First Princess, Heather Grant, poses on the catwalk at last year’s fashion show. Photo: YSR

The theme of this year’s Yukon Sourdough Rendezvous is local, community participation. With a theme like that, it makes sense that when designing the festival’s first-ever stand-alone fashion show, the organizers would look to the local design community to bring the event to life. The event will feature the work of Sportees, the Fashion Art Design School of Whitehorse, local designer Shelley MacDonald, and Dancing Storm Creations by Calgary’s Livia Manywounds, who is a proud member of the Tsuut’ina First Nation.

Although past Quests for the Crown (formerly the Rendezvous Queen’s competitions) have included fashion show elements, this will be the first stand-alone fashion show for the festival. The event will last two hours and has capacity for an audience of 250. It won’t just be women walking the runway. The Yukon Sourdough Rendezvous has been working hard to make its festival more inclusive. One male contestant is joining his female counterparts in the Quest for the Crown this year and one woman will join the men in the other competition that runs in the week leading up to festival weekend, the Call for the Cup. (Formerly the Sourdough Sam competition.)

“The Quest for the Crown competition is definitely more inclusive which I think is a great thing as it represents our wider community better,” said Anne “a la Mode” Huang, Yukon Sourdough Rendezvous board member and the coordinator of the fashion show. “It moves the festival into a more modern direction without losing any of its heritage or historical charm and significance.

“The audience can expect a fun two-hour show that celebrates the creativity of the Yukon. Expect to see designs from local designers, Yukon College and the candidates as well as performances from the Can-Can Line and the Snowshoe Shufflers!”

The evening will be emceed by Kimberly Graw, who may be joined at the mic by guest Hon. Jeanie Dendys, Minister of Tourism and Culture.

The fashion show takes place Feb. 8 at the Yukon Convention Centre. Doors open at 6 p.m. Tickets are $20 and can be purchased online at YukonRendezvous.com, or in-person at the Yukon Sourdough Rendezvous office (4230 4 Ave, Whitehorse, in the Yukon Inn Plaza).