Some weeks close with only a weekend, but mid-summer in Victoria BC, sunglass clad beer-swillers and eager foot stompers get to have a weekender. Its not just any weekender but the Phillips Backyard Weekender, a 3-day festival held in the funky industrial lot of Phillips Brewery in Victoria BC.
The festival kicked off tonight with homegrown and world class musical talent, cold cups of frothy craft beer and throngs of folks of many different sorts. Among the casual and the conspicuous in attendance were the city slickers, the tattooed hip people (that's the politically correct term these days), and the dreadlocked reggae fans most likely there to see the Original Wailers play the headline set.
Despite the unforgiving cement underfoot, local favourites Mindil Beach and Five Alarm Funk had people bouncing and warmed up for singing along to Marley classics, played by the Wailers.
With blue skies set against red brick walls, a festive caravan selling beer on tap, the kegs piled heavenly high overhead, and the smell of poutine and hot dogs wafting through the air, a toned down, urban carnival ambiance has been achieved. The newly expanded and more spacious event venue means that you can more easily avoid being sprayed by a beer on its way to the ground, and you can find a place to hang out where you might forget the uneasy presence of the rather vigilant security guards.
If you are just hanging out around Victoria right now, the rest of the weekend has some bands that are definitely worth checking out. Go to their site for a schedule and to purchase tickets.