CKXU’s Love and Records is back for a big sixth year of family fun in Galt Gardens, Sept. 16.
There will be a couple of noticeable changes this year.
“We’ve got a good connection with the folks at South Country Fair, so we’re using their stage instead of the amphitheatre,” said CKXU station manager Aaron Trozzo.
“It will be set up right in the middle of the park and they are going to help set it up,” Trozzo continued, noting the beer garden, sponsored by Coulee Brew, has also been expanded for this year.
“We’re going to reduce the environmental footprint of the festival,” he continued, noting there will be no water bottles, but there will be refillable water stations. Vendors are also being asked to use compostable take-away food containers.
“And we’re focusing on a ‘ride your bike down here’ message this year,” he said.
“We have volunteers responsible for proper allocation of waste.”
As usual there will be food trucks, a Kidzone plus plenty of record vendors.
“ We’re using the amphitheatre as a wind and weather sheltered market for the vendors,” he continued, estimating there will be close to 40 record vendors this year, plus vendors selling trinkets and other paraphernalia.
“And in the basin of the amphitheatre, there will be a skate demonstration,” he continued.
There will also be a bigger art presence at this year’s Love and Records.
“We have our art market as usual, but there will also be two art installations Tyler Stewart and Jane Edmundson are setting up. They include a solar flare public art installation by Caitlind R.C. Brown and Wayne Garrett and live analog video projections by Ghost House,” said Trozzo.
“The solar flare is a psychedelic light installation on a big LED screen so we can also show our sponsors’ logos which will look pretty awesome when the sun goes down.”
As usual with Love and records, there will be a lot of live music at the free festival.
In the afternoon, the Owl Acoustic Lounge hosts “Tuneful Tangle,” a showcase of under-18 bands.
“It isn’t really a band wars because there are prizes for everyone and they are all pretty similar,” he observed.
Connie Crop eared Wolf will open the main stage around 11 a.m. with a Blackfoot blessing on behalf of Treaty 7 First Nations.
Regular programming of the University of Lethbridge-based community radio station will be pre-empted by a live broadcast of Love and Records, though it won’t be simulcast on other stations like last year.
“We haven’t set up anything, but it will be made available to any stations who want to use it,” Trozzo continued.
There will also be no Ferris wheel like last year, as the organizers received a grant last year to cover that, which they weren’t able to get this year.
“We’re hoping people won’t miss it because of the skating demos and the KidZone has some really cool stuff this year. There will be a giant inflatable escape room that is a bank vault scenario and of course kids in giant inflatable balls bumping into each other, which is always entertaining to watch,” he said.
The big attraction, as always, is the live music on the main stage.
Performing this year are local alternative rock groups J Blissette and Fox Eyes and local folk singer John Wort Hannam. Also performing will be Calgary-based singer-songwriter Carter Felker, Calgary rockabilly band Peter and the Wolves, who played Love and Records a few years ago, Maria Livingston and headliners, Toronto’s Weaves and Somali-Canadian singer Cold Specks.
“Cold Specks played the Geomatic Attic with the Great Lake Swimmers and she’s got a new album coming out (“Fool’s Paradise”) so she’ll probably be playing new music from that,” Trozzo continued.
“Weaves are a really fun art pop band,” he described.
“They’re super upbeat and weird.”
The sixth annual CKXU Love and records festival is free to attend. It is sponsored by The Alberta Foundation for the Arts, Coulee Brew, Servus Credit Union, Western One and the South Country Fair plus Heart of the City.