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An open letter from the Arboretum team

By Apartment613 on August 28, 2013

Photo courtesy of Blurais from the Apartment613 Flickr Group

Photo courtesy of Blurais from the Apartment613 Flickr Group

Our friends over at Arboretum penned a letter on their thoughts about the festival that we thought you all might like to read. It’s originally posted over here on the Arboretum website and re-printed below in full. Enjoy!


The whole she-bang looked like the green, digital rainfall of Matrix code: details within details, all the loose screws.

We’ve had to paint the full picture of the festival from your words: You’ve said a lot of really wonderful things, and we’re beyond grateful.

You mentioned the sound for every act was prestine, and the food was unlike anything you’ve had at any music festival. You said you’d never seen Alex Lukashevsky before, and that he blew your mind. You said Missing Linx and Flight Distance were some of the best live hiphop you’ve seen in ages, and that Phil Osborne‘s projections during Holy Fuck blew your mind. You also said the “Chef Sessions thing” was astounding, but confusing; you can’t win ‘em all.

You’ve really inspired us, and we want to do better. You put your faith in us, and that’s enough to break a person’s heart. You wanted to see a different side of Ottawa, and for those of you not in cottage country, attending one of the other 7 great festivals happening that day, or sweating in formal attire at a dear friend’s wedding, that’s what you told us you saw. At two years old, we’re barely a toddler, our eyes are foggy and dim. There’s a lot we want to show you, but right now the thoughts come out in broken consonants and maverick diphthongs.wallerpark_arb2013

We’ve got a year. A year to see what Ottawa becomes, and to build our vocabulary. We may have a whole story to tell, or maybe just a haiku; either way, it’ll be words strung from our city’s big steps and our own wicked pratfalls.

So, there we were at the Manx. We were struggling to figure out what we could genuinely take away from the festival. Which acts pulled us out of our heads and planted us in the present, which moments left us feeling 13 again; it might have been when we sang along to Cousins’ song Thunder, shouting “DO YOU LIKE IT!” But we’re not sure.

I took my first delirious sip of beer, and it struck me, and I kinda shuddered. My memento was this gang, this group of gnarly doers, relentless in their dedication, inspired and fearless. In building this thing, we found and supported each other. Not one an expert, but all devoutly passionate. All in tune with the sublime, and all willing to share it with one another, and ultimately, with all of you. Maybe this is overstating things a little, but you get the idea.

Something about getting yourself on a path, regardless of when it starts, when it ends or where it leads you.

Thank you all for being part of Arboretum 2013.



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