Dozens of free Paralympic concerts in Whistler and Vancouver

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      If you're not too worn out from watching intense sledge hockey battles, there will be dozens of free musical performances taking place in both Vancouver and Whistler during the 10-day 2010 Paralympics.

      LiveCity Downtown (located at Georgia and Cambie) will be Vancouver's musical hub during the Paralympics, with local indie upstarts Said the Whale kicking off the festivities on March 12. Other acts taking the stage include the Weakerthans (March 13), the Trews (March 14), and Hey Ocean! (March 21).

      Up in Whistler, free live performances take place primarily at two venues: Whistler Live! Village Square and Whistler Medals Plaza, which doubles as the medal ceremonies site.

      The Whistler Live! site will play host to a diverse group of musicians, ranging from blues and roots to reggae and rock. Scheduled artists include Rich Hope & His Evil Doers (March 12), Thornley (March 12), the Jim Byrnes Trio (March 15), Spirit of the West (March 18), Alpha Yaya Diallo (March 19), and 54-40 (March 20).

      Performers at the Medals Plaza include alt-country chanteuse Kathleen Edwards (March 13) and Quebec multi-instrumentalist Antoine Gratton (March 15). Gates for Medals Plaza open at 5:30 p.m. with performers taking the stage at 7:30 p.m. nightly.

      There will also be nightly DJ sets starting at 9 p.m. in Whistler at the Skiers Plaza, located at the base of the Village Gondola. Featured DJs include Mama Cutsworth and DJ Co-op (March 14) and Rob Baanks (March 20).

      Many of the performers—including everyone performing at Medals Plaza—will be putting on shows in both Whistler and Vancouver. Among the artists doing double duty are Juno-award-winning musician Serena Ryder (Whistler on March 14; Vancouver on March 20) and singer-songwriter Justin Hines (Whistler on March 17; Vancouver on March 18). The aforementioned Weakerthans head up to Whistler Medals Plaza for March 14, while Hey Ocean! will rock the Village Square site on March 18.

      While crowds during the Paralympics will likely be smaller than during the 17-day spectacle that was the Olympics, be sure to arrive at your venue of choice early. Spectator access at Medals Plaza is limited to 5,000 people per night, while the Village Square site can host 5,500. LiveCity Downtown has a capacity of 2,500.

      For a full list of performers, including times and venues, check out the calendar.

      Follow Miranda Nelson on Twitter @charenton_.