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RBC Bluesfest brings grassroots festival to Eastern Ontario

RBC Bluesfest is heading into Eastern Ontario with a new festival that launches tonight in Perth.

The Festival of Small Halls is a pilot project that brings Canadian roots artists like Old Man Luedecke to intimate venues in Perth, Gananoque and Bloomfield.

Project coordinator Kelly Symes told CFRA the festival is based off of one held in Prince Edward Island.

"The idea is that these small towns each have their own community hall, which acts as the socializing hub of each town," she said. "We want to just pay special attention to these halls and showcase them to not only the community, but to tourists coming into these towns as well."

The festival takes place Thursday at the Crystal Palace on Colbourne Street in Perth, Friday at the Kinsmen Club of Gananoque on Stone Street and on Saturday at Bloomfield Town Hall on Main Street in Bloomfield.

Symes said this year they are testing the waters with the festival, but they plan to roll out a full edition of Small Halls in 2025, when it expands to 25 venues.

"We're kind of going down to a grassroots festival idea for this," said Symes. "As opposed to bringing in big, big artists on big stages with big sound and production, we're taking the same idea and putting on a great professional live show, back down to a smaller, more intimate-style setting. It'll be great."

Click here for more information on the festival.

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