Trews to rock Red Deer

Westerner Park officials plan to have a more environmentally and family-friendly Westerner Days this year.

Wendy Barnes

Wendy Barnes

Westerner Park officials plan to have a more environmentally and family-friendly Westerner Days this year.

Westerner Park president Wendy Barnes said green has always been their colour, but this year they’ve decided to take it a step further.

Westerner Park has partnered with Enmax to power the event with wind power, lights will be off in the midway during the day and lower trade show lighting will be used in the facilities to save on energy.

John Harms, CEO of Westerner Park, said they’ve created a family zone at Westerner Days this year.

He said they’ve moved the slots away from the Harvest Centre. Now there will be Kiddie Land, the Enmax family barbecue pit and other family-friendly activities in and around the Harvest Centre. He said there are better washrooms and more areas to park strollers there.

Harms said they’ll be posting signs around Kiddie Land, letting people know it’s a non-smoking area.

“It’s going to be hard to enforce, but hopefully with signage people will realize it’s a family area and they’ll butt out,” Harms said.

The event is set for July 15 to 19 this year. Westerner Park officials launched the official lead up to Westerner Days at Bower Place Shopping Centre Sunday afternoon. This year’s theme is celebrate the kid in you.

This year’s event will showcase the Trews on July 15, Gord Bamford and George Canyon on July 16, The Stampeders on July 17, Aaron Pritchett on July 18 and the African Acrobats on July 19. The concerts start at 8:30 p.m., with doors opening at 7:30 p.m. The African Acrobats will perform at 2 p.m. and 5 p.m., July 19. Tickets for the Trews concert are available through Ticketmaster at 403-340-4455 or online at www.ticketmaster.com.

All of the other concerts are included in the gate admission prices.

The Westerner Days parade will kick off festivities at the Red Deer Arena at 9:30 a.m. on July 15. and the Northern Lights Fireworks Show is set for July 18 at 10:45 p.m. There will be CKGY Pony Chuckwagon Races at 6:30 p.m. nightly, the Molson Canadian Chalet will be open from 3 p.m. to 11 p.m. and there are 39 rides on the midway, which will be open from noon to midnight.

Tickets to Ride for $27, covering gate admission and unlimited midway rides for any one day, are available at Bower Place Shopping Centre Guest Services from now until July 14. They will be available at FasGas and FasGas Plus locations starting June 15 until July 14.

Barnes said last year’s event drew more than 90,000 people from across Western Canada into the area.

According to a study on the 2008 event this year’s festivities are expected to bring approximately $5-million in spending by attendees from outside of the city visiting Red Deer.

More information on the event is available online at: www.westerner.ab.ca or on the Facebook group Westerner Days Fair & Exposition.

sobrien@bprda.wpengine.com