The magic is coming. As suddenly as the summer heat hits the entrance, so will the melodies of haunting blues, the rugged tinge of folk and the ascending wave of eclectic dance. It will come with a stampede of talent and the pattering of festival-goer feet.
At six stages, fans will absorb the world class line-up. The main stage will be at the far end of the grounds, where you will catch acts such as Bruce Cockburn, City and Colour, Daniel Lanois and Shakura S’Aida.
At the opposite end of the grounds you will find the boogie barn stage where the dancers can kick up their heels. Here you can vibe to Selah Sue, Santa Lucia, Richard Perso and Mississippi Heat, along with many others. It’s also near the dance tent.
At stages where there are seated patrons you won’t be able to dance up front. Don’t worry, though, there will be sectioned off dance areas to the side.
To the right of the main gate will be the focus stage with the family fun zone adjacent to that. Roots and Blues is family friendly and this area offers lots for kids to see and do. The family stage will feature a line-up geared towards children, not to mention a climbing wall, bounce house, sandbox and the Okanagan Science Centre on site. Kids 12 and under are admitted free of charge.
Right next door you will find the shade stage and picnic area. The global food village will keep your taste buds satisfied all weekend with western and eclectic cuisine.
Dispose of your trash in garbage bins and keep the grounds looking pleasant. Don’t drop that plastic water bottle on the ground, put it in a recycling bin nearby.
In the heart of the grounds, the artisan market will weave amongst the trees with handmade Canadian originals. Also down the middle will be the information centre, notice board and merchandise area where festival T-shirts, hoodies, hats, chairs, water bottles and more will be for sale. Here you can buy glow gear to illuminate the night. Make sure to pick up your favourite act’s CD to relive those festival memories over and over again.
If you misplace anything, the lost and found will be located at the information booth.
Security central and first aid will be set up near the fairgrounds riding ring.
If your child wanders off, this is where you will find him/her. Make sure your child knows where the first-aid building is in case they require assistance or are separated from you. Security volunteers will be wearing red Roots and Blues volunteer T-shirts.
The smaller riding ring will house the beer gardens where you can grab a drink in addition to the boogie barn pub. Overindulging in the heat will make for poor festival memories, however. No alcohol or illicit substances may be brought onto festival grounds.
When the heat starts to get to you, cool down at one of the misting stations throughout the site. Remember your sun essentials: hat, sunscreen, sunglasses and water so you can enjoy a full day of music. There will be water refill stations to keep you hydrated.
Bring low-back chairs – a festival or beach type. Higher lawn chairs will be restricted to a back and side location so they aren’t blocking anyone’s view. Tarps and blankets to sit on will also get priority.
If you require assistance getting around the grounds, take advantage of the mobility assistance shuttle. Volunteers at the security station, main and west gates will know how to get you aboard.
There will be limited designated parking on 5th Street SW for patrons with disabilities.
Other paid parking will be on the north side of the grounds. If you ride your bike down, there will be an area where you can lock it up.
The gates open at 5 p.m. on Friday and 10 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday.
Your wrist band will be your way in and out of the gates so don’t rip it, cut it, stretch it or alter it – but you probably won’t be leaving anyway.
From the Canadian legends to international trail blazers, the urban electronic to African rhythms, you probably won’t find a stage that doesn’t intrigue you. So get ready for a weekend of magic. It’s coming.