Road to Woodstock exhibit …

From left to right: Ken Kalmusky, Richard Manuel, John Till.

In the late 1950’s Rock and Roll hit the music scene in Canada.

In Stratford it was the inspiration for a group of boys to form their own band, The Rebels. Later known as The Revols, it launched the careers of three young musicians who went on to play with some of the famous bands in the world.
Richard Manuel, John Till and Ken Kalmusky honed their skills performing with rockabilly legend Ronnie Hawkins, and many other Canadian and American artists.

Richard Manuel went on to become one of the founding members of The Band. John Till was an original member of the Full Tilt Boogie Band, Janis Joplin’s band. Ken Kalmusky founded Great Speckled Bird, the band that backed Canadian musicians Ian and Sylvia.

This year the famous 1969 Woodstock Music and Art Festival celebrates its 50th anniversary. Till and Manuel performed at the pivotal event in music history.

Created in conjunction with the artists’ families, this exhibit celebrates the careers of these three musicians, and includes background stories and rare personal memorabilia. It also highlights some of the influences that are part of Perth County’s rich music history. Features include a look back at the Dance Halls of the 1930s, ’40s and ’50s, as well as a view of Stratford in the ‘60s through the lens of the Perth County Conspiracy (Does Not Exist).

The exhibit, which is made possible by generous support from Strickland’s and opens June 21.

This exhibit in cooperation with the Stratford Blues & Ribfest which also has a Woodstock theme in 2019. The Blues and Ribfest also opens Friday June 21 with the headline act Inspired by Janis, a Janis Joplin tribute band. On Saturday’ June 22 The Last Waltz is the theme with a musical celebration of The Band and on the closing day, Sunday June 23 it’s The Woodstock Experience.

For information about the Stratford Blues and Ribfest go to

Rotary, Stratford Perth Museum Shine On car rally moves to the fall

The second annual Dave Blackburn Memorial Car Rally “Shine On” will take place on Sunday, October 6, 2019 starting and ending at the Stratford Perth Museum.

This car rally will be a nice Sunday drive highlighted by a historical tour of Perth County (no gravel roads, we promise) featuring both historical destinations and delicious local food along the backroads of Perth County. The rally will be followed by fun, music, food, drinks and prizes back at the Stratford Perth Museum.

The event is organized by the Rotary Club of Stratford and the Stratford Perth Museum. It is also a tribute to the late Dave Blackburn who died in 2013. Dave was a devoted Rotarian, antique car lover and former branch manager at TD Bank in Stratford.
Rally drivers will get started at the Museum, located at 4275 Huron Road just West of Stratford, beginning at 10 a.m.
Although the content of the rally is historic, your vehicle doesn’t have to be as cars, pick-up trucks, even RVs are more than welcome to take part.
Along the route, guides and reenactors will provide interesting facts and stories about Perth County while area food and drink businesses provide delicious local food.
After the rally the Museum will be hosting a licensed reception with more fun, music, food, and rally prizes. Admission to the museum is included.
Pre-registration for the rally takes place online . Day-of registration will take place at the Museum from 9 - 10 a.m. Before setting out each vehicle will be provided a detailed navigation guide to help them find their way.
The cost to take part in the car rally, be fed along the way, and to participate in the events happening back at the Museum is $75 (price includes a driver and a navigator).
For more info and to register go to, call John at 519-393-5312 or email