Monday, June 27, 2011

Penticton Elvis Festival 2011 - 10th Anniversary

Sitting at Starbucks lost in a daydream, at the edge of my mind I honest to god thought I saw Elvis.  Of course I knew he had died a long time ago but I could have sworn …..  Snapping out of it I sipped my Grande chi tea latte and darned if I didn’t see Elvis again just a few minutes later!  Woweee was I losing it?  Well guess what?  I DID see Elvis and not just one… I saw lots of them!  It’s that time of year in Penticton…The Elvis Festival is alive and well!

My friend Julie and I, folding chairs in hand trooped down to the event, grabbed the best spot we could and settled in for what would prove to be a delightful “blast from the past” music experience.  The tunes were so familiar and I found myself humming away toe tapping and whopping after each Elvis performance.  These guys are dedicated and talented performers who take their Elvis impersonations seriously.  They are judged on things like stage presence, costumes, singing ability and how much they actually sound and seem like Elvis. The festive atmosphere was very evident and the crowd sang along, beat time with their feet, waved their arms and cheered enthusiastically when a particularly good Elvis belted out a popular oldie.

The guy beside us, David from Cranbrook was a dyed in the wool Elvis fan and filled us in on some Elvis info.  For example: Did you know that Elvis made 31 movies and 2 documentaries?  We were curious to know if the various costumes worn by the performers where actually ones that Elvis would have worn. The answer was yes.  Apparently in the 50s Elvis wore red jackets because he was into Karate at the time and this was a nod to that.  Then in the 60 s it was black leather (must have been his bad boy stage!) and finally in the 70 s he wore his oh so famous white jumpsuits.  David shared many more tidbits of Elvis trivia that only a dedicated fan would take the trouble to learn.

Contestants come from all over the United States, Canada and  other parts of the world to compete in this very popular festival.  This year we were treated to a pro from Australia named Mark Anthony, who apparently has wowed audiences in many countries and was rated top performer by our new friend David. (see video clip below)
When it was time to gather up our things and leave, we both agreed that it was a fun albeit surreal experience even though we are not anywhere close to being Elvis “fans”.  It is amazing that this “King of Rock” as he is called, can be so revered years after his death.
Elvis died on Aug 16, 1977 at only 42 years old.  Judging by the turnout at the Penticton Elvis Festival he left legions of enthusiastic fans in his wake.
This year was the 10th Anniversary of the Penticton Elvis Festival.

For more information visit the Penticton Elvis Festival website.

Don’t forget to book your Penticton Vacation Rental early for the 2012 Festival.

1 comment:

  1. Nice to see you all appreciating Elvis ................. as a life long fan of him I have been to Memphis , Graceland twice in my recent years . I am now 60 years (and counting) & will be HOME soon .... My Father was born on Aug. 16 and always I Remember this date , Dad was born in Alberta , His father was from Ontario . Me , well . I was only born in Vancouver 60 years ago in 1955 . I moved to the country like my cousins but now Abby is just another city like Penticton ! New Mexico is looking better every day , Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm MAYBE ! ! ! ! Just Look for the 4XXX Ranch ! L. M. A. Off Big Time Seeeeeeeeeeeee Ya'll Soon . Bye Bye !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!