The many music festivals held during the summer brings the valley alive with the sound of music. The Annapolis Valley has produced its share of both big and local talent musical artist over the years. The musical roots run deep, but never in its history has it been more celebrated than it is today.
The Annapolis Valley supports several local organizations dedicated to the growth and promotion of our local talent. There are many sponsored workshops; jam sessions and performances that are attended not only by our local talent but also by world-renowned musicians from all over.
We have many fine theatres in the Annapolis Valley specially dedicated to bringing fine cultural performances to the area. Places like the Evergreen Theatre; the Al Whittle Theatre; and the Kings Theatre to name just a few, are performing arts centres whose mandates are to encourage cultural, artistic and educational development of the region.
I also recommend you keep a watch at our local pubs, taverns, theatres, festivals and exhibitions for many fine concerts throughout the year. I will list several of the better known and on-going music festivals & events here for you, but there are always others playing throughout the valley.
If you are looking for a great musical event on a bit smaller level why not check out the many Jam Sessions that go on throughout the Annapolis Valley? You are welcome to bring your instrument or singing voice or you can just come to listen to some great Annapolis Valley talent.
The first ones I want to mention are the Jam Sessions that are held each week in the little community halls and other facilities.
Jam sessions are a great way to spend an evening no matter if you play an instrument, like to sing or just like to sit back and enjoy good music. They are like mini music festivals held every week. Everyone is welcome to come and bring their instruments, singing voice or their listening ears.
The admission is usually very minimal and lots of time this will include a lunch. Check out the ones going on in your area.
The annual Port George Bluegrass music festivals is held during the last full weekend in May. The Port George Regional Recreation Centre, 1225 Shore Road East hosts this great festival open to the Bluegrass Organization.
This has been an annual event since 1999 which is held during mid to end of June at the Fox Mountain Camping Park on the Aylseford Road. Bluegrass bands come from all over eastern Canada and the US to play during this four-day event.
The campground has many other events going on during this festival like crib tournaments, Young Musicians Spotlight & Open Mike, bingo, workshops and their annual big Yard Sale. A field canteen is set up and they feature a large stage area for the performers.
Fox Mountain is equipped with 390 numbered sites including 90 serviced sites plus 30 plus acres of "rough" sites. This always proves to be a musical treat for everyone who likes bluegrass music.
The park is located at 6128 on the Aylesford Road. Check dates and reserve your spot in advance by contacting them at the Fox Mountain Camping Park or calling them at 902 847 3747.
Concert band musicians from all over come to Annapolis Royal during their Community BandFest in mid July. As they say "playing in a band is fun, but not as fun as playing in a really big band!" That is what BandFest is all about, hundreds of people getting together to share their passion of making music with each other.
Musicians come for a weekend of learning and performing under the guidance of professional conductors like Ron MacKay, Rowan Fitzgerald, Maggie Helms, Ken Foote, Maggie Helms & Eugene Hay. It is a total weekend experience of playing, sharing information and being with other musicians. The entry fee also covers coffee breaks and a supper held Saturday evening followed by dancing to the Annapolis Big Band.
The rehearsals will all be held in the Annapolis Royal Regional Academy on St. George Street in Annapolis Royal. The weekend of Music Festivals is summed up with a big public concert on Sunday starting at 2 pm. played out on the front lawn of the Academy if the weather is good or in the auditorium if it rains. For more information check out the Annapolis Community BandFest website or contact Trish Fry at 902 532 7694.
The Port George Country Jamboree is held at the Port George Recreation Centre, 1225 Shore Road East, Port George as an annual fundraiser for the Middleton, Kingston & Lawrencetown Lions Clubs and the community of Port George. This jamboree is held around the end of July and has been held for over 25 years now.
Enjoy eleven hours of great country music, delicious food including a pancake breakfast, and a giant all-day 200 table flea market. There are lots of activities for the kids to like the Lions Kiddie Train, face painting among other activities and entertainment. Bring your tent or trailer and camp out for this great fun-filled weekend of Music Festivals. In 2001 there were over 4,000 people from all over Nova Scotia and beyond attend this fantastic jamboree.
The jamboree is held rain or shine and admission is not very much. You can book your spot or find out more information by calling Lion Bob Lyle at 902 765-3225 or visiting the Port George Country Jamboree website. Check out this page for more information on Port George and area attractions.
The Fox Mountain Camping Park at 6128 Aylesford Road host their annual Country Music Festivals during the first week of August.
The festivities start off with an Open Mike on Thursday evening, plus there is bingo after lunch on Thursday and Friday afternoons. Come hear the bands and individual performers play, take part in the songwriter's showcase and attend the Sunday gospel followed by more country music on Sunday afternoon.
This event has become quite popular so if you are looking for a great musical event plan to attend this one. The gates open at 8 am and close at 10 pm or camp right there. Reserve your spot in advance by contacting the Fox Mountain Camping Park at 902 847 3747 or visiting the Fox Mountain Camping Park website.
Bring your lawn chair and maybe a picnic and come to Ellenhurst, 10252 Hwy 1 in Paradise for a fabulous evening of music around the first week of August.
Hear the Annapolis Big Band, featuring singer Donna Holmes, perform the great tunes of the 30's and 40's outside under the stars for your listening and dancing pleasure. They play the songs like you remember them from Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Tommy and Jimmy Dorsey, Glenn Miller and others.
Admission is a free-will offering in support of the Paradise Community Hall. Free parking is available on the grounds at Ellenhurst and on site transportation is provided for people needing assistance.
For more information call Linda Hankinson at 902 584 3570 and watch your local community calendar for this years date.
