Tag Archives: Calabogie Blues & Ribfest

Extra-Curricular Fun @ Blues & Ribfest


As I write this, we’re a little more than 48 hours away from the start of our 5th Annual Class Axe Guitars Calabogie Blues & Ribfest (phew, that’s a mouthful) and the whole resort is bustling like elves at Christmas. Do you have your tickets yet? Today, I wanted to take a moment to tell you about the other activities taking place on site this weekend to keep you entertained between watching great performances and licking rib sauce off your fingers.

If you haven’t heard about Periscope yet, it’s a free live video streaming app that’s taking the social media world by storm. And seeing as I’m the social media guy for Calabogie Peaks, it’s only fair that I play around with a new toy this weekend. We’ll be showcasing various live performances from some of our artists this weekend and you can sign up for Periscope or catch the updates direct from our Twitter feed.

Think you can watch the stage from high above Calabogie Lake? It’s a possibility with the return of Sky-Mazing Parasailing and they’re taking bookings for Blues & Ribfest weekend. Reserve your ride now at 705-457-8359, plus if you book your parasail ride by Thursday, August 13th, you’ll be entered for a draw to win your ride for free.
Chair Lift Rides
Another great way to see the action from up high but without bringing your bathing suit, we’ll be running the chair lift again during Blues & Ribfest weekend from Noon to 5:00pm on Saturday and Sunday. Take in the sights as you rise to the top of Dickson Mountain, maybe even take in a hike to Eagle’s Nest and stretch those legs after dining on some ribs.

Ribber Voting


This is the Blues & RIBFEST and that means a weekend of non-stop ribs, BBQ chicken, and more, but it’s also a contest between our three ribbers: Route 55, Horn Dawgs, and Gator BBQ. This year, you can vote for your favourite ribber by text message, so keep your eyes peeled for the signs on how you can vote for the ribber that filled your belly better than any other.

Rib Valet
Speaking of ribs, we introduced our rib valet service last year and it was a huge success. Now it’s back for another year. Pull on up to the front gate and put in your order to bring home fresh off the grill ribs from any of our three ribbers.

Last, but not least, there’s the fireworks popping over the mountain. Next to Canada Day, you’ll never find a bigger fireworks display in Calabogie than you will on Saturday night after our headliner, Keb’ Mo’ wraps up on stage. Whether you’re on our VIP access only deck or kicking back at your camper, it’s a great way to enjoy another year at the Calabogie Blues & Ribfest.

Why Choose? The True Spirit of the Mountain Man Music Festival

It wouldn’t be summer without music festivals and it’s not like we’ve been joining the bandwagon here. If anything, I’d like to say we’ve been one of the early leaders in local, community-driven festivals and this year did not stray from that goal. But this year was different. This year was, shall we say, a little risky. And we’re happy to say that it was totally worth it.
If you had a chance to join us over the June 26-28th weekend, then you know exactly what I’m talking about: the Mountain Man Music Festival. Every one has its theme (OK, most of them do) and this one was very unique: three stages playing non-stop music all weekend long featuring a variety of genres played by local artists. It was like a gallery of undiscovered Ottawa Valley talents mix with a healthy spoonful of crowd favourites churning out reggae, blues, folk, country, R&B, and a little something extra in between. Needless to say, pulling off a festival like this was a bit of a challenge and came with some risks. There’s generally very little runoff between so many genres of music and with no major headliner to take the spotlight, there was no guarantee people would make the drive to spend the day or stay the weekend.
I’m happy to say we were pleasantly surprised by both the turnout and the reactions from the crowd. It may even be safe to say we’ve already accumulated some fans. (What should we call them: mountaineers?)


A summer sunset behind the outdoor stage as the Steve Marriner Band plays on into the night. Photo courtesy of Lori Hoddinott.

