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‘Doors Open Quinte West’ Returns September 10 with In-person Events

'Doors Open Quinte West' Returns September 10 with In-person Events

RELEASE — Doors Open Ontario, an Ontario Heritage Trust program, is returning for in-person events with Doors Open Quinte West on September 10 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. – the event is free of charge.

Collaborating with communities, Ontario Heritage Trust works to educate Ontarians about local history and conservation.

Each year, Doors Open Ontario offers Ontarians rare behind-the-scenes access to incredible cultural and natural heritage wonders. Doors Open Quinte West is excited to welcome people back by offering access to 14 cultural and heritage sites, with a mix of indoor and outdoor experiences.

Some sites include:

  • Research Casting International (10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.): Research Casting International is one of the world’s largest providers of museum technical services – specializing in the fabrication of paleontology displays. They built skeletons of T-Rex’s for the original Jurassic park! Check out some of their current projects, explore their facility and watch the teamwork.
  • Crazy Creek Fishing Preserve (10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.): In operation for over 25 years, this site provides public fishing, as well as a gathering space for barbeques, birthday parties and company get-togethers. Come and take a guided tour to view the 17 ponds – stocked with rainbow trout and speckled trout – set amid a cedar forest. This is a new site.
  • Quinte Museum of Natural History (10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.): The Quinte Museum of Natural History has partnered with Research Casting International to bring Exploration Exhibits to the Bay of Quinte region. This series of dinosaur specimen displays was developed for international tour. This is a new site!
  • National Air Force Musuem of Canada (10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.): Established in 1984, the National Air Force Museum of Canada is dedicated to preserving and telling the history of Canadian military aviation.

This event is one of many Doors Open Events happening this fall in the surrounding area. Why not take a day trip to visit Doors Open Kawartha Lakes (Sept. 11), Doors Open Belleville (Sept. 17), Doors Open Oshawa (Sept. 24) Doors Open Kingston (Sept. 24-25)?

These events make the perfect end of summer/fall road trip adventure – for other sites visit here and don’t forget to visit Digital Doors Open Ontario, which has over 250 sites to experience year-round.

Release: Submitted

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Comics festival returns with in-person events

The Prairie Comics Festival returns to in-person events on Sept. 10 and 11, with a weekend of panel discussions and workshops aimed at both fans and practitioners of graphic storytelling.

The event, being held this year at the West End Cultural Centre (586 Ellice Ave.), kicks off Sept. 10 with a day of panel discussions on topics including queer comics, finding your style, self-publishing and pitching to publishers, the latter featuring local publishers At Bay Press and Highwater Press.

A featured panel brings together artists Scott Henderson, who has worked on locally published graphic novels A Girl Called Echo and The Reckoner Rises as well as a new Marvel Pride comic, and Silvanna Moran, who sells her illustrations on Etsy under the name Radish Doodles. Henderson and Moran will also discuss their work that evening at 7 p.m. at McNally Robinson Booksellers’ Grant Park location.

On Sept. 11, the festival has a day of workshops on tap and invites participants to bring their sketchbooks or iPads for a day of learning with Jay Cormack.

For festival details, see

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Winnipeg’s No. 1 ufologist shares the fruits of his access-to-information requests in his latest book on unexplained phenomena in the sky.

Chris Rutkowski launches Canada’s UFOs: Declassified on Thursday at 7 p.m. at McNally Robinson’s Grant Park location, in conversation with broadcaster and city council candidate Hal Anderson. The new book offers details of sightings, including some previously classified reports by pilots, RCMP and military personnel.

● ● ●

Last month’s near-fatal attack on the novelist Salman Rushdie prompted a dispute over the head of the U.K.’s Society of Authors, Joanne Harris, author of the novel Chocolat.

Immediately following the attack, J.K. Rowling received a death threat when she expressed her support on Twitter for Rushdie. Rowling, a controversial figure in the U.K. ever since she came to the defence of an academic who was fired for insisting on a biological definition of womanhood, has come under fire for years for her support of what’s known as “gender-critical feminism,” a school of thought that insists on a difference between biological women and trans women.

