Horseshoe Tavern to bring back in-person concerts starting in July

If all goes according to plan, the iconic Toronto venue will reopen its doors to fans in a couple of weeks


Get ready to put your feet down on the Horseshoe Tavern’s checkerboard floors.

Toronto’s most historic music bar has been closed for in-person concerts since March 2020, but it’s stayed in the news throughout the pandemic. The Queen West watering hole has been trying to stay active, putting on its first livestream concerts and even a drive-in concert series. It’s also struggled with insurance like other music venues in the city, threatening to move to another province if things don’t change.

But before that happens, the Horseshoe is getting ready to reopen its doors to music fans. The venue just announced it will allow some fans for its previously announced livestream concert series, Horseshoe Hootenany.

“Tickets are available for physically distanced tables of 2-6 people from the same household,” the venue’s owner, Collective Concerts, says in an email. “All shows will be seated with table service from the bar. Masks are required unless seated as per current Ontario Public Health rules.”

The first shows advertised for in-person tickets is local folk-rock band Birds of Bellwoods on July 23.

That’s followed by Julian Taylor Band and Skye Wallace on July 24, and comedian Shaun Majumder on August 6.

Ontario could enter step 3 of reopening as early as July 20, which would allow for limited-capacity indoor events with restrictions. But capacities and other rules are yet to be announced, and venue owners and live entertainment industry workers have been pushing the government to release its guidelines ASAP so they can start planning.

These Horseshoe concerts will be contingent on those step 3 rules, but they aren’t waiting to start welcoming fans back. You can buy tickets right now.

Burl’s Creek is back

Outdoor concerts are a little bit easier to plan for, if still not entirely clear. Events at 25 per cent capacity are already allowed.

And so, Burl’s Creek has announced a full program of mini-music festivals called Endless Summer. The campground site that used to host WayHome and still hosts Big Sky and Boots & Hearts country festivals has put together a set of weekend bills with camping.

The first takes place July 30 to August 1 and features a series of classic rock tribute bands playing the music of Queen, the Tragically Hip, Elton John and more.

August 6 and 7 is a country weekend featuring Brett Kissel, Tebey, Jess Mosklaluke, Cory Marks and more.

August 13 is a one-day rock event with the Trews, the Blue Stones and Ferraro. Another Canrock day takes over on August 14 with Our Lady Peace, I Mother Earth and Monowhales.

Boots & Hearts will present another one from September 3-5 with artists TBA.

Tickets for all those shows go on sale July 9 at 10 am at burlscreek.com.

@trapunski

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