Gravenhurst set for Sawdust Music Fest


Miranda Mulholland and Andrew Penner of Harrow Fair. Mulholland played a key role in creating Sawdust Music City Festival. (Photo Courtesy Sawdust Music City Festival)

Story by Rod Charles Deputy Editor

GRAVENHURST, ONTARIO – The Jim Cuddy Family Band will headline the inaugural Sawdust Music City Festival in Gravenhurst this weekend. Cuddy will be joined by several other fantastic artists including Abigail Lapell, Benjamin Hermann, the Julian Taylor Band and Bet Smith & The Currie Brothers.

Harrow Fair, featuring Andrew Penner and Miranda Mulholland will also be rocking the town of Gravenhurst. The creation of this event – which promises to be a heart-thumping weekend featuring more than 20 musicians – is a dream come true for Mulholland, who was instrumental in making Sawdust a reality.

“When I first created my label Roaring Girl Records, I had a hypothetical festival in mind. A festival that celebrated collaboration, cross-genre and musicianship, the cornerstones of the label. It is beyond my wildest dreams that it’s actually happening now and in Gravenhurst,” says Mulholland. “I am so thrilled to see how much excitement, community involvement and joy leading up to our event from everyone involved – artists to volunteers to visitors. Working together, I think we are going to have a magical, unforgettable inaugural festival!”


Julian Taylor Band will be performing in Gravenhurst. (Photo Courtesy Sawdust Music City Festival)

For Mulholland, this is more than a festival – it’s a family tradition. Her Great-Great-Grandfather was Charles Mickle, who owned the lumber mill that dubbed the town’s Sawdust City nickname. He was also Gravenhurst’s mayor twice and commissioned the construction of the Opera House for the town’s residents. As the founder and Artistic Director of the Sawdust City Music Festival, Miranda’s goal is to celebrate her heritage while providing an amazing experience for residents and visitors alike.

Programming will consist of three nights of music at the Sawdust City Brewery, an evening of music at the Opera House, a free Songwriters’ Workshop, a Sawdust Stripped Down acoustic series in various small venues about town, and a free concert on Sunday evening as part of the Music on the Barge series (a 50+ year tradition).

“There is nothing more rewarding than supporting young entrepreneurs in this often harsh music biz,” said Cuddy in a statement. “I love Miranda’s talent for performing music and now I get to experience her talent for creating a great community event. Can’t wait.”


Dates: August 4-6
Location: Gravenhurst, Ontario


Sawdust_Jim Cuddy_PromoPhoto

Jim Cuddy (Photo Courtesy Sawdust Music City Festival)

Jim Cuddy Family Band – Headlining The Opera House
Abigail Lapell
Benjamin Hermann
Bet Smith & The Currie Bros
Briar Summers
C&C Surf Factory
Devin Cuddy
Harrow Fair
Jeremy Dutcher
Jessica Mitchell
Julian Taylor Band – Headlining The Barge
Justin Rutledge
Liz Stringer
Mélanie Brulée
My Father’s Son
NQ Arbuckle
Papa John Witterick
Tim Moxam
Winnie Brave
Zachary Lucky
Northern Beauties

Rod has previously worked for and is currently freelancing for Huffington Post Travel. He’s also written travel articles for the Toronto Star and Up! Magazine. Living in Toronto but raised in the small central Ontario village of Holstein, Rod is a country boy at heart who has never met a farmer’s market he didn’t like.

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