Kimberley Kaleidoscope is born

New festival will link First Saturday and Arts on the Edge

The Kimberley Arts Council was the driving force behind the First Saturdays concept last year — an experiment that proved successful in bringing some life to the Platzl on the first Saturday of each month.

Now the Arts Council is going to take the First Saturdays concept one step further and combine the first Saturday in August with their own Arts on the Edge festival to create a whole new, eight day celebration of all the arts.

Kimberley Arts Council president Mike Redfern says that it seemed like a natural fit to combine the two and hopefully Kaleidoscope will grow into something special.

“The City of Festivals doesn’t have so many festivals any more,” Redfern said. “First Saturdays began to bring some life to the Platzl last year and so we thought, let’s put something on so people will maybe stay a few days.”

What the Arts Council has in mind is a week-long series of concerts, workshops, get-togethers and exhibits that feature arts of all kinds.

Spearheaded by the Arts Council, the Arts on the Edge Committee will run Kimberley Kaleidoscope. The festival will take on the new name but the juried art show on the second weekend will continue to be named Arts on the Edge.

Already, the Arts Council has booked two acts for outdoor concerts. Cod Gone Wild will play the First Saturday and the Boom Booms from Calgary will play August 9.

There will be children’s events and music in the Platzl, with concerts located outside beside Centre 64 and the Platzl gazebo. Acts will be scheduled so people can move back and forth. There is a family picnic planned or Rotary Park, an evening of poetry and prose, with readings by author Angie Abdou, Trina Rasmussen will return with her vertical dance outside the Spirit Rock building.

And of course there will be workshops. A textiles workshop with noted artist Angelika Werth, a plein air workshop by noted Calgary artist Doug Swinton, a vertical dance workshop for those with the nerve and much more.

On Friday evening, the Arts on the Edge exhibit is celebrated with the annual gala reception, prize-giving, silent auction and musical entertainment.

“We are pushing hard to get an interesting mix of activities and acts,” Redfern said. “Hopefully with eight days of events, people will hang around. We want to put money in the hands of artists, musicians and performers. We want to put people in the Platzl and downtown. It’s an exciting new initiative and we hope the community will embrace it.”

The committee has a good group of volunteers, Redfern said, and will be looking to hire a paid coordinator. More volunteers will also be required.

If you would like to get involved with Kimberley’s new Kaleidoscope fest, contact Redfern at redruth@shaw.ca.