What to do; Ribfest, meet Buskerfest


Thursday, July 28

Capital Ribfest perfectly captures the need for charred meat with the long weekend ahead, offering four days of rubbed, slathered and smoked meat, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. each day, Festival Plaza, City Hall. Admission is free, all ages are welcome, you just pay for what you eat — cash only: $25/full rack to $8/pork sandwich, $3/beans and coleslaw, with partial proceeds going to the Ottawa Food Bank. (Stella Luna is also going to be there with their award-winning gelato.) www.capitalribfest.ca


Stiltwalkers perform at the 24th annual Ottawa International Buskerfest.

If someone on stilts walks by while you’re gnawing on a rib, don’t be alarmed: The Ottawa International Buskerfest take over five blocks of Sparks Street today, with acrobats jugglers, fire eating – including standout Throw2Catch and Pyromancer from the Netherlands.
Stand alone street shows will be ongoing each day, but don’t miss the on-stage fire show on Friday at 10:45 p.m., and burlesque dancers on Sunday at The Marriott, 10:45 p.m. (adults only).
There’s also a planned grand finale show with fest’s best performers, 6 p.m. on the street stage, Monday, Aug.1. Admission is free ($25 for the burlesque show), but don’t forget to toss something in the performers’ hats. ottawabuskerfestival.com

613 Casual Choir has yet to get to the size of Toronto’s Choir! Choir! Choir!, but it’s got ice cream and an outdoor gathering tonight. Everyone and anyone is invited to join in to this open event, where songs lyrics are handed out and everyone is taught two songs, and they are performed for fun: tonight, sing Sarah McLachlan’s Your Love Is Better Than Ice Cream, and a surprise tune. No experience, or skill, necessary, 7 p.m., Cardinal Ice Cream 991 Wellington St. W. Cost: $5. www.facebook.com/groups/613casualchoir

Creative Jam takes the Creative Mornings events to nighttime, with a twist: a three-part design experience beginning with portfolio reviews with creative leaders (sign up by email); presentations by three creative leaders; an all-night design tournament ending in a presentation, and socializing, 7 p.m., Lowertown Brewery, 73 York St. creativemornings.com/cities/ott

Australia’s ska-grooving, genre-bending, earnest party band Cat Empire are back at Algonquin College, where they exhausted even the young crowd by churning out eclectic dance tune after dance tune last year. They’ve got a new just as energetic album, Rising with the Sun (March), described by one reviewer as Tame Impala crossed with Beirut (who, coincidentally, is barely out of the door of this venue). The album is a carnival, held in a magical place where reggae, Latin rhythms, British punk, classic soul and Asian chords exist harmoniously — and everyone is invited, from grandma to angry teen and little kid, 8 p.m., Algonquin Commons Theatre. Tickets: $35-$40. spectrasonic.com

Starting after that show is Retr-O Graff, a live art performance and exhibit celebrating local graffiti artists, past and present, put on with House of PainT urban festival, 10 p.m. Babylon, 317 Bank St. Admission: $5 over before midnight.

Photos: What to do this week

Float, canoe or tour along the river or canal, or enjoy eating a bunch of ribs while laughing at buskers. There's so much to do in Ottawa this week, it might even feel like work getting it all in.

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    The Puppets Up! Festival takes over Almonte from Aug. 5. Brent Eades / supplied

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    The Glengarry HIghland Games are on in Maxville, with pipers and dancing and lots of music and impressive strength competitions. David Gonczol / Ottawa Citizen

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    $40 will get you yoga on the field and then ticketed to the Redblacks vs Argos came on July 31, AND yoga on the field and then tickets t the Fury FC match on Aug. 13.

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    Brett Kissel performs Friday night at the Gatineau Country music festival.

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    There will be a special Pyro show on Friday at the Busker Festival.

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    The Sound of Light competition returns to the Casino du Lac-Leamy.

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    The Danish String Quartet had the run-away success show at last year's Chamberfest, and are back with their Nordic folk and visceral approach to the classics.

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    There's some serious go-karting going on at the Ottawa Mayor's Cup and $10,000 in prizes to be won, Aug. 6 to 7.

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    Artist Hailey Asquin has made some colouring sheets to enjoy with some live music on Friday night.

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    Blue bath Series by Victoria Wonnacott, part of the large group exhibit BLUE at Cube Gallery until Sept. 4.

