Country on the Bay: Expect the Unexpected

Story by Sidney Ulakovic, Photos by Emily Turner

Here in Thunder Bay, we’ve never let a little thunderstorm get in the way of a good time. Rain or shine, this year’s Country on the Bay hosted at Fort William Historical Park was a weekend to remember. With headlining acts Walker Hayes, Brothers Osborne, and Dean Brody, how could it not be?

In a lot of ways, the festival was what you would expect – cowboy-hat-wearing, beer-drinking, line-dancing country fun – but the artists came with plenty of tricks up their sleeves to keep the crowd on their toes; Robyn Ottolini’s verbatim rendition of Eminem’s third verse on “Rap God” mid-set had everyone in the crowd attempting to keep up; Cory Marks amped it up with an in your face country rock set that drew in a rowdy crowd; and the James Barker Band’s hard-hitting cover of Rage Against the Machine’s “Bulls on Parade” brought every fist up in the air. At Country on the Bay, one thing is for sure: expect the unexpected.

But amongst all these surprises were everyone’s favourite country hits and smiling faces as they sang and danced along with family and friends. We can’t wait to see what Country on the Bay has in store for us next year!