AMAZING ART- Artist Josh Christensen uses his fingers to chalk out a viking on the sidewalk during CentreFest this past weekend downtown.

CentreFest has big plans for the future

CentreFest 2011 was a great success with warm weather, great attendance, and an abundance of diverse entertainment, organizers say.

The temperature for both days remained above the 20-degree mark, keeping the Rotary Water World quite busy and water bottle sales at a remarkable high.

“In five hours on Saturday we out-sold last year’s total water bottle sales for both days,” said Randy Butler, events coordinator.

Butler said the mister consistently had people walking through it to cool off and take a break from the hot day and children were enjoying running through with their families.

A small change for this year’s festival was the placement of Kids World, which was located in the park instead of on the road.

“It made it seem a bit more relaxed and gave more areas to sit down and take a few minutes to enjoy the day.”

Kids World had a steady flow of interested children as well through the weekend and Butler said it was a great hit for kids of all ages.

“This year went really smooth overall and we had huge crowds. The performers were all really happy and said they enjoyed the Red Deer people.”

About 28 performers could be found at CentreFest doing a variety of things. Some had crowds shocked and in awe, while others, like Fraser Hooper, had them laughing and cheering.

Hooper is a clown out of the United Kingdom, who Butler said was “indescribable” because of his different, contemporary style of entertainment.

“He doesn’t really talk at all; everything he does is motion and we had a lot of compliments on his show and how interesting and different it was.”

As a testament to the diversity of the festival, Hooper performed for the crowds using mime, audience participation, comedy juggling and eccentric dance without missing a beat.

“There was also Alakazam and a lot of people who were marvelling at the things he can do and saying they couldn’t believe he can move the way he does.”

Alakazam, or The Human Knot, is a contortionist from Australia who entertains crowds with a mixture of body bending, comedy and sky-high acts of danger.

Alongside these performers were chainsaw jugglers, magicians, musicians, face-painters, dancers and many others.

Butler said attendance was around the 28,000 mark, which is a huge increase over past years.

Even the ATCO Gas Kick-Off on Friday went smoothly, attracting about 500 people.

Butler said one of the things that CentreFest could not function without is the volunteers. This year, about 50 people helped out.

“Our volunteers were wonderful including some who put in some very long days. We couldn’t do it without them.”

Butler said he thinks this year was the biggest CentreFest to date and that a lot of comments have been made that it was the best one so far as well.

“There are always possibilities of new things popping up in future years but we’re really happy with how things turned out this year. We are striving to improve on what we have already done.”

Just Posted

RCMP offer crime prevention tips for the holiday season

Red Deer RCMP give tips so holidays aren’t marred by theft or damage

RCMP lay 34 charges in stolen vehicle operation

Red Deer RCMP arrest 13 people in four-day covert stolen vehicle operation last week

Last Christmas for Ten Thousand Villages in Red Deer

The fair trade organization will be closing its doors in the New Year

Olympic sportscaster Brian Williams says IOC too lenient on Russians

Williams was in Red Deer for a speech for Farm Credit Canada

A 37-year-old Red Deer man arrested for impaired driving

Man sustained serious injuries in two-vehicle collision

Troubled Monk releases new spirit

Troubled Spirit vodka was introduced in early December

Firefighter dies, thousands more take on California blaze

This is second death linked to the Thomas fire, northwest of Los Angeles

FCC votes along party lines to end ‘net neutrality’

Move rolls back restrictions that keep big providers from blocking services they don’t like

Truck driver volunteers to take dog lost in B.C. back home to Alberta

Frankie, a pit bull service dog, was found wandering in the Lower Mainland

Disney buying part of 21st Century Fox in $52.4B deal

Disney is buying a large part of the Murdoch family’s 21st Century Fox for about $52.4 billion

Bountiful polygamist believed he couldn’t be prosecuted: lawyer

Winston Blackmore’s lawyer says Blackmore did not believe he could be prosecuted

Woman charged after altercation injured baby in Toronto

Charges have been laid after a four-month-old baby girl was critically injured in Toronto

Ottawa Senators forward Chris Neil announces retirement

Veteran Ottawa Senators forward Chris Neil spent 15 seasons with the NHL team

Trudeau’s office confirms staffer being probed over allegations

PMO confirms staffer being probed over allegations of reported “inappropriate behaviour.”

Most Read