People come to Stratford for Shakespeare, but they stay for the ribs – and maybe a chance to spot Justin Bieber.

If you are headed to Stratford, Ont., June 22 to 24, you will want to bring some Handi Wipes as you take in the Blues and Ribfest. While there will be lots of blues happening, the music is just one of many attractions at this multi-faceted festival.

Your weekend could unfold something like this:

- Collect a few autographs at the celebrity rib tasting.
- Taste a few ribs.
- Test drive a car.
- Check our Robbie Antone’s Blues Machine.
- Taste a few more ribs.
- Have a gander at the antique tractor show.
- Get your face painted.
- Taste a few more ribs.
- Rock out to Plum Loco featuring John Till of Janis Joplin’s Full Tilt Boogie Band.
- Get up early and head out for the community breakfast (may contain ribs).
- Ogle the sweet rides at the motorcycle show and shine.
- Work off a few of those ribs dancing to Shakura S’Aida.

One of the nicest features of the festival is that much of the musical entertainment is local. Big Jon and the Honkin’ Swans, Robbie Antone’s Blues Machine, Club 42 Revue, Pigeon Jones, Whoa! Miss Mojo and more are all from Stratford and surrounding area.

But, my favourite attraction on the weekend’s roster has to be the low contact roller derby, from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday. Now that is the way to throw a blues festival.

Here is a clip of Whoa! Miss Mojo to give you a feel for what's in store at the Stratford BLues and Ribfest this weekend.


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posted by Chris Martin on Jun 21, 2012