Immediately after the death threat addressed to Rowling, Harris posted a Twitter poll that appeared to make light of the threat against Rowling.

In the aftermath of that action, one open letter demanded Harris’s resignation, another open letter voiced support for her and Harris herself issued a statement condemning threats against Rowling and any other author.

Details can be found at

● ● ●

If the word “storytelling” brings images of wandering bards, skalds or griots to your mind, you haven’t been spending much time in business strategy and marketing meetings.

The term has gained a whole new life to refer to ways businesses reach out to customers, clients and other stakeholders, and refers to ways of communicating that don’t sound like a sales pitch.

Winnipeg communications professional Rob Wozny, co-owner of Sound Strategy Communications and a former reporter/anchor for CTV and Global, as well as former communications head for True North Sports and Entertainment, presents case studies in the communication approach in his new book Storytelling for Business: The Art and Science of Creating Connection in the Digital Age. He writes in the book “Nothing connects people to engage emotionally with your business better than a well-told story — your story.”

Wozny will be at the St. Vital Indigo store Sept. 10 from 10 a.m. to noon signing and discussing the book.

● ● ●

With the 50th anniversary of the 1972 Summit Series between Canadian and Soviet hockey stars on the horizon, Montreal Canadiens goaltending legend Ken Dryden is launching his latest book, titled The Series: What I Remember, What It Felt Like, What It Feels Like Now (McClelland & Stewart).

He’ll take part in an online event presented by McNally Robinson Booksellers on Wednesday at 7 p.m., hosted by Greg Mackling of 680 CJOB. To join in, register at

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Kevin Smith returns to NJ foru00a0Clerks III, ‘a movie about how much people hate working’

Kevin Smith returns to NJ foru00a0Clerks III, 'a movie about how much people hate working'


Kevin Smith is supposed to be here these days.

Smith, the Red Bank-born and Highlands-raised filmmaker, returns to his personal and professional roots with his latest movie, “Clerks III.”

The film will be presented in theaters nationwide by Fathom Events and Lionsgate 7 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 13 through Sunday, Sept. 18. Smith is also taking the film on the road for the “Convenience Tour” roadshow experience, launching Sunday, Sept. 4 at the Hackensack Meridian Health Theatre at the Count Basie Center for the Arts in Red Bank.

His new release continues the story that made Smith an independent film sensation nearly 30 years ago, when the original “Clerks” (1994) introduced the world to jaded Quick Stop convenience store employees Dante Hicks (Brian O’Halloran) and Randal Graves (Jeff Anderson) along with their friendly neighborhood drug dealers Jay (Jason Mewes) and Silent Bob (Smith himself).

Back in 2006, Smith offered a poignant and satisfying full-circle conclusion with “Clerks II,” which found Dante and Randall taking charge of their place of employment from the original film in the Leonardo section of Middletown.

But Smith always knew there was more to the story, he told the Asbury Park Press.

“I’ve been trying to make ‘Clerks III’ almost since we wrapped ‘Clerks II,’” Smith said. Smith said he wanted to return to the sentiment of a now-classic jail cell scene in “Clerks II” where Randal cracks his veneer of snark. Smith called it “one of my favorite things I’ve ever done in a movie.”

“Randal shows his true heart for the first time, instead of just being acerbic or esoteric or a wisecracker he kind of lets it out,” Smith recounted. “He’s like, ‘I’d buy the Quick Stop and re-open it myself,’ it’s just a big moment for the character, it’s a big moment performance-wise for Jeff, and I was like, ‘I would love to spend a whole movie with that moment, that guy now.’”

After an earlier and far darker iteration of the screenplay featured Randal experiencing a post-superstorm Sandy nervous breakdown, the version of “Clerks III” arriving in theaters was informed by the massive heart attack Smith suffered in 2008.

