By ANTHONY PROBERT
VANCOUVER Street will come alive on Saturday with the buzz of its annual street festival.
Live music, vintage fashion, street performances, gourmet food and plenty of tweed will be on show for this year’s event.
The Vintage Tweed Ride is one of the highlights of the day and includes the Perth chapter of the WA Historical Cycle Club.
It will feature one of the biggest collections of penny farthings and vintage bikes ever assembled in the Great Southern.
Tweed rides, or runs, are a global phenomenon which began in London in 2009.
They feature vintage bicycles and a dazzling display of vintage clothing, with tweed being the preferred option.
Both vintage and non-vintage cycles are welcome to join the ride that departs the University of WA on Stirling Terrace at 12.20pm.
Vintage cycle enthusiast Murray Gomm is a member of the Great Southern chapter of the WA Historical Cycle Club and said there was always a bit of excitement in the air when it was time to “tweed up” for the ride.
He said the club was fortunate to have received a collection of penny farthings that were made by the late Garry Clark, which would be ridden in the event.
The ride makes its way to the Vancouver Street Festival where prizes for best dressed riders will be presented.
The best time to catch the ride is on take-off at the UWA at 12.20pm and on dismount at the festival around 12.30pm.
Riders can register at the start line from 11.50am.
Other highlights of the festival include performances from musicians with Odette Mercy and her Soul Atomics headlining the program with a set of funk and soul originals.
Straight from Fairbridge Festival, the band is renowned for its great horn and rhythm sound and the huge sound of their lead vocalist.
The entertainment program also includes the rollicking songs of The Albany Shantymen, the dance beats of David Rastrick’s Electro Swing Thing and the moving sounds of Soulin Wild.
Double bass and piano accordion duo Flamacue will be playing and The Second Hand lead a line-up of roaming street artists.
New to this year’s event is the Manga Milkbar, a creative space for young people with free Wi-Fi, aerial displays, Japanese-inspired craft and space to draw.
Cosplayers are especially welcomed, with the design of the milkbar inspired by vintage anime.
The Vancouver Street Festival will also see the opening of the Story of Wool exhibition which celebrates Albany’s connection to wool production.
In another festival first, a 230m knitted scarf will be wrapped around the front of the Vancouver Arts Centre.
Children are well catered for with activities including clay sheep painting, fleece throwing and a vintage dress-up photobooth.
Festival parking will be available in Foundation Park, Parade Street, and events kick off at 11am.