Festival season is in full swing in the Bulkley Valley, and one of the most anticipated events of the summer is approaching fast.
President of the Kispiox Valley Music Festival (KVMF) Society Christine Bruce said there will be something for people of “all ages and all interests” at this weekend’s festival.
“We want everyone to feel that their taste has been addressed somehow,” she said.
Headliners include folk musician Jesse Waldman, the musical trio Red Moon Road, and “outlaw country” band The Revelators, as well as a myriad of local favourites.
Bruce said the history of the KVMF is tied in very closely with one of the area’s other major festivals.
“The [Midsummer Music Festival] organizers 24 years ago decided that they wanted to distribute some extra money that they had into the northern regions to try and encourage other festivals … That was how we got started; with a grant from Midsummer Festival.
“We’re very grateful to the original organizers, and to the current members who continue to be really good advocates for music in the North. They’re very good mentors, they’ve helped me with a lot of things I didn’t quite understand. They’ve been pretty fabulous for our entire history … They had a terrific 35th Midsummer this year, they put on a great festival, and we have a high bar to come up to, but we hope we will.”
The KVMF continues to grow and develop even as it approaches its 25th anniversary, and Bruce promises something new for attendees this year.
“Last year we started a drum circle … and it’s basically a quiet place for the performers to go after-hours and just hang out and jam … I’m sure it’ll be a highlight for a lot of people who want a quiet place to go and just hang out with musicians and jam and have a quiet time.”
Bruce thinks one of the biggest draws for the festival is its remote location.
“People know that when they go there — vendors, performers, and festival-goers alike — they all know that when they get there they cannot access wifi, so nobody can reach them and they can’t reach anybody else.
“Obviously that gives us some challenges for things like emergencies, first aid, that sort of thing, which we’re always very careful to address. Those are high priorities for us. But it means that when people come, they will not be distracted, and they will come for an entire weekend of old-fashioned fun where they can’t look at their cell phone, can’t be called. Nothing can take them away from it, and I think that’s why people really like this festival. It’s also a very beautiful place right on the Kispiox River. It’s gorgeous.”
This year’s festival will take place from July 27 – 29 at the Kispiox Valley Community Grounds. Bruce encourages everyone to visit their website at kvmfest.com for information about this year’s performers, and said they are always looking for volunteers.