Horsefly Arts on the Fly festival program announced

Five Alarm Funk, Fish and Bird, Linda McRae and many more artists will be performing at the Arts on the Fly festival in Horsefly July 13-14.

Five Alarm Funk, Fish and Bird, Linda McRae and many more artists will be performing at the Arts on the Fly music and dance festival in Horsefly July 13-14.

“Horsefly, B.C.’s incredibly popular summertime festival, Arts on the Fly, is going full steam ahead with its seventh annual festival,” says musician Pharis Romero.

This year she says the festival will be on Friday, July 13 and Saturday, July 14 with a full schedule on the Friday evening.

Growing from a single day festival in 2006, she says the festival now attracts audiences from across western Canada and beyond, with acts from around the world brought to this small, beautiful town.

Friday night opens at 6:30 p.m. with a special opening ceremony featuring local elders, cowboy poetry and special programming.

It continues with a full night of entertainment with local favourites Jesse LeBourdais and Drum & Bell Tower, all-girl roots-rock act Jungal, the Vancouver-based LunaSea Circus Troupe, roots/folk award-winners Fish and Bird, and local rockers Big Twang Daddy.

Saturday opens at 11 a.m. with local bluegrass-folk ensemble Jenny’s Jam, then youth band Calling April, the high school duet of Sam and Rowan, the intricate sounds of the harp-cello duo Crossbow, local singer-songwriter Colin Easthope, and Horsefly-based lady of folk and blues Marin Patenaude.

The evening show continues with former Spirit of the West member and country crooner Linda McRae, the eclectic jazz-roots of Danielle Savage, outlaw country singer Joey Only, and the classic western sounds of the Little Horsefly Country Band.

“The last two acts of the evening will keep the crowd up and dancing; Tim Readman and the Eire Born Irish Dancers were a huge hit at last year’s festival, and this year we are proud to present the 10-piece funk powerhouse of Vancouver’s Five Alarm Funk,” Romero says.

Both days will showcase “tweener” acts primarily by local and regional youth. Saturday will also feature an all-acoustic stage with performances by Pharis & Jason Romero, Fish and Bird, Doug Koyama, Crossbow, Christian Hoelderl, and Troy Forcier.

Festival goers can take part in workshops — laughter yoga, vocal improvisation, and Irish dancing, wander through the vendors market, enjoy a delicious meal by chef Martin Comtois, or bring the young ones to Saturday’s Kids’ Zone.

Our Kids’ Zone this year will run most of the day Saturday, with workshops where kids can make a ukulele with local expert lutheiers, or a didgeridoo to take home, among many other ongoing arts and crafts.

Advance tickets are available online at www.artsonthefly.com, in Horsefly at Clarke’s General Store, or in Williams Lake at the Bean Counter and the Gecko Tree.

For more information, please call 250-620-0592, or e-mail pharisromero@gmail.com or artsonthefly.com.