Great Music & Great Camping - Escape to Nature!

IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT

We know many of you had been holding out hope … but finally, we’ve received a clearer picture from the province with their announcement of Stage 2 guidelines. So with heavy hearts, we’re announcing that there won’t be a River & Sky Music/Camping Festival as we’ve come to know it, this upcoming July 22-26.

 

PASS HOLDERS… 

We want to thank all the people who bought planning ahead passes –some even during the pandemic– for supporting the festival. Your faith in us is touching and inspires us to work harder. We are preparing to offer full refunds for your passes. If you are able to donate your ticket purchase, or a portion of your purchase, back to R&S we would very much appreciate the gesture and your money will help to ensure a solid future for R&S. For more information on how to get a refund, go to the bottom of this message.

 

KEEPING THE CAMPFIRE BURNING

Despite the isolation, we are coming closer together. This is what festivals have always done – we have brought people closer together. There will still be music this summer, music in nature, and music creation as part of River & Sky. We’ll be announcing more on this soon. 

 

R&S VALUES 

At this time when so many people are fighting against systemic racism and our colonial legacy, we want to affirm that R&S works in the spirit of inclusivity, diversity, and community. We will continue to seek out BIPOC to serve as board members, staff, artists, vendors, and crafters. Now is the time for us to listen and learn – ways we can do better as an organization and as a community.

Support marginalized voices! Here are some resources to learn more:
Black-Owned Businesses in Sudbury
How to be Actively Anti-Racist
Anti-Racism Resources for white people
40 Ways You Can Help Right Now
What is Environmental Racism
A Short Guide to Settler Colonial States

NEW CREW

2020 has been a year of many changes … This year Peter Zwarich, who founded R&S with a group of friends in 2009 and has led the festival ever since, will be stepping down. Peter has taken a job as Senior Program Officer with one of our funders, Canadian Heritage in its Cultural Spaces program. He’ll continue to help out with River & Sky providing mentoring to our two new, young leads (they are both in their 20s!) in this transition year, as well as out at our venue at Fishers’ Paradise. 

Abigail Cassio is taking on the role of Executive Director and Shawn Kosmerly, that of Artistic Director. Both of our new leads have a background working with River &Sky. Abby worked at the festival last year as Festival Intern and is a recent graduate of Ryerson University’s Creative Industries program. Shawn has played the festival as an artist in multiple bands, recorded it as Video Lead, and recently took on the job of Music Programming Lead (we are really bummed that we won’t be able to see his wicked 2020 line-up). He is a graduate of Humber College’s Motion Pictures and Film program and has his own production company Here Kitty Kitty Productions. 

We’ve also hired, through Canada Summer Jobs, a venue crew to work on a bunch of projects. Welcome Seb, Oli and Dawson!

 

MORE ANNOUNCEMENTS COMING …

Stay tuned to your email and R&S social media channels for exciting news on ways we will be supporting artists and keeping our community campfire burning online. Take good care, keep your spirits up and know that we are all doing the right thing to ensure our safety and well being. May the spirit, memory and anticipation of many happy R&S’ be with you at this time. With love from all of us at R&S 🏕

 

REQUESTING A FULL OR PARTIAL REFUND:

  1. Send an email to info@riverandsky.ca with your order number, the purchaser’s name, and the amount of the refund you would like to receive back, for a full refund simply write “full refund requested.”  e.g. SUBJECT LINE:  Order #12345, Monty DelMonte, Full refund requested OR  $XXX refund requested.

Please feel free to drop us a note in the body of the email as well – we would love to hear from you and hear how you are doing. We will work hard to respond to all emails, beyond the issuance of refunds, in a timely manner.

With the best Canadian Indie and Northern Ontario camping, R&S brings you simple good times, along the Sturgeon River. Since our inception in 2009, R&S has strived to support regional emerging artists in Northeastern Ontario and to showcase their talents alongside amazing artists from across Canada and beyond. Sincere thanks are extended to the Department of Canadian Heritage – Canada Arts Presentation Fund; the Ontario Arts Council, Ontario Creates (Ontario Media Development Corporation) and the Government of Ontario. R&S would not be possible without this support. Many thanks to the R&S Music Committee and to everyone who submitted their music!

Our venue partner, Fishers’ Paradise, is located between River Valley and Field, in West Nipissing Ontario. R&S works with our hosts, Chris and Julie, to shape new campsites, trails, and more. Our volunteers build fun things like saunas that add to the R&S fun too! The property features the Sturgeon River and a private oxbow lake – both semi-private and group campsites – and lots of trees for shade. We welcome you to bring your bikes, canoes and your pooches. Yes – dogs are welcome! Please see our rules for more info.

