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Stagecoach Saloon becomes Showdown Dance Hall at Ponoka Stampede

Ponoka Stampede’s new Stagecoach Saloon will feature five artists and a new name this year.
Hailey Benedict. (Photo by Travis Nesbit)

Ponoka Stampede’s new Stagecoach Saloon will feature five artists and a new name this year.

The newly expanded building has officially been named the Showdown Dance Hall and will be the location for the musical acts not on the main stage at the 2023 Ponoka Stampede.

This year’s line up for the Showdown Dance Hall is Ben Chase, Alicia Aichelle, Kalsay Kuyluk, Hailey Benedict and Craig Moritz.

Born and raised in PEI, Ben Chase is just getting started but he already has plenty of career highs. He’s had two number one songs on the Canadian Country charts, four top 100 charting singles at Canadian radio and has won the Fan’s Choice award at the Country Music Alberta Awards. After spending four years in Alberta he made the move to Nashville, TN., to further pursue his music and recently returned home to Canada to be direct support for Zach Bryan and the Zac Brown Band at the 2022 Calgary Stampede.

Alecia Aichelle is a familiar face around central Alberta. Her latest single Household, recording at MCC Studio in Calgary, was released in March, 2021. Packed full of raw emotion, Aichelle says it tells a piece of her recent personal journey. She lived in Nashville for nine months before the pandemic brought her back to Canada.

READ MORE: Local artist Alecia Aichelle to perform during Lacombe’s Canada Day festivities

Rising country star Hailey Benedict was recognized as the 2022 CCMA Interactive Artist of the Year and she continues to make her mark in the Canadian country music industry. Known as a dynamic artist, playing guitar as well as writing her own songs, Benedict was also awarded the 2022 County Music Alberta Horizon Female Artist of the Year.

Kalsay Kulyk was a finalist for the Canadian Country Music Association’s Discovery Artist Program and won ole’s On the Spot competition. She grew up in Hudson Bay, Sask., and after being diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma she found solace writing about her experiences. When she recovered from her cancer she pursued her passion for music and currently lives in Nashville and she states the purpose behind her music is to touch the lives of others and to transform struggles into rejuvenation.

Craig Moritz has three full-length studio albums and has opened shows and shared the stage with some of the biggest names in country today including Kip Moore, Jason Aldean, Dierks Bentley, Steven Tyler, Tanya Tucker, Sara Evans and The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band.

“I guess at the end of the day besides connecting with my fans through music I wanna be the guy who they would wanna sit down with after the show to hang out, have a drink, and B.S. about life,” Moritz states on his website.

During the Stampede, two sets of shows will run each day in the Showdown Dance Hall, including one in the afternoon and one in the evening.

This year’s dance hall schedule of performances is as follows:· JUNE 26: 9:30p.m. to 6:25 p.m. Ben Chase performs.

· JUNE 27: 4:30 p.m. to 6:15 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. Alicia Aichcelle performs.

· JUNE 28: 4:30 p.m. to 6:15 p.m. Kalsey Kuyluk performs.

· JUNE 28: 10:30 p.m. to 1:45 a.m. Hailey Benedict performs.

· JUNE 29: 4:30 p.m. to 6:15 p.m. Kalsay Kuyluk performs.

· JUNE 29: 10:30 p.m. to 1:45 a.m. Alicia Aichelle performs.

· JUNE 30: 4:30 p.m. to 6:15 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. to 1:45 a.m. Craig Moritz performs.

· JULY 1: 4:30 p.m. to 6:15 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. to 1:45 a.m. Craig Moritz performs.

READ MORE: Big country names to take the big stage at Ponoka Stampede

More Ponoka Stampede coverage

Check out our page on Ponoka News for daily coverage of rodeo action and all you need to know about concerts, entertainment and attractions.

Alecia Aichelle. (Amy Allmand Photography)
Ben Chase. (Facebook)
Kalsey Kulyk. (Facebook)
Craig Moritz. (Facebook)