How will you spend the May long weekend this year?
GO Fest — Whistler's Great Outdoors Festival — returns for its third year from May 20 to 23 with even more music and options for fun.
Arts and culture are an important part of the festivities, along with sporting events (for more information on sports, see page 61).
Whistler mayor Nancy Wilhelm-Morden says the Resort Municipality of Whistler has worked closely with the community to bring in more events this year.
"It's a work in progress and we knew three years ago that it wouldn't occur in the course of one year and it was a multi-year project. We got this from our experience with (hosting) New Year's Eve," she said.
"My expectation is that this weekend will be better than last year with the word that has gone to the community and guests as well."
Three free headlining concerts are part of the celebration, all taking place on the GO Fest mainstage in Village Square.
First up is Juno-winning singer-songwriter Dan Mangan, on Friday, May 20, at 7:30 p.m.
Cuban-Canadian and four-time Latin Grammy winner Alex Cuba performs on Saturday, May 21, at 7:30 p.m.
The final concert is by Vancouver rockers The Matinee on Sunday, May 22, at 7:30 p.m.
(See interview on page 78)
The Whistler Film Festival (WFF) continues its Adventure Film Series over the weekend at the Maury Young Arts Centre.
The series opens on Saturday, May 21, with the B.C. premiere of Speed Sisters (1 p.m); The Rider & The Wolf, double-billed with Reaching For The Sky (4 p.m.). The Great Alone (7 p.m.) won the Grand Jury Prize and Best Exploration and Adventure Film at Banff Mountain Film Festival in 2015. The evening closes with Meru (9 p.m.).
On Sunday, May 22, there is Racing Extinction (1 p.m.), Waterways and View From A Blue Moon (4 p.m.) and the Canadian premiere of We Are Blood (7 p.m.).
Tickets to each screening are $12; a WFF Adventure Series ticket package is available for $60 for seven tickets.
Tickets are available at the Maury Young Arts Centre box office or online at www.artswhistler.com.
Alta Lake becomes a new option for the long weekend as GO Fest comes to The Point Artist-Run Centre on Sunday, May 22.
The Point's artistic director Stephen Vogler says the day will feature family fun, with bocce, brunch, live music, an art show and a great place to socialize, starting from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m.
"The RMOW asked us if we wanted to put something on, because they are trying to include more organizations and businesses in the GO Fest plans," he says.
Alta Lake promises to be a quiet respite over the busy weekend.
"It will be a nice little local sanctuary away from the hullabaloo in the village," Vogler adds.
He adds that it is a trial run for Sunday open houses planned to start in July.
The Point is also offering a canoe shuttle across the lake from Blueberry dock to the lodge, where the festivities will take place.
The canoe, called the Alta Clipper, has a historical link to early Whistler, being modelled on co-founder Alex Philip's canoe which shuttled guests around in the 1920s and '30s.
It can take up to five people.
Entrance to the afternoon's festivities and canoe rides are by donation.
The Point is holding its first dinner show of the summer at 6 p.m., with Chinese food cooked by chef Michelle Bush. Live music comes from western swing band Poor Dirty Sylvia and a special performance of pop, rock and punk songs by Barbed Choir, which is open to anyone who wants to sing.
Show-only tickets are $10. Dinner and show tickets are $25 for adults and $18 for children under 12. Tickets are available at www.thepointartists.com and Armchair Books.
The GoPro GoShow, presented by Whistler Blackcomb, is back with six athletes competing for $2,000 by making a short film shot entirely with GoPro cameras. Their work will be shown in front of a judging panel and audience at the Garibaldi Lift Company on May 22; with doors opening at 7 p.m. Admission is free.
Mountain Bike Heritage Week also runs during the festival, with speakers and screenings at the Whistler Museum. For more information visit www.whistlermuseum.org.
Other events include Bear Sculpting, Wine about Art, and the Picasso Portrait Party at the Crystal Lodge Art Gallery, a digital photography workshop offered by Photography Whistler, and Revolution: Whistler Mountain Biking in Photography and Art at the Maury Young Arts Centre (runs until June 14).
For tickets and more information on these and all GO Fest events, visit www.greatoutdoorsfest.com.
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