“Clerks III” finds Randal, after experiencing a near-fatal heart attack, at work on an independent film about the quirks of life as a convenience store clerk. Smith famously created the original “Clerks” while working at the Quick Stop, and he decided to return to the View Askewniverse for “Jay and Silent Bob Reboot” after his own heart attack.

Smith and Randal both experienced the sort of dangerous heart attack doctors refer to as the “widow-maker,” and both of their life-saving doctors share the last name Ladenheim (Randal’s is played by Amy Sedaris of “BoJack Horseman” and “The Mandalorian.”) It’s all a continuation of the bond between Smith and Randal, a character he had originally written for himself to play.

“As we got closer to (filming ‘Clerks’), I was like, ‘I can’t memorize all this dialogue,’ so I went for the role with no dialogue whatsoever, Silent Bob,” Smith said. “But that’s why Randal has all the best jokes, because I wanted to be Randal. Thank God there was Jeff, and Jeff defines that character. So in a weird, small way I’ll never get to be Randal but now because of the story personally I did finally get to be the guy that I always wanted to be.”

While the film — Smith’s “Clerks III,” not Randal’s movie-within-the-movie — is rich with references to both View Askewniverse lore and Smith’s own life, the material remains broadly resonant.

“You can enjoy ‘Clerks’ just because it’s a workplace comedy, something that took me nearly 30 years to figure out. That’s why people connect with it,” Smith said. “I was always like, ‘How can this play outside of New Jersey? How can this play outside of Monmouth County? You only have to be from here to understand this.’

“And I didn’t realize that ‘Clerks’ is a movie about how much people hate working, and that’s universal. You don’t even have to do a retail job or work at a convenience store specifically to identify with two people, or anybody, trying to do anything but the job.”

Back to the scene

“Clerks III” is Smith’s first film since his debut to be entirely shot entirely in New Jersey, he said. By pulling up the original film on the HBO Max app on his phone for reference, Smith found himself composing shots to match those he’d filmed nearly three decades earlier, in the same locations and with the same actors. It was an experience that Smith compared to fantasy camp.

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“Within the movie, when they make their movie, it is unmistakably ‘Clerks.’” Smith said. “Part of the fun is you know their history by way of two movies, and the history that (Randal) decides to tell is literally the history from everything you’ve seen. So it’s a real best-of compilation, you get to see everybody.”

That “everybody” includes both famous View Askewniverse players returning for cameos — Ben Affleck, Justin Long and Rosario Dawson among them — as well as friends, family and former neighbors of Smith’s, including the cast of his AMC reality series “Comic Book Men” and three generations of his family.

That’s not to say that “Clerks III” is all cameos and in-jokes. It’s a story of aging, reflection and community that finds Smith trafficking in the same snarky-yet-wounded humanism that’s been the stock-in-trade for fellow New Jersey writers from George R.R. Martin to Steely Dan’s Donald Fagen to Brian Fallon of the Gaslight Anthem.

How to get tickets:Kevin Smith is taking new ‘Clerks III’ on the road

The original “Clerks” launched the View Askewniverse, which has since grown to include eight live-action films, a “Clerks” animated series, comic books and a video game. But “Clerks III” is shot through with melancholy nostalgia and a wistfulness not seen since “Clerks II,” the last time Dante and Randal were his stars.

“At the end of the day, I feel like when I get to play with these characters I throw a bit more into it, I care,” Smith said. “I’m deeply invested in their storyline.”

“Clerks III” will be presented by Fathom Events and Lionsgate in more than 700 cinemas across the country, 7 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 13 through Sunday, Sept. 18. For tickets and a full list of participating theaters, visit

Smith is also taking the film on the road for the “Convenience Tour” roadshow experience, launching 1:30 and 7 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 4 at the Hackensack Meridian Health Theatre at the Count Basie Center for the Arts, 99 Monmouth St., Red Bank. Other area dates include 7 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 7 at the Keswick Theatre in Glenside, Pennsylvania and 7:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 9 at the Beacon Theatre in New York City. For tickets and a full list of dates, visit

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Pride returns to Nelson with week of events – Nelson Star

Pride returns to Nelson with week of events - Nelson Star

Kootenay Pride is thrilled to be coming back to the streets, flag poles, museums, parks and plazas in a big way for the first fully in-person events since the shut down in 2020.

