Hillsborough hosts the third edition of the Bore Music Festival this weekend, with entertainment slated for Friday evening and throughout the day Saturday.
This year’s festival lineup boasts a wide array of talent, from children’s entertainer Fred Penner to Moncton native Jane Ehrhardt, from singer-songwriter Don Brownrigg to roots-folk group Banded Stilts, and more.
The festival came together three years ago when organizer Kelly-Sue O’Connor was looking for ways to raise awareness of the Nature Trust of New Brunswick. Established in 1987, the Nature Trust is a non-profit, charitable land-trust organization dedicated to land conservation throughout the province while also advocating environmental stewardship and education.
Kelly’s involvement with the Nature Trust dates back almost four years. Kelly felt the organization would be a good beneficiary of funds raised by the Bore Music Festival.
“I was personally very interested in the organization as they help protect land, which in turn helps protect bird habitats,” she says. “There are a lot of charities doing this but some of the smaller organizations have a hard time with finding the necessary funds as well as volunteers.”
While summer music festivals are an annual rite of passage all over the world, they are typically held in the major cities of any given region. The fact that the Bore Music Festival calls Hillsborough home was a deliberate move on Kelly’s part.
“I had originally decided on having the festival take place in Hillsborough out of sheer convenience for me since I live there,” Kelly says. “Keeping the festival in Hillsborough allowed us to have a home base close by for the performers. I am also a big advocate for supporting our local businesses as well. I have friends that run businesses here. What better way to help the local business community than by infusing it with festival-goers?”
Asked if holding the festival in a smaller community has posed any logistical challenges, Kelly says that they have been few and far between.
“(But) without the financial support of the people at Picaroons, I don’t think that I would have been able to make it to year 3,” she says. “But also, local businesses like the Apple Blossom Café and Valufoods, the Kiwanis of Hillsborough as well as the village council have been ardent supporters of the festival since Day 1.”
This year’s edition of the Bore Music Festival will be the biggest to date, with Kelly choosing to expand the former single-day event to two days. The festival kicks off on Friday evening with an intimate singer-songwriter concert at Hillsborough’s St. Mary’s Anglican Church.
The church, completed in 1889, seats approximately 60 people but boasts acoustics that will complement the songs performed by Jane Ehrhardt, Morgan MacDonald, Carly Maicher and Willie Stratton.
“I have had the opportunity to host a number of shows at this very venue over the last year and felt that it would be an incredible experience to incorporate the venue into the festival,” Kelly says. “It can really be quite moving to hear songwriters perform in such intimate confines. It really brings listeners to the heart and soul of every single word sung and every note played.”
Saturday the festival moves to Kiwanis Ballfield for a family-friendly lineup. The event includes face painting and bouncy castles for children while a host of food trucks will help keep festival attendees fed.
The day will be headlined by children’s entertainer Fred Penner, who is scheduled to perform in the mid-afternoon. As the first children’s entertainer to headline at the Los Angeles Amphitheatre, the two-time Juno Award winning performer saw his show Fred Penner’s Place run for 12 seasons and nearly 900 episodes.
What: The Bore Music Festival
Tickets: Weekend passes allowing entry to both days are available for $35. Advance tickets are available for purchase online at theboremusicfestival3.eventbrite.com
Who: Morgan MacDonald, Carly Maicher, Willie Stratton, Jane Ehrhardt
When: Friday July 11, 6 p.m.
Where: St. Mary’s Anglican Church, 39 Mill St., Hillsborough
Tickets: $15 plus service fee
Who: Fred Penner, Lindy Vopnfjord, Don Brownrigg, Corey Isenor, Banded Stilts, Tomato Tomato, Masons Tender, Klarka Weinwurm
When: Saturday July 12, Noon
Where: Kiwanis Ball Field, Hillsborough
Tickets: $25 plus service fee