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article imageOp-Ed: Montreal's Osheaga 2013 Festival shaping up to be the biggest yet Special

By Bryen Dunn     Jul 20, 2013 in Entertainment
Montreal - After selling to maximum capacity last year for the first time ever, Montreal's OSHEAGA Music and Arts Festival can certainly honour itself as one of the top 10 annual music events in North America.
OSHEAGA takes place in Parc-Jean Drapeau on Ile Ste-Hélène, typically an island oasis of tranquility just minutes from downtown Montreal, and easily accessible by transit, foot, and bike. Known worldwide as one of the sites for Montreal’s Expo ’67, OSHEAGA’s five stages are nestled among trees, hills, ponds, and the mighty St. Lawrence River.
Celebrating their 8th festival this year, the diversity of entertainment also plays an immense role in attracting festival goers. The two main stages continue to bring in some of the heavy hitters both current and past, which this year include The Cure, New Order, Frank Ocean, Tricky, The Breeders, Bob Mould, The Stars, among others. As well, the three side stages snugly arranged among the trees are where you head to if you're looking for the next up and coming act, or an all out DJ-driven dance party. Catch the likes of Quadron, Soul Clap, Little Green Cars, Palma Violets, Groenland, Millimetrik, DVBBS, Vilify & Henward, Bad Things and Majical Cloudz. As well, remaining faithful to local Quebec bands, there's always a few opportunities to catch some Francophone musique, avec Jacques Lu Cont, Les Soeurs Boulay, et plus!
I've written about this event many times in the past, having attended the very first one back in 2006. As I explained after attending last year, and missing a couple years prior, the festival has grown immensely. Not only have the attendance numbers doubled, but the number of acts has grown exponentially as well, and a fifth mid-size stage was added to accommodate those artists who fall somewhere between indie and mega. While I definitely noticed the increase of attendees, especially when trying to navigate myself between stages, I still found the overall vibe to be very laid back and peaceful overall.
I'd reckon to guess that well over fifty percent of those attendees are from outside of Montreal, primarily south of the border, and Toronto/Ottawa. While Ottawa has a similar style festival with their two-week long Bluesfest, Toronto fans have no such event that can come close to comparison for this all-ages diverse genre of live musical entertainment. In terms of tourism dollars brought to the city of Montreal, OSHEAGA has been a big win for the city, joining the likes of their Jazz Festival, Just For Laughs, Divercite, and even Igloofest in the depths of winter!
Recognizing their demographic markets, the organizers teamed up with a couple local area accommodation providers last year to offer weekend packages. While adding even more this year, all have been sold out far in advance. As well, all three day weekend passes are sold out, with only single day passes available. New this year are the reserved seating areas alongside the two main stages, which is perfect for anyone just interested in the more mainstream acts performing there. As well, there are VIP experience packages that allows for a dedicated viewing area, catered dinner, private bar and restrooms, and more pampered goodies. After battling crowds trekking along in the dust and sometimes mud for three days, this could be your ticket to paradise.
OSHEAGA takes place August 2nd to 4th, 2013. Check the full schedule of entertainment here.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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