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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

Live Summer 2020 events by the Niagara Folk Arts Festival

Covid-19 precautions are giving the 2020 Niagara Folk Arts Festival a unique opportunity to be the most creative in providing employment opportunities for Niagara Regional Artists, cultural expression and revenue opportunities for our ethno-cultural members and the Festival itself. The Festival is working closely with the City of St. Catharines By-law, Transit and the Regional Health Departments as well as following the City’s Staged Re-Opening Plans to be sure to balance the events to be as safe as possible while still offering opportunities. Programming will be subject to Provincial, and Municipal Covid-19 guidelines.

Arts to the Folks

These events are a first step in an overall hope that some activities will be able to move forward, depending on what restrictions might be in place. A call for Artists has been sent out (see below), inviting all generas to offer presentations. The venues for each performance will be at local residential addresses, determined by an on-line auction-highest bid wins the right to have a ‘show’ on their front lawn or driveway. Unless you live immediately nearby, you will miss out BUT that should inspire more ‘venue operators’ to acquire a show for them. The target for these events is mid-July to mid-August.

Arts to the Stage

Planned for outdoors, ethno-cultural live performance activities will be offered to a drive-in viewing area. For those who missed the live performances that happen at the annual Open Houses, this will be an opportunity for the ethno-cultural performers to have a show with a live audience, in a more formal format. Nothing replaces the energy that artists and audiences create while in the same space, feeding each other the joy of authenticity. This event is planned for mid to late August.

Open Houses Curb-Side pickups

If you missed tasting genuine homemade foods with the 2020 Open Houses postponement, these pop-up takeouts are going fill that need. Planned for later this Summer, Open House clubs will be offering their specialties for take-out. All meals will be pre-ordered and paid for on-line. This will be the only direct opportunity for our members to recover any revenues from their one annual biggest fundraiser, and we get to remember and share fond memories of festivals past through food.

Arts to the Folks – Calling All Artists

The Niagara Folk Arts Festival is bringing the Arts to the Folks this Summer, since you can’t get to us. We are looking for artists, cultural specific or not, to participate in performing at local residences. We are looking to offer a wide selection of arts formats – music, dance, DJs, visual arts (chalk or temporary paintings on sidewalks), dramatic readings, theater presentations, singing – all genres, all languages too many to list here.

Your arts presentation will be family friendly and should be able to be performed on a residential front lawn, sidewalk or boulevard and only require access to an outside plug for an extension cord(s). The Artists will provide all equipment, though a small PA system can be arranged through the Festival. The performances will be live streamed and supported by Cogeco through the Source and YourTV. Artist bursaries to be negotiated.

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