The Wapiti 2022 lineup has been announced ahead of the 10th annual music festival in Fernie.
The lineup of 11 bands includes local talent as well as bands from Vancouver and as far away as Toronto.
“I’m very happy to have the lineup done,” said Wapiti’s artistic director, Chantel Vincent.
The lineup has The Sheepdogs as the headliner – a band that Vincent said Wapiti had been trying to pin down since the very first festival. Also on the lineup are The Harpoonist and the Axe Murderer, local favourite Shred Kelly, My Son The Hurricane, The Free Label, Zaki Ibrahim, John Welsh and Los Valientes, Leather Apron Revival, Mount Rushka, The Steadies, and Fernie local DJ Cona.
The 2022 festival is the return of Wapiti after a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic, and a lot of the names of the lineup for this year are bands that had to be cancelled in 2020.
“I’m the one that dealt with that, and it was sad, heartbreaking and scary because everything was so uncertain. For those bands we were cancelling, it was like cancelling their work.”
The organizers decided that going back to those same bands was a great way to try to pick up where they left off.
“It felt right to go back to those original bands and at least offer them their spot back.”
Wapiti 2022 will look different to Wapiti 2019, with an all-new venue in James White Park and all the challenges of a new location, but the organizers say they’ve gone to great lengths to ensure the feel of the festival is as Wapiti as it gets.
Locals and visitors alike are clearly buying what Wapiti’s selling, because as of Apr. 8, half of all tickets have been sold, four months ahead of the festival on August 5 and 6.
Vincent said such fast sales were a record for the festival.
“The community obviously wanted to get back together.”
With a new venue comes new challenges for the festival: While the organizers have ten years experience behind them, James White Park is significantly larger than the festival’s traditional location at Annex Park, so Wapiti is calling out for more volunteers to sign up to help things go smoothly in the lead up, on the day, and afterwards. For more information head to the Wapiti Festival website at wapitimusicfestival.com.
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