Roots and Blues mixes music, nature

New outreach program Routes and Blues takes to the trails Aug. 11 and 2011 festival T-shirt is unveiled Aug. 13.

Local singer-songwriter Aimie Laws will perform during the Salmon Arm Routes and Blues 2011 T-shirt reveal Aug. 13 at Askew's Foods in Salmon Arm.

There is a new way to get out and get down this summer.

The Salmon Arm Folk Music Society will debut their Routes and Blues concert series, a great new program where you can get your boots on for a trial hike in the afternoon and your dancing shoes on for a fantastic concert held in an intimate setting in the evening.

Held throughout the Shuswap on the six days prior to the Roots and Blues Festival, this new series of events will spread the fun of the highly successful festival throughout the region.

And there’s more: four of the guided interpretive hikes are part of BC Parks 100th Anniversary celebration sites.

The Routes and Blues programs will be held Aug. 11 to 16 –  six days of hiking, concerts and food planned in six communities around the Shuswap.

Every day includes a free, guided interpretive hike in the afternoon, sponsored by Shuswap Trail Alliance, Roots and Blues, Shuswap Tourism, BC Parks 100, and the Adams River Salmon Society.

Hikes are followed by a dinner in the host community, with proceeds going to a local charity.  Each evening features a high-calibre concert, held in an intimate setting of a community hall or other venue.  The hikes are free but concert-goers must buy tickets for the food and music.

“It shows what can happen when you connect the Shuswap; combining arts and culture with the outdoors seems a natural fit,” says Shuswap Trail Alliance executive director Phil McIntyre-Paul.  “The Roots and Blues festival has been such a positive and successful event in our community, and to be part of this new initiative, to spread the benefits of the festival beyond Salmon Arm to other communities in the Shuswap, and to celebrate the role of BC Parks in our region, is great for us all.”

The Albas Falls hike on Saturday, Aug. 13 includes a shuttle on the historic Phoebe Anne paddle wheeler. The evening is capped off by dinner and a concert with Alpha Yaya Diallo.

On Aug. 12, visit the Kingfisher community, hike up Enderby Cliffs, return for a pulled pork dinner and a concert with Rumba Calzaga at the Kingfisher community hall.  Or head out to Malakwa on the 11th, Celista on the 14th or Blind Bay on the 16th.

I

n Squilax on Aug. 15, you can feast on bannock and venison taco and rock out with George Leach, after you hike the Bear Creek Flume trail.

The Shuswap Trail Alliance is hosting a bike clinic at the John Evdokimoff Bike Park in White Lake, the trailhead for the hike between White Lake and Blind Bay on Tuesday, Aug. 16.  Steve St-Denis and Sutra, owners of Ways2Ride, will be teaching cross-country mountain bike skills. Skookum Cycle will have bikes on site for demo-ing.

Log on to Routesandblues.ca and look under “Activities” for details.

“This is an opportunity for the entire Shuswap to share in the success of the Roots and Blues festival,” says Carmen Massey, organizer of the hikes for the Routes and Blues festival.  “It really connects the community, the land, the businesses and artisans, and the musicians in an intimate way.  It is a way for locals and visitors to explore the little communities throughout the Shuswap, hike some of the trails in their backyard, and see these musicians up close.”

T

here are exciting pre-festival performances closer to home too.

Kick those summertime blues to the curb at Roots and Blues T-shirt day Saturday Aug, 13  at Askew’s Foods. You can have your cake and eat it too from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and young talent Aimie Laws will perform live.

Catch the reveal of this year’s T-shirt and wear your own Roots and Blues T-shirt from festivals past for a chance to win some really great prizes including Roots and Blues passes and Askew’s gift cards.

Donations for Second Harvest will be gratefully accepted at this event through the festival’s Roots and Foods initiative.

SIRIUS Satellite Radio and Waterway Houseboats return to host Live on the Lake. Sherman Doucette and Wassabi Collective will belt out the tunes from atop a houseboat Wednesday, Aug.17 in various lake locations.

Catch them at Herald Park day-use area at 11 a.m., Canoe Beach at 1:30 p.m. and the Salmon Arm wharf at 4 p.m.

Friday, Aug. 19, the festival opens with more than 45 acts on six daytime stages. Featured acts include Jonny Lang, Taj Mahal, Five Alarm Funk, Arkells, Ben Waters Trio, Broken Social Scene and much, much more. Weekend and day advance tickets are on sale until midnight Aug. 12 at www.rootsandblues.ca or call 250-833-4096.

 

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