Our audience mostly camps in tents, but we do have limited space for camping trailers. Passes for trailers cost $35 or $70 for the duration of the festival.

River & Sky supports sustainability in our region by promoting, supporting and working with like-minded organizations and partners. We donate passes to other organizations for prizes and silent auction items.

Being completely sustainable is not easy. We do use diesel and gas generators and power equipment to maintain our venue. In the long-term, we plan to change this. In the short-term, we have ensured that all waste from the festival has been audited – sorted and placed into the correct municipal waste management streams. Our camping areas are carefully chosen. Areas that exhibit floodplain behaviour are off-limits. We ask our audience not to camp directly beside the river or on the beach so as to avoid unnecessary impacts upon the shoreline. In 2015 we created a new pathway, set back from the river’s edge, to allow a vegetative buffer to take root in an attempt to preserve the shoreline.

In 2018, we banned plastic straws and we supply our vendors with reusable/washable dishware. We do not sell water in plastic bottles and we offer our attendees free water. Cars have been removed from the majority of our camping areas and bikes and canoes are encouraged. Projects such as our cob oven and sauna builds have been based on sustainable building techniques and reuse/recycling of materials. You will not see a sea of plastic banners at R&S. We really try to keep it simple!

R&S will never become a mega-festival, as we feel that being small is meaningful with less impact and more nature for all of us attending.

Factor logo
Acknowledgement to Canada
Canada Logo
The Ontario Arts Council logo
Government of Ontario logo

MEMBERSHIP & VOLUNTEERING

Becoming a member of any not-for-profit organization is a show of support for what the organization does.

A strong membership means that there is a community of like-minded people who stand behind the ideals of the organization.

At R&S we present the Arts in Nature in support of Sustainability. We also love to celebrate the culture of camping in the North!

 

You need to become a member to volunteer at R&S.

AS A MEMBER YOU . . .
  • Have a voice and a vote at our Annual General Meeting
  • Are helping to shape and support the festival
We hope that as a member you will feel part of the R&S community – one that is working to create a fun, stress-free weekend in July while exploring sustainable living and building practices as well as bringing together people who share a love of music and nature, family and friendship.

WHAT TO EXPECT AS A VOLUNTEER . . .
  • Volunteer arrival and orientation day on Wednesday, July 17th with an end-of-day beach party with bands – just for volunteers. If you can’t make it for orientation and the beach party – no worries (please communicate with your leads)
  • Dedicated group campsite for volunteers with perks
  • Volunteer meals and snacks (pancake breakfasts each morning at the festival – blueberries!)
  • Better volunteer coordination and scheduling to make your work experience an improved one overall


AS A VOLUNTEER YOU . . .

Contribute either
A minimum of 9 hours of work (generally 3 three-hour shifts) during the festival

Or
18 hours throughout the year at work-parties, on committees, festival set-up, or take-down

However
You must be 16 years of age or older otherwise, you are helping your parents/guardians with their work

Expectations are that volunteers will show up on time for their shift and do their best to make the festival a great experience for ticket holders, fellow volunteers, and organizers alike. R&S does reserve the right to decline a volunteer’s application based on past performance.  We are always in need of volunteers with certifications such as Standard First Aid, Smart Serve, and any tickets such as “chainsaw training”.

TYPES OF VOLUNTEER CREWS
  • Venue – developing and maintaining campsites and pathways
  • Construction & Building Maintenance – helping with projects and repairs pre-festival
  • Signage – making and posting signs and banners
  • Set Up & Tear Down – setting up tents, generators, and waste/recycling stations and chopping/stacking wood pre-festival, and tearing down all non-permanent structures post-festival and general clean up
  • Gate – welcome committee and parking attendants
  • Transportation – transporting items and people pre-, during, and post-festival
  • Eco Warrior – sorting/collecting waste and recycling, stocking outhouses, and participating in the garbage audit at the end of the festival
  • Hospitality – ensuring artists’ needs are met
  • Merch – help us silk screen shirts pre-festival and sell them (and artists’ shirts) at the festival
  • Snack Shack – food prep, service, dishwashing
  • Video and Photography – taking pictures and videos for next year’s promo video, of artists, and social activities and workshops
  • Stage and Technical – helping set up stages, lights, and sound

LET'S PARTNER UP!!!

We would love to work with your business or organization!