Annual Events

Magnificent River Rats Festival

The very first River Rats Festival in 1995 was, in fact, on the river. Local jet boaters held races and competitions over the Canada Day long weekend. Today, the Magnificent River Rats Festival has evolved into one of Northern Alberta’s premier outdoor music festivals, attracting local and national talent to its unique riverfront stage.

With genres varying from country, rock, and pop to blues, swing, and the golden oldies, there’s a bit of something for everyone – and the chance to listen to something new. This family-oriented festival boasts more than 16 hours of live music, a kids’ zone, marketplace, and lots of food. A Canada Day parade, classic car show, and fireworks round off a fantastic way to celebrate Canadian music talent and kick-start your summer.

For more information, visit them online at or on Facebook.

Athabasca Farmers' Market

From May to September, on Saturdays at the Athabasca Riverfront you can get the best in Make It – Bake It – Grow It the region has to offer! 10 am to 2 pm. On occasional Saturdays, other events happen at the Riverfront, so look for the Farmers’ Market at the Seniors Centre or another venue.

From October to January, you’ll find the Athabasca Farmers’ Market at the Athabasca Regional Multiplex

Boyle Farmers' Market

May to September, Thursdays from Noon to 3 pm, you’ll find an amazing selection of artisan crafts, baked goods and in-season produce at the Boyle Farmers’ Market! The market is hosted at the Boyle Community Centre in Downtown Boyle.

The Boyle Farmers’ Market also has special markets throughout the year including the Wildberry Festival, a market at Skeleton Lake, Thanksgiving and Christmas. Visit the Boyle Ag Society Facebook for details.

Jet Boat Poker Rally

2015-7th-poker-rallyAll Jet Boats and water crafts are welcome to participate! The rally is a popular event with boat owners from throughout the region and beyond, and is a great way to get introduced to the mighty Athabasca River. The run operates like any other poker rally: stop in at the checkpoints to add a card to your hand, and the best poker hand wins. The fun doesn’t end there – live music, kids’ scavenger hunt, concession, cash prizes, and lots of door prizes make this an event for the whole family. Everything wraps up at Riverside Recreation Park, where you can camp for the night and participate in the boat rodeo on Sunday.

The rally is hosted by Grand Rapids Wilderness Adventures: call (780) 689-0567 or 689-6096 for more information.

Athabasca Regional Airport Fly-In BBQ

People at the event_outside_DSC_4612Athabasca County and its Airport Committee are very proud of the Athabasca Regional Airport. They host this event each year in July to showcase the airport, the improvements that have been made to it, and the potential for growth in its future.

It’s a free barbecue and event that is open to the public and the Alberta aviation community. Displays from aviation businesses and organizations inform the public of the importance of the airport for northern Alberta.

In the past, the event has offered visitors the opportunity to win a ride in a helicopter, fighter jet, or a skydiving experience.

For more information, visit

Rochester Fair

Rochester Fair horsesThe annual Rochester Fair brings hundreds of visitors to see the Main Street parade and enjoy the show & shine, traditional jamboree, heavy horse pulls, marketplace, and lots of activities for the kids. Come for the day and bring your family – a pancake breakfast, great concessions, beer garden, and classic steak supper in the evening will keep you well-fed while you enjoy the festivities. For more information, visit

Boyle Wildberry Festival

The Wildberry Festival held the second weekend of August celebrates the best of Boyle, all centred around a “wild berry” theme.

This street fair and market happens in Downtown Boyle, with vendors, entertainment and kids activities. There is also a jam session and pancake breakfast.

Hosted by the Boyle Community Betterment Committee and the Boyle Agricultural Society.

Kapâwinihk Wilderness Triathlon

The Kapâwinihk Wilderness Triathlon is held on the first Saturday of September. This unique race combines trail cycling, paddling and trail running for a triathlon event like no other! competitors start on their bikes in Downtown Athabasca, ride the trails at Muskeg Creek, switch to their watercraft on the Athabasca River, paddle to River Meadows and run the trails!

The day ends with prizes, food and festivities! Visit the website for info and to register!

Moonlight Madness

moonlight madness paradeWhen Christmas is just around the corner, downtown Athabasca gets in the spirit! The local Chamber of Commerce organizes a Friday evening in November when stores are open late, Santa Claus leads the parade, and fireworks fill the sky. The event encourages residents to shop local, but also offers some great deals, contests, and activities for visitors.

For more information, visit the Chamber website or Facebook page.

Northern Lights Spiritus Singers

northern lights singersThe Northern Lights Spiritus Singers is a holiday choir composed of 80 to 100 voices in five-part harmony. Every December, they put on a series of concerts filled with Christmas music that is one of the most highly anticipated events of the season. The Nancy Appleby Theatre has every seat filled for their thrilling performances. The concerts are by donation, with proceeds going to local charities.

To learn more about the Northern Lights Spiritus Singers, visit their website.

Athabasca River Runners Annual Snowmobile Rally

sleds rounding the bend_DSC_2450Everyone is welcome to participate in the region’s annual snowmobile rally, which offers a short route and long route along scenic trails that are maintained by the Athabasca River Runners Snowmobile Club. Registrants receive a poker hand and free hot dog lunch along the trail. The rally often attracts more than 200 sledders and is a great way to explore the hundreds of kilometres of trail that the club maintains every winter.

For more information, visit the River Runners website at