Riverfest ready

I don’t mean to sound like a groupie, but I’m going to and I’m okay with it. Riverfest Elora happens this weekend and I have been waiting since, well, last summer. That is a long time for a music fan like me, especially when a whole bunch of my favourite performers are coming to town.

You can bet I will be standing in front of the stage for all of them. Every single one. I am going to get lost so deep in the crowd that I will find myself in the rhythm of Riverfest Elora. Two days and three nights of outstanding live music, with a diverse line-up of performers on three different stages in one beautiful park is the ultimate music festival experience for me.

I’m going to dance like everyone is watching and I don’t care, because really, I don’t care. Life is too short to stand still. Life is also too short to worry about how you look when you dance. And isn’t that the best part of a music festival? People cut loose. People dance, all jiving to the same music, happy just to be there. Music brings people together.

So, I’m going to wave my hands in the air and sing along to the bands I love, and open my ears to performers I don’t know yet, so I can fall in love with a new sound or be totally repulsed by a sound and still appreciate that someone in the crowd is really loving that. To each their own. Another fabulous thing about Riverfest Elora: there is something for everyone.

Even the Carpenter gets excited for this event (he doesn’t get excited for much, especially if it involves being social). But if you see me out there in the sea of faces, his won’t be next to me. Oh, he’ll be at Riverfest alright, just not with me, and for all the right reasons. He would rather pick up garbage. Wait. Let me clarify: Riverfest is the Carpenter’s big public outing of the year.

He is so passionate about this event that he has volunteered every year since it began, building bridges, ramps and stairs – and then he took on garbage duty.

He is just one of hundreds of volunteers who will sweat it out all weekend long to be a part of this epic festival, doing everything from selling tickets, merchandise and the ever-popular beverages, to ensuring the port-o-potties have supplies (critical job). There is a whole army of people who help set up the site days before the show and take it all down later. It’s a lot of work, but if you talk to anyone who volunteers for this weekend, it’s truly a highlight of their summer. I think that speaks volumes for the character of Riverfest. To all those who give your time to support and help this festival grow, this music fan says thank you.

A few things would make this year’s event over-the-top amazing for me: like if July Talk asks me to sing back-up, or Blue Rodeo wants to serenade me, or if The Beaches need another woman to hit the harmonies. Just throwing it out there. I play a mean triangle and can spank a tambourine like nobody’s business.

But my biggest Riverfest wish is to dance with the Carpenter to Blue Rodeo. If they play our song, Lost Together, great, but when we look back at 25 years of us, pretty much every Blue Rodeo song falls into the category of “our song.”

Can’t wait. 

Kelly Waterhouse