This week we are taking an in-depth look at one of the newer festivals to come alive in Canada’s capital city Ottawa.  Perhaps I’m getting older and want higher quality for my buck, but I simply don’t go to many music festivals arboretum2015-scheduleanymore because of the high cost and terrible programming.  And, as Dan and I have frequently discussed, it’s a music concert so shut the fuck up.  Why in the world would you pay the crazy cost of some of these events just so you can go there and talk about hooking up at the bar last night?  In the past I had forked out the cash so I could sit in the VIP areas where this chatter wasn’t tolerated, but the prices and quality of these ‘rich guy’ areas just isn’t worth it anymore.  All of a sudden, a couple of like-minded folk got it in their head they would put on their own party filled with up-and-coming quality acts, amazing visual arts installations, as well a featuring food as the art form it so deserves.  Arboretum Festival was born, and now into it’s fourth year the event is better than ever.  Here’s some info they’ve got going on the interweb – FATS


Arboretum is an intimate and immersive boutique music festival, produced annually in the last steamy days of August in Ottawa Ontario Canada.

We bring together the region’s new music, across many genres, along with exceptionally curated national artists, all-night parties, and ambitious cultural programming.

Every year, we:

  • transform historic sites to host outdoor concerts and revelatory weekend parties in purpose-built environments;
  • present local and nationally curated showcases;
  • bring together champions of culture for hard-hitting talks aimed at expanding cultural awareness;
  • engage local chefs, vendors, and breweries to present a snapshot of our city’s exceptional food and drink.

Looking to add an intimate and progressive event to the region’s festival culture, Arboretum Festival was founded as a not-for-profit organization in 2012.

In three short years, Arboretum Festival has blossomed into a vibrant music festival and cultural celebration. We’ve worked with over 50 presentation partners including local, regional and national arts organizations, such as POP Montreal, theOttawa Art Gallery, Megaphono, the Royal Architecture Institute of Canada, Ottawa Explosion, Exclaim!, Le Festival de l’Outaouais Émergent, Wavelength Music, Weird Canada, SAW Video and many more.


Why the name “Arboretum”, and why doesn’t the festival take place at Ottawa’s Arboretum? We know it’s confusing.

Latin for “Tree Garden”, the name Arboretum is a great metaphor for the diversity of artists we present and creative seeds we sow; more importantly, it pays homage to the natural resource honoured by our region’s Algonquin community and other First Nations. It’s also the title of a great book on the interconnectedness of ideas by Talking Heads’ David Byrne.

(Click here for everything you need to get yourself to this incredible party)