Summer in the City (of Hamilton)


Hamilton is bumping during the summer (and pretty much all year, but especially in the summer) and sometimes it can be hard to keep track of all the cool things happening. Well worry no more; I took the liberty of compiling a list of all the exciting festivals and events so that you don’t have to!



JULY 1: Canada Day

Ah good old Canada Day, there’s always lots to do from backyard parties to fireworks. The City of Hamilton puts on a day of festivities down at Bayfront (Pier 4, to be specific) including a selection of food trucks, shows, and fireworks to end off the night. The City is also offering free shuttle buses to and from downtown all day. Find out all about the fun here!

JULY 1-3: It’s Your Festival

The annual “It’s Your Festival” takes place in Gage Park every year and it’s a fantastic way to get out and engage with the local community. The festival highlights local musicians, food, contests, vendors, and more! It’s a great opportunity to grab a friend and just chill for a day this weekend! Find out more here.

JULY 8-9: Because Beer Craft Beer Festival

This festival is in its third year and it’s a great example of Hamilton’s renaissance. Craft beer is on the rise here in #HamOnt and this festival will give you a glimpse into all the different and unique types of brew Hamilton (and surrounding areas) have to offer! With headliners like Terra Lightfoot and Yukon Blonde, this weekend is guaranteed to be a good one! Read more and buy tickets here.

JULY 14-24: Hamilton Fringe Festival

To be honest with you, this is a festival I’ve never been a part of but personally, it’s also the festival I’m most looking forward to! Fringe runs from July 14-24 all around downtown Hamilton at different venues like Baltimore House, Theatre Aquarius, The Staircase Theatre, among others. Tickets range from $8-$10, and show lengths range from 20-90 minutes long. With over 40 different shows, the Fringe is bound to have something to please every taste! Check it out here.

AUGUST 5-7: Festival of Friends

A classic Hamilton festival, the Festival of Friends has brought together Hamiltonians from all walks of life for the past 40 years. In honour of its rich history the festival organizes a museum for visitors to view. The festival recently moved from its historic Gage park location to the Ancaster Fairgrounds, where it is currently held. The festival touts itself as a breeding ground for Hamilton musicians and has a reputation as being one of the finest music festivals in town. For more info check out their website here.

AUGUST 19-20: Hamilton Beer Festival

Another beer festival? Us Hamiltonians can’t seem to get enough craft beer! This one’s happening August 19th and 20th at Bayfont Park. With a lineup of unique brewers and caterers, your taste buds are in for a treat at this festival! More info and tickets can be found here.

AUGUST 19-21: Dundas Cactus Festival

Cactus fest is another classic Hamilton favourite. With amusement park rides, food, shows, and vendors there’s something for everyone at the Cactus fest! The festival takes place in downtown Dundas from August 19-21. An all-around feel-good family event, grab mom, dad and your siblings and head down to the Cactus fest for a weekend of fun! Find out more here.

Ongoing Events


JUNE 1- SEP 1: FreeFit

The City of Hamilton has teamed up with Moksha Yoga to provide Hamiltonians with free yoga and cardio sessions outside City Hall on Wednesday’s and Thursday’s, respectively. If you’re looking to supplement your summer workout regime or just try out something new, this is a fantastic opportunity to get outside and engage with the city and also get active! Check out the poster here.

JUNE 1- SEP 2: Gore Park Summer Promenade

Located in the heart of downtown Hamilton, Gore Park is always bustling with activity. Every summer the Downtown BIA puts on a “summer promenade” every Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday until September 2nd. The promenade showcases local music, food trucks, and vendors in Gore Park from 12-2pm for the food and entertainment, but other activities run from 11am-5pm. More info here.

JUNE 30- SEP 1: Music on the Waterfront

Summertime in the Hammer is a time to discover and enjoy music, and what better place to do that than Hamilton’s waterfront! Take in the views and enjoy some music every Thursday night from 7-9pm at the Waterfront Stage in Pier 8. Find out more here.

JULY 14 & AUGUST 4: Free Films

The City of Hamilton and First Ontario Credit Union are showing a movie at Time Hortons Field every month this summer! Upcoming are E.T. and Toy Story on July 14 and August 4. Grab a friend, or partner, or dog, or even a stuffed animal and some blankets and head on down to Tim Horton’s field for what promises to be a nice relaxing evening in the city. Check out the poster here.


That’s all I have for now, but this is definitely not a comprehensive list! These are just things that I’ve been to our heard about but I encourage you to go out and find events for yourself and come back and tell me about them! Hopefully this post has inspired you to go out and experience the awesomeness that is Hamilton during the summer! Tweet at us (@MacPopTheBubble) with pics if you check out any of these festivals/events, we’d love to see them!