The dedicated and busy team of volunteers has been working for months to create a bevy of fun, inclusive, educational, and entertaining events and happenings during the week leading up to the Pride weekend.

Micheal Wicks, longtime Kootenay Pride, volunteer shared, “While postering for Pride on Baker Street this Saturday, we were greeted enthusiastically by every business and they grabbed our posters and handbills eagerly, putting them up almost immediately. Some were already planning their window displays and all were very excited at all the diverse events. It was a heartwarming community welcome back to all of us.”

Start off the week right by coming to cheer on the flag raising at City Hall on Monday, Aug. 29 at 9:30 a.m.

From Aug. 29 to Sept. 5, The Civic Theatre will be running queer movies at the main and Shoebox screens. Check online for movies and times.

On Wednesday, Aug. 31, from 5:30 to 8 p.m., head to the Nelson Innovation Centre at 91 Baker St., for Queerdos, inspiring queer, questioning and curious people to step into their truth and express themselves authentically through meditation, art, and conversation. Find out more details about this event and all of the events on the Kootenay Pride’s Facebook page.

Thursday, Sept, 1 at the Nelson Innovation Centre from 5 to 8:30 p.m. is Queer Games Night, an evening of casual multiplayer video games and quick tabletop games intended to help us make new friends and connect with other LGBTQIA+ people in our community. All people ages 12 and older are welcome! No alcohol will be served at this event.

Happening the same day at the Shawn Lamb Archives at Touchstones Nelson Museum is Explore Y(our) Archive/Build the Future, an interactive participatory drop-in workshop from 5 to 9 p.m.

On Friday, Sept. 2, everyone is invited to the Welcome BBQ and Social at the Rotary Shelter at Lakeside Park from 3 to 5 p.m., hosted by Kootenay Pride, ANKORS Trans Connect and HIM-health initiative for men. This all ages event. Also that day, the Pride Cabaret with The Dancing Legs is at The Royal. Two performances are at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. Tickets available online or at The Royal.

On Saturday, Sept. 3, Kootenay Pride is super excited to present Rainbow Families, a free, all-age event and BBQ for 2SLGBTQ parents and children. There will be food, face painting, crafts, dance party, Drag story time and more at the Nelson Family Place, 312 Silica St., 1 to 4 p.m. You can follow this event up by reliving your prom (the way you want to) with Queer Prom at Passmore Hall, 3762 Little Slocan, South Road, in Winlaw from 7 p.m. to 12 a.m.

And the week wouldn’t be complete without the spectacular Pride parade on Baker on Sunday, Sept 4. Gather at Central School (Wildflower) at 808 Stanley St. to decorate, celebrate and be ready for a 3 p.m. prompt departure to the downtown core. The parade will be ending its run at Hall Street Plaza where it will join the Pride Artists and Services Market that has been underway from noon to 5 p.m.

If you would like to volunteer as a parade marshal or for any of these events please contact Kootenay Pride at or reach out on Facebook. The team of volunteers have been working hard and are looking forward to seeing the community come out to support their 2SLGBTQ+ neighbours. Love Wins.

Contact with any questions.

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What to expect when the Fair at the PNE returns this weekend

What to expect when the Fair at the PNE returns this weekend

Metro Vancouver’s end of summer tradition is almost here.

The long-awaited Fair at the PNE is opening Saturday after being scaled down during the pandemic.

Vendors spent Thursday setting up their booths as doors open in just a couple of days.

“Every member of our team is incredibly excited to welcome back British Columbia,” said Shelley Frost, the PNE president and CEO.

“It’s no secret the last two years have been difficult for our organization and during that time, we have heard unwavering support from people across the province,” she added.

The fair will also include dozens of cultural performances.

“At Festival Park, fairgoers can experience our cultural showcases of three shows daily bringing you a mosaic of dancers and exhilarating musical performers,” Frost said.

