One of Kelowna's long-running, home-grown music festivals is returning this winter after a two-year hiatus through the pandemic.
Fireside Festival is returning to Kelowna over the first weekend of February, welcoming more than 30 artists from across Canada and from right here at home over three days of music.
Fireside has a long history in Kelowna, dating back to 2014, when a handful of local musicians and friends gathered at Aaron DeSilva's home off Lakeshore Drive for an afternoon of music.
The event grew in popularity over the next few years, leading DeSilva to formalize the event in 2016, with pre-sale tickets and a new venue at BNA Brewing. It continued every winter at BNA through until 2020.
Festival Director of Operations Heather Leslie says it was always their plan to bring the festival back after COVID-19 restrictions forced its postponement in 2021 and 2022.
“We wanted to make sure that when we came back it would be in full force,” she said.
“It's a 100 per cent a Kelowna home-grown festival. The main team is all local people and it's of huge importance to us to showcase and give a big stage to up and coming acts, and having some bigger names so they're all sharing the same stage.”
Fireside announced their artist lineup Wednesday, and Leslie says she's been hearing from local artists about how excited they are to play the festival.
This year, the festival will kick off at Red Bird Brewing on the evening of Friday Feb. 3 with an “all-femme” lineup of hip-hop, RnB, Soul, DJs and burlesque performances.
The fun will return to Red Bird Saturday Feb. 4 for a full day of shows, featuring 15 performances, and headlined by Neon Steve and Teon Gibbs.
The festival will return to its “home base” at BNA Brewing on Sunday Feb. 6, for an all-day event at the local brewery.
“We've just been really impressed with Red Bird's live music and the name that they've made for themselves,” Leslie said. “It was a no-brainer partnering with them.”
All three days are open to people of all ages until 10 p.m. Leslie notes that tickets, which can be found here, make a great Christmas gift.
“It's something you can really look forward to through those grey months,” Leslie said. “We finally get to bring it back and bring it back right.”