The Prairie Barge Festival to Showcase the Music, Art, and Culture of Manitoba & Saskatchewan on Dry Land

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Sol James performs at the Prairie Barge Festival announcement

The prairie borders are being erased for one big, free outdoor party on Labour Day Weekend. Manitoba and Saskatchewan are celebrating the Year of Music together for The Prairie Barge Festival, showcasing the vibrant talent of our two provinces just a few feet away from the Assiniboine River.

“Moving the stage a few inches up on to land won’t interfere with the incredible prairie talent, or the beautiful backdrop of the river,” says Paul Jordan, CEO, The Forks North Portage Partnership. 

Presented by founding legacy partner, Winnipeg Arts Council, Manitoba Music, and Creative Saskatchewan, the festival runs August 29-31 in The Forks Historic Port, and promises three days of music, art, and culture. While high waters have grounded the barge this year, the fun will still play on the famed stage, which has hosted countless artists over its multi-year history.

The festival will feature performances from a diverse collection of acclaimed artists spanning the genres. Cellist and composer Leanne Zacharias, folk artist Keiffer McLean, alt rockers League of Wolves, pop/rock pair Mise en Scene, indie blues rock band The PistolWhips, indie folk/pop outfit Yes We Mystic will take over the stage on Friday and Saturday, joining already announced artists JUNO Award-winning soul/pop outfit Chic Gamine, alt-country favourites The Deep Dark Woods, 2014 Western Canadian Music Award nominee marijosée, singer/songwriter and former Waltons front man Jason Plumb, and a spectacular outdoor performance from the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra.

Sunday’s program offers food for the body and the soul, with an outdoor pancake breakfast with entertainment from the spine-tingling Riel Gentlemen’s Choir; tunes from Rosie & the Riveters; the Floating Folk Jam featuring Allyson Reigh, Alexis Nordman, and Red Moon Road’s two Daniels; the Blues on the Barge Jam with Joey Landreth (The Bros. Landreth), Jack Semple, Sol James, and more. At 3pm, the big screen will light up with a live projection of the Labour Day Classic: Winnipeg Blue Bombers vs. Saskatchewan Roughriders. The School of Contemporary Dance will also be featured throughout the day.

Throughout the weekend, an outdoor art market will host celebrated local visual artists and craft producers. Saskatchewan’s Larry Trask (soapstone sculpting), Sherri Hrycay (milliner), Gwen Fehr (beeswax candles), and Manitoba’s Boomerang 360 (clothing), Blokland Pottery, One Plus One Designs, and 129 Designs (jewelry) will be among the professional creative producers representing a variety of creative disciplines.

The family-friendly free weekend will offer a little something for everyone, including the evocative magic of Winnipeg Contemporary Dancers & School of Contemporary Dance, an installation from the internationally-renowned PO-MO Project, the improv comedy stylings of Hot Thespian Action, and more.

Manitoba’s Year of Music celebration, a provincial initiative supported by Manitoba Liquor & Lotteries, shines a spotlight on the many musicians, festivals, events, and fans who help make Manitoba  a great place to live, work, and visit.


7:30pm  Leanne Zacharias
8:00pm  Riel Gentlemen's Choir
8:10pm  Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, opening song by Jason Cullimore
8:20pm  Jason Plumb & WSO

2:00pm marijosée
3:00pm Keiffer McLean
4:00pm League of Wolves
5:00pm Mise en Scene
6:00pm The PistolWhips
7:00pm Yes We Mystic
8:00pm Deep Dark Woods
9:00pm Chic Gamine

Also featured throughout the day: Hot Thespian Action and Winnipeg Contemporary Dancers

11:00am Outdoor Pancake Breakfast ($5 for pancakes and sausages from Pancake House)
12:30pm Rosie & the Riveters
1:00pm   Floating Folk Jam featuring:
                                             Allyson Reigh
                                             Alexis Nordman
                                             Daniel & Daniel of Red Moon Road and guests
2:00pm   Blues on the Barge Jam featuring:
                                             Joey Landreth
                                             Jack Semple
                                             Sol James and guests

Also featured throughout the day: School of Contemporary Dance

3:00pm Live projection of the Labour Day Classic: Winnipeg Blue Bombers vs. Saskatchewan Roughriders

#prairiebarge #mblive

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