If last week’s turnout for the kick-off to Performances in the Park is any indicator, people in Williams Lake are keen to enjoy fresh air and live music.
On June 5, the park’s hillside was packed as people sat listening to local performers Miss White Spider and One Below.
This week’s Thursday evening concert will feature two familiar acts — Colin Easthope and Cole Patenaude in one set and Kym Gouchie and Northern Sky in the other.
Easthope is originally from Williams Lake, where his brother and parents still live.
Fresh off his first full-year teaching contract position in Salmon Arm, Easthope said his life is starting to stabilize and he has more time to write and play music.
“It’s good to be back home to perform,” he added. “Originally I was supposed to perform with my good friend Tanya Gallagher, but she was called back to Florida, so luckily Cole’s able to join me because he’s here early for Arts on the Fly. Cole and I have a handful of shows lined up this summer.”
On Thursday the two will perform some of Patenaude’s originals, a few blues and country covers, and “strip-down acoustic” versions of some of Easthope’s tunes.
“Hopefully I can get my banter going because that’s always my favourite part of the shows, being able to talk and joke around with the audience and with Cole,” Easthope said. “I super excited.”
He is also looking forward to sharing the evening with Gouchie.
“We were scheduled to play the same night last summer but that obviously didn’t work out. I know she is equally as excited to be able to be there. It will make it all that more special after last summer’s wildfires. My brother is a firefighter and I really felt for everybody in this community last year, not being able to be here. Cole and I talked about how strange it was to watch from a distance.”
He last performed in Williams Lake in 2016 during a Safety Meeting concert and for the 2018 Arts on the Fly lineup announcement party held in May.
“I’ve been starting to record some new demos with Brandon Hoffman for a new album,” Easthope said.
Gouchie is an Indigenous roots songwriter from the Lheidli T’enneh /Prince George.
A warrior of the light, Kym Gouchie’s inspirational music lifts the soul beyond its fettered state along the quest of creating a better world with compassion, understanding and forgiveness, reminding us that we are all in this together.
She fearlessly leads her band Northern Sky, featuring some of Northern B.C.’s finest musicians, as they create compelling and stunning live performances of her genuine and heartfelt songs.
Cody’s Bannock, Taylor Made Cakes and the Fennel Cup will be on hand with bannock, sandwiches, pizza, cupcakes, sweets and hot east Indian food and burgers available for everyone during the performances.
There will be an Art in the Park kid’s corner, hosted by the Community Arts Council of Williams Lake as in previous seasons providing art projects for the little ones.
Performances in the Park is sponsored by Gold Sponsors United Concrete and Gravel, West Fraser Truckers Association, Lakecity Ford Collision Centre and the evening sponsors are PMT Chartered Professional Accountants and Tolko Industries.
The concerts go from 6 to 8 p.m.