The long awaited return of Lake Lenore's Heatwave is finally here. The festival goes this weekend. Here's a look at all the excitement upcoming starting July 8. 

Like any event that hasn’t been held throughout the pandemic, this year’s Lake Lenore Heatwave is hoping to bounce back stronger than ever. The fun is scheduled for July 8 - 10. The annual event that celebrates the vibrant village incorporates a few new things and is combining with a celebration of the 100th anniversary for St. Anthony’s Parish. Chair of the event Scott Lessmeister talks about the festival’s return and what to expect.

“The Heatwave has been our signature summer event for the past many years, and this year we’re also adding in a homecoming as well as running a celebration in conjunction with St. Anthony’s Parish which is celebrating its 100th anniversary this summer as well.”

The Lake Lenore Sports Grounds will be the centre of much of the activity with slo-pitch, kids activities, and spike ball for the competitive set. The kids activities will feature bouncy castles and the ever-entertaining frog races. Spike ball is a relatively new addition that combines the action of volleyball with the frenetic motion of trampolines to propel the spikes.

At the last Heatwave, the committee introduced bunnock, a popular combination of bocci and bowling that employs plastic crafted horse ankle bones. The traditional Russian immigrant sport found popularity in some Saskatchewan quarters and has made its way to Lake Lenore. 

No Heatwave celebration would be complete without the famous Lake Lenore pork loin supper, says Lessmeister. 

“It’s barbecued pork loin done up real well along with new potatoes with brown butter, and of course, you’ve got all the fixings and salads.”

For the first year in many, a parade returns as part of the package. The last parade was attached to the 2005 Homecoming in Lake Lenore, says Lessmeister, so this will be a welcome return. The committee is looking for businesses, organizations, and families to provide entries into the parade by contacting the committee. A farmers market at the community hall will provide local produce, baking, and crafts, and the Saturday evening entertainment will wrap up with a fireworks display.

Then on Sunday, as a special part of the 100th anniversary of the parish, Lessmeister talks about a special concert in the works. 

“We’re going to have an organ concert with some of the former organ players from Lake Lenore combining to provide a concert that will really show off and highlight the pipe organ that we have in our church.”

The concert will follow a pancake breakfast and a mass. The concert has so far secured five former organ players and promises to be a nostalgic time that showcases the majestic sound of the renowned pipe organ.

Passes are now available for the event which will include the supper and dance plus entry to all of the activities. Early bird passes are on for only $55 for adults and $25 for youth, 6 to 14,  until April 30. After that, Heatwave passes are $65 for adults and $55 for youth. 

Parade registrants, those seeking information, and those wishing to purchase advance tickets can head to the Lake Lenore Heatwave Facebook Page. Once again, all the activity gets under way on the weekend of July 8 - 10.