*Wander safe, wander local. Check your region’s local health guidelines before heading out.
Live music and patios go together like yin and yang, salt and pepper, peanut butter and jelly, or….well, you get the picture. When you’re dining on a patio with a band playing beside you, your food tastes better, the night stars are brighter, and the laugher of friends and family is even more precious.
When lounging on a patio under the stars, the music drifts over you, enveloping you like a blanket.
If you’ve been missing watching local bands sing in the great outdoors, we have good news: your wait is over. This summer, say no to virtual and watch a live performance, in person.
Haliburton Highlands Brewery – Haliburton
Music pairs perfectly with a cold brew and a patio under the stars, and at Haliburton Highlands Brewing Co. you can enjoy both at the same time. While you’re at the brewery, browse the Ukuleles for sale because oddly enough they also happen to be the premier Canadian location for several renowned Ukulele brands. Just in case you feel a song coming on.
Who’s Playing: Past performances have been from Woody Woodburn, Emily Burgess, Ro Randall and North of Seven.
Important Dates: Live performances are hosted in partnership with Abbey Gardens and take place on Friday nights or Sunday afternoons in July and August. If you’re lucky you might stumble upon one of their one-off Ukulele jam sessions.
Boshkung Social – Minden
If you’re at loose ends on a Wednesday evening, Boshkung Social is there for you. A satellite location of Boshkung Brewing Co., Boshkung Social is located in the heart of Minden and has a large patio, just perfect for hosting live bands. Food served at the Social is made by the popular Rhubarb Restaurant, with a unique, Boshkung Brewing twist.
Who’s Playing: Past performances have been from the brother and sister duo, Amanda and John and Nick and Benton.
Important Dates: Check with Boshkung Social for details, but know they plan to host live music on Wednesdays or alternate Wednesdays, depending on the week.
Neat Coffee Shop – Burnstown
Not quite a patio, but Neat Coffee Shop’s “shed sessions” are a unique response to COVID, and so far the reviews have been outstanding! If you can’t make one of these performances (or they are sold out) we still recommend a swing past Burnstown for a Neat meal.
Who’s Playing: These folks have hosted so many musicians! Upcoming shows are from Tim Hicks, the Sheepdogs, Good Lovelies, and Born Ruffians.
Important Dates: At the moment tickets are still available for performances Aug. 1, 6, and 19 and 20.
The Locks Restaurant – Perth
Located in the Best Western Parkside Inn & Spa in the heart of downtown Perth, this venue has the best of both worlds – a stunning garden and waterside location on the Tay River, and within just a short walk of shops and other conveniences. Their patio is also rocking most weekends (reservations recommended).
Who’s Playing: Look for upcoming performances from Brock MacNamee and Cait St. Clair, Chris Strang, or Dallas Alexander.
Important Dates: Live music takes place on the patio most weekends, but check their website for details on upcoming shows before heading out or making a reservation.
Dominion Hotel – Minden
Known for their live musical events, the Dominion Hotel is the place to be for dinner and a show. Their new Boathouse is the perfect venue for live music. Book a table for six and then plan to have dinner at the same time.
What’s Playing: Upcoming performances will be from Ian Reid, Suzie Vinnick, and Harpdog Brown with Charlie Jacobsen.
Important Dates: Check their website for full details and to purchase tickets, but a few up upcoming dates are Aug. 5, 7, 19, and 28, plus more dates into September.
Waterfront Gastropub – Carleton Place
This spot has a stellar view of the mighty Mississippi River as it flows through Carleton Place. Worth the drive, here you can enjoy a live performance and great food after getting in some shopping in downtown Carleton Place.
Who’s Playing: Upcoming performances are from the Mojo Bros., Jimmy Cochrane, Brock Zeman, Al Tambay and Spencer Scharf.
Important Dates: Patio performances are on Saturdays and Sundays between 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. or 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. There is also live music inside almost every day of the week!
BONUS: Music at Home
These aren’t quite patios, but they’re close! Here are two options where the patios and music come to your backyard or dock.
- Nick and Benton Bonfire Sessions: Book talented local musicians, Nick and Benton, for a backyard or dockside performance and you can invite your friends or family for an outdoor performance beneath the stars.
- Munch Music: Book a Munch and Music session through Yours Outdoors for a private performance at your home or cottage. They’ll bring the food and the musicians and take care of all the details for you!
*featured photo credit to Brad Brown
Looking for more inspiration for connecting to music and creativity in Ontario’s Highlands? Click here to learn more about where to find inspiration and creative spaces.