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THINGS TO DO IN MONTREAL (AUGUST 25-SEPTEMBER 1)

While Montreal’s warm weather will continue well into late September, the beginning of September is nevertheless considered the end of summer, just as with most places in the northern hemisphere. But at least summer goes out with a bang here! The St-Laurent Street Fair sees to that, with the main shopping, wining and dining strip closed to cars and open to fun and carousing all weekend. Add to that a film festival, a burlesque festival and plenty of music and art to take the sting out of summer’s end…

MUST-SEE BANDS AT POP MONTREAL 2011

This year Pop Montreal is ten years old. To celebrate this landmark, the people at Pop have created a lineup that reflects maturity, grace and, of course, one serious party. There are over 300 bands to see in only 5 days. This is an impossible amount of shows, but that’s the point. You’re supposed to be feverishly running around town in a delirious Pop Montreal frenzy. It’s okay though, you have all winter to recover.

THE LION KING MUSICAL ROARS INTO MONTREAL

The Lion King is an award-winning musical, one of the longest-running of all time. It has traversed the globe and finally the dazzling production has made a stop at Place Des Arts in Montreal from August 9 to September 4. Long live the king!

ARMAND VAILLANCOURT EXHIBITION IS YOUNG AT HEART

The Montreal Jazz Festival’s Galerie Lounge TD in the Quartier des Spectacles now has a fabulous, fun and free show featuring Armand Vaillancourt, a Quebec artist-icon. I recently the chance to meet Armand for the Montreal Buzz…

MONTREAL WORLD FILM FESTIVAL 2011

If you’re a true cinemaphile, you’ll be intrigued by the 383 films on display at the 35th annual Montreal World Film Festival, which runs August 18-28…

THINGS TO DO IN MONTREAL (AUGUST 11-18)

Every time I think Montreal is about to take a break from all the fun it keeps having, it pumps up the volume – this week, that means Montreal’s loud-and-proud Pride celebrations, an above-ground graffiti and skateboarding fest, five days of francophone-style blues and a weekend-long children’s festival. Plus the usual music, comedy, theatre (like The Lion King!) and general fun (always free!) in the sun…

FREE THINGS TO DO IN MONTREAL: AUGUST

As August is a vacation time for many, whether they’re staying in Montreal or headed to a cottage on its outskirts, the city’s pace slows down somewhat – the festival frenzy of the Jazz Fest and Just for Laughs is replaced by more even-keeled cultural events at the Quartier des Spectacles and plenty of free entertainment outdoors in the parks and streets…

ARCADE FIRE PLAYING FREE SHOW IN MONTREAL ON SEPTEMBER 22

Montreal’s Arcade Fire have just announced that they’ll be playing a free show at the Quartier des Spectacles‘ Place des Festivals on September 22, 2011. The show, part of Pop Montreal‘s 10th anniversary festival, is a tip of the cap to their hometown. “Our band couldn’t exist without Montreal,” says the band’s Régine Chassagne. “After having had the chance to tour extensively around the world, we’re very excited to finally come home. And to do so the Montreal way, we hoped to play a free outside show, on the very last day of summer as a big ‘Thank you’ to the beautiful city we love so much…”

THINGS TO DO IN MONTREAL (JULY 28-AUGUST 4)

Here we are at the end of July – only one more month of summer, but what a glorious month it is. July finishes strong with three final days of great comedy at Just For Laughs and Zoofest, along with the long-awaited outdoor music festival Osheaga in Jean-Drapeau Park and The Montreal Electronic Groove Festival in town. August rides that happy wave with The Montreal First Peoples’ Festival, the Festival of Fashion and Design, and plenty of music and arty happenings in the parks and in venues around town…

HYATT REGENCY MONTREAL

What came first, the Hyatt Regency or the Jazz Festival? Well, the Hyatt did in 1976 but the Jazz Festival moved right across the street shortly afterwards, designating the Hyatt as the place to be for the best shows in town. In fact, you don’t even need to be within the Jazz Festival grounds to enjoy the world-class entertainment. Simply saddle up to the bar, order a cocktail and hit the expansive wrap-around terrace with the best view of the shows happening right across the street. With a full bar and restaurant and a pool with glass sliding doors, why would you want to be anywhere else?