It's festival season!

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With June just around the corner, Wab's decided to come up with his very own guide to summer festival season here in Manitoba. From Morden's Back 40 Festival, to Gimli's Islendingadagurinn, it's an hour of great Manitoba acts like The Other Brothers, Alana Levandoski, and The Nowosad Price Quintet... all performers you can catch live this summer!

Just a few of the festivities we'll be chattin' about on The (204):

MORDEN'S BACK 40 FESTIVAL

One Sunday afternoon in Morden Manitoba, three friends sat on a porch and thought:"how fun would it be to have a folk festival around here?" Most people would just nod their heads and pour themselves another lemonade. But not Linda Hiebert, James Friesen and Wes Hamm. For over 20 years, their vision of "keeping home-made music alive" has been going strong as the Back 40 festival. That's happening next weekend if you want to check it out.

Lots of great performers will be at this year's Back 40 including Sue Foley, Jacob and Lily and the Other Brothers. AND - we have tickets to give away for the festival so tune in!

NATIONAL ABORIGINAL DAY

National Aboriginal Day is celebrated every June 21st. Not only is that also the summer solstice, this year it's also Father's Day and the day the Manitoba Marathon will be held. So as a marathon running, Sundancing father of 2 Aboriginals, Wab's reaaaaaaaaaaaallly excited about it. Seriously though, National Aboriginal Day is becoming a big event here in Winnipeg with numerous celebrations happening around town.

There will be a competition pow-wow held at the Red River Ex, which is a great chance to see traditional dancers and singers.There will be a number of concerts held around town at varius night clubs. And there are a number of community bar-b-q's held across the city's downtown. The biggest party of the weekend will be on Aboriginal Day Eve - June 20th - when the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network takes over Scotiabank stage for an evening.

JAZZ WINNIPEG FESTIVAL

Branford Marsalis. Dave Brubeck. And now Al Green. Just a few legends that have played this town, thanks to one festival in particular. The Jazz Winnipeg Festival happens every year at the end of June. And this time around, it turns 20. And although jazz giants play each time, the festival is also a chance to expose music fans to the next generation of talent. The Curtis Nowosad and Keith Price Quintet, for example. You can hear them perform their own arrangement of Pink Floyd's "Welcome to the Machine" this Saturday!

Catch them live at this year's Jazz Winnipeg Festival. They open for the Bad Plus July 2nd at the Park Theatre.

ISLENDINGADAGURINN

Now here's something to be proud about, Manitoba:
Our annual Icelandic festival, Islendingadagurinn, is the second longest running cultural festival in NORTH AMERICA. Represent! (In case you're wondering, an Irish festival in Montreal started up only a couple years before the "Ice Fest.") You historical fans will be interested to know that the first Icelandic Festival was held on August 2nd, in 1890! But it wasn't in Gimli. The inaugral parade went down Nena Street in Winnipeg which has since changed names to Victor street, in Winnipeg's West End. The festival moved to Gimli in 1932.

Now it's been said that there are more people of Icelandic descent living in Manitoba than there are living in Iceland itself. And that could be true. Not just in the Icelandic hot bed of Gimli, but all around this province. Musically, we boast such great folks as Jaxon Haldane of the D.Rangers, John K. Samson of the Weakerthans, performance artist Freya Olafson, Keri Latimer of Nathan, and DJ, Mizz Brown. Not too shabby.

Well, that's just the tip of the festival iceberg this summer, so tune in to find out more.

Listen to:
The (204) with Wabanakwut Kinew
Saturdays 5-6 p.m. on CBC Radio 1
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