UNSTOPPABLE- Spandy Andy will be one of the many performers during this year's rendition of CentreFest this weekend in downtown Red Deer.

CentreFest performers set the stage for the long weekend

This year’s CentreFest is a growing attraction and organizers recently announced the addition of ‘Music World’ which will feature musical talents from Central Alberta’s vibrant music scene.

“Music World is obviously a new addition. It’s a new way to help local musicians promote themselves as well as Central Alberta’s music scene,” said Randy Butler, events coordinator.

Music World had been a suggestion by visitors and performers in previous years as a way to allow more musical buskers to take part in the two-day festival and showcase their talents. CentreFest runs July 30-31 and will take place on Ross St. and 49 Ave.

The ATCO Gas Kick-Off BBQ takes place at noon on July 29 in the City Hall Park with the festival running Saturday from noon to 8 p.m. and again on Sunday from noon to 6 p.m.

“The barbeque on Friday will be a sneak preview of some of our talent on site and people are free to come and watch.”

There will be burgers and chips and pop for $5 at the kick-off. The proceeds from the barbeque will go towards funding CentreFest and bringing it back to the City next year, said Butler.

CentreFest is Central Alberta’s largest street performers festival featuring acts of all sorts from all over the world.

“Everything is on track,” said Butler. “We’ve got a lot to do this week in preparation but all of our performers are coming in and everything is going well.”

Local comedians, actors, face painters and visual artists take part in the event alongside buskers of many types including dancers, mimes, artists, clowns, magicians, musicians and puppeteers.

The event is especially family-friendly with the inclusion of Kids World and the Rotary Water World.

“Kids World is a lot of different fun games for kids of all ages,” said Butler. “Different stimulating games will be available that work children not only mentally but physically too. Every kid out there is going to find something they like.”

The Rotary Water World is a misting station similar to the one seen at Westerner Days where people can simply walk through on a hot day to cool off with a gentle spattering of cool water.

“We are also going to have reusable water bottles available on site for sale for just one dollar.”

Last year’s attendance surpassed 25,000 and this year, with the addition of Music World, Butler said they anticipate similar if not higher numbers.

“It’s hard to predict attendance but it’s a long weekend again this year so we could end up with higher numbers. But we would sure like to see everybody come out.”

From Victoria, B.C., Aaron Greg will be joining the list of performers in this years’ line-up.

“He is actually a world record holder for chainsaw juggling which is obviously not something people see very often,” said Butler.

Another group called the Be Arthurs will be entertaining crowds with their covers of songs from popular artists. “They do all their songs on ukuleles which ends up being very different and very funny for the audience.”

Butler said the event is still looking for some volunteers specifically for the tear down process both Saturday and Sunday nights.

To volunteer or get more information contact Randy Butler at 403-340-8696 or by email at info@centrefest.ca

kpalardy@reddeerexpress.com

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