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Summer Block Party returns to downtown Orillia this month

Event begins July 26 with Night Market
2018-07-16 Summer Block 1.jpg
There will be lots of attractions for people of all ages at the Summer Block Party and Night Market July 26 and 27 in downtown Orillia. File photo

Downtown Orillia is throwing a party for the town.

The annual Summer Block Party kicks off with a Night Market on July 26.

The market is a showcase for artisans, farmers, local producers, and antique collectors, among others, said Courtney Thompson, marketing director with the Downtown Orillia Management Board (DOMB). The vendors are parked on Mississaga Street, between Albert and West streets.

“We also have live performances,” she said. “It's just a really cool atmosphere because it's a night event (and) it goes on until the lights come on. We feel it grows in attendance every year. In terms of vendors, it has stayed consistent, with about 30 every year.”

Thompson added the night is just a fun evening out for families.

“It's a nice way for everyone to meet up with everyone in the community,” she said. “It's also a precursor to the farmers’ market and the Summer Block Party the next day.”

The party kicks off at 9 a.m. the next morning and goes until 6 p.m. Mississaga Street will be closed from Albert to Front streets for merchants to bring out their seasonal decor and sales.

Other than that, the street is filled with food vendors and performers, added Thompson.

“There are also lots of live performances the entire day,” she said. “This year, we have Long Range Hustle, Northland Rail Service, the Neema Children's Choir, and Ever-Lovin' Jug Band. We also have a live DJ keeping the party going throughout the day, and we will have street performers as well.”

In case of rain, bands and performers will be moved into various restaurants and downtown businesses, said Thompson, adding a full schedule of events will be available a week before the party

“(The Summer Block Party) just brings a lot of foot traffic to the downtown,” she said. “It's a great way for merchants to advertise that they're here in the hopes that new customers will find them. It's a great way to promote downtown and all the different businesses down here.”

The event hopes to bring boaters up the street as well, she said.

“We just want to showcase the downtown as a whole,” said Thompson. “We've been working with the chamber (of commerce) a lot over the past few years to bring the boaters up the street to downtown Orillia.”

Any vendors interested in a space at the Night Market can get in touch with staff at the DOMB by calling 705-325-3261.