June 25 was canning day at Dog Island Brewing Co. in Slave Lake. Four people were going at it hard in the canning room, preparing flats of a brew called ‘Mahalo Pineapple Pilsener.’
That’s a new thing at Slave Lake’s only craft brewery. Another new thing is a musical concert, happening there on Sunday, Aug. 1. Dave McCann, the Lethbridge-based singer-songwriter is the artist. It will be at least his second ‘pocket’ concert (I.e. very small) in the Slave Lake area on that weekend. When we spoke to him a couple of weeks ago, he was hoping to add a couple more back-yard-type shows. Such intimate gigs are what are keeping some musicians in business these days, COVID restrictions being what they are (or were).
All that might have changed by now, but when these shows were being booked, the small size was what could be done.
Brew pub manager Kennedy Ball says if it’s not raining, the show will be out the back of DIB. There’s more room out there – possibly for as many as 150 people.
And if it is raining?
“In here,” she says, meaning the patio area, plus whatever space can be added to that with the bay door open.
It’s not the first live show held at DIB. There’s been a comedy performance and a country music concert. That one was held last October, at the end of a day that had started at -30, Ball says.
“We still had a really good turnout!” she says.
The same is hoped for McCann. He plays the evening prior at the Holden property in Widewater.
Ball says DIB plans to have some food available at the concert, but she isn’t sure what it will be. The pub has had good success with specialty food sales before.
Tickets, she says, will be $20 in advance and $25 at the door.
“We’re looking to cover our costs.”
More live shows at DIB will be scheduled, Ball says, although nothing is fixed at this point. Something is likely, though, for the brewery’s fifth anniversary, coming up on Oct. 5.