Think You Look Like Louis Riel?

Louis Riel's grave site in St. Boniface (STAN MILOSEVIC / MANITOBAPHOTOS.COM)
Louis Riel (MANITOBA ARCHIVES)

The best impressions of Manitoba’s founding father, Louis Riel, will be judged this afternoon as part of the first annual Louis Riel Look-A-Like Contest at Festival du Voyageur.

A panel of experts will see how close participants can get to pulling off their Riel-inspired look, including his signature mustache.

“We think it’s a great way to pay tribute to the founding father of Manitoba,” said Emili Bellefleur, director of marketing and communications for Festival du Voyageur. “After all, isn’t imitation is the sincerest form of flattery?”

Judges will be critiquing on costume, hairstyle, steely glare, props, attention to facial hair, and extra points will be awarded for historic speeches and/or poetry.

Organizers already have a few people signed up, but are looking for more participants. Anyone interested in taking part can call (204) 237-7692 or show up on-site 30 minutes prior to the event. Men and women alike are welcome to respectfully represent Riel at any point of his life.

“Louis Riel Day is always the busiest day at Voyageur Park,” Bellefleur added. “We collaborate with the Union Nationale Métisse St-Joseph and the Saint-Boniface Museum to present a full day of activities, workshop and musical acts, all in celebration of the people of Manitoba and Riel’s spirit. We encourage festival goers to purchase their pass in advance and carpool or to arrive early in order to avoid line-ups.”

The top three Riel doppelgangers will be awarded prizes.

The contest begins at 2 p.m. inside Voyageur Park.

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