Hillbilly Highway – Time once again for Harvest Moon

The Mariachi Ghost 2013

by Sheldon Birnie

It’s that time of year again, folks. Crops are coming in, the days are getting shorter, and there’s a chill in the air that lingers each morning. As the autumn approaches, it’s time for one last kick at the outdoor festival can here in Manitoba. Pack up the car, it’s time to head for Clearwater.

This year marks the 12th perennial Harvest Moon festival in the beautiful Pembina Valley community of Clearwater, and if you haven’t already gotten your ticket by the time you read this, you may well be too late. For those who haven’t been to the festival before, it is a gem of a fest, run by a dedicated core of volunteers, which balloons the population of Clearwater from ~63 to 1500 overnight. As such, the festival has capped itself off at a healthy 1500 attendees, and this year will likely mark the first time that the festival has completely sold itself out of tickets. So if you haven’t got yours yet, get to www.harvestmoonfestival.ca pronto!

The line-up for this year’s fest is a good one, with a great mix of up and coming indie folksters like Flying Fox & The Hunter Gatherers (watch for our feature on the band, online on Friday!), Eagle Lake Owls, and Woodshed Havoc alongside festival favourites Crooked Brothers, Mama Cutsworth, and JD Edwards Band. Newly minted Manitoban Shotgun Jimmie will be performing, as will some of our favourite bands down here at Stylus, Cannon Bros and Mariachi Ghost. Throw in all the local acts and those I’ve neglected to mention, and you have one jam packed weekend.

And of course Harvest Moon isn’t all about the music. There’s plenty of hands on workshops, about everything from local history to salsa classes, “freelance farming” to panel discussions on sustainable land management. If I were you, I’d check out the Two-Stepping course Saturday afternoon, and really wow ’em on the dancefloor next time you’re at Times.

So get to it and at it! If you wait until the weekend, you may be spit out of luck. Catch you later on the Highway, friends.

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