The banners are up, the floats are being worked on and festival committee members are experiencing that tension and uneasy feeling that comes before the floodgates are opened on a week of celebrations, Morinville style.
It would be hard to imagine a festival that could top the one Joel Chevalier, Ron Cust and countless volunteers envisioned last year when they reinvigorated the St. Jean Baptiste Festival on the closing edge of Morinville’s first century, but looking at the menu of events and activities planned for this week, one is left with a sense that this year’s festival committee has no governor on their gas pedal. It’s pedal to the metal, balls to the wall, and full out festival time in Morinville.
From the series of concerts that begin Tuesday on Aboriginal Day with First Nations gospel group Broken Walls to the closing fireworks Sunday night, Morinville will be home to a cultural and entertainment smorgasbord that is sure to please the most discerning of appetites.
The festival slogan is Our Community, Our Heritage, Our Pride, and although we will see all of those elements that make Morinville what it is in this week’s festival, we will see another element that makes this community great – the ability to envision and achieve what some would never attempt.
It was more than a century ago when settlers said, “Hey, we’re going to go there and set up a community.” Today that community continues to grow, and along with it a revitalized festival that says Morinville is still a small town, but one that is neither intimidated of kept in its place by the bigger communities that share its border.
There is often an explosion of enthusiasm here when a small group of people come up with a crazy idea that seems all the less crazy when it is brought from a kernel of an idea to a fully realized audio and visual display everyone can take part in and take pride in.
We tip our hats to the countless volunteers and organizers who have worked since the last streamer was packed away last summer to bring us a bigger and better St. Jean Baptiste Festival this year.