WINNIPEG — While Manitobans won’t be able to gather by the thousands like in previous years, Festival du Voyageur is pushing ahead with a modified format in the face of COVID-19.
Organizers on Wednesday revealed their plans to bring Manitobans the joie de vivre they’re used to feeling every February.
The 2021 edition includes an emphasis on virtual concerts and events, as well as French-Canadian meal kits made available for people to take home and enjoy with a virtual show.
Festival favourites, like the beard-growing contest, pea soup competition, fiddling contest and the jigging contest, will also be held virtually.
“If public health orders allow it at the time, the festival will also feature an emphasis on distanced, cohorted and one-directional outdoor activities with visual art installations, snow, ice and wooden sculptures, and historical interpretation presented by Université de Saint-Boniface at a much-reduced capacity,” organizers said in a release.
“We also hope to present a safe, distanced evening experience for adults titled the Liquor Mart Labyrinth.”
Also on the schedule is a series of educational vignettes on Métis culture and instructional videos showing Manitobans “How to Festival from Home.”
Children in schools will be treated to a modified Canada Life School Program, highlighting the fur trade and Indigenous histories into schools with pre-made craft kits, virtual presentations from Fort Gibraltar and free educational activities for teachers and parents.
Further information on Festival du Voyageur, being held February 12 to 21, 2021, is available at HeHo.ca.