Anyone in Durham Region looking for some ideas on how to grow their arts community can just look to Uxbridge. I’ve recently taken a position managing Blue Heron Books in the town of 22,000 and in the couple of months I’ve been on the job I have been gobsmacked at the support the residents of the town provide to the arts. When I think of the years of work put into boosting the arts into Oshawa, a city of 160,000 and here’s this town 40 minutes north with so many makers, making things, making things happen, making a difference, well, I can’t even imagine. Incredible.
September is when the town “Celebrates the Arts” and they go all in. Sean McCann of Great Big Sea is performing a solo show Friday Sept 14 at the Music Hall. The studio tours runs Saturday Sept 15 and Sunday Sept 16.
Art on the Fringe runs simultaneously at the Historical Centre and the Children’s Art Show takes place at the Municipal Offices on Tuesday Sept 18. There are lunchtime organ recitals at St. Paul’s Anglican Church Thursday Sept 20 and 27. Also on Thursday Sept 20 Uxbridge musician Matt Gun will be playing an in-store at Blue Heron at 6p.m. He will be releasing his new album Saturday Sept 22 at the Second Wedge Brewery.
On Thursday Sept 27 Blue Heron Books presents its annual Books and Authors at the Music Hall. Wayne Grady, Rawi Hagi, Elizabeth Hay and Lisa Gabriele will be reading and chatting about their work. The evening will be hosted by Uxbridge author Ted Barris - his latest book, Dam Busters, released Sept 11.
AND. . . for the food arts - Eight Uxbridge eateries have partnered up with local farmers and producers to create special menu items for the month of September. Partners include The Passionate Cook Bistro, Savon du Bois, Tin Mill Restaurant and The Urban Pantry .
The celebrations continue into October with performances, a film festival and plays. So thats the official list but Uxbridge is constantly humming with arts activities and events. The Second Wedge hosts musicians regularly, My Father’s Son is playing Sept 15 and Phil Cooper is in Sept 16. Zachary Lucky is in Sunday Sept 23 and there is an art exhibit opening for Lynda Cunningham on Sept 27.