2 Days, 2 Streets, 2 Much Fun!

A carnival atmosphere heats up the Bay & Algoma Neighbourhood

Occasionally it’s hard to tell who is officially part of the Bay & Algoma Buskers Festival. The carnival-like atmosphere at this weekend event held annually in late July in the Bay and Algoma Neighbourhood has become one that you won’t want to miss if planning a summer visit to Thunder Bay. So this year, mark your calendar for the Buskers Festival Saturday July 28 and Sunday July 29.

buskers singer

The streets - Bay and Algoma are blocked off for a mix of activities. There will be multiple stages setup where buskers and entertainers rotate through putting on impromptu performances.

There are always surprise shows that are not part of the program, so the result is that sections of the streets look like flash mobs. It is the unexpected that kept people coming back for what will be the fifth year for this unique festival.

buskers-eric juggler

In come cases you can't tell the difference between the people performing and those attending as young people unicycle through the crowds, while others dress in costume for no other reason than for an opportunity to do so. 

People mix and interact with the actual performers to juggle with the juggler, hoola with the Hoola dancer and swing balls in socks or twirl the ribbons with the professional poi artist. It is all part of the fun.

buskers trio algoma best

There are kids whose faces are painted to look like cats or dogs or Spiderman as they run about freely in the street, or bounce around the air castle beaming with delight. They’ll get in with the chalk artists, sketch out cartoons on the road then plead for an ice cream from one of the many food trucks, which also offer food for the adults.

Young and old alike are impressed by the agility of the Larpers – live action role players – who really get into battle. And of course there are the wonderful costumed belly dancers from the local dance school with their infectious smiles. And bellies.

buskers dancers

There are tents where local artists sell their wares and these tents can get blown around a bit, but the artists persevere, duck into the Scandeli House to get some Swedish chocolate or partake with the public to chomp down on poutine, burgers, Indian cuisine like sabzi, chole, samosas, or many other delights offered in the shops and tents on the street.

buskers potter

Local shops along Bay St. and Algoma St. set up with sale displays on the sidewalks, and bakeries and coffee shops produce more cinnamon buns and cupcakes for the event. All in this area of the city that is really the best place to access local art and crafts at a number of venues throught out the year.  

Local art groups also set up booths where great little pieces of art can be purchased at reasonable prices.

buskers art

Don’t miss the Buskers Festival in the Bay & Algoma Neighbourhood Saturday and Sunday July 28 - 29, 2018.

buskers fruit

About Duncan Weller

A writer and visual artist, Duncan Weller is a Governor General's Award winner who lives in Thunder Bay. You can visit his website at www.duncanweller.com. His latest two books are a novel, Flight of the Silk, and an expanded edition of the award-winning children's picture book, The Boy from the Sun.

Recommended Articles

Rainy Days and Everyday

Indoor Play Areas for Kids in Thunder Bay

6 great hiking trails in and around Thunder Bay

Hike the famous Sleeping Giant or the Flett railway tunnel in this Northwest Ontario city.

Treasure Hunting in Thunder Bay

A longtime thrifter's story—and some hot tips!

12 Best Places to Stay in Thunder Bay

A boutique courthouse, art-filled hostel, or a luxe waterfront hotel—TBay has accommodations for every taste.

Conquer a Giant

This iconic Northwest Ontario landmark rises 1000 ft above the surface of Lake Superior.

Top 5 places to view the Sleeping Giant

Thunder Bay's Most Famous Landmark and the best places to see it

Cruising Northwest Ontario on the 11/17 West Loop

On a solo ride from Thunder Bay to Manitoba

Quality Time Overload

Here's everything that's going on for Family Day in Thunder Bay this year.

A Bird's-Eye View of Thunder Bay

Mount McKay Lookout - Anemki Wajiw is a must-do in this Northwestern Ontario city

Good Old-Fashioned Eats

Thunder Bay's best diners and greasy spoons

There's a Reason, Every Season

Visit Kakabeka Falls

Have a Shag at Camp: Learn to Speak "Thunder Bay"

5 terms you must learn before you visit.

Good News Yarn Hunters!

Two New Yarn Stores have opened in Thunder Bay

Imported Groceries and Mouth-Watering Sandwiches

Feed Your Hunger at Fresco's Deli

A Friendly Place for Food & Drink

Cheer's Village Pub

Time to change your clocks—but why?

The Thunder Bay and Northwest Ontario Connection to Daylight Savings Time.

The Niagara of the North

Kabakeba Falls Lives Up to Its Billing

Live on the Waterfront

A summer time tradition

Homemade eats on Highway 61

A must-stop south of the city

The 5 Best Sights to See in Thunder Bay

From the legendary Sleeping Giant to Indigenous art galleries these Thunder Bay attractions are not to be missed.