What to do this weekend, August 18-20
Jackalope celebrates natural adrenaline highs at the Olympic Stadium with the largest action sports event in Canada. See people BASE jumping off the Big O tower, hang out with skating legend Tony Hawk, take part in highline and slackline demos and more.
The Balloon Festival wraps up Sunday in St Jean sur Richelieu... one ticket gets you in a hot air balloon, and access to the oudoor site, activity areas and the live music. Friday's headliners includes Montreal rockers The Franklin Electric and Cowboys Fringants.
Canada Pride is in high gear in Montreal. Learn about Montreal's LGBTQ history near Papineau metro, check out drag queen Manny at the closing party and make sure to take in the highlight, the Pride Parade, which has a new route: it begins at noon at Drummond and René-Lévesque, then heads east to the Village. A moment of silence for victims of violence and hate will be held at 1:30pm. You can see Justin Trudeau, fresh off his vacation in BC, marching again this year, along with the first foreign leader to join in a Canada Day Pride: Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, the first openly gay PM of Ireland.
Also at Pride: Naked Boys Singing is an off-Broadway musical review that debuted in 1999 in California, and has never visited Montreal - until now. Six male dancers, nude about 90 per cent of the time, singing: sounds like a winning night out. On the second floor at Café Cléopâtre.
Animaze - Montreal International Animated Film Festival is Montreal’s homage to animated short and feature films. There are screenings at around and McGill for all ages, and one big draw is A War to End No Wars, a short film screening at the McCord Museum Sunday morning. It was made by a young, self-taught Brit in her basement with a budget of a couple hundred dollars... it’s about her ancestor's time fighting in WWI. There are also opportunities to watch animation in virtual reality.
Montreal Symphonique is a free mega-concert with nearly 400 musicians performing on a huge stage that's been set up at the foot of Mont-Royal. It's an eclectic mix of music and artists, with three symphony orchestras, including the MSO, joined by Montreal pop stars like Rufus Wainwright, Pierre Lapointe, Coeur de Pirate and my fave, Patrick Watson. Saturday night, 9 to 11pm, near Molson Stadium. Can't make it to the Plateau? Parks all over the city will be streaming the show live. Find out the nearest one to you here.
And Sunday, in NDG, there is Rock the Park III: a free concert at Benny Park. The NDG-strong lineup includes my brother’s favourite band, Thicke Sugar, and Summerled, Po Lazarus and rapper Annakin Slayd. It's a fundraiser for the Einick Gitelman Fund, which supports NDG Minor Hockey.
Restaurant Day is a global 'food carnival' that lets anyone be a restauranteur for the day. Check out the map to find the pop-ups in your neighbourhood this Sunday. Some places to check out: Laotian and Vietnames food at 'Halong BayM, which is at someone’s apartment on de Castelnau. Papaya salad for $6 and tapioca dessert for a toonie.
Ukelele Fest brings together uke enthusiasts for a free strum-along at Sporting Club Montreal on Friday, followed by music and workshops throughout the weekend. more music tomorrow and workshops the rest of the weekend.
Drive4Smiles lets sick kids tool around in fancy cool sportscars on Saturday in a fundraiser for Starlight Children's Foundation. The kids will get the chance to be co-pilots on the track, followed by motoring enthusiasts, over at the ICAR circuits located at12800, Boul. Henri-Fabre in Mirabel.
Girls just wanna have fun: Cyndi Lauper Burlesque celebrates the Queens native's music and style, Friday night at the Wiggle Room. Performers include Natasha Nebula, Seska Lee and Mikki Michelle.
And please tune in this coming Sunday: I'll be co-hosting the Trivia Show on CJAD with the excellent Dan Laxer!