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Blues fest bound for Grand Forks

While there will be no Canada Rock Fest in Grand Forks this year, there will be a blues festival at the end of the month.

The Gem Theatre will host the Whiskey Blues Weekend on Friday, April 28 and Saturday, April 29. Canadian blues legend Jim Byrnes will perform the first night with Simon Kendall (of Doug and the Slugs fame) and Eric Reed. The Jack Semple Band takes the stage the following night. Both shows start at 7:30 p.m.

“We wanted to bring more arts and culture to the Grand Forks area,” explains Gem proprietor Kirstin Aquiline.

“We thought this event would be amazing. It would be great for all audiences, young and older. Our main focus is to create something that allows the people of Grand Forks to be ambassadors for their community, by inviting their friends and family who live out of town to come and enjoy hiking, the outdoors, go for dinner, see the Boundary and enjoy an awesome blues weekend.”

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Aquiline says the loss of Rock Fest this year “definitely prompted us” to put on a bigger event than they would ordinarily. She says they normally bring in one live act in every two or three months, but hope this will be the start of an annual event.

There hasn’t been much of a blues scene in the Boundary, she adds, although players do come through once in a while. Semple has performed in Christina Lake a couple of times.

Tickets, which cover both shows, can be purchased online. Printed tickets will also be available in the coming week.

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