They came far and wide to Mooney’s Bay in Ottawa’s south end to celebrate athleticism, fundraising, paddling – and some relaxing rock and roll on the side!
The 25th edition of Ottawa’s Dragon Boat Festival – the largest in North America – was held June 21 to 24. As tradition, to help the competitors relax and chill after days of hard paddling, the free concert festival brought an all Canadian line-up from far, wide and everywhere in between.
Thursday night saw Sam Roberts open the festival with hometown headliners, Amos the Transparent, Oshawa’s Crown Lands and Toronto’s M.T. Walker.
The treat of seeing one of Canada’s most electrifying and celebrated bands was one that thousands took advantage of Friday night, as Broken Social Scene brought the entire family to the park.
Opening for BSS on the wonderfully beautiful summer night was Halifax’s Gianna Lauren, Oshawa’s Dizzy and Hamilton’s Ellevator.
The rains came Saturday; but were no deterrent for friends, family and fans of Hollerado, who came out in force for the local heroes performance with Halifax’s Wintersleep.
Rounding out the day’s concert line up were Toronto’s Fast Romantics, Wakefield, QC’s Rebelle and Ottawa/Toronto folk act, Old Man Grant.
After yet another day of rain, the skies brought one more glimmer of rock and roll glory late Sunday evening, as closing headliner, Matt Mays, played under a double rainbow that filled the sky just as he roared through his opening guitar solo.
Representing Ottawa and the surrounding area on the final day of the Dragon Boat Festival were Craig Cardiff, Rory Taillon and Pembroke’s Midnight Vesta; while Toronto’s Birds of Bellwood lead the charge into Mays’ closing performance.
For more photos from the 2018 Dragon Boat Festival, head to our Facebook page!
Born and raised with thoughts and aspirations of becoming a famous bassist in Sarnia, ON; Emily Plunkett now lives in Gatineau, QC, and considers National Capital Region home sweet home. A product of the Beatles, MuchMusic and the Southwestern Ontario summer festival circuit (circa 2000), her interest and love in concert photography came almost completely by accident when her journalism program at Algonquin College required courses in photojournalism (and she quickly realized that photos taken at concerts using a DSLR are enormously better than ones she was taking on a point-and-shoot she bought for a trip to England). She is extremely proud of the fact she has seen Sloan in some form or another 25 times.