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'Deported World Tour' set to headline inaugural WTF Festival

Three-day comedy festival to hit the Sault this summer
Tourism Sault Ste. Marie executive director Ian McMillan announced the WTF Festival, a three-day comedy festival featuring a performance by Russell Peters, will happen in Sault Ste. Marie June 7-9. James Hopkin/SooToday

Comedian Russell Peters will be bringing his ‘Deported World Tour’ to the Essar Centre in Sault Ste. Marie as part of the inaugural WTF Festival this summer.

The comedy festival, which will take place June 7-9, was announced earlier today at the Machine Shop.

Tourism Sault Ste. Marie executive director Ian McMillan says that the initial idea for the three-day event was the product of a conversation with WTF Festival executive director Tim Progosh during last year’s Festivals and Events Ontario conference.

“We knew we had some great assets,” said McMillan. “We knew we had some great local talent, and with his [Progosh’s] input and his connections, I mean it just became obvious that this comedy festival was really the way to go.”

The Dave Broadfoot Awards will kick off the WTF Festival at the Machine Shop on June 8. The luncheon and award show will see Canadian Air Farce alumnus Luba Goy presented with the Dave Broadfoot Award for Comedic Genius.

“She was so thrilled that she’s receiving this award, and she can’t wait to be here,” Progosh said.

The festival will also feature what’s being described as a ‘comedy murder mystery’ aboard the Agawa Canyon Train Tour on June 9.

The weekend of comedy will then wrap up with a variety show at the Canadian Bushplane Heritage Centre.

McMillan says the marketing strategy for the festival will include northern Ontario, the Greater Toronto Area and parts of Michigan. Roughly 500-600 tickets for the event will be set aside to be sold as packages that would include accommodations.

“If we do get five or six hundred people, that translates into two nights, so we get a thousand room nights out of the deal,” McMillan said.

“That’s a very good first start to have an impact on our community.”

Tickets and accommodation packages and additional festival information can be found on the WTF Festival website.