Vancouver is a fabulous place for free concerts in the summer. Music genres include Rock, Classical, Country, Jazz, Folk and more.
Free Summer Music Concerts
Below are some of the best places to find live outdoor music in the summer, with most if not all of the venues being free. In 2020, because of COVID-19, most of the following concerts didn’t happen. Many also didn’t happen last summer either, although some did. Most, but not all, are back in 2022!
Free Summer Music in Vancouver
Vancouver has a number of great summer festivals and events which feature free outdoor live music, including the following:
- Monstercat Compound – a block party with live music, video games and art displays in Vancouver. It takes place on Saturday, August 20th, in 2022.
- Vancouver International Jazz Festival – free and ticketed concerts throughout Metro Vancouver from late June until the first weekend in July. In 2021 the festival ran in a virtual format. In 2022 the festival takes place from June 24th until July 3rd.
- Carnaval del Sol – a Latin carnival with outdoor concerts in Vancouver in July. The 2021 events were in-person and online. In 2022 the activities take place in-person from July 2nd to the 24th with the main event on the weekend of July 8th to 10th. Admission in 2022 is free for everyone on July 8th and free for children and seniors on July 9th and 10th.
- Summer Jazz on the Porch – a “pay-as-you-can” Jazz concert outside the Roedde House Museum in Vancouver’s West End. They take place on June 30th, July 28th and August 25th in 2022.
- Honda Celebration of Light – a fireworks festival in English Bay near Stanley Park’s Second Beach on two Saturdays and one Wednesday in late July and/or the beginning of August. The festivities include live entertainment in the afternoons, with headliner bands in the evenings. The 2021 celebrations were cancelled but return on July 23rd, 27th and 30th in 2022.
- Canada Day Celebrations – July 1st is also a great time to find free outdoor concerts, including at Canada Place, Granville Island and other venues throughout the Lower Mainland.
- Khatsahlano Street Party – a major street party on West 4th Avenue, billing itself as “Vancouver’s largest free music and arts festival” in mid-July. The street party didn’t happen in 2020 or 2021, but it is set to return on July 9th in 2022.
- Taiwanese Canadian Cultural Festival – a celebration of Taiwanese and Canadian artists in the North Plaza of the Vancouver Art Gallery. In 2022 the festival is from July 1st to 3rd and features over a dozen performers.
More Events in the City of Vancouver
- Music on Main – a series of pop-up concerts happen outdoors at Mountain Pleasant Park between August 9th and August 18th in 2022.
- Kitsilano Showboat – live music takes place at Kitsilano Beach on various days of the week between June 20th and August 20th in 2022.
- Trout Lake Summer Concert Series – free weekly concerts outside the Trout Lake Community Centre at 3360 Victoria Drive on Wednesdays in the evening (from July 13th to August 24th in 2022).
- Brahm’s Tam Drum Circle – informal drumming sessions take place at Third Beach in Stanley Park on sunny Tuesday evenings from May until September. They aren’t “concerts,” but they are free, musical and entertaining! If it’s a sunny evening, there will be drummers (plus lots of people).
- CBC Musical Nooners – a free concert at noon every weekday outside the CBC building at 700 Hamilton Street from early July to mid-August. They didn’t happen in 2020 or 2021 because of the COVID-19 pandemic. It doesn’t seem like they’ll happen in 2022 either, although exact details are to be confirmed.
Free Concert in Abbotsford
- Symphony in the Park – a free classical music concert at Mill Lake Park in Abbotsford. Taking place on August 12th, it also features music from popular shows like West Side Story, Mission Impossible and Phantom of the Opera in 2022.
Free Concerts in Burnaby
The premier free music event in Burnaby each summer is a one-day event involving the Lower Mainland’s finest classical music.
- Symphony in the Park – a free outdoor concert by the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra at Deer Lake Park. The date in 2020 was going to be on July 18th until it got cancelled. The event returns on July 16th in 2022.
- Summer Stages – free live music in Civic Square, Edmonds Park and Confederation Park. The performances take place on weekdays from July 4th to September 1st in 2022.
Free Summer Music in Coquitlam
- Summer Concert Series – free live music from 6 to 9 pm at Town Centre Park Plaza at 1299 Pinetree Way on a few Fridays in the summer. In 2022 the events take place on July 15th with a Rock Night, August 6th with a Jazz Night, and September 2nd with a Pop Night.
Free Concerts in Langley
- Odlum Brown Fort Langley Jazz & Arts Festival – a 3-day live music and art festival with both free and ticketed events in Fort Langley. The festival takes place from July 21st to 24th in 2022. It’s a fabulous event and highly recommended!
