Red Deer’s 125th-annual Westerner Days will be (mostly) all-Canadian

Central Alberta’s largest summer attraction will have more ag events

Jamie Woodfin

Red Deer country singer Jamie Woodfin joins electronic artist Coleman Hell, rocker Tom Cochrane and golden hit-maker Chilliwack in an all-Canadian entertainment lineup at the 2017 Westerner Days.

Although the fair’s Centrium acts will run the gamut from country to cutting edge pop and ’70s-era radio rock, all the entertainers — along with most vendors — will be Canadian, in honour of this country’s 150th birthday, said CEO Ben Antifaiff.

“This year’s campaign embodies what it means to be a Canadian. We are proud, welcoming and service oriented,” he added.

All entertainment at the July 19-23 fair will once again be free with gate admission — and cost-saving early-bird tickets to the fair go on sale Friday until June 15 from ticketsalberta.com.

Country bands Nice Horse and Hey Romeo will perform with award-winning headliner Jess Moskaluke on opening night Wednesday. Kenny Shields and Streetheart will pair up with Chilliwack on Thursday, while Woodfin and Ken Stead will open for Cochrane and Red Rider on Friday night.

Saturday night’s entertainment will feature Calgary pop singer Jocelyn Alice and headliner Hell, who’s known for the chart-topper Two Heads.

Smaller stages will also feature an array of entertainment, including singers Drew Gregory, Dean Ray and Alecia Aichelle, from Red Deer County.

Red Deer’s 2017 Westerner Days Fair is taking a step back to its agricultural roots. “We’re very excited to increasing our agricultural events,” said Ben Antifaiff, CEO of Westerner Park.

Among them are ranch hand competitions to test cowboys skills, mounted equine games and a pony steeplechase. There will also be more horse events — including The Equine Experience and Gypsy Vanner Feather Horses — in addition to nightly Pony Chuckwagon races.

A petting zoo, goat and beef shows will be offered — as well as magicians, clowns, illusionists, stunt acts and stock dog trials.

This year’s 19th Street Market will feature works by local artists and artisans, said Antifaiff. And among varied food offerings — including new cereal and coffee bars — will be local vendor Chedda’ Heads.

Families needing a break from the Kids Corral and 40-ride midway will be able to enter a Calm Room for the first time. And once again there will be nightly fireworks, and a Westerner Days Parade downtown on July 19.

For information about events, ticket prices, special day admissions, and a VIP experience contest, please visit westernerdays.ca. Co-op stores will sell all-day ride passes from June 16 to July 19.

lmichelin@bprda.wpengine.com

 

Chilliwack band

Jess Moskaluke

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