Big Fun Festival kicks off 5th year in Winnipeg
'The most amazing thing I've learned is how this city comes out for its own'
Winnipeg's Big Fun Festival is looking back to its beginning for its fifth anniversary festival, which kicks off Wednesday.
The multi-genre music festival is still all about getting people out of their homes during the dark, bitterly cold month to see local talent at different venues, but this year is special for the organizers.
- Winnipeg fiddle player posts 365th video of herself playing a new tune, completes year-long goal
- Music, the healing power in Winnipeg and worldwide
- Winnipeg New Music Festival gives audience Lego-like seating experience
"There's that nostalgia feel this year," said Lauren Swan, one of the founders of the five-day festival.
Big Fun was founded and planned in 2012 at the Lo Pub, which used to be at the corner of Kennedy Street and Ellice Avenue. Jack Jonasson, who used to manage the pub, is headlining the festival this year with his band Novillero on Saturday night at The Good Will.
"We're bringing everyone back home to celebrate," Swan said.
New to Big Fun this year are shows on Thursday, Friday and Saturday at the winter pop-up restaurant RAW: almond.
"It's the best venue that encompasses everything about Big Fun — the celebration of winter in the Prairies and also, the highlighting of our music scene," Swan said. "They've made it look like this enchanted forest. It's still going to be really wonderful."
"That's going to be a really great show, because the opening bands are all local, and they're all really awesome," she said about the Calvin Love show on Thursday.
The organizers admit they never thought the festival would go on for five years, and they're still amazed every time people line up in the cold weather to wait for a show.
Advance tickets are available through Ticketfly for Calvin Love, RAW: almond, Fist City, Novillero, Yes We Mystic with Close Talker and Micah Visser, and the Big Fun Hangover Breakfast.
The festival runs Jan. 27-31.