The 30th annual Harrison Festival of the Arts was an artistic and financial success, with organizers wondering what they can do to top this year’s event. The evening concerts in the Memorial Hall featured one of the strongest line-ups in the Festival’s history, including a sold-out show by Jim Byrnes & the Sojourners, and wonderful shows from Baka Beyond, UHF, The Paperboys and more. Music on the Beach featured a little something for everyone. From cutting edge dance music by Delhi 2 Dublin to the old-time music of the Highwater Jug Band, audiences were treated to some of the best that Canada, and the World, has to offer. Children’s Day was also a big success, with a myriad of activities and entertainment from Juno Award winning entertainer Al Simmons. It was also a strong year for the Art Market, with product ranging from paintings, pottery and jewelry to henna tattoos and tie-dyed clothing.
Top Ten Moments:
1. Festival Executive Director Phyllis Stenson getting a big hug from his Honour Steven Point, Lieutenant Governor of BC and receiving a drum made by her Honour Gwen Point.
2. Baka Beyond’s concert, from start to finish.
3. The incredible vocal harmonies of Jim Byrnes & the Sojourners.
4. Delhi 2 Dublin getting the whole beach dancing.
5. The humour and song parodies of Todd Butler.
6. A fantastic encore from BC super-group UHF (Shari Ulrich, Bill Henderson & Roy Forbes) as they each performed their greatest hits.
7. Seeing old friends like Tao Ravao & Vincent Boucher back in Canada and better than ever.
8. Harrison Festival favorite Faith Nolan leading the Community Choir.
9. The sing-along at the Paperboys concert.
10. Swing dancers just showing up and showing off to the music of the Highwater Jug Band.