>> Andrew Kerr

Celebrating 21 years!! Can you believe it?! While FernFest is ­getting older, these two days are still all about celebrating the vibrant ­neighbourhood and people of Fernwood, making time play, and connect with your neighbours. So, mark your calendar, call your firends, and join us for music, games, dancing, suprises, and fun!

The festivities commence on Friday as we fire up the grill, open the bar, and ­kickoff with the first of 17 amazing and diverse musical acts gracing the gazebo Main Stage!

Whether you prefer the soulful grooves of Chance Lovett & the Broken Hearted, the boot-stomping swingin’ western ­rockabilly of Slim Sandy & the Hillbilly Boppers, the tropical vibes of Leisure Club, the explosive rock of Deep Sea Gypsies, or the Balkan dance party that is Bučan Bučan, we’ve got something to wet ­everyone’s whistle!

Try not to over exert yourself on ­Friday though, as the festivities continue ­Saturday morning, starting at 9am with a ­Community Pancake Breakfast hosted by our friends at the Fernwood Inn. Once you’re full and sufficiently caffeinated, make sure to catch the Kidical Mass Bike Parade at 11am. Senior’s Tea follows at 1pm in the Fernwood Community Centre. Making his triumphant return as host-extraordinaire is everyone’s favourite MC from across the pond, Benji Duke!

Family-friendly as always, we’ll also have an abundance of attractions at the Field of Dreams and Kidz Zone from 11am-5pm on the Vic High Field. The cardboard castle makes its return, along with face-painting, art, balloon animals, giant games, and many more activities for everyone to enjoy! We’ll have free workshops and performances at our Mini Stage. Many local non-profits will be joining us this year on the Field of Dreams with info booths and activities.

FernFest’s Artisan Market has moved to the Vic High tennis courts in order to accommodate the ever-growing ­number of participating artisans and vendors. Open on the Saturday from 10:30am-5pm, it’ll ­feature upcycled clothing, art, hoops, ­jewelry, zines, vintage ­treasures, treats, soap made with beer, pallet art and furniture and so much more!

One new Saturday feature we’re excited to share with you this year is our Beach ­Chill-out Lounge, featuring pink ­flamingos, Phillips’ soda samples, astro-turf, and enough kitsch to shake a stick at!

We cannot even begin to express our gratitude to everyone who contributes to make this festival an unqualified success year after year. Free as always, FernFest would not be possible without the generosity of our amazing volunteers, sponsors, silent auction donors, artisans, musicians, local business, and other community ­partners. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you!!!

FernFest continues to be inspired by the people and neighbourhood of Fernwood, and we want to share in the celebration with all of you! Invite your friends, your family, your neighbours, and even that cute-barista-at-the-coffee-shop-you’ve-been-building-up the-courage-to-ask-out-but-haven’t-found-quite-the-right-moment-yet. We can’t wait to dance with you all! Happy FernFest!

Check out our program for the full schedule of activities…