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Carstairs Heritage Festival, parade attracts about 1,500 people (4 photos)

Second annual event promotes and celebrates community in Carstairs

CARSTAIRS — The second annual Carstairs Heritage Festival & Parade of Kilts attracted about 1,500 guests of all ages, with everyone enjoying warm late-spring weather during the community celebration event.

Started in 2019, the festival and parade was cancelled in 2020 and 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but returned last Saturday.

Organization committee member and town councillor Marty Ratz called the day-long event a success with many people he spoke to expressing pleasure at seeing the festival’s return.

“The weather sure turned out well,” said Ratz, who estimated that about 1,500 people were around the parade route and at the festival events.

The Parade of Kilts saws hundreds of residents and guests line the streets of town to watch the proceedings, which included the Innisfail Legion Pipe Band, local dancers and athletes, and others.

The festival activities in Memorial Park included a pipe band concert, tug o’war, Highland dance showcase, circus workshop, petting zoo, face painting, museum tours, and a massed bands finale.

The multi-stakeholder Carstairs Community Development and Economic Partnership came up with the original idea of hosting the festival and parade to promote and celebrate the community.

Mayor Lance Colby, who rode in the parade, commended the many volunteers, service groups, businesses, sponsors, town staff and others who made the festival and parade possible.

Next year’s festival and parade is tentatively scheduled be held on Sunday, June 4.