Hugely Popular Music Festival About to Kick Off in Mississauga

Music lovers, rejoice—a major festival is about to takeover one of Mississauga’s most popular neighbourhoods.

If you’re a big blues lover — or just excited that Port Credit is about to experience a much-anticipated annual festival that’s exclusive to Mississauga — you are in luck! The Tim Hortons Southside Shuffle Annual Blues and Jazz Festival is set to kick off this weekend.

The event is a three-day outdoor music festival held in Port Credit. But even though the event that calls itself Mississauga's Musical Mardi Gras is always special, this year it's celebrating—believe it or not—its 20th anniversary.

The festival, which will begin on Friday, Sept. 7 and run until Sunday, Sept. 9, will feature beloved Canadian and international blues musicians, including Ray Fuller and The Blues Rockers, Savoy Brown, Coco Montoya, The Legendary Downchild Blues Band, Angel Forrest, Sue Foley Band and more.

You can find a full list of performers here.

As for what to expect, most performances will take place in Port Credit Memorial Park. The event boasts four stages, as well as an artisan market, a food court and wine and beer gardens.

To make this year's event a little extra special, a military tribute will be featured.

"The Southside Shuffle Blues & Jazz Festival, celebrating its 20th year in 2018 will be bringing Portraits of Honour to the Festival this year to pay tribute to our fallen Canadian soldiers in Afghanistan," the event's website reads.

The Portraits of Honour is a 10' x 40' hand-painted mural depicting the 158 Canadian soldiers, sailors, aircrew and two non-military faces, that of Calgary Herald reporter Michelle Lang and Canadian Diplomat Glyn Berry who lost their lives in their line of duty in Afghanistan. The mural took over 6,500 hours to paint. The artist, Dave Sopha, a veteran himself, will be on-hand to answer questions and discuss how the painting evolved.

Although an early version of the mural toured across Canada in 2011, it did not make a stop in Mississauga. The popular exhibit, completed in 2014 has travelled to Vimy Ridge and Juno Beach in France.

As far as music goes, the Rabba Fine Foods Street Shuffle (a free event), will hit the streets of Port Credit at noon on Saturday, Sept. 8 and wrap up at 4:00 p.m.

Bands and artists will be performing on four different stages, including the Jim Tovey Memorial Stage (named after the late city councillor who passed away suddenly earlier this year), the Port Credit BIA Stage, the Northern Fox Resources Stage and the Sab Memorial Stage.

Attendees can also check out musical performances at a number of Port Credit bars and restaurants.

The Sab Memorial and Northern Fox stages are ticketed. If you’re visiting a ticketed mainstage, you’ll pay $10 on Friday and $15 on Saturday and Sunday. You can also get a weekend pass for $30.

If you’re willing to pay a little extra, you can purchase a $65 pass for the Bourbon Street Mardi Gras tent. The tent offers covered seating, a private bar and enviable views of the main stages.

Also, since it’s officially TIFF time, remember that you just might see a celebrity! According to Ron Duquette, the chair of the Shuffle, some A-listers have crossed the border into our neck of the woods in the past.

"Brad Pitt and Johnny Depp are lovers of the blues and they were both here for TIFF on two separate occasions," says Duquette. "They came over here with their entourages and got into the music. That happens. People who like that kind of music will come down here. The fact that they were there got a buzz going in the audience."

As for other housekeeping details, remember to bring your own lawn chairs (seating is not provided). Tickets are non-refundable (even if you're rained out); the venue is wheelchair accessible and no pets other than service animals are permitted.

For more information, check out the website.

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