The Shortlist: Top 5 Things To Do in Canada This August

Live music’s back baby; Arkells hit the lake and Ryan Reynolds leads a return to the movies.

The Arkells posing in No Frills grocery store

No. 1

Arkells Reopen Budweiser Stage

Fri., Aug. 13, Sat., Aug. 14 and Sun., Aug 15, 7:30 pm ET
In-person events
$35–$95 per ticket
909 Lake Shore Blvd. W., Toronto


After sitting idle for almost two years, the Budweiser Stage is welcoming fans back to their Toronto lakefront, open-air amphitheatre. Hamilton’s Juno Award-winning rock band Arkells kick off the summer season with back-to-back shows Aug. 13, 14 and 15.


Haviah Mighty, the incredibly talented hip hop artist and first-ever NEXT cover star, will open all three nights. Reserved seats and general admission lawn tickets are available at a reduced capacity, and guests will be required to wear masks.


Later in the month, Sam Roberts Band will grace the stage with Mat Mays and k-os (Thurs., Aug. 19) and Blue Rodeo will be joined by special guest Alan Doyle (Sat., Aug. 28).


Screenshot from Free Guy

No. 2

Free Guy

Opens Fri., Aug. 13
First-run film


No more microwave popcorn! With movie theatres opening up across the country, you can finally enjoy the fresh, buttery snack in front of the big screen. If you’re having trouble picking a genre, then Free Guy is for you. In a blend of science fiction, action and comedy, the film follows Guy, a non-playable video game character played by the beloved and handsome Ryan Reynolds, who becomes aware of his virtual surroundings. Hopping between Guy’s video game universe and the real world, a fight emerges to save the game from developers who are determined to shut it down. The cast includes Jodie Comer, Joe Keery, and Taika Waititi.

Victory posing outside

No. 3

Honey Jam

Thurs., Aug. 12, 8 pm ET
Livestream event


Honey Jam, an inspiring musical showcase that celebrates female artists of all genres, returns to Toronto for its 26th year. The event features 20 young musicians from across the country, hand-selected for mentorship and development—and now they’re ready to take the stage!


The annual Honey Jam concert will stream from the iconic Toronto venue El Mocambo. Performers include 12-year-old MC DJ Love Jones, Calgary singer-songwriter Victory and CBC Searchlight competitor Bukola. Past Honey Jam events have hosted the likes of Nelly Furtado, Jully Black and Haviah Mighty.

Bebe Buckskin posing with guitar in front of tree

No. 4

Camp Sled Island

Thurs., Aug. 19–Sat. Aug. 12,
doors at 6 pm, show at 7:30 pm MT
$60 for table of 4
High Park, 340 10 Ave. SW, Calgary


Calgary’s Sled Island returns with three evenings of live music, films and exclusive pre-recorded sets from some of the city’s top underground artists, including feminist post-punks Slut Prophet (Aug. 19) and improv-ers Bug Incision (Aug. 20).


It’s all up on a high-rise rooftop with live sets from ex-rodeo queen and Nehiyaw blues songstress Bebe Buckskin (Aug. 19) and electronic R&B artist Uyemi (Aug. 21). Stick around for sundown film features.

Brett Kissel posing in field

No. 5

Endless Summer Series

Fri., Aug. 6–Sat., Aug. 14, 4 pm ET
In-person event
$38 single-day tickets, $160 weekend passes
Burl’s Creek Event Grounds, 180 8 Line S., Oro-Medonte, Ont.


This month, the Burl’s Creek Event Grounds finally re-open their gates for an exciting series of outdoor concerts. Hosted by Republic Live, the team responsible for the Boots and Hearts Festival, this series welcomes Tebey (Fri., Aug. 6), Brett Kissel (Sat., Aug. 7), The Trews (Fri., Aug. 13) and Our Lady Peace (Sat., Aug. 14).


Tickets are sold by zone and groups of up to four people can sit together—lawn chairs are encouraged! Tent and RV camping is available for guests who don’t want to drive home in the dark.


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