Ode to Winter
February 25, 2017
Co-founder and Assistant General Manager at Le Festif! de Baie-Saint-Paul
” I was born in a mariner’s family of Isle-aux-Coudres. I owe to my ship captain ancestors my love of water, the river and this ever present need to make waves. I believe that all my energy and strength come from the tides and the men who weathered the storms before me.
I was born in Saint-Joseph-de-la-Rive. This explains that. Isle-aux-Coudres straight ahead, its impossible to forget where I come from. My youth is filled with unforgettable memories like the ferry rides taking us from shore to shore to visit the family. Even today, I never miss an opportunity to cross to Isle-aux-Coudres to take in a show at Auberge La Fascine where my 84-year old grandmother was the DJ when it was still called Le St-Bernard and belonged to her family. Do you know that to this day, my beautiful Grandma Fernande wears her nicest shoes to go dancing?
There is an incredible creative energy in Charlevoix. In 2009, when the Cirque du Soleil celebrated its 25-year anniversary and remembered its beginnings here in Baie-Saint-Paul, friends from high school and I had the idea to recreate this type of great gathering around music. We were all committed to contribute to the social and economic development of our native land; something like a thumbing of the nose to those who believe that all youth wants to leave the region. On the contrary, we wanted to stay here forever and felt that all was possible. So we created Le Festif, a rallying event brilliantly completing Charlevoix’s cultural offering. When I see 5000 people gathered in front of a stage and 22 000 festival goers heading for Charlevoix, I feel very proud. And what’s more, the whole community seems to feel it too.
It is nice to see how our youths have an entrepreurial streak. There are many but I think, among others, about my friend Gabrielle, a warrior who perpetuates the family traditions. I enjoy going to work at her boutique-restaurant La Table. It smells delicious, we eat well and she only uses local produce. Love it! “