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Calgary’s Chinook Blast delayed until February

Chinook Blast organizers announced Thursday that the winter festival would be delayed until the start of February.

The festival was was originally slated to start in late January. It has now been moved to a February 4 start date because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“While we would have loved to kick off January 2022 with Chinook Blast, our patrons’ safety has always and will continue to be our top priority,” said Franca Gualtieri, Executive Director for Chinook Blast and Strategic Projects at Tourism Calgary.

Calgary has seen record numbers of Covid-19 infections, and rising counts of hospitalizations.

Chinook Blast organizers and community partners are planning to use the week’s delay to prepare the festival for the changing pandemic conditions.

The inaugural Chinook Blast was also scaled back due to spreading Covid-19 cases in February of 2021.

Partners delay, cancel events

Calgary’s High Performance Rodeo, one of the pillar events for Chinook Blast, has cancelled entirely.

In a statement, the High Performance Rodeo wrote that “the safety of our community is our top priority.”

“While deeply disappointed, we are working with our festival artists and team to explore options and opportunities ahead.”

The international festival of the arts was set to return for its 36th year.

The BIG Winter Classic has also been postponed. The music festival was set to run for four days at the start of Chinook Blast from Jan. 27 to 30.

BIG Winter Classic organizers said that they are attempting to commit alternative dates, venues, and artists for later in 2022.

Gualtieri said that Chinook Blast will continue to work with the City of Calgary, Alberta Health Services, and festival partners to create a safe experience for visitors.

“We know some of our Pillar Festival partners had to adapt and delay their festivals, and we support their chosen paths forward to keep Calgarians safe,” she said.

Moving forward with Chinook Blast

The festival’s outdoor Hub, and several pillar events are projected to go ahead.

The Block Heater music festival is slated to continue with its Feb. 17 through 20 dates. The Ethnik Festival is also currently slated to continue with its Feb. 27 date.

The outdoor Glow festival of lights in downtown Calgary is also going ahead from Feb. 10 through 12, and again from Feb. 17 to 19.

The Friends of Chinook Blast, and community pop-ups will be offering additional regional programming throughout the city.

Chinook Blast organizers will be providing scheduling updates on chinookblast.ca.