Rocking at the Canmore Folk Music Festival

I spent the long weekend in August in Canmore (Aug. 3-5) participating in the 36th annual Canmore Folk Music Festival. I was a newbie, it being my first Folk Festival, and my first time there as a artist-vendor.

LINDA COTE-Nicole Tremblay GlassI had the encouragement of a friend, colleague and fellow Folk Fest lover, Nicole Tremblay, who graces the Canmore scene with her beautiful blown glass creations.

Many thanks to Nicole for getting me to the event (years of nagging) and more importantly, for getting me prepped for the big event (“Don’t forget to silicone your tent for rain!” … “Don’t forget your lights for the night shoppers!”….)

It was a fantastic weekend. If you discounted the weather: frequent threats of storms, and many showers that (mostly) didn’t last that long. With the exception of one unbelievable thunder and lightening event that saw the heavens open up for about 20 minutes on Monday while my studio partner, Barb, and I quivered and laughed inside a zipped up tent.

In fact, I have so many thanks to offer to everyone. I often say it takes a village to get me get to, through and successfully unpacked from these outdoor shows.

Special thanks to: Barb Fyvie, my studio partner who regularly checked in on me throughout the weekend and kept me well-fed with delicious creations from the local food vendors. She and her husband also danced the night away with me at the Spirit of the West concert on the Sunday night — a band I’ve followed and loved for almost 30 years — then helped me schlep two bins of my artwork back home across two fields to the car.

LINDA COTE-Spirit of the West

Spirit of the West entertains at the Canmore Folk Festival.

Thanks to Maureen, a local friend and networker extraordinaire, who took my second pass for the weekend and covered my booth while I took breaks for food, and allowed me to catch the odd band on the large and small stages around the grounds. I always came back to her joyful report: “I sold some cards!!”

LINDA COTE-Voyager TileThanks to Brian and Dawn from Voyager Tile, who were in the tent beside me, and who were lovely partners-in-crime to pass the weekend with. They had beautiful artwork that delighted my senses (including this piece that came home with me) .

Thanks to my friends Diana and Charles who came to the Folk Festival from Calgary, and visited the booth several times, then brought me a strong coffee mid-afternoon on Monday … after two 16-hour days in a row, it was very much appreciated!

Thanks to the many friends and clients who stopped by my booth and entertained me with stories, gave me feedback (and praise) for my art, told me that they had found my artwork in different galleries and that it was nice to finally meet, and gave me leads on other artists I needed to look up online. These people always make my weekend magical.

And, of course, thank you to my husband, who never thinks an outdoor show is a silly idea — no matter how  many hours it is, or how much I stew over the event before the event, but simply pitches in and helps with set up, tear down, bringing me forgotten sandals and any other little thing I might need. And to my two young boys who think nothing of a mom who works all weekend, and who always throw their arms around me and ask “How did you do?” when I come home each night.

I am so blessed to have such an amazing community of support around me!

Here, for those who missed it, is a little taste of the weekend in photos.

LINDA COTE-Tent and Sky

Set up on “day 1” — Saturday this ominous cloud hung over the mountains, but surprisingly it never rained!

LINDA COTE-Folk Fest Tent

The tent on day 1 — I was optimistic that the “open both sides” layout would be fine, despite the threatening clouds. In fact, it didn’t rain, but the wind did whip the art a bit!

LINDA COTE-Tent Inside,

Ready for the show — the people lined up at the far gate are just starting to come into the grounds.

LINDA COTE-Folk Fest TentInside

Inside the booth with prints, cards and alphabet prints displayed.

LINDA COTE-Folk Fest Sunset

Sunset on the first night. A spectacular view of the east end of Mount Rundle. The artists stay open until 10 pm.

LINDA COTE-Folk Fest Night

Night lights inside the tent. I was glad that Nicole reminded me I needed these! I’d never done a night show before.

LINDA COTE-Tent closed back

For day 2 & 3, I closed the back of the tent because the forecast was for rain. It did rain — a fair bit — but my art stayed nice and dry.

Here is a selection of music-themed cards I created for the Folk Festival:

LINDA COTE-Love song

Love Song

LINDA COTE-Mountain Music

Mountain Music

LINDA COTE-Major Birds

Major Birds



And, I will end with a panorama of the last afternoon when the sun and rain seemed to fight for dominance. The weather was weird, but it didn’t seem to dampen the enthusiasm of the people attending the Folk Festival, nor those who came by our artists’ tents. A hardy bunch, these music festival goers!

LINDA COTE-Folk Fest Panorama


6 responses to “Rocking at the Canmore Folk Music Festival

  1. hank YOU Linda! Your generosity of spirit is inspiring; you are a more than willing participant in the kind of sharing and giving that makes Canmore a wonderful from your smile that place to live. From sharing the process of your art to donating to events, from your cloud busting smile to your thoughtfulness to others, you are a gift to your community!

  2. Those musical cards are delightful!! What a venue and I love those glorious clouds too!! When outdoors for a show, you never know whether rain or wind or sun…but its an adventure. But, I do know that your joy for what you do rises above any dark cloud!! What fun music and camping!! 🙂

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