Organizers of the Thunder Bay Blues Festival have announced that, after reviewing the numbers, a new attendance record was set at the 2016 festival.

This year’s festival saw just over 18,000 people in attendance, which represents a 30 per cent increase over the previous attendance record set in 2013. “People seemed to really embrace the incredible talent that was found in the all-Canadian line-up this year,” said general manager and festival programmer, Bob Halvorsen. “After all is said and done, I believe that we had some of the best performances ever at this year’s festival.”


Carson Downey Band, Photo by Dave Koski

While the weak Canadian dollar initially led organizers to search out an all-Canadian line-up as a means of reducing the risk of an unpredictable exchange rate, it actually helped to put together one of the most talented rosters of artists to ever appear at the festival, with performances that included Tom Cochrane, Serena Ryder, Gowan, Colin James, The Downchild Blues Band, April Wine and Burton Cummings, to name a few…

“This type of success is not possible without a lot of hard work from many people,” said Halvorsen. We would like to thank all of the ticket buyers who came out to support us, along with our partners Tom Pazianos and Bob Stewart from The Keg, our presenting sponsor, Tbaytel, and all of our sponsors and supporters who came together to make this one of the most memorable concert events ever.”

Work has already begun on selecting a line-up for the 2017 Blues Festival, and organizers hope to be able to announce the acts in early 2017. The 2017 festival will take place July 7, 8, 9, 2016.

For a full gallery of Blues Fest 2016 images, check out the gallery on our Facebook page.