I’m no music critic, but the best band I heard from the Main Stage on Saturday, Sept 21, at Vankleek Hill’s ‘Beau’s Oktoberfest’ was Neon Dreams, a two-piece pop band from Nova Scotia.
If I were a critic, this would be the part where I described who they reminded me of, or whose style they were ripping off… for some reason I’m sure there’d be a comparison to Weezer in this paragraph as well. I don’t know why.
But I’m not a music critic… I just know they sounded clean, and had a great stage presence. And they were, except for maybe ThunderKok on the Black Forest Stage (1), the most dynamic band I had seen all day.
This is “Life Without Fantasies” by Neon Dreams from their 2019 album, ‘Sweet Dreams ’till Sunbeams’:
…Walter Ostanek, the King of Polka, was also on the Main Stage. I believe he’s been at every Oktoberfest in Vankleek Hill. The man has 21 Grammy nominations, with three wins, so, no matter what, he’ll always be the most successful musician in the room.
The other bands who were on the Main Stage, and I enjoyed all of them, were ‘What If Elephants’, ‘Birds of Bellwoods’, and the great Canadian hip hop artist ‘Shad’ — whose full name, Shadrach Kabango, would be a perfect band name — headlined (2).
…anyway, not a critic.
This was the eleventh time Vankleek Hill-based ‘Beau’s All Natural Brewing Company’ (or just Beau’s) (3) has put on it’s famous Oktoberfest.
This time 18,983 people showed up this year to party in our town of 2,100 (4). It’s a good thing we have a lot of space.
Every year a percentage of beer sales goes towards local charities. This year they raised $91,432 off of 25,000L of beer sales (at $6 bucks a pop), making for a grand total of $802,644 raised over the past eleven years.
This year the cash went to Hidden Harvest, Ottawa Riverkeeper, Healthy Eating for Better Learning, Vankleek Hill Agricultural Society, Hawkesbury Rotary, United Way of Eastern Ontario, Big Brothers Big Sisters Cornwall, For Pivots Sake, Vankleek Hill Cadets, Opportunity Knox, Citizen Advocacy Ottawa, and Prescott-Russell Victim Services.
(1) Part One: The Punks & The Skaters, How High Can They Get [link]
(2) The Bands:
Walter Ostanek [link]
What If Elephants [link]
Birds Of Bellwoods [link]
Neon Dreams [link]
(3) The Beau’s Wiki page [link]
(4) The numbers according to Beau’s [link]
…click on a photo to get the carousel going.