Supercrawl: The 12-hour Music and Arts Festival in Hamilton’s Hippest Neighbourhood

Image via Tourism Hamilton

It may be news to you Toronto residents, but Hamilton has a pretty happenin’ art scene. Of course, by calling it “happenin”, I’ve probably decreased its coolness factor substantially.

Let’s just say that Queen West doesn’t have a monopology on kitschy craft stores, Kensington’s not the only place to score vintage finds, and Trinity-Bellwoods isn’t the only place peppered with quirky, exotic restaurants.

That’s right, Torontonians. Shift your eyes south this weekend to Hamilton’s SUPERCRAWL, a massive street festival on Saturday September 10th, 2011 from 1PM – 1AM on James St. North. The streets will be teeming with hipsters, artists, dancers, and musicians hell-bent on getting rid of Hamilton’s cultural-hellhole image.

Did I mention it’s 100% free of charge? The festival offers free admission to every art exhibit, dance performance, and open-air street concert. The only thing you’ll need are a few bones to procure some food and drink (and maybe a reclaimed-object sculpture or hand-printed calendar).

The music lineup features indie heavweights Broken Social Scene and local heroes Junior Boys. Jeremy Greenspan’s The Brain, hotbed of local kool kids, will host the Beehive Craft Collective, a group of incredibly talented printmakers, textile artists, and artisans.

After a ridiculously virtuosic performance at the What Next? festival earlier this year, Basia Bulat is reuniting with the Hamilton Philharmonic Orchastra to play beautiful adaptations from her last album (as transcribed by Owen Pallett). Said The Whale and Young Rival will also be playing full sets earlier in the day.

In case you’re curious, here’s where you can find me at SUPERCRAWL. But feel free to do your own thang and check out the full schedule here.

1PM – 2PM: Haircut at Albert Snow to get the perfect hipster haircut – messy, with a side of indifference. Goes well with vintage doll dress, scuffed leather boots, or anything plaid (Cigarette and sneer not included).

2PM – 3PM: Head to the intersection of James and Main to catch a free bus ride up James Street North courtesy of the HSR. Shuttles will be running all day and into the wee hours of the night.

3PM – 4PM: Check out the art installations of the Beehive Craft Collective at The Brain.

4PM – 5PM: Nod along to the nouveau-grunge of Young Rival at the York-Wilson Stage.

5PM – 7PM: Grab dinner and drinks at Mulberry Cafe, a cafe that serves fair-trade and organic snacks, sandies, coffee, and beer in a too-cool-to-be-true setting that feels like you’re making your boho parents proud. Order the London Fog and a Vegetarian Panini, if they have any left. If not, a Savoury Southwest Muffin will suit my needs quite nicely.

7PM – 8PM: Head back to the York-Wilson Stage for Basia Bulat and the HPO. Try not to cry tears of joy when she strums her first chord on the autoharp.

8PM – 9PM: Join my pal Laurie to watch Said The Whale at the Colbourne Stage.

9PM – 10PM: Head over to Baltimore House on King William Street for a DJ set filtering onto the street to build hype for the Victorian-inspired lounge’s grand opening in the upcoming months.

10PM – 11PM: Shimmy to the Junior Boys at the Colbourne Stage. I’ll be keeping my ears open for Dull To Pause.

11PM – 12AM: Fight bony hipster elbows for a decent view of Broken Social Scene.

Throughout the day, I’ll be walking into the many art galleries on James St. North, hoping to pick up a few quirky prints for my bedroom wall. Maybe you’ll see me there! I’ll be the girl with the messy, indifferent hair.

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