Every year, in a quiet little town in Simcoe County, Elvis rises from the dead… or, at least, it seems like that at the Collingwood Elvis Festival! For over 20 years, Elvis tribute artists perform all over the town, even putting on Vegas-like productions. The big show happens in the middle of the town, where different performers compete to be the best Elvis on stage. Spanning three days, from morning til basically midnight, Collingwood is transformed into a rock and roll paradise and it’s one of the best festivals in the country!
If this is your first time going, don’t fret, because it’s easy to find your way around the festival when you do go. The first day of the festival is usually dedicated to street parties and performances, including the first round of competitions where the Elvis performers compete. The indoor concerts often require tickets, but the outdoor events are lots of fun and often where the energy is.
Saturdays are often kept for tributes and dancing, with the semi-finals lasting for several hours in the day. Again, the semi-finals are ticket events, and you’ll be able to see the grand champions of previous years perform as well. The best part of the Saturday, in my humble opinion, is the Memory Lane Street Dance—I guarantee that you’re going to have someone dance with you before the night is over!
Sundays often have some sort of worship service, usually a gospel service early in the morning, reminiscent of Church days. Right after the service, the audience act as judges during the Canadian Star Challenge Elvis showcase takes place. If you enjoy gospel music, there’s a gospel competition for Elvis performers that you can buy tickets or! The grand finals happen later in the afternoon, and the Ultimate Finale showcase is expected to run from 8 til 11:30 this year.
The festival has loads of shops, food vendors, and performances that are worth seeing, and the energy at this festival is infectious even if you don’t think you’re a huge fan of Elvis going in. The Collingwood Elvis Festival is a great party in a small and cozy town, and it’s a great way to spend a weekend. The festival runs from July 27th til the 29th, and you can find out how to get to the festival by visiting their website here!