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    Award-winning Bachata and salsa dancers Isabelle and Jacques are performing at the Ottawa Sala Convention, July 29 to 31, 2016. handout for endemann

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    There's a fairytale princess party at Dovercourt on Saturday ... Sara Cratt / supplied

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    ... and this time there are swimming mermaids, too. handout for endemann Sara Cratt / supplied

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    The Gatineau Float was intended as a meet-up among friends, and has since exploded on Facebook.

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    Only $50 for a pegasus seems utterly reasonable for a stylish float down the Riviere be Blanc.

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    The Stilt Union is offering acrobatics workshops, for beginners too, on Mondays this summer on the Tabaret Hall lawn.

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    The Stilt Union is offering acrobatics workshops, for beginners too, on Mondays this summer on the Tabaret Hall lawn.

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    The first Ottawa Footy Street Festival is on Aug. 6.
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Friday, July 29

The 150th Lombardy Fair offers old-time fun with modern flair, including traditional agricultural fun from pig scramble to homecrafts and agricultural showcase — this is where to bring that huge zucchini — plus demolition derby (tonight only), live music, extreme cowboy races, midway rides, and more. There’s even a quiet, shaded area for a rest.
Really bringing it back in time, the fair has a baby show on Sunday, with many categories to win — baby chomper, mini-me, curly cue and best gripper: registration at 12:30 p.m.
Gates open at 3 p.m. today; 9 a.m. to late tomorrow — when they have live music from Doubleback and Ramblin’ Valley Band; and 11 a.m. on Sunday; 9 a.m. on Monday, Lombardy Fairgrounds, 6 Kellys Rd., Smiths Falls. Admission: $10, free for children 12 years an under. www.lombardyfair.ca

Hear the crack of a different kind of bat (the zombie-killing kind) at the Ottawa vs Toronto Youth Cricket tournament, on the beautiful pitch at Rideau Hall, built in the late 1800s and where Cricket Ottawa holds matches regularly throughout the non-snow months. Match starts at 1 p.m, expected to end about 5 p.m. (Also, check out the Mango Festival on Saturday.) www.cricketottawa.com

Seeking to unwind? Colour in some whimsical, nature-inspired images created by local artist Hailey Asquin accompanied by dreamy, psychedelic tunes from Trails at Pressed, 8 p.m., 750 Gladstone Ave. Cost: $5


Toronto’s Hiram and Briia are at the three-day Ottawa Salsa Convention.

The Ottawa Salsa Convention is about shimmies, not chips, with three days of shows and socials, plus workshops from some of the best national dancers, Horticulture Building, Lansdowne Park. Tickets: $65 includes all shows and dancing until the wee hours all weekend; $10/workshop; $140 for full festival pass. www.ottawasalsaconvention.ca

Show your Bike Love at a free, social evening showcasing handmade accessories, with live music, demo by Right Bike. and samples of Bicycle Craft brews, 5 to 9 p.m., Maker House Co., 987 Wellington St. W. (Anyone who bikes to the shop — with helmet as proof — gets 10 per cent of regularly-priced items.) xovelo.com

Tonight’s free outdoor screening is the animated classic, Finding Nemo, screened at 9 p.m. after a BBQ starting at 7 p.m., Dundonald Park. The library’s Bibliobike will also have books on the ocean and fish of various sorts. Entrance: Free, with proceeds from the BBQ to support Recovery Day Ottawa 2016. centretownmovies.wordpress.com

Indie-folk favourites Amos the Transparent are bringing big summer fun to Zaphod’s with a special, themed show alongside local nu-gypsy duo Moonfruits and more M-named bands, Man Made Forest and Mayfly’s Landing, 8 p.m., 27 York St. Tickets: $10. zaphods.ca

Toronto’s heavy-groove soul group After Funk will be ripping up the stage (not literally) at The Rainbow, 10 p.m., 76 Murray St. Tickets: $10. therainbow.ca

Saturday, July 30


Dirk Bishop throws the 16lb hammer at the Glengarry Highland Games, August 1, 2014.

It’s the last day for the epic The Glengarry Highland Games, where big competitions are underway, from pipe bands, highland dancers to the World’s Heavyweights Championships where cabers, stones and sheafs will be tossed. Plus, there is live music, activities for the ‘wee bairns’, fiddle workshops and move, from 9 a.m. to late, 34 Fair St, Maxville. Tickets: $20, free for those aged 12 years and under. www.glengarryhighlandgames.com


Costumed characters will help teach about Colonel By and the labourers who made the canal at Bytown Days.

