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Tonight's headliner at Mountainfest, Montgomery Gentry, has canceled their appearance at the show.

Active Mountain Entertainment released this statement on its Facebook page early this morning:

"Although an official statement has yet to be made, you are hearing it from us first.   We have done all we can to ensure Montgomery Gentry closes the stage tomorrow night, but short of becoming Lear Jet mechanics they are not able to make it. Disappointing yes, but all of the fantastic acts that are to open the stage tomorrow originally had their set cut short to make room for MG's schedule - now you will get to enjoy a full set from each of them."

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The opening of Mountainfest went relatively smooth for officials and police last night.

Corporal Kelly Bartsch of the Merritt Mounties says local police are being joined by Kamloops Traffic Services throughout the weekend.

Police were called in a little after midnight last night when one camper was seen floating down the Coldwater River on a picnic table, but there were no serious consequences as a result of that incident.

On stage last night, country star Joe Nichols was joined by Nickelback frontman Chad Kroeger in a surprise appearance, which followed a brilliant performance by Crystal Shawanda.

Mike Gouchie and Marion Weston also graced the stage to mark the return of Mountainfest.

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It's his second appearance in Merritt tonight, after being at Mountainfest in 2008, but he's known about Merritt a lot longer than that.

Dierks Bentley says Mountainfest is known as one of those special dates for performers on both sides of the Canada-U-S border.

Bentley is scheduled to be on stage at 9 o'clock tonight, following a performance by Aaron Pritchett at 7:40.  This evening's entertainment kicks off just after 6:30 with Bobbi Smith.  It wraps up with the Vince Gill show underway at 10:30.

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The popular Music In The City series generally held Thursday nights over the Summer moved aside for Mountainfest last night.

Organizer Robyn Grebliunas says there is Music In The City, however, with performances today and tomorrow between 12 noon and 2 pm at the Spirit Square.

Meanwhile, the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame is open between 11am and 3pm over Thursdays, Fridays, and, Saturdays this weekend, next weekend and the final weekend of the month during Centennial week celebrations.

Future schedules for the Hall of Fame, which opened this week, will be announced at the end of this month.

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The City of Merritt has been working to make the City more wheelchair accessible this Summer, with let-downs installed along the two-thousand blocks of both Quilchena and Granite Avenues, but there still appears to be a problem.

City Councillor Dave Baker says some people are ignoring the wheelchair parking only signs.

Baker is hoping people will pay heed and show more consideration by not parking in those wheelchair-only zones.

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