By Rae Porter
Monday Magazine contributor
If you’ve strolled down to Ogden Point at any point over the last few summers, chances are you’ve noticed some changes. Sure, Pier A has a new paint job and there’s a lot of pipe laying around, but that’s not all.
Entering its fourth season, Friday nights at The Breakwater Barge has been breathing new life into a part of the city that is used to seeing more tourists than locals in the summer months.
Presented by the Greater Victoria Harbour Authority in partnership with Deanna Young Promotions, the Breakwater Barge is a community minded, live music venue that serves up a perfect slice of Victoria.
The start of a new season has brought a couple of changes. A new barge and a reconfigured site have led to more accessibility and a better overall experience. From the stunning views and family friendly vibe, to the local beers, ciders and fresh food truck fare, all soundtracked by the best of the South Island’s music scene; it’s a perfect place to entertain the kids, catch up with friends, or wind down from a hectic work week.
In past seasons, The Barge (as it’s affectionately known) has had its fair share of local favourites grace its stage. Past highlights include intimate performances from Jon Middleton, Vince Vaccaro, Fox Glove, Caleb Hart, and who could forget Jesse Roper’s secret set that saw the length of the breakwater walkway packed with fans?
The 2019 Barge season opens with a bang with the New Souls kicking things off May 31 with their own brand of soul and R&B-infused funk. Morgan Brooker, artistic director for The Breakwater Barge, has strived to create a diverse musical lineup of local artists, sure to appeal to all ages.
“I’m genuinely excited for the entire lineup,” he says. “I feel like this is the strongest one yet.”
June sees Cities return to the floating stage for the third time, with The Hip Replacements (the Island’s best Tragically Hip tribute band) making their Barge debut in July. In August, the incomparable DJ Yachtub (the sleeper hit of the 2018 season) will be sure to get the barge grooving with another evening of rousing Yacht Rock.
“The Breakwater Barge is a community event,” Brooker adds. “We want everyone to come down and enjoy great music, great beers and a phenomenal view.”
With music usually starting around 5:30 p.m. and a curfew of 9:30, it’s the perfect location to see in those sweet summer evenings and ease into your weekend.