“Together we have weathered the storm of COVID-19 and we have emerged stronger. And we’re making investments into our team and into our business dreams,” she continued.

New attractions include a canoe carving showcase and new drag shows.

The Peking Acrobats and the SuperDogs will also return to the stage.

“It’s our 45th year here at the PNE. It’s a dream for us to have been here this long,” said Leonard Chase, the creative director of SuperDogs.

“We go to other cities. We’re very well appreciated in most cities, but let me tell you the enthusiasm here in Vancouver is beyond anything,” he added.

Visitors to Playland can also check out some classic rides such as the Wooden Roller Coaster, as well as the new Skybender.

Some big names will headline the Summer Nights Concerts, including the Barenaked Ladies, Nelly and TLC.

Translink is boosting bus service to help support guests taking transit to the fair.

In a statement, TransLink said it will be adding an express bus to and from the PNE, which will run every 15 minutes each day the fair is open. The 16 PNE Special will run between 29th Avenue Station, Renfrew Station, and the PNE.

The fair runs from Aug. 20 to Sept. 5. 

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Ad Age Leading Women event returns and ‘Password’ gets a reboot: The Week Ahead

Ad Age Leading Women event returns and ‘Password’ gets a reboot: The Week Ahead

Aug. 8

Party City reports second-quarter earnings. In its previous quarter, the retailer reported a 1.4% rise in net sales to $433 million. 

PubMatic will release second-quarter results today in a call with Wall Street analysts at 5 p.m. ET. PubMatic is among a handful of ad tech companies disclosing their quarterly results this week, following Criteo’s report last week, offering details about the state of internet advertising.

Aug. 9

Planet Fitness will report second-quarter earnings. The fitness chain recently shifted its ad agency strategy by abandoning a bespoke model with Publicis to return to prior agency of record Barkley.

Read more: Planet Fitness returns to Barkley

Also today, The Trade Desk gets its turn revealing its second-quarter finances. The Trade Desk had a busy quarter, marked by a deal with Disney, and its results could shine a light on the state of connected TV advertising and other aspects of the programmatic landscape. There is an analyst call at 5 p.m. ET. Magnite also releases results today and has an analyst call at 4:30 p.m. ET.

Ad Age hosts a conference honoring its Leading Women of 2022. The New York event will feature speakers including our 2022 Vanguard honoree Fiona Carter, chief marketing officer of Goldman Sachs.

Read more: Introducing Ad Age’s 2022 Leading Women

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Formula E fan has ‘no faith’ in car race organizer, as city returns its $500K deposit for cancelled event | CBC News

Formula E fan has 'no faith' in car race organizer, as city returns its $500K deposit for cancelled event | CBC News

Vancouver is refunding the $500,000 deposit for a major international electric car race that was supposed to have happened earlier this month before organizers pulled out.

The two-day event was scheduled to start on July 2, and included a Nickelback concert, before being cancelled by its organizer, One Stop Strategy (OSS) Group, who have previously said it would be rescheduled to next year.

But four weeks after the cancelled event’s original date, ticket-holders have complained about not receiving refunds. The city said its repayment of the organizer’s performance security payment for the event is contingent on giving fans their money back.

It was to be the first Formula E event in the city, and promoted as an economic boon, selling thousands of tickets to the False Creek-area races.

One of those fans waiting for a refund is Andrew Chobaniuk, who said he could not get any response after repeated request from organizers and ended up reporting it to his credit card company.

It reimbursed him the $210 he paid for four tickets to see the Vancouver races.

“Absolutely no word from the Formula E organizers despite numerous emails to them,” he told CBC News in an email. “Received a refund from my credit card company pending an investigation.”

“It’s disappointing — you look forward to car racing finally making a return to Vancouver after all these years, and you’re left feeling swindled. Given the lack of communication from the organizers … I have no faith in OSS at all.”

One Stop Strategy Group did not respond to multiple requests for comment Friday.

