug. 13.

Last weekend’s Robert Creek Daze festival took on a decidedly historical theme. Medieval swordsman, long-robed wizards, and even good-natured dinosaurs paraded past the Gumboot Café en route to the seaside mandala during the anything-goes Higgledy Piggledy Parade.

At the pier, amid a nonstop lineup of live musical entertainment, artist Emily Picard painted an original work from scratch during a five-hour period. Picard’s painting, inspired by cuttlefish, was raffled to benefit the Roberts Creek Community Association.

The epic performance by Driftwood Players Story Theatre was the troupe’s penultimate appearance of the summer. One more chance remains to see this multigenerational company of actors in action as they reinterpret classic fairy tales and nursery rhymes (with a dollop of humour and improvisation). Story Theatre appears next on Sunday, Sept. 3 at Winegarden Park in Gibsons. 

Strings with sax appeal

On Aug. 12 and 13, the Pender Harbour Music Society welcomed Pender Harbour favourites Joan Blackman (violin), Julia Nolan (saxophone) and Jane Hayes (piano), in the company of two young cellists, Henry Shapard and Hannah Adarrio-Berry.

Their first concert featured wartime masterpieces through the music of Britten, Shostakovich and Ravel. Program notes and narration by the musicians placed the compositions in the context of what was happening on the world stage.

The next day, the musical journey continued through France and Spain. The players explored the music of Ravel, Sarasota, and Faure. The History of the Tango by Astor Piazzolla had the audience transported by familiar, beautiful melodies and seductive rhythms.

“We had a totally enjoyable and transporting weekend,” Margaret Skelley, of the Pender Harbour Music Society. “Thank you to the brilliant musicians and phenomenal ensembles.”

Mark your calendar: music in Pender Harbour continues on Sept. 24 with jazz and blues by the Diane Lines Trio. See the full schedule at

Weekend of literary largesse

If you missed the Art & Words Festival in Gibsons, the Sunshine Coast Writers and Editors Society plans to bring a unique mix of art exhibits, photography, book signings, literary readings, weaving demonstrations, and workshops to the Seaside Centre in Sechelt this weekend.

The Seaside Art and Book Fair and Sale takes place from Aug. 18 to 20, concurrent with the 41st annual Sunshine Coast Festival of the Written Arts (taking place nearby at the Rockwood Centre).

Details of the Seaside event are at The Writer’s Festival schedule is online at

All’s fair in Hackett Park

An annual summer gathering of 50 local and regional vendors takes place this weekend (Aug. 19-20) in Sechelt’s Hackett Park. The Hackett Park Artisan Fair has been an annual tradition on the Coast for 35 years, and attracts close to 5,000 visitors seeking to discover the creations of artisans, each of which is jury-selected based on craftsmanship, originality, and the uniqueness of their wares.

Live musicians performing at the Hackett Park amphitheatre on Saturday, Aug. 19 include the Knotty Dotters marimba band, kids’ entertainer Graham Walker, indie folk musicians The Vallees and singer/songwriter Donald Glen. On Sunday, Aug. 20, singer/songwriter Lowry Olafson leads the charge, followed by classical quintet Whirlwind, jazz and world musician Mitch Lazer, and Joe Stanton and Deborah Holland as the folk, rock and blues-flavoured conclusion. Both days of music start at 11 a.m.

More information is available by browsing to

Come in for a Landing

The Music in the Landing series, sponsored by the Town of Gibsons, features three ensembles this weekend near the Winegarden Park waterfront. 

On Friday, Aug.18, the Doc Fingers trio performs at the breakwater gazebo, starting at 7 p.m. 

On Saturday, Aug. 19 at 3:30 p.m. at the Winegarden amphitheatre, Meg Wang and the Verna Chang Trio perform. That night at 6:30 p.m., the Mimosa ensemble plays its signature mix of jazz, Brazilian sambas, French 1960s pop and cabaret melodies.

Enjoy a cool Sunday

The xwesam/Roberts Roberts Creek Community Association sponsors a weekly summer music series at the gazebo stage behind the Roberts Creek library. 

On Aug.20, starting at noon, the Beachcombers Ukelele Group Singers (BUGS) lead a full afternoon of performances. At 12:40, violinist Michelle Bruce performs with Gord Beynon and Cassidy Wieler. Teen singer/songwriter Kaishan returns to the stage at 1 p.m., followed by solo guitarist Bradley Wells at 1:40. Local legend (and world-class Brazilian musician) Celso Machado delivers a tuneful coda to the afternoon of music, starting at 2:20 p.m.