What to do this weekend, September 1-3
Électro Parade is being touted as a ‘titanic, kilometres-long street party.’ Inspired by similar parties in Berlin, Zurich and Paris, this is the first we've seen of it in North America. Of course, it's for Montreal's 375th. Floats of DJs will head down from Mont Royal and Parc all the way to Place des Arts on Saturday September 2. The lineup ncludes the likes of Montana, Spaz, Romulus and Boho Soundsystem. On Saturday, the party starts at 2pm, the parade starts at 4pm and the partying continues (officially) to 11pm. Note that there will be closures on Parc Avenue.
Speaking of the 375th, residents of St Léonard are invited to Wilfrid-Bastien Park for La Grande tournée, the big travelling circus/food/games show.
Hair, the 'American tribal love-rock musical' of the swinging sixties, is being remounted at MainLine Theatre this weekend and next, in time for its 50th anniversary of the show. Relive the Vietnam war draft, the long hair, fashion - and the sex and nudity - with In the Wings Promotions. Hippe Claude has received his draft card - and he faces pressure from his compatriots to burn it. Will he? I caught opening night, and while it took a bit to get revved up, the singing and choreography were excellent and I had a swell time.
Mile End Music Fest is a brand new festival, with two days of music tucked under the industrial-but-reclaimed Van Horne Overpass in Mile End. The fun starts at Saturday at noon, and headliners include Suzanne Vega, City and Colour and my fave, Patrick Watson and his band.
YUL EAT is a food carnival at the Old Port near the clock tower, with food trucks, tastings and workshops to tempt your tastebuds. This year, you do have to pay $5 to enter, then shell out for food. But the programming is interesting, with top chef Martin Juneau telling you about ‘enhancing tomatoes’, a Beer 101 workshop and another on 'Super Boubon.'
Nearby, The Grand roue (finally) opens today at 4pm to the public! Hop on the 20 storey-high wheel to take in the city… it’ll cost you $25t o do it, but you can say you were among the first!
Two long-running downtown events have just returned this week: the impressive World Press Photo exhibit is showcases the best news snaps from the past year at Place Bonaventure (until October 1), and the trippy public art exhibit KM3 has just started at Quartier des spectacles (until October 15).
Love the beach? It's the last weekend to take the plunge at the Jean Doré beach at Ile Ste Helene, Saturday to Monday.
The food trucks take over the Big O Esplanade for First Friday, 4 to 11pm.
Celebrate sexuality and art with the Festival art erotique all weekend at Circus Club in the Gay Village. Hundreds of artists will showcase their sexy paintings, sculptures, photography and live performances. Friday's special show is all about vintage erotica, and Saturday's closing bash is an Erotic Circus.
Cool event I learned about last weekend: Les Contes de Verdun, a live, camping-style storytelling event at Notre Dame des Sept Douleurs Church on Wellington. Cozy up to the campfire to hear First Nations tales. (Earlier in the summer, visitors were regaled with stories of the Madelinots and the Irish.) If you cannot make the live show, there is an app so you can follow the stories on your own.
The Wiggle Room, our favourite speakeasy burlesque bar in Montreal, is celebrating its fourth anniversary this weekend with a special show Saturday night. See Pinot Noir, Frenchy Jones and Alice Ocean, among other performers.
Caturday at Villeray Park is for people who want to reclaim the outdoors for their feline friends. I think organizers ran into some trouble the first time they tried to mount this, so this is a city sanctioned event. Bring your cat in a carrier or on a leash.
The largest rural agricultural fair in Quebec is on all weekend: check out the horse judging, machinery parade, horticulture competition and live music like Ben Arkansas & The Brome Tones - all at the Brome Fair in the Townships.