Decision came ‘after intensive review’ with city

On Friday, the city said its deposit return would have “no financial impacts” on its budget, and was only made on the condition that “that the funds be used by OSS to pay its financial obligations” including refunding ticket-holders, suppliers, or event sponsors.

“Questions about funds being paid or refunded by OSS to ticket-holders, suppliers, sponsors, and/or other potential creditors should be directed to OSS,” the city said in a release.

An F1-style car sits in a showroom display.
An electric Formula E race car prototype is seen on a display stage at CeraWeek energy conference in Houston in this 2019 file photo. (Kyle Bakx/CBC)

On April 22, the city announced that the event’s organizers called off the event, exercising their rights under the Host City Agreement. At the time, the city said in a statement it hopes “to announce a new date in the near future.”

At the time of the cancellation, OSS said the “incredibly difficult” decision came “after intensive review” with the city.

“Delivery of a world-class event is of the utmost importance” to the group, it said, promising to communicate with ticket-holders “to inform [them of] their options.”

Coun. Michael Wiebe co-sponsored a motion last year that supported hosting the event the city.

“I know the management company didn’t work here, but I still believe it can be a great event,” he said in an interview Friday. “It was going to be a big weekend, I’m disappointed because it’s an opportunity for Vancouver.”

He stepped aside from voting on the city-issued deposit refund because he himself bought tickets to the cancelled event, and is now among the thousands who have not yet received a refund.

“I haven’t yet, but I’ll wait in the back of the line,” Wiebe said. “I want to make sure the people that really deserve the funding are getting it.

“We’re saying, ‘If you are going to take the $500,000 return, there are certain people that need to be paid, and the funding can only go to specific things … That includes ticket-holders, suppliers and others.”

Controversial races

The Formula E races have been controversial in other cities. 

In 2017, Montreal city officials announced they would pull the plug on a Formula E race that was set to take place in that city the following year.

The mayor said the event was “headed straight for a financial fiasco,” and that taxpayers would be on the hook for $35 million. 

But one year ago, the City of Montreal agreed to pay a settlement of $3 million to Formula E Operations, which puts on electric car races around the world. It had sued the city for $16 million after the city cancelled their events in 2018 and 2019.

Formula E isn’t the organizer of the Vancouver event, though it appears to have a degree of oversight with regard to the OSS Group-promoted race, which is part of the Formula E series.

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Hamilton Fringe Festival returns to in-person events after two-year hiatus – Hamilton |

Hamilton Fringe Festival returns to in-person events after two-year hiatus - Hamilton |

The director of Hamilton’s Fringe Festival says there’s “nothing like the real thing” with in-person shows returning after a two year hiatus due to the pandemic.

“Being in a theater with real people, seeing the same show together and … that rush, there’s nothing like it,” Christopher Stanton told 900 CHML’s Good Morning Hamilton.

The festival kicked off Wednesday and boasts 14 stages across Hamilton with more than 350 performances on tap from more than 60 artistic companies.

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An outdoor stage at Theatre Aquarius was the starting point with a preview event highlighting performances during the 12-day long festival.

Writer and performer Carly Anna Billings who stars in the “storytelling, culinary” production ‘Meat(less) Loaf’ says the online-only digital fringe offered last year paled in comparison to standing on a stage with live audience.

Read more:

Sesame Place park apologizes after Black girls asking for hugs snubbed

“Just doing tech the other day (before the show) I was getting teary eyed,” said Billings. “Standing in the light, you know, waiting for my next cue … I was like, ‘this is the thing.’

Porch Light Theatre and Industry.

Stanton says the entire festival is a “monster’ when it comes to planning, a year-round exercise requiring a core of five executives.

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“The other piece of it is ‘be flexible’ because stuff is going to happen,” Stanton said.

“At the kickoff, we had to stop mid-show because of thunder and lightning. We had to shelter in place, which felt so very fringy.”

The festival includes a family hub at the Bridgeworks event space with family-friendly shows and kids workshops during the weekdays.

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The Family Fringe Carnival Day happens July 30, between 10:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m., under a big tent. The kids craft event will take place during the same hours on Sunday July 31.

