There are many attractions that draw visitors to Lennox and Addington County but one, often overlooked attribute is the abundance of live music being performed in numerous locations within the area. These will often feature national and international touring acts and can provide some amazing unexpected and rewarding experiences.
If you’re looking for full weekends of live music experiences, Lennox and Addington has several wonderful options to explore.
In southern Lennox & Addington, Greater Napanee is home to two multi-day music festivals, the Napanee Country Jamboree and the Voodoo RockFest. The “country” flavoured Jamboree is held typically the 3rd weekend of July while the “metal” oriented RockFest generally is held the 3rd weekend of September and is slated for September 22 & 23, 2018. Both of these events take place in the Napanee Fairgrounds and accommodate overnight camping.
The Classic Country Music Festival is another great annual gathering for country music. This event takes place every August at the Centreville Fairgrounds. The annual Back to the Farm: The MacKinnon Brothers Beer & Music Festival is a big draw to the county as well.
Back to the Farm draws a big crowd every August in Lennox & Addington
Just about a 20 minute drive east plus a short and enjoyable ferry ride south, Amherst Island is home to yet another multi day music event, the Emerald Music Festival. This bluegrass-country oriented festival typically occurs on the second weekend of August and offers not just great music but a unique geographical experience as a bonus. The Waterside Summer Series, while not a weekend festival, is another great music event that takes place on several dates throughout the summer. It’s been going on for more than two decades and hosts renowned classical musicians in a variety of genres.
If you are in the northern portion of the county, the Flinton Community Jamboree offers another multi day music experience that takes place on the August Civic Holiday weekend. This event includes a ceremony that inaugurates selected performers into the Land O Lakes Music Hall of Fame, as well as a collection of music that varies from 50’s and 60’s rock ‘n roll to country.
The Flinton Community Jamboree is a popular event for country music and bluegrass lovers.
Single-show musical performances also happen regularly in Lennox & Addington. The Waterside Summer Series takes place on several dates throughout the summer on Amherst Island. It’s been going on for more than two decades and hosts renowned classical musicians in a variety of genres. The Starstop Concert Series held in Ellena’s Café in downtown Napanee regularly features touring musicians from a variety of backgrounds. The Newburgh Community Hall offers a Classic Country Music Festival that showcases local musicians on the last Sunday afternoon of each month. The Music by the River series also presents live music in Conservation Park in Napanee every Sunday afternoon from June to August. In addition to the annual weekend event, the Classic County Music Festival also has monthly events during the Spring, Winter and Fall.
Tamworth has a well-established reputation for hosting high profile live music events. The TECDC Concert Series consists of six shows scheduled from October to May. The line-up is always diverse but is made up of performers who have been recognized by the music industry for their accomplishments. The 120 seat venue used for this series has recently been included as a venue for Ontario’s Festival of Small Halls concert series citing its excellent acoustics and site lines as valued properties.
The TECDC Concert Series sells out the Tamworth Legion with award-winning Canadian musicians.
No matter where you go in Lennox and Addington, the opportunity to take in some spectacular live music is not far away. The options are year round, the talent being presented is amazing, and the settings are intimate and rewarding, and you will discover some of the best experiences the region has to offer.
Mark Oliver is a Lennox & Addington County resident and volunteer. Mark, along with his partner Barb Pogue, are the lead organizers for the successful TECDC Concert Series in Tamworth and are excellent ambassadors for the community.