From the arts, to music to family fun in the sun, summer is the season we love.
There are myriad ways to enjoy the season, whether it’s wandering down to a local park or beach with a good book for an afternoon of peace and quiet or packing up the kids and dogs and heading up Island for a week at the lake, residents and visitors love to enjoy all Greater Victoria and the Island has to offer.
There are day trips to the Saanich Peninsula, a stroll through world famous Butchart Gardens and its glorious Saturday evening fireworks show, or take in your favourite local music festival. However you choose to enjoy the season, we wish you a happy summer!
Groove to cool tunes
Ska and Reggae festival – The first Victoria Ska Festival was a one-day event on Aug. 12, 2000 at Market Square. By 2012 it had grown into a five day event, spanning multiple venues, and attracting 10,000 attendees over the course of the festival. The Victoria Ska and Reggae Festival is now the longest running Ska Festival in North America. The 2015 lineup includes Hepcat, Morgan Heritage, Third World, The Slackers, Stickybuds and more July 1 to 5. victoriaskafest.ca
Sooke River Bluegrass Music Festival
June 19 to 21
The Sooke River Bluegrass festival is proud to include two bands from Boston, MA. The Lonely Heartstring Band is a hot new band combining instrumental virtuosity, 3-part harmonies, and a deep understanding of traditional bluegrass and Appalachian music. Mile Twelve combines a love for traditional bluegrass with songwriting skills honed at renowned music schools. sookebluegrass.com
Tall Tree Music Festival
June 26 to 28
As one of the western most points of Southern Vancouver Island, the scenic Port Renfrew site will play host to this 6th annual community spirited, open-air music festival. The festival site is located on Brown’s Mountain, approximately 1 hour and 40 minutes west of Victoria. talltreemusicfestival.com.
In a career spanning five decades, Journey is blazing hotter than ever with the lineup of Neal Schon, Jonathan Cain, Ross Valory, Deen Castronovo and Arnel Pineda. Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre. selectyourtickets.com.
The legendary rock group featuring front man Steven Tyler takes the stage at Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre with special guests Living Colour. selectyourtickets.com.
TD Victoria International Jazz Fest
June 19 to 28
The TD Victoria International JazzFest is a 10-day music festival featuring the jazz, blues and world music of local, Canadian, and internationally acclaimed musicians. The “grandfather” of music festivals serving audiences in the Vancouver Island and Gulf Islands region, the TD JazzFest offers its devoted audience. jazzvictoria.ca.
Brentwood Bay Music in the Park
July 8 to Aug. 26
Each summer in July and August, outdoor concerts are held Wednesday nights from 6:30pm to 8:30pm in Pioneer Park. Bring a chair, a blanket, a picnic dinner, or buy dinner from one of the food vendors. Come early – the park fills fast! Free. (1209 Clarke Rd.) brentwoodbay.info.
Sidney Summer Sounds
July 5 to Aug. 23
Sidney’s Beacon Park hosts live music on Sunday afternoons. Bring a picnic and blanket to enjoy the performances. Free. peninsulacelebrations.ca.
Rock The Shores
July 18 and 19
Come enjoy this popular open air music festival in Colwood featuring The Black Keys, The Sheepdogs, Current Swell, 54-40 and more. Juan de Fuca Recreation Centre lower fields. Single day: $84.50, two day: $149.50. rocktheshores.com.
Phillips Backyard Weekender
July 24 to 26
Get out and enjoy music, beer and sunshine in one of our city’s best outdoor live music venues/breweries, with Talib Kli, USS, Jon and Roy, BadBadNotGood and more. Phillips Brewery Backlot (2010 Government) Tickets $34.50 to $89.50 at atomiqueproductions.com.
Rock of the Woods Music Festival
July 23 to 26
This year’s lineup includes Gob, The Dudes, JPod, Good for Grapes, HiBou, Sisters and more. Camp out and rock out! At Glenora Farm (Cowichan Valley) Tickets are available at Lyle’s Place, Ditch Records and rockofthewoods.com. Four-day pass $125 plus fees.
