Evening approaches in Ottawa, and a fun energetic feeling has taken over the normally traffic filled Bank street. A Starbucks employee chases people down offering free passion iced tea samples, in teeny tiny taster-sized cups, entirely too small for my thirst. I love when city and festival people decide, “let’s close everything down and put music and people things in places it normally isn’t.” Parking lots? Downtown streets? Close ’em.
For now, the ever powerful pedestrian rules for a brief evening in the city, as it should be.
The Strain, a Canadian band performed some of their latest music for the festival. The crowd is small, relaxed and easygoing. The free tunes ring out through downtown, echoing off the glass skyscrapers surrounding us in the little transformed parking lot.
A bit later, when I walk through the festival entranceway and into the main stage area, a pink haired girl on stage sings with the band TOPS. Her guitarists and drummer back up the melody.
Using spaces not for their originally intended use opens us up to the re-use, re-think, an outside the box mentality. The NYC Highline neighbourhood space is a great example of community, sustainability and innovation where old rail tracks are redesigned into community spaces. Creating an interesting or inviting space invites people to enjoy something in a new way.
Festival time in the city. There’s nothing quite like it. From rooftops to gardens, aquariums to courtyards, let’s put music everywhere.