This year’s Bytown Days celebration is honouring the many labourers from across the world who built the canal, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with activities for all-ages, including hands-on activities, musket demonstrations, tours about history and even ghosts, re-enactments, marketplace, voyageur canoe tours ($7.30), and more, Ottawa Locks, Rideau Canal.
Later, party at the Celtic Ceilidh, with traditional song, dance (and craft beer) and the band Écosse with Bobby Watt, 6 to 10 p.m., in the Red Lion Pub tent, next to the Ottawa River. Tickets: PWYC (but set price for the beer). www.bytowndays.ca

Children on the autism-spectrum will be happy at a special, free concert by Cecilia String Quartet as part of Chamberfest, where usual conventions of musical performance are removed allowing for freedom of movement and interaction, 2 p.m, Dominion-Chalmers United Church. Cost: Free, but register in advance. chamberfest.com

Sticky fruit goes well with cricket whites: The first Mango Festival is a celebration of fresh, chaunsa mangoes alongside some light-hearted competition at a cricket tournament, to play or watch from the bleachers while trying to eat the fruit without making a mess, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Lynda Lane Park, 1951 Lynda Lne. The mangoes will be handed out free for as long as they last — and organizers will be showing how they get at the delicious yellow flesh, courtesy the Pakistan High Commission. There will also be board games and badminton set up (no registration, free) and some henna artists ($5/hand) and BBQ. Spots are still open for cricket teams. Admission: free, but team registration is $10-$15/individual $110-$165/team.


The Gatineau Float was intended as a meet-up among friends, and has since exploded on Facebook.

There are free zumba classes each Saturday morning outdoors in the ByWard Market throughout the summer, from 10 a.m., 55 ByWard Market Sq. The perfect excuse to go drink mimosas and eat eggs benny afterwards. (Class is cancelled whenever it rains.) Or to join in on The Clarence Street PatioFest pub crawl, the finishing touch to a month-long weekend of events, starting at 2 p.m. The street will still be closed to traffic, and these tickets include special deals and prizes, plus VIP entrance to the after-party. Tickets: $15-$20. www.clarencepatiofest.com

The Gatineau Float is the ultimate in lazy, hazy summer activity, involving four hours of floating down the river in your own inflatable raft — whatever it is (maybe this awesome option). Meet up at 11 a.m. at the Parc du Cheval Blanc to inflate your “craft,” then carefully get in the river for a float down the Rivière Blanc to Rue Parisien. There are no lifeguards at this event, nor shuttles back to the park, so prepare in advance — this was intended as a meet-up for friends that has grown to enormous proportions; about 10,000 people ‘interested’ in the event, so far.
Remember: the law requires everyone wear a personal-floatation device. But the real trick may be finding parking, or room on the river for floating …


Urban Legends poetry and jazz slam is a semi-formal event hearkening back to the early days in Chicago.

Urban Legends Poetry Collective is bringing poets and improvising jazz musicians into one night of creation hearkening to the early days of Chicago slams. All poets are welcome to take to the stage alongside Jamaal Jackson Rogers, Jenny Meya, Janeen Alhassoun, Salah Adam and more, 7 p.m, Orgin Studio, 57 Lyndale Ave. Tickets: $10, and the dress code is semi-formal for the night.

The offspring of the musical Leahy Family are spreading their wings, with 13-year accordionist Xavier headlining his first show at The Black Sheep Inn, 8:30 p.m., 753 Riverside Dr. But he won’t be playing originals and Irish and French folk songs alone: his cousin, 22-year-old singer songwriter Emily Flack, will be by his side — and his dad, drummer Francis, will be on stage as well as Leahy band member, Erin, on piano. (There is also expectation some friendly area musicians may rock up and sit in.) Tickets: $12 in advance. theblacksheepinn.com

Sunday, July 31


See a carillon up close and personal on Sunday at Rideau Hall.

Come see what the carillon that peals out from Centre Block looks like, or something very like it as one of three mobile ones in North America will be on display outside in the beautiful grounds of Rideau Hall, played by carilloneur Andrea McCrady and her protegé Devon Hansen, 3 p.m., Rideau Hall, 1 Sussex Dr. (Trivia: The carillon weighs about 11,793 kilograms.) Tickets: Free. chamberfest.com

Most of us see the Rideau Canal every day, but know nothing about its history and architecture: Heritage Ottawa will fix that with its walking tour today at the beginning of the almost 200-year-old waterway, part of Bytown Days celebrations, 2 p.m., starting at Bytown Museum. Cost: $10. heritageottawa.org


$40 will get you yoga on the field and then ticketed to the Redblacks vs Argos came on July 31, AND yoga on the field and then tickets t the Fury FC match on Aug. 13.

