Montreal Events and Festivals July 2017

Cosplayers (photo by Jean-Frédéric Vachon)

Piknic Electronik

Louisahhh. Piknic Electronik. Photo Lili Hudecova.

Louisahhh. Piknic Electronik. Photo Lili Hudecova.

Sundays, Until September 24, 2017

Parc Jean Drapeau

DJs from around the world perform for the Sunday crowds who want to bliss out in the sunshine and on into the evening. July DJ headliners include Roman Flugel, Shanti Celeste, Cassy, Chus and Ceballos, Spindeman, Chloe, Adam Husa, the Motor City Drum Ensemble, and Jesse Futerman. Not bad for a way to party your way into Monday. Click HERE for details.

Marché des Possibles

June 23 to August 13 2017
5635 St Dominique

It isn’t so much of a festival as a weekend market that combines vendors with food with drink with performances and events run by the POP Montreal crowd. The vibe is local and the offerings always delightful. Some weekends its yoga, some it is music. Info HERE.

Montreal International Jazz Festival

Groenland at Montreal's Jazz Festival Photo by Robyn Homeniuk

Groenland at Montreal’s Jazz Festival Photo by Robyn Homeniuk

June 28 to July 8 2017

It’s not exclusively jazz but it’s an anything goes kind of event with free programming and paid events that blow people away year after year. The main attractions this year are Kandace Springs, Men Without Hats, Bob Dylan, Aliocha. Wicked. Tickets and schedules HERE. 

Mtl en Arts

June 28 to July 2 2017

Multidisciplinary arts festival offers an open air art gallery along St. Catherine St. It has of course grown to include film, installations, live demonstrations, and much more. Details can be found HERE. 


Hair Thing. Elektra Festival. Arsenal. Photo Angela Potvin

Hair Thing. Elektra Festival. Arsenal. Photo Angela Potvin

June 27 to July 9 2017

The international digital art festival showcases artists and works that utilize new technologies. The festival has a Montreal focus, but an international vision. For more information, click HERE. 

Canada Day

July 1 2017
Old Port

Sir Wilfrid Laurier is celebrating yet another birthday and the old port is the site of the celebration. While there are many activities, some things to see of note are the swearing in of new Canadians, a 21-cannon salute, and fireworks at 10 p.m. Information HERE.

Montreal Organ Festival

July 1 to July 7 2017

The big organ with plenty of keys and pedals gets a week long party. Check out concerts throughout the city and enjoy the unique music of the organ in different venues. For more information click HERE.

Carifesta Parade

July 8 2017
St. Catherine St. between Rue du Fort and Phillips Square

Montreal’s St. Catherine Street is the hub of the colourful costume and reggae and dancehall heavy parade of the Caribbean. It’s loud. It’s a serious party. This year promises 7 bands and a lot of feathers and glitter. Information HERE.

L’International des Feux Loto-Québec/Fireworks Festival

Fireworks in Montreal. USA. Photo Lydia Saad

Fireworks in Montreal. USA. Photo Lydia Saad

Saturdays, 10 p.m., July 1 to August 5 2017

While Parc Jean-Drapeau is one of the go-to places to see the international fireworks festival, you can also hang out at the Old Port or make your way to the Jacques Cartier Bridge. Each week features a different country — England, Portugal, France, Germany, Poland, and Italy — setting off fireworks to music. Things culminate in a finale with C’est dans le ciel: Serge Fiori and Harmonium. Information HERE.

Festival International de Lanaudière

July 1 to August 6 2017

If you need to get out of Montreal, the Festival de Lanaudière provides the opportunity to listen to orchestral and classical music in Joliette. It’s only about 45 minutes away from the city (by car). Beethoven, Chopin, Rachmanioff are a few enticements. Find out more HERE. 

Montréal Complètement Cirque/International Festival of Circus Arts

Montreal Complètement Cirque. Photo Magali Crevier.

Montreal Complètement Cirque. Photo Magali Crevier.

July 6 – 16 2017

Since we can’t all just run off to join the circus, we can at least go and watch one. With one of the only circus training schools in the country here in Montreal, we get outstanding performers. Some shows to catch are Vice and Vertu, Tabarnak, Limo, and Entre Nous. There are free shows on St. Denis where you can catch some daring performances on building rooftops, or perhaps try out some circus performance yourself. Details HERE.

