Fifty days and counting until 40,000 people descend on the Sea
to Sky corridor for three days of music and fun — the pressure is on.
But the people behind the scenes of the Pemberton Festival seem
to be chipping away at the massive laundry list of details to be nailed down
before the three-day event kicks off on Friday, July 25.
Organizers have just released a breakdown of performances for
each day of the festival, though they have yet to assign times to each act.
The first day features performances by Nine Inch Nails,
Interpol, Serj Tankian, Wolfmother, Metric and other bands. On Saturday, Tom
Petty and The Heartbreakers and The Tragically Hip take to the stage alongside
The Flaming Lips, My Morning Jacket, Sam Roberts Band and Black Mountain, to
name a few. Finally, to cap off the three-day festival, Coldplay and Jay Z,
Death Cab For Cutie, N.E.R.D., Vampire Weekend and Wintersleep perform on
On the DJ side of things, the Bacardi B-Live Stage will also be
packed for all three days, with Junkie XL, Booka Shade, Chromeo and Tommie
Sunshine warming the crowds up on Friday, followed by Dave Seaman, MSTRKRFT,
M.A.N.D.Y., and Kevin Shiu on Saturday, and The Crystal Method, DJ Shadow and
Cut Chemist, and Deadmau5 wrapping things up on Sunday.
They’ve also named the stages: the main stage has been dubbed
the Mount Currie and the secondary stage, the Lil’Wat.
Shane Bourbonnais, president of North American touring and
business development for Live Nation, explained that with Mount Currie right in
the backdrop, and the Lillooet (or Lil’Wat) River nearby, they were the obvious
choices for stage names.
“We didn’t want to name them the Coca Cola stage, or those
types of things, we wanted to name them after things in the area,” Bourbonnais
said, adding that the names are also meant to show respect to the First Nations
heritage in the area.
Now that the daily lineup has been released, organizers are
also putting a limited number of one-day passes up for sale, at a price of
“I’m not able to discount it because I’ve got such a limited
amount of them,” said Bourbonnais. “But what I want to do is I want to let the
locals buy them first, because it’s really a lot of the local businesses that
really reached out to me and said, ‘you know, the resort’s going to be full.
It’s going to be really hard to let my staff have the weekend off. Can you look
at doing a single day ticket?’”
There are only 2,000 single passes available, which will go on
sale to locals on Monday, June 9 from 10 a.m. until 10 p.m. After that, the day
tickets go on sale to the general public on Friday, June 13.
Bourbonnais explained that they had to wait to offer single-day
passes to ensure that considerations were made for traffic management.
“The reason we’re going to be able to do it is because when we
put this event on sale, it was really important that we had a certain number of
people staying in the campground.”
But camping sales have exceeded expectations; the RV site has
already sold out, the family site is getting pretty crowded, and there are only
about 1,000 spots left in the general camping area.
“The way camping is going… next week at this time, I don’t
think camping spots will be available,” Bourbonnais said. “I think they’ll all
Camping is still restricted to those with three-day festival
passes, so anyone who is going up for just one or two days will have to make
alternate arrangements to and from the site, whether it be by taking the
shuttle service, bus, cab, or driving themselves and paying for parking.
Organizers are also working with engineers to finalize their
comprehensive site plan, which should be 100 per cent complete in a week or
“It’s plotted out, everything from where Whistler Water is
going to have their mister to where the garbage can is going to be,”
But they have a general idea of where everything will be going.
Over on the east side of the site, the food vending area will
feature an extensive farmers market and over 80 food outlets, offering
everything from Greek to Ukranian cuisine.
Pemberton’s annual summer barn dance will essentially be rolled
into the Pemberton Festival, as well. They’re being given their own tent,
dubbed the Pemberton Barn Dance, which will house activity companies, showcase
local talent, and host a pancake breakfast every morning.
In a treed area on the west side of the site, local and Native
artists will exhibit their work alongside dry goods and merchandise vendors,
and booths set up for social causes.
Businesses from throughout the province — Sechelt,
Saltspring Island, Gibsons, Nanaimo, Whistler, Pemberton, and Birken —
are bringing everything from tie-dyed T-shirts and hemp clothing to leather
products to sell to concertgoers.
“You name it, it’s pretty cool actually… it’s coming out of
For more information on purchasing tickets, visit www.pembertonfestival.com .