Elvis impersonator Adam Fitzpatrick returns to the Salmon Arm Fair stage for 2022. (File photo)

Whole lot of shakin’ in store at upcoming Salmon Arm Fair

Award-winning Elvis tribute artist among musical acts to perform at Sept. 9-11 event

By Barb Brouwer


There’ll be a whole lot of shakin’ going at the Salmon Arm Fair.

Elvis Evolution will be part of the great slate of acts entertainment coordinator Gil Risling has assembled for the fair, which runs from Sept. 9 to 11.

Adam Fitzpatrick first performed as Elvis in a Penticton festival in 2008, where he won in the amateur division. A win in a California competition in 2012 earned him an entrance into the Ultimate Elvis in Memphis, where he made top 15. In 2013, a win in a Penticton festival’s professional division again earned him a spot in the Ultimate Elvis, where he came in second. In 2014, he won the European championship in Blackpool, England and a week later took the Las Vegas Championship.

That same year, Fitzpatrick gave up competing to become a family man.

‘I always wanted to be a dad, so I didn’t want to miss all the perks of being one,” he said, noting his two children, now 5 and 6, arrived back-to back. “I didn’t want to miss all the milestones, but I miss competing.”

Fitzpatrick said he’s considering getting back into competition, perhaps next year, but stressed that it would have to be the right place at the right time.

“I’m really looking forward to performing in Salmon Arm again where it’s always a fun crowd, and working with Gil again is really nice.”

Fitzpatrick will be bringing his family, which includes six-year-old Noah, who has also been bitten by the Elvis bug.

Noah has his own jumpsuit and, at the Blue Suede Festival in Westlock, Alta. in early August, he sang “That’s Alright (Mama) a capella and stayed onstage and wiggled a bit.

Fitzpatrick said he will ask Noah if he wants to share the stage for a bit in Salmon Arm.

Grateful for the support fans gave him for his online shows during Covid, he is happy to be performing in front of live crowds instead of at home in front of a camera.

Award winning, songwriting, multi-instrumentalist acoustic duo Blu and Kelly Hopkins will perform from their extensive repertoire of classic folk, country and bluegrass music.

Kelly’s harmonies combine well with Blu’s smokey baritone voice to provide traditional and contemporary tunes, with a dash of humour in a welcome brew of good times and good tunes.

Introduced to a wide audience in the Louisiana Hayride shows, area radio personality Patrick Ryley will ride onto the stage with his Hank on the Wagon routine.

A popular performer at several Shuswap venues, his is a musical journey of classic country roots and blues music.

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Fairgoers can relax under the shelter in the food court and view shows that feature an eclectic mix of performers.

The Main Stage will feature the Hat Trick Band, Hank on the Wagon, Just For Kicks prior to the 5:50 p.m. Friday grand opening. Shuswap Dance Centre will then take the stage followed by the new Movie Night at the Fair from 7:30 to 9.

Beginning with Barn Catz at 11:45, Saturday’s Main Stage lineup includes Shuswap Pipes and Drums, Shuswap Dance Centre, Blu and Kelly Hopkins and Just For Kicks, with Movie Night at 7:30 p.m.

Adam Fitzpatrick brings his Elvis Evolution to the stage at 1, 3 and 4:30 p.m.

Back on the Main Stage on Sunday are Barn Catz at 11:45, followed by Elvis Evolution, Just For Kicks and Blu and Kelly Hopkins.

Salmon Arm Fair awards will be presented at 3:15 and Main Stage entertainment will finish with members of the Shuswap Dance Centre.

The Heritage Lane Studio will feature Green Room, True Blue and William and Penny on Friday beginning at 1 p.m.

Saturday performances begin at noon with Green Room and followed by Hank on the Wagon, Blu and Kelly Hopkins, True Blue and the Shukuleles.

Green Room is back at noon on Sunday and followed by True Blue and William and Penny.

Looking forward to being back at the fair, Risling says he and wife Lori have managed fall fair entertainment for many years as a way to give back for the tremendous support daughter Shannon received in the community.

But the couple are now living in Saskatchewan, which complicates their ability to coordinate the shows now.

Sad there will be no Shuswap Idol this year, Risling is hoping someone in the Shuswap will step forward to take over the program.

“It was a big part of the fair for many years but it needs new blood,” he said. “Salmon Arm Idol was the first performance for many who realized they could do that and several went on to play, open for acts and are still playing.”

Risling says he and Lori developed an excellent template of how they organized the event and would happily share the information if someone is willing to take the program on.

“It’s been a long haul, we’ve enjoyed it and wanted to give back, but it might be time to hand over the reins.”

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