Zoofest and Off JFL

July 6 – 30, 2017

Anytime is a good time to laugh. In order to get the belly muscles ready for all the haha of Just for Laughs, start out with Zoofest and Off JFL. Comedy, theatre, spectacle, and random randomness. Among the things to check out are Kirsten Rasmussen, DeAnne Smith, Lady Fest, Arj Baker, and the Lucas Brothers are just a few. Click here for the schedule.

Festival Musical Independent Diapason

Les DeuxLuxes. OUMF. Photo Dylan Thompson.

Les DeuxLuxes. OUMF. Photo Dylan Thompson.

July 6 to 9, 2017
La Berge des Baigneurs, Sainte-Rose

Laval adds itself to the festival map with its 8th annual Diapason Independent Music festival. This year has a fantastic line up planned: Blood and Glass, Les Deuxluxes, The Sadies, Lydia Kepinski, and more. For information, click HERE.

Montreal Comiccon

Comiccon Montreal. Photo Jean Frederic Vachon

Comiccon Montreal. Photo Jean Frederic Vachon

Palais de Congres
July 7 – 9 2017

Get your costume out, your wallet out, and attend workshops, panels, and have a blast at the annual Comiccon. Nerds, geeks, trekkies, Buffy buffs, Muggles, Dr. Whosters, and fans of Firefly have reason to go to meet the guests. Among them David Tennant, John Cusack, John Bernthal, Jason Isaacs, Kevin Conroy, James Marsters, and Kevin Eastman. Details HERE.




Dragon Boat Challenge and Cultural Festival

Montreal Dragon Boat Races. Photo Magali Crevier.

Montreal Dragon Boat Races. Photo Magali Crevier.

July 8 to 9 2017

2000 athletes from Quebec, the US, Ontario, and the Maritimes come in their boats to compete in the Olympic basin’s annual Dragon Boat Challenge. Competition is fierce as this is part of the “triple crown circuit,” a racing event of three events in the Montreal area. There are recreational and competitive teams. Details HERE.

Echoes of a Proud Nation  Pow Wow

July 8 to July 9, 2017


The Mohawk nation welcomes other nations (including Canada) to its territory for its annual pow wow. See magnificent hoop dances, join in the singing and dancing, and make friends. More information can be found HERE. 


July 9 to July 15, 2017

Gay Village

Check out circus artists and other kinds of social justice-interactive pieces in the Gay Village. For more information on this event, click HERE. 

Nuits d’Afrique

July 11 to July 23 2017

Like the cool cousin to Jazz Fest, Nuits d’Afrique follows on Jazzfest’s heels and brings out more world beat, jazz, afrofunk, and other soulful rhythms to Montreal. Free music is available on the stages, while indoor shows this year include Bandidas, Emel Mathlouthi, Ben l’Oncle Soul, Amadou and Mariam, and Tété. Information HERE. 

Just for Laughs/Off-JFL/Zoofest

Jimmy Carr, The Nasty Show, Just For Laughs, Photo: Matthew Cope

Jimmy Carr, The Nasty Show, Just For Laughs, Photo: Matthew Cope

July 12 to July 31 2017

Comedians from all around the world descend on Montreal venues and clubs in one of the most beloved Montreal festivals. This year, see Jerry Seinfeld, Jud Apatow, Laverne Cox, Ali Wong, Trevor Noah, Mike Birbiglia, David Spade, and more. There are always favorite staples like The Nasty Show, Brit(ish), The Ethnic Show, as well as knew club shows like Nasty Girls. Even a tour of the street festival is usually fun. Check out information about passes HERE.

AIM Electronic Music Festival

July 14 to July 16 2017

WIth over 50 artists in a three-day camping extravaganza, enjoy electronic music the way it was meant to be. Live groups and DJs will keep you moving and the fresh air will keep you awake. Visuals, art installations, and more. For information, click HERE.

Fantasia Film Festival

Crimson Whale, 2014. Fantasia International Film Festival 2015

Crimson Whale, 2014. Fantasia International Film Festival 2015

July 14 to August 2

Fantasia is a chance for horror, fantasy, foreign, comic, and oddball films to air on a big screen before enthusiastic audiences. This international film festival attracts large, dedicated crowds. More information HERE.