Artists Eve Beauchamp and Caity Smyck, on the fringe circuit across Ontario, will bring their comedy Unmatched to the Bridgeworks stage Sunday night.

The duo, from Ottawa’s Levity Theatre Company, are first-timers to Hamilton’s festival and say they were originally scheduled for last year’s festival but were halted by the pandemic.

In 2022, the two have once again resumed in-person shows hitting festivals in Ottawa, Toronto and Hamilton before heading over to the west coast for more performances.

Read more:

Dave Chappelle show abruptly cancelled by venue after online backlash

Unmatched tells seven unsuccessful first date stories the pair once heard from friends, colleagues and family.

“So the different dates we portray on stage, they run the gamut of lighthearted and quirky, to just bizarre and like potentially dangerous,” Smyck said.

The shows title stems from dating app terminology describing an action from a subscriber when facing a “no go” scenario.

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“It’s also kind of like a play on … combinations of people that just are not working out for whatever reason,” Beauchamp said.

Tickets to in-person shows can be bought on the festival’s website or at the main box office just outside of Theatre Aquarius at 191 King William St.

Most advance tickets can be purchased until one hour prior to showtime.

Every fringe patron over the age of 12 will require a Fringe Backer Button to access paid in-person shows. The Backer Button is a one-time purchase of $5.

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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Coal Dust Days Festival in Cape Breton returns after two years of pandemic cancellations | SaltWire

Coal Dust Days Festival in Cape Breton returns after two years of pandemic cancellations | SaltWire

A sense of community. 

It’s one way to describe the importance of the annual New Waterford Coal Dust Days Festival each year. From seeing old friends at events to having a reason to come home, the festival has a purpose for current and former residents. 

However, there hasn’t been much to celebrate over the past two years in the community. Like all festivals, the Coal Dust Days committee was forced to cancel their festival in 2020 and 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic and provincial restrictions.

With restrictions lifted and the province now fully reopened, the Coal Dust Days Festival is set to make its return next week with weeklong events kicking off on Monday in the community. 

Joey Lever, board member for Coal Dust Days, said the committee is excited to be back and ready to move past the pandemic-related cancellations. 

“We think the community needs this back,” said Lever. “It’s a chance to be together again after two years of being stuck at home and it’s a chance to gather and celebrate.”

This year will mark the 37th edition of the Coal Dust Days Festival. After being off the past two summers, Lever admits there’s been a bit of an adjustment period preparing for the festival. 

“It’s more about getting our heads around it again,” said Lever, noting the committee began planning for this year’s festival in February. 

“You roll it out the same way every year. There’s a blueprint for Plummer Avenue Day and the car show and we have great partners with the Cape Breton Regional Municipality and volunteers who also help us along the way.”

The festival will feature both committee-organized and community-hosted events, running until July 24.

One of the larger events organized by the committee is Plummer Avenue Day, which will feature local vendors, entertainment and games on the town’s main street on Thursday. The event runs from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and will finish with a concert from 7-10:30 p.m. featuring Hearts of Kin and Cherrybomb. 

Lever confirmed vendor spots are almost sold out. He anticipates this year’s Plummer Avenue Day to be a record year. 

“If we have the weather, we’re expecting great crowds and everyone to be out,” said Lever. “It’s a great event for people to bump into each other and see people that they haven’t seen in a while and just get out on the main street where they may not have had that chance in a little while.” 

‘It ran its course’

Among the events not returning this year is the Coal Dust Days Tavern Tour, which was one of the more popular attractions when the festival first began for both participants and local establishments. 

Lever said there were several reasons for the committee discontinuing the event. 

“The crowds have been down the last couple of festivals, a lot of people weren’t attending and that was a big reason for it,” he said. “I think the committee and the bars have dealt with a lot of underage drinkers and stuff, so it was really hard to keep a handle on it and make it safe for everybody.”

While it’s too early to confirm, Lever doesn’t anticipate the committee running the event in future festivals, but it’s not to say a tavern tour won’t happen.