Free Concerts in Maple Ridge
- Music on the Wharf – a series of outdoor concerts on the Port Haney Wharf at 22360 River Road in Maple Ridge every couple of Mondays in July and August (by donation). Concerts take place on July 11th, July 25th, August 8th and August 22nd in 2022.
- Happenings Summer Events – concerts and/or other family-friendly activities take place at Memorial Peace Park on Wednesdays and Fridays from 6:00 until 8:00 pm between July 6th and September 2nd in 2022. On most days there are family-friendly activities, not live music. The concerts in 2022 are the following Fridays:
- July 8th, 2022 – Blues Night with Dalannah Gail Bowen.
- July 29th, 2022 – Pop Night with Paul Filek & Nette.
- August 12th, 2022 – Rock Night with Johnny Bootleg and Wyper & Parker.
- August 26th, 2022 – Country-Rock Night with Nicole Sumerlyn and Antonio Larosa.
- September 2nd, 2022 – Battle of the Bands featuring multiple local youth bands.
Free Concerts in Mission
A couple of years ago Mission joined the many other locales with their own version of free weekly outdoor music entertainment from June through August with the Twilight Concert Series at the Fraser River Heritage Park (7494 Mary Street) on Fridays starting at 7 pm. With the event there were different styles of music each week. The concerts take place on Wednesdays from July 6th to August 31st in 2022.
Free Concerts in New Westminster
New Westminster has a couple of major festivals that feature free live music in August most years (or at least ones without global pandemics).
- Uptown Live – a giant street party and Indie music festival in New Westminster. The 2021 Uptown Live event was cancelled, but the event is scheduled to return on July 16th in 2022.
- Columbia Street Food Truck Fest – a food truck street festival from one end of Columbia Street to the other in the heart of the old town. The festival has been rebranded as Car Free Day New West in 2022 and takes place on August 6th.
Free Music in North Vancouver
North Vancouver is one of the best places in the Lower Mainland for free live outdoor music, with multiple concerts each week at the following venues:
- North Vancouver Summer Concert Series – now called the Live & Local Concerts & Culture Series, free outdoor concerts take place in Deep Cove on Friday evenings from 7 to 9 pm in August.
- Shipyard Night Market – a slightly upscale summer night market in North Vancouver’s Lower Lonsdale neighborhood that features great live bands on Friday nights. The market was cancelled in 2020 and 2021. It isn’t happening in 2022 either, and possibly never again, although exact details are to be confirmed.
- Shipyards Live – also taking place at Shipbuilders’ Square, these live performances are on Fridays from June 3rd to September 2nd in 2022. This includes a special Canada Day event.
Free Concerts in Port Moody
- Summer Sundays – free concerts at Rocky Point Park in Port Moody on Sundays in July and August at 2 pm (although not in 2020 or 2021). There’s a different band each week and the music ranges from Blues to Soul, R&B, Funk, and Reggae. On sunny days between 1000 and 2000 people attend. In 2022 the concerts run from July 10th until September 4th.
Free Summer Music in Surrey
Surrey offers the following free outdoor concerts every week (in years without restrictions banning live events):
- Sounds of Summer Music Series – free outdoor live music at Surrey parks on Thursday evenings during the summer. In 2022 the events run from July 6th to August 24th.
- Surrey Fusion Festival – a festival at Surrey’s Holland Park in mid-July each year. Tentative dates for 2021 were July 24th and 25th, although the event was held later and in a virtual format. In 2022 the festival takes place on July 23rd and 24th.
Concerts in West Vancouver
West Vancouver offers its free outdoor live music concerts in early August and early September at the following festivals:
- Harmony Arts Festival – a popular week-long community festival in West Vancouver in early August that features live music and free evening movies. In 2021 the festival ran on a smaller scale from July 30th until August 8th. In 2022 it returns from July 29th until August 7th.
- Coho Festival – a festival in early September celebrating salmon in West Vancouver. In 2019 it took place on September 8th. The event happened in a virtual format in 2020 and 2021. In 2022 the festival takes place on September 11th.
Free Concerts in White Rock
- TD Concerts at the Pier – White Rock’s free concert series takes place on Thursdays in the summer. There are around half a dozen concerts scheduled to take place from late June to late August in 2022.
Other articles that might be of interest include the following:
- Free Outdoor Movies in the Summer
- Vancouver on a Budget
- Vancouver Shows & Entertainment
- Lower Mainland Summer Activities
- What’s Happening This Weekend