Downtown street party in Abbotsford

The annual BerryBeat Festival takes over the downtown core on Saturday, July 7 and Sunday, July 8.

Musical entertainment will once again be among the attractions and activities at BerryBeat 2012.

Musical entertainment will once again be among the attractions and activities at BerryBeat 2012.

This weekend, make your way to Historic Downtown Abbotsford to celebrate the 31st annual BerryBeat Festival July 7-8.

What began as a one-block street party has expanded into four city blocks of entertainment and activities.

Now attracting close to 40,000 guests annually from across B.C. and within the Abbotsford area, the BerryBeat Festival compliments the world’s most abundant berry producing communities and commemorates Abbotsford’s rich farming heritage.

The streets are lined with activities for kids to enjoy, including a fun swing carousel, bouncy house, rock climbing, mini golf, the B.C. Chicken “Poultry in Motion” mini barn and Radical Raptors, a presentation that features birds of prey. There will also be a colouring contest for kids that can be downloaded from the Downtown Abbotsford website.

The Coast Capital community stage will host free nonstop entertainment, including favourites like Horizon, with their jazzy blues gospel, and the spectacular rhythm of the Korean Drum Team. New acts will be welcomed to the stage, such as rock and roll band Groove Daddy, up and coming country singer, The Johnson Brothers, and The Funky Mamas from Guelph Ontario.

There will also be performances by dancers and musicians from local schools, Ace All-star Cheerleading and Abbotsford Mayor Bruce Banman will serenade the festival.

The “eats and treats” scene has been expanded to include more vendors and artisans, with plenty of new tastes to experience.

All downtown boutiques and shops will be open and offering BerryBeat specials.

On Saturday July 7, Crossfit Abbotsford will be hosting their first annual “Matt Robic Memorial Barbell Beatdown.”

The event is sure to impress spectators, as participants are pushed to their physical limits using workouts designed to test all areas of fitness.  The cost to participate is $50, and all Crossfit members can register at CrossFit Abbotsford, located in Downtown Abbotsford at Core Fitness & Rehab.

Tina Stewart, executive director for the Abbotsford Downtown Business Association, attributes the success of the BerryBeat Festival to the “Abbotsford merchants and their commitment to being involved in this wonderful and unique community event.”

For more information, or to download the kids’ colouring sheet, visit the website at downtownabbotsford.com.