You are invited to the Hillsdale House Inn at 519 St. George Street in Annapolis Royal in early September for a fabulous afternoon of music. Enjoy the sounds of the Annapolis Big Band in the beautiful gardens of the Hillsdale House Inn. Bring your picnic lunch, non-alcoholic beverages, blanket or chair.
The Hillsdale House Inn was built in 1859 and has provided over 100 years of gracious accommodation for Nova Scotia travelers, catering to many famous persons, including King George V of England. This registered Nova Scotia heritage Inn is situated on a 12 acre estate with manicured lawns, stately trees and numerous fine gardens.
Make sure to check the Hillsdale House Inn website for the date of this years Big Band concert.
Wolfville is the place to be in mid September for the annual Deep Roots Music Festivals. This festival celebrates Nova Scotia's rich and diverse musical traditions featuring samples of cultures like Mi’Kmaq, Acadian, African, Nova Scotian and the British Isle. Musicians from all over at all levels of playing abilities come to take part in the main stage groupings, performance workshops, jam sessions and sing-a-longs.
Here world-class musicians interact with the audience at all the different events throughout the whole weekend. There is even a Fresh Beats Rhythm Parade for the young and the young at heart.
Performers CD's will be on sale throughout the weekend and it would be a good chance to get them autographed. The main stage concerts are held on Friday and Saturday evenings and again on Sunday afternoon at Acadia Universities historic Convocation Hall. If you would like more information on this festival you can visit their website Deep Roots Music Festivals.
The Evergreen Theatre is a non-profit organization who's mandate is "Bringing the Best in Live Performance to Margaretsville, the North Mountain and the Mid Annapolis Valley".
The building is the former Evergreen Baptist Church which was donated to the community of Margaretsville in 1999. The building was built in the 1860's and was repaired and turned into a theatre by volunteers using donated cash and materials. It already had great acoustics. Fundy Folk manage the building and a community board oversees its operations.
They hold several concerts and music festivals scheduled throughout the summer months when they bring in professional performers from all over. Such artist as David Francey, Jill Barber, Chirgilchin, La Famille Arseneault, John Gracie, Montreal Guitar Trio, Tidal Funk, Old Man Luedecke & Gypsophilia, Joel Plaskett and Tony Cox to name a few have entertained in this great old building.
There is no numbered seating at the Evergreen, come early for best choice of seats, but they are a lot softer these days. No indoor plumbing helps remind you that you are in a small rural area, even though the music leads you to dream otherwise.
Fundy Folk and the Evergreen Theatre is a non profit organization. They are located at 1941 Stronach Mountain Road in east Margaretsville. For more information on their schedule of mini Music Festivals you can visit the Evergreen Theatre website.
The Bear Rhythm Coffee House is open year round in the Rebekah Hall in Bear River. You are invited to be a part of a long-standing tradition of entertainment excellence. Enjoy coffee houses along with monthly performances. Several festivals and special events are going on continuously. They offer high quality local and not-so-local performers for your enjoyment. Memberships are available. Look for updates in the Bear River Tributary, Health Clinic newsletter and local papers. Information: 467-3836.
Located in Wolfville the al Whittle Theatre is a 160 soft-seat venue for live music, theatre, dance, cinema, music festivals and more. Above it is located the Acadia Cinema's Studio-Z which is a smaller 35-seat performance, meeting and rehearsal space.
The theatre was opened in 2004 and is owned and operated by the volunteer-run Acadia Cinema cooperative. The cooperative was formed in 2002 to save the landmark Acadia Cinema building and to revitalize the building to be a fine cultural facility.
The building started as a theatre back in 1911 as the Opera House which was located in the back of the T.E. Hutchinson building. Since then it has been the Orpheum theatre (1923), the Acadia theatre (1947), Acadia Twin Cinemas (1986) and the Acadia Cinemas (1997). It is now named after Al Whittle who retired as manager of the theatre for 47 years.
To learn more about this fine facility and to see a line up of its performers visit their website.
The Union Street Cafe is locally owned and operated by Jenny Osburn. They are a family run dining establishment located in Berwick. Included in their establishment is an attractive dining room, a cozy pub, great live music and a sidewalk patio.
Join in for a drink and your favorite pub munchies and enjoy their pub concerts at the Wick Pub. Or you can come for dinner at the Union Street Cafe and stay for the show
On Friday evenings they host the valley's best Open Mic Kitchen Party starting at 8 pm. They often have special guest from across the nation and around the world.
Other concerts throughout the summer feature musicians like Roger Marin, B'town Blues Band, Ross Neilson with Hupman Brothers, David Francey, Stacey Earle & Mark Stuart, Morgan Davis, The Eddie Ellis Band, Big Dave McLean & Doc MacLean plus many more.
To find out more and check their calendar of events visit the Union Street Cafe website.
The Kings Theatre in Annapolis Royal is "An incorporated not-for-profit regional performing arts centre whose mandate is to encourage cultural, artistic and educational development of the region."
The theatre features between 50 to 70 live performances and around 120 film presentations throughout the year.
The Kings Theatre is located at 209 St. George Street in Annapolis Royal. For a list of the events happening call the theatre for their 24 Hour Listings at 902-532-5466, or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
From July 1st to September 1st the Kings Theatre in Annapolis Royal hold their annual Summer Festival. Reservations are encouraged. For more information call the theatre at 902 532 7704 or their 24 hour hotline at 902 532 5466.
If your organization has an annual event you would like included on this page of Annapolis Valley Music Festivals please let me know about it. You do that by filling in my Annapolis Events Contact Form. It's easy to do but please remember to include as much information as you can. When I receive your submission I will go over it and I may have to contact you for more information before I list the event.
Remember I am only adding annual events to this page, but still send in other events as I will post them on my Annapolis Valley Vacation Facebook Page.
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