Blue Wranglers: Bruce Amber, back left, Dam Fremlin, Dustin Bentall and Trixie Berkel. Arlen Park, right. (Kelly Sinoski photo - 100 Mile Free Press)

Update: Clinton’s Blue Wranglers cancel Last Call Cabaret on NYE

Event was to include three sets from the country-bluegrass band

Update (Dec. 23):

The Blue Wranglers have cancelled their Last Call Cabaret in Clinton, following new COVID-19 regulations.

The country-bluegrass event, slated for New Year’s Eve at the Clinton Memorial Hall, had been pared down to a music-only event and bar after Dr. Bonnie Henry announced new rules last week to help combat the spread of the Omicron variant in B.C. Initially, it was to include a banquet and auction to raise money for Clinton Minor Sports.

Blue Wranglers’ vocalist Trixie Berkel said they made the decision because there was so much confusion around the new regulations. About 50 tickets had already been sold for the show at $50 a seat before the new regulations were announced.

Original story

The Blue Wranglers are going ahead with their Last Call Cabaret in Clinton, with a few changes as a result of new COVID-19 regulations.

The country-bluegrass event, slated for New Year’s Eve at the Clinton Memorial Hall, will now be a music-only event and bar, Blue Wranglers’ vocalist Trixie Berkel said. A planned banquet and auction have both been scrapped as a result of the regulations, announced last week by Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry to combat the spread of the Omicron variant in B.C.

Doors will now open at 8 p.m. with music sets slated for 8:30 – 9:15 p.m., 9:30 – 10 p.m. and 10:15 – 11:15 p.m. The original event was slated to go past 2 a.m.

“We’re going to wrap up by 11:30 p.m. so people can still celebrate New Year’s on their own,” Berkel said.

About 50 tickets had already been sold for the show at $50 a seat before the new regulations were announced.

Dustin Bentall, the bluegrass band’s lead singer and guitarist, said last week he was looking forward to playing music throughout the night.

“It’s going to be our first big party show. We’ve been working on a bunch of new songs to get people dancing even if it has to be in a chair or in their own space,” Bentall said. “It’s great to have something to work towards in the winter.”

Bentall said the band has been practicing a lot of new songs for the night, including Berkel’s Last Call. The first set of the night is expected to be bluegrass focused, the second set a hybrid between bluegrass and country and the third “straight-up dance and party country,” he said.

Proceeds from the show will help fund the band’s trip to a recording studio in the new year to release their first album.

“We’re feeling like we’re ready to make a record,” Bentall said. “In 2022 we’re just going to continue playing more music and getting better together.”

Banjo picker Bruce Ambler said both Bentall and Berkel have written some songs that he expects will be a hit. He said he’s looking forward to playing them for his hometown crowd and recording them later. The fourth member of the band is Dan Fremlin, on mandolin.

“For me, this is all brand new stuff. I’m excited for my first time in a recording studio,” Ambler said. “Like I’ve said before we’re working our way towards the Grand Ole Opry.”



patrick.davies@100milefreepress.net

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