“I don’t foresee the committee planning that event anymore – I think it ran its course,” said Lever. “There’s community-organized events, so if a community group wanted to host such a thing they could put it in the brochure.” 

The festival will also not include a parade this year. Lever said the committee removed itself from parades in 2015, noting a community group had tried to organize those events in the past. 

Other events

Some of the highlighted events for the festival include the Kay MacSween Memorial Walk the Loop at 9 a.m. on Monday at Rose Schwartz Park as well as the Family Walk-In Drive-In at 7 p.m. at the New Waterford and District Community Centre.

The annual antique and custom car show will be held on Tuesday from 6-9 p.m. on Plummer Avenue, while the Susan Coombes Memorial Teddy Bear Picnic and Sobeys Children’s Festival will be held on Wednesday from 1-4 p.m. at Colliery Lands Park. 

The closing concert will take place on July 24 at Colliery Lands Park and will feature The Non Essentials Band, beginning at 7:30 p.m. Fireworks will take place at dusk. 

Some events to look out for are listed below. For a full list of festival events, visit the festival’s Facebook page by searching New Waterford Coal Dust Days.

Coal Dust Days highlights

Monday, July 18

• 9 a.m. – Kay MacSween Memorial Walk the Loop beginning at Rose Schwartz Park

• 7 p.m. – Family Walk-In Drive-In, New Waterford and District Community Centre

Tuesday, July 19

• 10 a.m. – Coal Dust Days Bicycle Rodeo, New Waterford Fire Department

• 6-9 p.m. – 13th annual Antique and Custom Car Show, Plummer Avenue

Wednesday, July 20

• 1-4 p.m. – Susan Coombes Memorial Teddy Bear Picnic and Sobeys Children’s Festival, Colliery Lands Park

Thursday, July 21

• 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. – Plummer Avenue Day

• 7-10:30 p.m. – Plummer Avenue Day Wrap-Up Party featuring Hearts of Kin and Cherrybomb

Saturday, July 23

• All Day – New Waterford Credit Union Minor Baseball Day

• 12 p.m. – Kids Fun Day, New Waterford Fire Hall

Sunday, July 24

• 7:30-9:30 p.m. – Coal Dust Days Closing Concert, Colliery Lands Park

• Dusk – Fireworks

Jeremy Fraser is a reporter for the Cape Breton Post. Follow him on Twitter @CBPost_Jeremy.

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KFX returns with three-day event – Kelowna News

KFX returns with three-day event - Kelowna News

Kelowna Fan Experience ’22

After a three-year hiatus, the Kelowna Fan Experience is back with a three-day event loaded with celebrity guests, artists, cosplayers, comic book writers and more.

“KFX is kicking off! We’re coming back in a big way because we couldn’t put on the event for the last couple of years, so we really wanted to come back in full swing and give the Okanagan a jam packed event where there is really something for everyone,” explained KFX producer Kimberly Billinton.

Many event-goers filled the Delta Grand Hotel ballroom Friday night dressed as their favourite fictional characters, and everyone seemed happy to share the experience with fellow content lovers and creators.

“It feels amazing! It’s great to be back, it’s awesome to be here. And honestly, it’s really just a great vibe with great energy. I’m just glad people have been so positive in the community in the lead up to it and in the event so far,” said KFX Founder Brock Grattz.

The weekend is filled with events in several locations including the Delta Grand Hotel, the Rotary Centre for the Arts, the Library, and Black Box Theatre featuring some big name guests doing meet and greets with the fans.

“We’ve got some really exciting guests coming out tomorrow. We’ve got Jett Klyne, who plays Tommy Maximov in Wanda Vision and Doctor Strange. And Baylen Bielitz who plays the young version of Billy in Wanda Vision, we’ve got Roark Critchlow from Days of our Lives and Pretty Little Liars, we’ve got comic book artist John Delaney who’s coming to do a panel,” said Billinton.

The event runs from 10:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. Saturday, and wraps up on Sunday at 4:30 p.m.