Not to be outdone by its first two installments, the Kingsville Folk Music Festival is bringing another impressive list of performers to the stages for 2016.
The third annual musical gathering of its kind for Kingsville’s Lakeside Park will be presented on five separate stages from Friday, Aug. 12 to Sunday, Aug. 14. The event is again being present by Rebel Cowboy Music School owners and operators John and Michele Law, who are taking on the roles of co-producers for the annual festival while also committing as the opening act to this year’s installment.
This year’s Kingsville Folk Music Festival will feature Buffy Sainte-Marie, whose earlier works have been performed by the likes of Elvis Presley, Janis Joplin, Donovan, Joe Cocker, Courtney Love and several others. A Cree activist and educator, Sainte-Marie has been the recipient of Oscar, Polaris, Juno and Golden Globe awards. Renowned for her protest anthems of the 1960s and appearances on Sesame Street in the mid 1970s, Sainte-Marie has a tour in the works that includes locations throughout Europe, Australia and other North American stops.
The other 29 performers for this year’s three-day show include several other award winners and what multiple sources describe as up and coming musicians. Other accomplished acts to take to the stages include Latin Grammy winner Alex Cuba, Garnet Rogers, Alysha Brilla, Bill Bourne and Quique Escamilla. Attractions this year will also include several food, beverage and art vendors including Pelee Island Winery wines and craft beers. The Laws explained that with a larger ethnic diversity among performs, food vendors will also be offering a wider assortment of cultural meal options.
A Media Launch for the Kingsville Folk Music Festival was hosted by Pelee Island Winery in Kingsville Friday, May 6, where the Laws paid tribute to the event’s sponsors as well as announcing its performers. The occasion also featured live music from Mike and Kelly Authier of The Oh Chays, local performers from the first two editions of the festival.
“This year I think we have a stellar, musical diverse line up,” John said. “It’s going to take this festival to a three-year high.”
Luther Wright and the Wrongs’ side project Butterfingers, Jangles the Magical Clown, Magoo and Todd Crowley’s Musical Petting Zoo will appear as children’s performers and attractions. Local musician and Last Friday Coffee House founder Dale Butler will make this third appearance for the festival, performing as well as presenting his Learn to Play Guitar in Two Minutes program.
“We’re really excited that we can make this happen,” said Michele. “We’ve got a strong community and it’s growing all the time.”
Michele explained that the ‘time off’ between festivals runs for about two weeks before the board of directors and roughly 250 volunteers begin making arrangements for the following year.
The sale of Early Bird passes that were made available until Apr. 1 doubled the number accounted for last year. Weekend passes are now selling at $95 per adult and $85 per senior and student while single-day passes range from $40 on Friday to $60 on Saturday and $50 for Sunday. Patrons 16 and under will be entitled to free admission. Tickets can be purchased by calling 1-800-838-3006 and are available online at www.kingsvillefolkfest.brownpapertickets.com. Tickets can be bought at Merlis’, Pelee Island Winery, Box Office Video and Anna’s Flowers in Kingsville, Fletcher’s Cleaners and the Leamington Municipal Marina in Leamington and Guardian Drug Store in Wheatley.
The Laws explained that they’re hoping to draw an audience of 5,000 per day. Michele noted that Lakeside Park would be able to accommodate up to 11,000 visitors, but explained that 5,000 will still allow for an intimate atmosphere.
Interested businesses and organizations are still able to sponsor this year’s festival with a variety of sponsorship packages available for the non-profit event. Further details are available at www.kingsvillefolkfest.org.
Each year, the rain-or-shine festival’s proceeds support the MAY (Music and Arts for area Youth) Fund, a program supporting Windsor and Essex County youths who are pursuing the arts.