Roots and Blues Festival kicks off

Reggae band Raging Fyah, left, and Iceland’s alternative folk-rock duo Bellstop are among the many artists who will bring their talents to this year’s Roots and Blues Festival that runs from Aug. 15 to 17. - Photo contributed
Reggae band Raging Fyah, left, and Iceland’s alternative folk-rock duo Bellstop are among the many artists who will bring their talents to this year’s Roots and Blues Festival that runs from Aug. 15 to 17.
— image credit: Photo contributed

It’s here. The gates to Roots and Blues opens at 5 p.m. Friday evening.

Tickets will be exchanged for wristbands, which need to remain on your wrist and intact in order to access the grounds again.

Festivalgoers are welcome to take their own blankets or tarps for seating, but they must not exceed eight by 10 feet in size. All bags will undergo a security check at the gates to make sure nobody is packing alcohol – go to the beer garden for that.

Chairs are also OK, but higher chairs will be relegated to the back of the pack to prevent them from blocking the view of the stage for others. Those who want to get up and cut a rug, are asked to stay in the dance areas for the same reason.

Anyone who needs assistance for any reason can look for members of the security team, who will be wearing red shirts and patrolling the grounds during the festival.

Medical treatment is available at a first aid station located in front of the fairground riding ring that will be staffed by health-care professionals. If children are lost, they will be taken to the first aid building by a security member.

For those who may need a little help getting around, a mobility assistance shuttle will be running throughout the festival. For more information, head to the security stations set up at the main and west gates.

There will also be disabled parking located on the west side of the grounds, on Fifth Street SW.

Any missing items can be retrieved at the lost and found booth set up across from the food vendors.

Release your inner foodie and indulge in a taste of the exotic with Thai, Greek and Mexican foods, which are just a sample of the many unique, delicious international cusines that will be served up during the festivities.

An exciting new addition to the festival this year is The Vine Bar & Tasting Room located between the Artisan Market and the Boogie Bar-N.

With a purchase of a $6 wine tasting ticket, festivalgoers can sample fine Okanagan and Shuswap wines in a relaxed oasis setting. Participating wineries include Summerhill, Sonoran Ranch, Ovino and Recline Ridge.

The Vine Bar will be open on Saturday and Sunday from noon to 8 p.m. with wine tastings from 1:30 until 4 p.m.

Unique, handmade Canadian creations will again be featured in the popular artisan market. More than 30 vendors will set up shop and sell their one-of-a-kind products. Festival-appropriate tie-dye creations, exotic jewelry, glass works, and custom furniture are just a few things that will be available to shoppers at the festival.

Protect yourself and your kids with sunscreen, hats, sunglasses, protective clothing and footwear. Also, don’t forget to stay hydrated. There are water refill stations throughout the site and misting stations to help cool you down. Don’t worry if you’ve forgotten something, there will be a variety of items available for all your festival needs at the newly created, on-site ‘Survival Store’ located near the festival merchandise tent.

As always, the fun extends to the younger set at the Hub International Barton Family Fun Zone. The family friendly environment will be alive with activities and performances by kid-friendly performers.

Another addition to the festival will be a pancake breakfast with a side order of great music at the Ross Street Plaza hosted by the Salmon Arm Folk Music Society and Downtown Salmon Arm from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, Aug. 16.

Free to Roots and Blues campers and the community, donations will be welcome and will be passed on to Daybreak Rotary for their projects.

A free transportation service operated by Noble Adventures will be shuttling all day from the Fairgrounds to Downtown from 8:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

There’s still time to order tickets online at, or by calling 250-833-4096. Remember, children 12 years of age and under are admitted without charge when accompanied by an adult.


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