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Organizers expect more bands, more people and more RVs for the third year

by Sue Gallant

 Ontario-based band The Backstabbers will be appearing on stage at this year's Evangeline Bluegrass Festival, July 11-13Ontario-based band The Backstabbers will be appearing on stage at this year's Evangeline Bluegrass Festival, July 11-13

It's set to be the biggest yet! The organizers of this year's Evangeline Bluegrass and Traditional Music Festival are confident that this, the third such event, will be bigger and better than before.

At a recent press conference, Artistic Director Albert Arsenault, announced that the festival is set to open at noon on Friday, July 11, and will run through to 8:30 pm, on Sunday, July 13. Nineteen bands have been booked to play, including two featured Canadian groups: The Backstabbers from Toronto and Hard Ryde from Ontario. Island bands include Jericho Road; Out of the Blue; Janet McGarry and Wind River; S K bluegrass; Bluegrass Ramblers; Just for Fun; Bluegrass Revival; The Corrigans; Bluegrass Bound; The Wagners; Norm Boswer; and Wayne Brown and Friends. The Maritime group line-up includes Bluegrass Diamonds; Canadian Grass Unit; New Blade of Grass; Cabin Fever and Silver Fox.

The president of the Evangeline Bluegrass Association is Yvonne Pitre: "2002 was double the attendance of 2001," Pitre says "The first year we had a thousand people and 150 RVs; in 2002 we had two thousand people and 212 RVs." Pitre says that in years one and two they welcomed festival-goers come from as far away as New Zealand and Texas.

This year, the festival has expanded its exhibition grounds to make 114 service sites available. At the time of the press conference, almost half had already been booked. There are also 400 rough camping units available.

Earlybird rough camping and serviced sites are available July 7-10. A weekend's rough camping is included with a festival pass. An advance weekend pass is available until June 15. Saturday (all day), Saturday (after 4pm) and Sunday passes are also available. Lobster suppers are served Friday, Saturday and Sunday. There will be a Farmer's market on-site Saturday. Canteen facilities, first aid and security will be on site. For information call 902-854-2375/854-3300, or e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. The Evangeline Bluegrass Festival 2003 is sponsored by Festivals and Events P.E.I., P.E.I. Tourism, and Canadian Heritage.

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