Slut Island Festival

July 20 to 30 2017

Queer, trans, gender fluid and others with underrepresented identities are the focus of this DIY music festival. Empowerment is the theme and good music is how this is disseminated. Some of the bands playing are Hua Li, Cousins, Trans Trenderz, and Special Interest. Keep an eye on their Facebook page HERE.


Haiti en Folie

July 24 to July 30 2017

Montreal enjoys a special relationship with the French speaking island. Of course there are arts, theatre, and dancing. This festival also invites performers (Gaya, Jahfaa, 4MULA, Lakou Mizik, and Synedad) to the open-air portion of the festival. A theatre piece, Pawoi Chouchoun, a “spicier” version of the Vagina Monologues is also part of the festival. For more information click HERE. 

Outdoor Cinemas


It seems like every night of the week, there’s a place to catch a free film during the month of July. Here are some worth mentioning:

Sunday Nights

Cinema en Plein Air on Mt Royal. Information HERE. 

Film Noir Au Canal. Information HERE.

Monday Nights

Parc des Faubourgs. Schedule HERE. 

Place de la Paix. Schedule HERE.

Tuesday Nights

Parc de L’Espoir (Gay Village). Schedule HERE. 

Parc du Pélican. Schedule HERE.

Parc Saint Gabriel. Schedule HERE.

Wednesday Nights

Parc Laurier. Schedule HERE. 

Square Dézéry. Schedule HERE.

Thursday Nights

NDG Park. Schedule HERE. 

Various NDG Parks. Schedule HERE. 

Friday Nights

Val David. Schedule HERE. 



Waiting for updates:

International Percussion Festival

July 2 – 10

This festival to celebrate things you strike, musically that is, has the cool motto “Je TAM.” Head to Verdun to see over 500 artists from around the world perform and teach workshops. There are three different stages to check out. Information HERE.

Kickdrum Summer Marathon d’été

July 13-16

Kickdrum spotlights independent music in independent venues in Montreal. It hosts events throughout the city and has its first (?) annual festival along with CJLO at a few familiar venues: Casa del Popolo, Blanc de Blanc, Bar Le Ritz PDB, and La Vitrola. Among those playing are Jesse Speed, Helena Deland, Year of Glad, and NOBRO. For information, click HERE.


Montreal DJ Festival

July 17-20, Rue Normanville (Parc Villeray)

They promise over 25 DJs, along with comedy, arts, events, and BBQ.  The DJs are where its at with hip hop, reggae, konpa, soca, dancehall, and top 40 all combined for your sonic moving pleasure. Sounds like fun, right? To find out more, keep your eye on their facebook page HERE.


Upcoming in August

Osheaga Music and Arts Festival

The Osheaga experience. Osheaga 2015. Photo Bélinda Bélice.

The Osheaga experience. Osheaga 2015. Photo Bélinda Bélice.

August 4 to August 6 2017

The music festival that everyone loves to attend takes over Jean Drapeau. We publish an annual survival guide HERE. There is an art fest, food trucks, and best of all… music: Lorde, MGMT, Sampha, The Shins, Liam Gallagher, Crystal Castles, Die Anteworord, Run the Jewels, The Weeknd. Not bad, not bad at all. Information HERE.

Rogers Cup

August 4 to 13 2017,

Uniprix Stadium

The annual tennis tournament alternates between men and women’s. This year, the women are in Montreal. While there’s no telling who will play in the event, usually a few of the big names appear. Information HERE. 


Montreal Highland Games

August 6, Doublas Hopsital, Verdun

This summer tradition combines highland dancing, pipe music, with the coolest athletics you will ever see.  56 and 28 pound weight tosses and hammer tosses might sound familiar. The Sheaf Toss entails throwing sheaves of hay. And the highlight: the Caber toss — throwing an 18 foot log. More information HERE. 

Montreal Electric Groove (MEG)

Adam Husa. MEG 2015. Photo Sean Lapalme.

Adam Husa. MEG 2015. Photo Sean Lapalme.

August 31 to Sept 3, 2017

Get your dance shoes and glowsticks on at the MEG festival. With a line up of bands that bring music electronically, this festival keeps it going all night long at small and large venues like the SAT, Sala Rossa, Divan Orange, and Le Belmont. Check out top performers like Kllason, Douchka, Robert Robert, Ryan Playground, Clement Bazin, CRi, and Guts. For more information click HERE.

About Rachel Levine

Rachel Levine is the big cheese around here. Contact: Website | More Posts