Get limber for the game: The Ottawa Redblacks take on the Toronto Argonauts tonight, but first do some yoga on the field the team will be playing (winning) on with Pure Yoga, 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. Tickets: $30, include tickets to the game at 7:30 p.m. (Or, for another $10 add yoga on the field and tickets to the Fury game on Aug. 13.) capitaltickets.ca/tdplacepromo Promo code: YOGAOTF.

For a less genteel event, country’s hoodlums White Cowbell Oklahoma return to House of Targ (via their ‘backwoods’ home town, Toronto) with their ‘shock-roots’ spectacle, including live previews of soon-to-be-released kikers, Harder Come, Harder Fall and Into the Sun. They’ve got a new drummer, Cathy Skullcrusher Marchese replacing G.M. Fiacconi. Tickets: $7 before 10 p.m. houseoftarg.com

A long weekend calls for some Sunday night partying: Rémi Royale is hosting a long weekend mixer with his own-brand of shenanigans, at The Manx (from 11 p.m., 370 Elgin St.); and there is, as usual, the 80s retro long weekend night at Barrymore’s, with a new VIP ticket that lets one skip the massive lineup. ($7-$15); down the block at Babylon, there’s another 80s dance party, this time with live music from The Hornettes and Sabbath, then DJs Cool Cal, Adam Saikaley, Sweet Cheeks (10 p.m., $5 cover)

Monday, Aug. 1


Re-enactors will be parading and acting out parts of our history along the canal for Colonel By Day.

It’s Colonel By Day, and there’s a free celebration of our city and the canal running through it, with re-enactors parading at 11 a.m., a heritage marketplace, crafts, live music and even plays and musket displays all along the Rideau Canal. Plus, enjoy free access to the Bytown Museum and events for all ages there, and there will be a Celtic Cross Ceremony at 2 p.m., commemorating the workers who died while building the canal. bytowndays.ca


Want to learn how to do this?.

Interested in joining the circus (or just being acrobatic)? The Ottawa Stilt Union is hosting weekly drop-in sessions where they will help hone skills, or teach absolute beginners some acrobatics. No experience is necessary, but some fitness is required, as is willingness to be climbed over, turned upside down, stepped on and other fun stuff, 5 to 7 p.m., Tabaret Hall lawn. Cost: Donations of $10-$15 welcome. ottawastiltunion.ca

Not to be missed: The Danish String Quartet are back at Chamberfest, after astonishing the crowd with their premiere at the festival last year, with their cool but energetic playing of the entirety of their album of Nordic folk songs, Wood Works. This year, they will be performing classical pieces by Nørgård, Mendelssohn and Beethoven, but will add some of the crisp, outdoorsy Scandinavian folk at the end, 7 p.m., Dominion-Chalmers United Church. Tickets: $35. www.chamberfest.com

Tuesday, Aug. 2


Beau’s Oktoberfest 2011.


Blue bath Series by Victoria Wonnacott.

It might be weird to be thinking about Oktoberfest in August, but Beau’s two-day event regularly sells out, not just for their craft beer, but also the musical lineup, this year with snappy indie band Born Ruffians headlining Saturday, and k-os and Fast Romantics on Saturday. Purchase now, or be forlorn later. (They have moved the event up a week, hoping for less chilly weather.) Tickets: $32, $45/pass, $5/children 18 years and under. www.beausoktoberfest.ca

BLUE is the theme for a new art exhibit opening tonight, in which about 20 artists show works that explore the colour, from worker’s overalls to blue plate special to the stained glass of cathedral windows, Cube Gallery, 1285 Wellington St. W. Opening event Aug. 4, exhibit on until Sept. 4. cubegallery.ca

Wednesday, Aug 3


Sylvain Dubeau and Jessica Lavigne fish near Petrie Island in Ottawa Thursday. May 19, 2016.

Island walk: The Ottawa Voyageurs are taking their latest out of the urban core and onto Petrie Island, for a trail event offering the chance (water condition permitting) of a little cool down dip after the six- or 10-kilometre walk. Meet at 5:30 p.m. at the Legion, and stick around for a BBQ, 800 Taylor Creek Dr. Cost: $6, includes sausages and corn on the cob. (Bring bug repellant.) http://ottawavoyageurs.ca.


Networking for nerds

Networking for nerds brings the business connections “without the boring,” and is back with bigger than ever event this time downtown, but still including prizes for trivia, video and other gaming, alongside the tech demos and make-your-own poutine bar, 6 to 10 p.m, The Red Lion Pub, 47 Clarence St. (If you think you might be a nerd, you’re welcome. No credentials required.) Tickets: $20 in advance, $26 at the door. www.networkingfornerds.ca