Back for its 25th season, the Halifax Jazz Festival has a new home. The Festival Tent is moving to a new beach-style park on the Halifax waterfront, at the foot of Salter Street. The annual festival, which runs Jul 8 – 16, attracts renowned jazz and blues musicians from around the globe. This year’s highlights include Idle Warship, the Preservation Hall Jazz Band and Jill Barber. From Jul 20 – 24, Cirque du Soleil takes over the city with Quidam. Since its world premiere in Montreal under the Big Top, this production has toured five continents. The international cast features 52 world-class acrobats, musicians, singers and characters.
This month, Toronto welcomes two stars of the silver screen to perform live on stage. Backed by an 18-piece orchestra, Hugh Jackman performs classic Broadway show tunes at the Princess of Wales Theatre Jul 5 – 17. Just down the street at the Royal Alexandra Theatre, Carrie Fisher, best known as Princess Leia from Star Wars, presents her one-woman show,Wishful Drinking, opening July 12, in which she talks frankly about the highs and lows of life in the spotlight.
Every July, the hottest ticket in town is the Calgary Stampede. The Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth is ten days of rodeos, parties, chuckwagon races, midway rides, deep-fried treats, pancake breakfasts, two-stepping, world-class live music and so much more, Jul 8 – 17. Join the thousands on Parade Day Jul 8 for the famous Stampede Parade where word has it, royal newlyweds Prince William and Kate Middleton will be in attendance. One of the city’s most beloved festivals of the year, the Calgary Folk Music Festival brings acts like Blue Rodeo, Bonnie “Prince” Billy, K.D. Lang and Yo La Tengo to Prince’s Island Park, Jul 21 – 24.
Get ready for an exhilarating weekend of track speeds of over 300km/h at the world-class Edmonton Indy, Jul 22 – 24. The newly designed course will have you closer to the action than ever before. Watch Canada’s own Alex Tagliani, along with other big name IndyCar Series drivers. Or take a stroll down the lively Whyte Avenue strip for Art Walk Jul 15 – 17, this outdoor gallery and studio features over 230 working artists and their artwork in all styles and mediums.
Blue Rodeo, K.D. Lang, and Tegan and Sara are just some of the big name acts appearing at the 38th annual Winnipeg Folk Festival, Jul 6 – 10. Browse the handmade village for artisanal jewellery, stoneware and clothing, grab a bite to eat from varied food vendors and admire the work of local visual artists at this popular music event. On Jul 27, legendary metal bands Slayer and Rob Zombie take the stage together for the first time in a decade in an all-ages show.
Rub shoulders with top PGA golfers as they play the Banff Springs Golf Course during the Jul 25 – 26 Telus World Skins Game. Also, Parks Canada turns 100 on Jul 16, so help celebrate by hitting up Parks Day in Banff and Jasper—have some birthday cake or watch the new totem pole being raised outside the Jasper Heritage Train Station.
Hot summer sun, thousands of cheering fans, and five outdoor stages make for a spectacular concert-going experience at the Cisco Ottawa Bluesfest, which runs Jul 5 – 17. Big names include The Flaming Lips, The Black Keys, Peter Frampton, The Roots, and Blue Rodeo. Starting Jul 6 and running to Sep, the Sound and Light Show: Mosaika will once again be projected onto the exterior of the Parliament Buildings. Bring a blanket and enjoy this free, nightly presentation about Canada, which features music, narration, and stunning visual effects.
The Vancouver Folk Music Festival brings over 60 musicians from around the world to Jericho Beach Park for three magical days, Jul 15 – 17. Enjoy performances by Joel Plaskett & The Emergency, Gillian Welch and Rosanne Cash, while your little ones partake in face painting, storytelling and other fun-filled activities. On weekends throughout the summer, scour the stalls at the Chinatown Night Market for traditional crafts and clothes, and then tempt taste buds with exotic food finds. Don’t miss the live entertainment that ranges from karaoke to opera to live Kung Fu demonstrations.
Head to Squamish for five days devoted to celebrating mountain climbing during the Squamish Mountain Festival, Jul 13 – 17. Newbies and pros master their climbing skills then catch films and photography exhibits before partying the night away at the Howe Sound Brew Pub. Then catch hundreds of mountain bikers showcase their impressive skills in downhill and slalom challenges, while popular musicians K’Naan and Hot Hot Heat entertain the crowd as part of the outdoor concert series at Kokanee Crankworx, Jul 16 – 24.
Catch some of the world’s top street performers, including musicians, fire-throwers, jugglers and a whole lot of clowning, at the Victoria International Buskers Festival Jul 15 – 24, this family-friendly event takes place over six event stages located across downtown.