Vancouver Island Blues Bash
The Vancouver Island Blues Bash fulfills the mandate of the Victoria Jazz Society by featuring local, regional and international blues and R&B artists/groups in both free to the public, and paid admission performances. Ship Point (Inner Harbour) Continue checking website for updates. jazzvictoria.ca
Rifflandia Music Festival
Sept 17 to 20
At this point, it’s anyone’s guess who will be showing up to entertain the masses at Rifflandia, but every year has only topped the previous one! Check Rifflandia.com for lineup announcements and more information. At Royal Athletic Park. Tickets are $175 or $295 (VIP) for both park and night stages. Early Bird tickets will be available until the lineup is announced for $125/250. Layaway options are also available.
DEAN BRODY & PAUL BRANDT
Multiple Juno and CCMA Award winners s Dean Brody and Paul Brandt co-headline the #RoadTripTour. Bringing together the best in Canadian country music, this epic tour kicks off in Victoria with Brandt recognized as the most awarded male Canadian Country Artist in history and Brody, the #1 most played Canadian Country Artist on radio. sofmc.com
Fine art inside and out
Kabuki– Japan’s Dynamic Theatre in Prints is on at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, 1040 Moss, to June 15. aggv.ca.
Fun with Fibre
June 8 to 14
Fun with Fibre, Cloth and Wood is a show and demonstration of creative techniques by four fabric artists and one wood carver. Daily 10am to 4pm. Free parking and free admission. Show takes place at the Tulista Gallery (9565 5th St. in Sidney.) cacsp.com
June 8 to July 11
See the works of Desiree Bond, Deborah Czernecky and Peter Dowgailenko. The reception will take place June 13 at Eclectic Gallery (2170 Oak Bay) from 3 to 5pm June 13. eclectic-gallery.ca.
Between Two Worlds
June 15 to 21
An inspired show of acrylic paintings, watercolour paintings, crystal jewelry and stained glass by artists Evelyn Williams, Sherry Williams, Renate Annalisa Essihos, Beth Powell, Patricia Rose Williams and Erin Moriarty. Open daily 10am to 4pm at the Tulista Gallery (9565 5th St. in Sidney.) Free admission and free parking. cacsp.com.
Making a Scene! Victoria’s Artists in the 1960s
to June 27
Curated by Emerald Johnstone-Bedell, with contributions by Josie Greenhill, Jenelle Pasiechnik, Caroline Riedel, Kate Riordon and Naomi Shields. Legacy Art Gallery Downtown (630 Yates St.) uvac.uvic.ca.
TD Art Gallery Paint-In
The Art Gallery of Greater Victoria’s Annual Paint-In on Moss Street (a not-for-profit event) features invited professional and emerging artists from Victoria and Region who demonstrate their art to over 35,000 visitors strolling Moss Street from Fort to Dallas. aggv.ca.
July 4 to Sept. 26
Unlimited edition constructs a historical framework that looks at how prints by Aboriginal and Inuit artists, represented in the Kamloops Art Gallery’s collection, works on loan from the Carleton University and Legacy Art Galleries, represent a drive to preserve oral histories and address social inequities in printmaking. Featuring prints from Northwest Coast, Woodlands and Inuit artists with a focus on printmaking in the 50s to 70s. Legacy Art Gallery, 630 Yates. uvac.uvic.ca.
Fairytales and Flowers
to July 11
Enjoy the works of Diana Sharp on display at the Greater Victoria Public Library – Saanich Centennial Branch. cacgv.ca.
Judy McLaren – Summer Heat
July 13 to Aug. 15
Judy McLaren has been painting for over 30 years and has twice won first prize at the Sooke Fine Art and Sidney Fine Art shows. The reception will be held July 18 from 3 to 5pm at 2170 Oak Bay Avenue. eclecticgallery.ca.
