The 20th anniversary of the carnival ran from August 21st to 24th even though there was concern that it would even happen the year prior. Sponsors including Sun Life Financial helped the carnival back onto the streets of UpTown Waterloo despite the devastating rain the year prior. In addition the free BBQ prior to Opening Ceremonies, there were 2,000 decorated cupcakes to help launch the 20th. Also new, there was a fireworks display on Friday night and the Rock Climbing Wall both Friday and Saturday.
Heres "What's On When" to review the 4-day event:
A star studded lineup of buskers included:
Rafael Sebastian, Montreal - fire eating, comedy, magic, physical feats
The Wally Show, Iceland - circus skills, comedy, manipulation, contortion
The Renfrews, Ottawa - mounted garbage can steeds and RCMP-like precision
PitterPat, Florida - face painting extraordinaire
Aerial Angels, Michigan - high flying acrobatics, fire eating, hula hoops, comedy
The Dan Show, Winnipeg - improv, acrobatics, contortion, magic, juggling
Eric Something Else, Montreal - circus skills, comedy, extreme stunts, bed of nails
Phantastyks, Sudbury - acrobatics, juggling, unicycling, balance, clowning
OKA, Australia - musical adventure
Green Fools Theatre, Calgary - comedy, physical comedy, mystique
USA Break Dancers, New York City - break dancing, acrobatics, comedy
Cartoon Bob, Oakville - cartooning, caricatures
The Fast Horses, Minnesota - drums, fire, native dance
Les Walkyries, Montreal - fire, acrobatics, dance, comedy
The Silly People, Kitchener - balloon artistry, comedy, circus stunts, fire
Perhaps it was fate, but Aerial Angels and The Dan Show were featured side-by-side in the program. The relevance of this would become much more evident in 2009 when a busker first would highlight the 2009 carnival.
Randy Warren, consistently on the carnival committee since the 2nd carnival in 1990, was honoured with The Waterloo Award in 2008- the highest civic honour a person can receive from the City of Waterloo. Since 1989, Randy was a key player in contributing to the success of Waterloo Busker Carnival, by raising sponsorship dollars, procuring festival entertainment, organizing the Festival of Fools, and serving seven times as chairperson of the carnivals executive committee. A 2003 graduate of Leadership Waterloo Region, Randy has since served on Leadership Waterloo Region committees.
In 1998, Tracey Johnston-Aldworth, also on the carnival committee since 1990, received The Waterloo Award.