New festival set for July

Featuring live music, dance, and performances, July 16 will bring the inaugural Kootenay Festival.

Featuring live music, dance, and performances, July 16 will bring the inaugural Kootenay Festival.

Encouraging the appreciation of the community’s diversity, the festival will give residents and visitors an exciting opportunity to sample the cuisine, culture, and heritage of this dynamic region.

“It is a fantastic opportunity for the region’s artists and cultural organizations to come together and celebrate, and we are working hard to create a showcase for them,” said Audrey Polovnikoff, Committee Chair for the Kootenay Festival. “We look forward to welcoming everyone to a day of food, entertainment, information about the culture of the community, and of course a day of fun!”

Located adjacent to the Doukhobor Discovery Centre and Kootenay Gallery of Art, this easily-accessible site will host at least two performance venues: the Main Stage, front and centre on one acre of open-air land for bigger acts; closer to the Gallery, the second stage will host the softer side of music and allow patrons to lounge on the grass or enjoy a calming butterfly garden.

The amazing talent residing in the Kootenays will be on display. Well-known local musicians Adam Shaikh, Aspen Switzer, and Razberry Rockets have been contacted to headline the festival, while regional dance groups specializing in Highland, Balinese, Jazz, Modern, Modern, and Belly Dancing are being offered an ideal venue to showcase their talent.

The true excellence of art in the region will be on exhibition as well, with the Kootenay Gallery and a resident artist’s studio located on the festival grounds. Art easels will also be available for use, surrounded by artists creating alongside the public.

The diversity and heritage of the region will be exhibited. In addition to the historic Doukhobor Discovery Centre being open for business during the festival, local ethnic groups will be invited to share their culture with attendees. With such possible activities as Lower Columbia All First Nations teepee displays and storytelling, Italian gardening/cooking, and Russian weaving taking place throughout the day, a visit will be both entertaining and educational for the entire family.

To become involved with the festival, or for any inquiries, please visit www.castlegarculture.com or www.kootenaygallery.com.

/Submitted