Nickel City Sunshine: Discovering Summer Festivals In and Around Sudbury

 Our long, dreadful winter is officially dead and gone, and we can finally look forward to the excitement and sunshine of summer. Around Sudbury, summer means one really important thing: Festivals, and lots of 'em! We take the festival season and turn it up a notch, with a constant calendar of activities from June to October. We want to share with you a selection of our favourites around the Nickel City.

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Photo by Arron Pickard

Downtown Rotary Blues for Food 

June 11

Rotary Blues for Food is Sudbury's kick-off to summer. The sounds of guitar licks, soulful singers, and tasty ice cream  will be the perfect chance for you to celebrate the start of summer. Every year, hundreds of people congregate on Durham Street to hear the best blues bands Sudbury has to offer. With a main stage of local stars and a children's showcase on either end of the street, there's something for everyone.

And don't forget — this great event is for a fantastic cause — your entry fee of a small donation or non-perishable food goes directly to families in need, thanks to the Sudbury Food Bank. 


Admission: Donation or non-perishable food at entry

Fierté Sudbury Pride

July 18-24

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Northern Ontario's largest Pride festival is an opportunity to celebrate, educate and support the LGBT2-SQQA community, and provide a valuable experience in equality amongst Northern Ontario. Plenty of celebrations are always planned, including an exhibition roller derby match and of course, a Pride march!


Various events – donations are welcomed

Northern Lights Festival Boréal

July 8-10

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Photo by Erik Lovin

A must-see festival, Northern Lights Festival Boréal is a gigantic showcase of alternative music in the North. Over thirty performers will deliver three packed days of concerts, workshops, and special performances, all from the scenic beauty of Bell Park. Vendors galore will be on hand with artisan clothing, crafts, jewelry, and refreshments. There's no shortage of entertainment with multiple stages set up featuring an eclectic mix of music.

NLFB maintains a proud tradition of bringing in a hand-picked selection of the best musicians in the country. Don't miss the dozens of performers on tap.


Advance tickets and passes – Online, or by calling 1-866-943-8849. Check website for hours of operation.

River and Sky

Dates TBA

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Located on the Sturgeon River near Field, Ontario, River and Sky is a new and exciting camping and music festival showcasing what's new in folk, indie, country, and other forms of music. River and Sky is a real reflection of what a festival should be, with fresh air, unique acts, and a real sense of escape. Be sure to reserve your camping spot along with your tickets. Make it a fam-jam with plenty of kid-friendly activities.


Advance passes: Online only

Downtown Sudbury Ribfest

September 2-4

End your summer right with the country's best grilling crews duking it off, all for the glory of the People's Choice and Best Ribs awards. Ribs, BBQ chicken, pulled pork, beans, and even veggie options are on hand for your tastebuds to be wowed by. The smell of fresh-smoked delicacies can be smelled for blocks away, and Even if BBQ isn't your thing, you'll be lining up for seconds, and thirds, and fourths...


Open event – No admission needed

Other Festivals

Don't forget to visit the Northeastern Ontario Events Calendar for plenty of Northern events, including North Bay's Summer In the Park, the Jazz Sudbury Festival, plus dozens more!

About Bureau
We're Frank Chartrand and Terrie Barksey of Bureau, a design agency in the heart of Downtown Sudbury. We use big ideas and simple design to create marketing communications that make lasting impressions.
Follow us on Twitter: @frankchartrand + @terriebarksey

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