Sooke Fine Arts Show
July 24 to Aug. 3
The Sooke Fine Arts Show is an exhibition of fine art showcasing original, west coast art by artists on Vancouver Island and the surrounding BC coastal islands. It is the largest juried event in the region to represent Island artists, attracting more than 8000 visitors, throughout its 11-day run. sookefinearts.com
Free Play at the Art Gallery
to Aug. 3
Free Play is a hands-on exhibition that explores the work of artists who borrow from play and games to reveal contemporary social, and cultural issues through aesthetic experience. aggv.ca.
Held at Fairfield Gonzales Community Place, the day will feature a huge collection of vendors sharing their knowledge and enthusiasm through demonstrations and hands-on-activities. fibrationsvic.wordpress.com
Integrate Arts Festival
Aug. 28 to 30
Victoria’s annual art festival will feature an opening and closing celebration, gallery art crawl, music, performance art and independent artist displays. integratearts.ca.
Victoria International Chalk Festival
Sept. 12 and 13
Enjoy amazing street art by incredibly talented international chalk artists. Downtown Victoria. Free. victoriachalkfestival.com.
Exciting nights of theatre
BOOM – Rick Miller returns to the Belfry Aug 4 to 23 with an explosive solo performance documenting the music, culture and politics that shaped a generation. BOOM covers 25 turbulent years, giving voice to hundreds of politicians, activists and musicians – a mind-blowing experience. belfry.bc.ca.
Giants of Country – Blue Bridge Country Classics
June 11 to 14
This fundraiser for Blue Bridge Repertory Theatre pays tribute to country music greats with Zachary Stevenson singing the songs of Hank Williams and Buddy Holly, Jonas Shandel singing the songs of Johnny Cash and Samantha Currie singing the songs of June Carter and Patsy Cline. bluebridgetheatre.ca
July 7 to 26
Blue Bridge Theatre presents Noel Coward’s Private Lives, the story of a divorced couple who, while honeymooning with their new spouses, discover that they are staying in adjacent rooms at the same hotel. Despite a perpetually stormy relationship, they realize that they still have feelings for each other. bluebridgetheatre.ca
Brian Regan can turn the most mundane situations – like going to the eye doctor to get fitted for glasses, or trying to decide how many fig newtons to eat in one sitting – into side-splitting stand-up material. rmts.bc.ca.
June 11 to 27
Humble Boy is a dark comedy by Charlotte Jones. We find Felix Humble, a troubled physicist, brooding Hamlet-like over the death of his father and the much-too-quick move of his mother into the arms of a fun-loving neighbour. His solace is found in his father’s Cotswold garden and apiary where a prying spinster, a past lover, and the bees allow for musings about life and the universe. langhamtheatre.ca.
Theatre Skam’s skampede
July 10 to 12
SKAM’s Bike Ride has been newly renamed to reflect the variety of ways audiences can get outdoors and enjoy theatre. SKAM’s annual live performance festival, with site-specific short theatre shows by the likes of SNAFU Dance Theatre, Gotta Getta Gimmick, Impulse Theatre and more, are all presented on a four kilometre stretch of the Galloping Goose Trail. Audiences are welcome to walk, take a scooter, bike or even skateboard from show to show. Starts at Cecilia Ravine Park (475 Burnside E). For information and tickets see skam.ca/bike-ride.
Victoria Shakespeare Festival
July and August
Camosun College Lansdowne Lawns (3100 Foul Bay)
The Victoria Shakespeare Society presents Romeo and Juliet and A Midsummer Night’s Dream on a rotating basis on the lawns at Camosun College. Tickets are available now at The Sidney Street Market, The Moss Street Market, The James Bay Market, The Fernwood Market and The Victoria Public Market. For information, see vicshakespeare.com.
Victoria Fringe Theatre Festival
Aug. 27 to Sept. 6
55 Shows. 10 Days. 11 Venues. The 29th annual Victoria Fringe Theatre Festival is a 10-day celebration of live performance from around the world, featuring an eclectic mixture of spoken word, drama, musicals, comedy, music, theatre for young adults and more. The Fringe is an unjuried and uncensored international theatre festival. Various show times and various venues across downtown. See intrepidtheatre.com for more.