By Erika Mathieu
Sunny South News
After a successful rebrand and launch in 2022 of what was previously named “Settler Days,” Summer Fest is returning to Coaldale the weekend of August 12 for its second year of summer fun.
Director of Recreation and Community Services, Russ Tanner said, “The community feedback has been very positive at this point. We feel that the new dates for the event has already generated more interest as it avoids conflicts or direct competition with surrounding communities and their events, keeps us a little further away from Canada Day.”
Tanner said since the change, the event was also allowed for new partnerships to take place, adding even more value to the weekend of events.
“The Coaldale Custom Cruisers were able to fit the Summer Fest event into their circuit, so it was a really good timing for people that have those cars and like to show them off to be able to come to Coaldale where other dates in July were already taken by other shows.”
Although the outdoor space at the recently completed Civic Square building wont be fully completed for the 2023 event, Tanner said the space will be central to the event and others like it once all of the final touches are completed.
“We’re hoping to have battle of the bands this year event,” Tanner said adding, “whether it happens this year, or next year, we want to see it become a pretty regular occurrence,” during Summer Fest.
“Next year, you’ll you’ll kind of see us grow into that space which will be a little bit more centralized and have better flow. One of the other changes will be that we will have two stages because we’ll actually have a stage in civic square,” for some of the high school bands and smaller performances.
The Town is also working on launching a dedicated website for Summer Fest which is expected to go live in the coming days.
Due to the ongoing work being done on the outdoor civic square space, the main stage will still be located near the Kinsmen beer gardens.
The 2023 theme, A Salute to Agriculture, will be featured on all promotional media generated for the event.
“It’s about acknowledging the importance of agriculture has in our area in our community and like last year, we will continue to have agricultural equipment displayed on main street as well.”
Historically, the Town has not offered programming related to Canada Day. Particularly since the summer event formerly known as Settler Days event was scheduled in early July, close to the National Holiday.
“It was a little bit overwhelming for the community to have both. However, we are going to do a Canada Day event this year. It’s not going to be anything massive because we know that there’s also people around us that put on various event. Summerfest will still be our big summer event,” explained Tanner adding that for Canada Day this year there will be a pancake breakfast fundraiser for the food bank from 8-11 a.m., followed by a pool party luau from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. at the Coaldale community pool.