Prince Albert residents have the opportunity to enjoy a variety of free arts and culture activities starting on Friday.
Rather than taking place over a three-day weekend, the city’s Culture Days runs for a month from Sept. 25 to Oct. 25.
This has allowed the committee to offer more events and abide by everyone’s comfort levels throughout COVID-19—some activities take place in a small group, and others are self-guided or virtual.
The well-known Tapestrama Cultural Festival, for example, will be live-streamed on the Prince Albert Multicultural Council’s Facebook page on Sept. 26 and 27, much like its Canada Day celebration. Cultural food trucks will also be set up in the Multicultural Council’s parking lot.
Several of the events are new, such as the window art bomb contest hosted by the Arts Centre and the community music video hosted by the E.A. Rawlinson Centre.
For the window art bomb contest, which runs until Oct. 15, residents and businesses can decorate their windows, yards or sidewalks and send a photo to the Culture Days – Prince Albert Facebook page.
For the music video, vocalists and musicians are able to record portions of a song for sound technician Joel Rohs to compile together. The video will premiere on Nov. 10.
“That’s really why Culture Days started, is to be able to offer free, hands-on activities to those that maybe don’t get the opportunity or weren’t aware, haven’t tried something in arts and culture,” said Judy MacLeod Campbell, the city’s arts and culture coordinator.
Another important aspect of Culture Days is creating awareness of the local arts and culture community. Campbell, who works out of the Prince Albert Arts Centre, said a lot of people are unaware of what they offer, or that the Arts Centre even exists.
“It’s always shocking when we hear people who don’t even know that the Arts Centre is here, or that there’s a gallery inside, or that the Mann Art Gallery is part of the Rawlinson, the different programs that the museum offers, or the library.”
The library is unable to participate in Culture Days this year because it’s currently closed to the public.
Many of the activities are offered by the Arts Centre, including beading, yoga, outdoor painting and screen printing.
MacLeod Campbell said it was a unique experience to plan Culture Days during the pandemic. The committee has been meeting over Zoom instead of in person.
“The timing was okay. It’s not like March when we all closed or July when we just started to reopen,” she explained.
She said she’s thankful for groups such as SaskCulture and SaskLotteries for continuing to support Culture Days.
“COVID-19 created many challenges for the cultural community this year but it also opened the door to some creative opportunities,” said SaskCulture CEO Dean Kush in a news release.
“Lots of discussion and brainstorming among national and provincial Culture Days partners resulted in a new way to highlight the cultural experiences found here in the province, as well as throughout the country.”
Other communities in Saskatchewan participating in the nation-wide celebration include Weyburn, Lloydminster, Regina, Saskatoon, Manitou Beach, Yorkton and Warman.
You can visit culturedays.ca for the full lineup of activities.
In Prince Albert, Culture Days activities include:
- Window Art Bomb Contest — Sept. 12 to Oct. 15, hosted by the Prince Albert Arts Centre
- Historic Scavenger Hunt — Self-guided, hosted by the Prince Albert Historical Society
- Community Music Video — Sept. 1 to Oct. 13, video premieres Nov. 10, hosted by the E.A. Rawlinson Centre
- Community Culture Chalkboard Canvas — Available anytime, hosted by the Prince Albert Arts Centre
- Tapestrama and Food Trucks — Sept. 26 and 27, hosted by the Prince Albert Multicultural Council
- Outdoor Painting at Little Red — Sept. 26, hosted by the Prince Albert Arts Centre
- Gallery Tours of Why The Caged Bird Sings and Art Activity — Sept. 26, hosted by the Mann Art Gallery
- Indigenous Riverbank Tours — Sept. 27, hosted by the Prince Albert Historical Society
- Virtual South Asian Cooking with Shaista: Samosa & Pakora — Sept. 30, hosted by the Prince Albert Arts Centre
- Public Art Tours — Oct. 3 and 24, hosted by the Prince Albert Arts Centre
- Painting Workshop with Leah Dorion — Oct. 3, hosted by the Mann Art Gallery
- Try Beading — Oct. 3, hosted by the Prince Albert Arts Centre
- Family Yoga — Oct. 10, hosted by the Prince Albert Arts Centre
- Art Installations and Métis Mentorship Project Presentation — Oct. 17, hosted by the Mann Art Gallery
- Try Clay — Oct. 17, hosted by the Prince Albert Arts Centre
- Screen Printing — Oct. 24, hosted by the Prince Albert Arts Centre