Rockin’ River, Mission Fest heat up district

Two massively popular events held in Mission this weekend

It’ll be a hot weekend in Mission as Rockin’ River Music Festival and downtown’s Mission Fest sizzle with music and fun.

Rockin’ River, the Lower Mainland’s largest country music affair, begins today (Thursday) and runs until Saturday at Mission Raceway Park.

The annual event started four years ago and has grown annually. This time around, the festival will be stretched out over three days, instead of two.

“We added a kick-off party on Thursday,” said Kenny Hess, a performer and organizer with Rockin River, who hopes fans will enjoy a taste of the show on opening day and return for more Friday and Saturday. Pre-ticket sales indicate there will be about 2,500 people at the festival each day, but Hess is hoping that number will be doubled.

“People like to show up at the last minute.”

The list of performers on Thursday include Aaron Pritchett, Karen Lee Batten, Brent Lee and Tyler Whelan.

There will be a dance floor and lots of games throughout the festival. Proceeds from the games will benefit local charities, said Hess.

Todd Richard, The Higgins, Victoria Banks, Kenny Hess, Randy Bachman and Dwight Yoakam perform Friday, and Shane Chisholm, The Matinee, Stacey McKitrick, Ridley Bent, One More Girl, George Canyon and Blue Rodeo will take the stage Saturday.

They’re all great entertainers, said Hess, who couldn’t say enough about Yoakam, who will be closing Friday’s show.

“He’s fantastic,” said Hess. “He plays one hit after another. Randy Bachman has more hits than anyone can imagine and George Canyon is one of my buddies.”

Hess has opened for Yoakam in the past and has written songs with Bachman. He has also known Canyon for close to 20 years when they were both trying to find their wings in the music industry.

For tickets and information on camping, visit or call the Rockin’ River hotline at 604-733-2235.


Mission Fest

Mission downtown businesses are opening their doors and closing down the street for the second annual Mission Fest. This large community celebration is the ultimate customer appreciation event.

There will be many in-store activities and people are encouraged to wander from store to store to see what’s happening, said Ronda Cushnie, Mission Downtown  Business Association’s executive director. On the street, there will also be vendors, buskers, a car show, as well as the fire department’s new truck.

The event begins at 10 a.m. and runs until 5 p.m. A stage will be set up by Tim Hortons and opening ceremonies start at noon.

First Avenue will be closed to vehicle traffic, except for those entered in the car show at Grand Street. There is only room for 75 cars, so it’s first come first serve. Registration begins at 7:30 a.m. and is $10.

There will be seven bouncy castles, a petting zoo and pony rides. There will also be a kids chalk zone by Magnolia’s, and the first 200 children ages 12 and under at the event will receive a goody pack with sidewalk chalk, bubbles, crayons, stickers and more.

“Even though Mission downtown is opening its doors, we couldn’t do it without community support,” said Cushnie, who is expecting 7,000 to 10,000 visitors downtown this weekend. Last year 5,000 attended.

A few businesses on Second Avenue are also participating, including the Farmers’ Market, which will be extending its hours, and the Mission Community Archives, where will be be a strawberry tea and ice cream.

For more information and a list of sponsors, visit

Just Posted

Creepy phone caller threatens women in Abbotsford

RCMP first warned of disturbing calls last month

Mental health a big factor when addressing safety issues

‘I do feel that my kids are safe’ : Tracy Loffler

Canadian culture, gun laws have made life safer in B.C.

Gun amnesties have helped, says Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth

Stopping school violence starts with communication

Some B.C. schools moving to locked doors, identity badges, video surveillance

‘Our schools are safe’

Mission school superintendent Angus Wilson says training, protocols in place

Ottawa proposes restricted pot labels, packages

Packaging will include red stop sign with marijuana leaf and ‘THC’

Pro-Trump protest sign with F-word is OK, court rules

Judges say Ontario man can protest publicly, even using vulgar language

Chilliwack’s Spirit Abreast team searching for new paddlers

As dragon boat season approaches, breast-cancer-focused team holds annual meet and greet

Body of missing Australian woman found in Whistler lake

RCMP say they do not suspect foul play in Allison Raspa’s death

VIDEO: Police officer looking for distracted drivers gets hit by truck

Road safety investigator clipped by trailer while patrolling busy intersection

YVR wants you to help name three new puppies

Say hello to the Vancouver Airport’s new assistance pups

COLUMN: Fundraiser helps Abbotsford family fulfill $100K goal for BC Children’s Hospital

Five years after setting their goal, Team Miracle Maya surpasses their target

Speculation tax causing concern at Cultus Lake, Harrison Hot Springs

Recreational property owners face hefty bill for 2019 for what some call a ‘wealth’ tax

Suspect who attacked autistic man in Ontario could be from B.C.’s south coast: police

29-year-old man was sent to hospital with serious injuries

Most Read