What was nice about Mountain Man was the relaxed atmosphere about it all. You could enjoy a full band on the outdoor stage – a brand new and permanent addition to The Peaks, I might add, made with help from our sponsor, Renfrew Home Hardware – or take in a smaller venue with a personal touch upstairs in Black Donalds on the Ottawa Blues Society stage. Personally, there were some nice surprises even I wasn’t expecting and I’ve already found myself shopping online for The Riot Police and Lucas Haneman. In fact, Lucas was probably the breakout, slap-across-the-face performer of the entire weekend, in my opinion. Judge for yourself with this video of just his second song from Friday night’s show. (Apologies in advance for some of the audio in some parts as this was all captured with my Canon without any special recording gear.)
And of course, I’d be remiss if I didn’t make mention of the other fantastic performers: Jeff Rogers, Dan Livingstone, Andria Simone, Soulstack, Richard Martel, and more. So now that we have that one done and over, you’d think we could rest for the summer, right? Wrong, because there’s the always-popular sensation we call Calabogie Blues & Ribfest. That means we take a couple of days to rest, catch our breath, and dive right back into the swing of things.
See you in August!

Tips & Tricks To Survive The Calabogie Blues & Ribfest Weekend

BluesRibfest2014_guitarlogo-341x1024Music festivals have become a staple of summer must-see events and our 4th Annual Class Axe Guitars Calabogie Blues & Ribfest is no exception. Hours of live music, smokin’ hot food, chilled beverages, sunshine and good times all make for a jam-packed weekend of fun and excitement but there are some tips to help you enjoy the fun all through the weekend. Whether you’re camping on site with us from Friday to Sunday or simply spending a day enjoying the show, here’s some suggestions to make sure the fun isn’t interrupted.

The Bare Essentials

Regardless of how long you’ll be on site, it’s always handy to pack a few fundamentals to deal with the environment.

  • Sunscreen and a hat – Sitting outside in the sun all day is just asking for trouble, so that’s why these two items are listed first on the list (especially if you’re bringing the kids with you).
  • Rain gear – Sure, we’d love to have nothing but sun all weekend long, but that’s not our call. Should the rain start to fall, you’ll be glad you came prepared.
  • Bug spray – As much as we might not like it, the bugs lived here first and the tantalizing aroma of BBQ ribs is sure to attract them from across the valley.
  • Blankets or small camping chairs – Why not make yourself as comfortable as possible? Many camping chairs come with cup holders and pouches to keep all your extra goodies handy at all times.
  • Refillable plastic containers – As an outdoor festival, there are no glass containers allowed. If you’re planning on keeping bottles of water handy at all times, go plastic and reuse as often as possible.
  • If you’re camping, you’ll want to haul a little more than that but the benefit is that you’ll automatically have more room to bring more gear.
  • Tent and tarp – Listed first for all the right reasons and the tarp comes in handy should rain fall overnight.
  • Toiletries – Soap, toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant and anything else you’ll need to stay fresh and clean throughout the weekend. They’re not just for single people, you know.
  • Coolers – As outside food and beverages are not allowed within the concert area, you’ll want to keep your own handy while gathered around your campsite mingling with friends both old and new. No one wants to drink a warm beer while grooving to the blues!
  • Small propane cooking stove – As open flames are not permitted, should you want to cook up some of your own grub at your campsite, this is the way to go.
  • A flag/ribbon to mark your site – Have a little fun with this one and put up something with your family crest, a pirate flag or a funky design of your own creation.

What NOT To Bring


Every list of what to bring must be balanced with another list of things not permitted on the grounds. To ensure everyone has an equal opportunity to enjoy the festival and avoid unwanted incidents, please comply with the following conditions.

  • No pets allowed – While they’re great companions, they’re not for everyone.
  • Balloons
  • Generators – If you’re bringing your RV, there are electrical hook-ups available (spaces limited).
  • Glass bottles – As mentioned before, no glass containers are permitted on the property.
  • Aerosol sprays
  • Bicycles, scooters, ATVs, etc – All vehicles are to be keep off the grounds at all times (barring RVs, of course) for safety and maintenance of the grounds.
  • Any weapons, illegal substances and fireworks – We have a zero tolerance policy. If you bring any of these onto the grounds, you will be removed by security.

For more details on these and other aspects of the festival, check out www.calabogieblues.com. We’ll see you this weekend!