This Labour Day long weekend, Harrison Hot Springs is getting ready to have its beach filled with music once again.
The annual Bands on the Beach event will be returning to Harrison for Saturday, Aug. 31 and Sunday, Sept. 1, nine years after its first concert hit the waterfront stage.
“To be nine years later, all four of us just go ‘Wow,’” organizer and performer Todd Richard said about the event. He has been organizing the two-day concert since the beginning with his wife Sylvia, as well as Sonja Reyerse and Tourism Harrison’s Robert Reyerse.
“It just turned into something where people actually book their hotels a year in advance, and they plan on coming back every year, which is so awesome.”
Each year, Bands on the Beach presents six performances over two days at the beach side stage. Starting at 1 p.m., the event features musicians playing all different genres of music.
“I think the only thing we haven’t had is heavy metal,” Richard said, laughing. “We have never had that, and I don’t think it would go over very well.”
This year’s event will feature Saturday performances by Abbotsford pop singer Jada Klein (1 p.m.), country singer Emily Taylor Adams (2:15 p.m.) and Americana rock and rollers TrailerHawk (3:25 p.m.). Sunday performances include country band The Unbranded (1 p.m.), Vancouver singer-songwriter Ivan Boudreau (2:15 p.m.) and the rockabilly group Coal Davie and the Rockabillionaires (3:25 p.m.).
Both nights will end with 4:30 p.m. performances by Todd Richard and his band, likely featuring some kind of dramatic entrance.
“One year the police had me in handcuffs and took me to the stage,” Richard remembered.
“Then we had people donate to Variety (Children’s Charity) in order to get the handcuffs off so I could join my band.”
Richard said he always enjoys ending the Bands on the Beach concerts in his hometown because of the crowd and the energy.
“I get to see fans that I don’t see all the time, all different ages,” he explained. “And there’s no better spot for it. It’s just incredible.”
Each year the concert sees thousands of people attend the free outdoor event, and Richard expects this year will be no different.
But with the 10th anniversary on the horizon for next year, he’s already planning some big headliners to make it memorable.
“We want to try and do something really big to celebrate it being a 10th year,” he said. “We get some really good acts … but maybe with a little bit more sponsorship we could … bring in somebody like the rock band Chilliwack.”