Port Moody Ribfest is a 3-day community festival that features live music, family-friendly activities and barbecued ribs in Rocky Point Park in Port Moody.
EVENT CANCELLED FOR 2020
On April 23rd the organizers of Port Moody Ribfest announced that they have cancelled the event this year due to the outbreak of the coronavirus. Consequently, the next time Rocky Point Park will be full of barbecued rib vendors won’t be until the weekend of July 16th to 18th in 2021.
To learn more about the cancellation see the PortMoodyRibFest.ca website.
Ribfest Festival in Port Moody
In 2020 the Port Moody Ribfest was going to take place on the Friday, Saturday and Sunday of July 17th to 19th.
Hosted by the Rotary Club of Port Moody, it’s a free event that takes place in July each year.
In most years as many as 40,000 people attend the festival over the course of the weekend, which is a number greater than the entire population of Port Moody! It’s a fundraising event, benefiting charitable projects, and as much as $100,000 is raised each year.
Take your friends, family and appetites and check it out!
Where is Port Moody Ribfest
Port Moody Rotary Ribfest takes place at Rocky Point Park which is located at 2800 Murray Street in Port Moody, a beautiful town of 33,000 people just east of both Vancouver and Burnaby. For such a small community, Port Moody Ribfest is an impressive event and at a wonderful venue.
Rocky Point Park is a beautiful park on the waterfront with a pier, community stage, walking trails, outdoor swimming pool, and first-class children’s playground and waterpark.
When is Port Moody Ribfest
Port Moody Rotary Ribfest usually takes place on the second-to-last weekend in July. In 2020 the dates were going to be July 17th to 19th (so slightly earlier than other years).
Admission is FREE and most years activities run from 11 am to 9 pm on the Friday, Saturday and Sunday. The live music usually runs from 4:30 pm until closing on the Friday, and all day starting at 11 am on the Saturday and Sunday.
At Port Moody Rotary Ribfest there is live music and lots of barbecued food for sale. There are also craft breweries on site, a Kids Fun Zone and various forms of family entertainment.
Port Moody Ribfest features free live music on the Friday evening and most of the day on the Saturday and Sunday starting at around 11 am.
Below is the live music schedule for 2019. The 2021 schedule should be similar. (Note: times and performer details are subject to change.)
Friday, July 19, 2019
- 2:00 pm – Chronicles of False Creek
- 4:30 pm – Mostly Marley (playing classic Reggae)
- 6:00 pm – Barracuda (a Heart tribute band)
- 7:30 pm – Shooting Star (playing tunes by the band Bad Company)
- 8:15 pm – Stonebolt (a Grammy Award-nominated band)
Saturday, July 20, 2019
- 11:00 am – Al Foreman
- 12:15 pm – Hickelstock
- 1:30 pm – Rocky Milino Jr. & The C4D Band
- 3:00 pm – TRIO (playing music by the Police)
- 4:30 pm – The Pop Junkies
- 7:30 pm – Bad Moon Riders (playing the tunes of the band Creedence Clearwater Revival)
Sunday, July 21, 2019
- 11:00 am – Tony Prophet
- 12:30 pm – Honeyboy Wilson Trio
- 2:00 pm – Ribfest Judging
- 3:00 pm – Giggle Dam Band (from Port Coquitlam’s Giggle Dam Theatre)
- 4:45 pm – Mr. Boogie Woogie
- 6:30 pm – Eagle Eyes (an Eagles tribute band)
BBQs, Food and Beverages
Being a “Ribfest,” a major part of the Port Moody event is the food. A variety of BBQ vendors serve beef ribs, barbecued chicken, corn on the cob and other tasty items.
World-famous barbecue vendors at Port Moody Ribfest typically include the following:
- Gator BBQ – from Port Dover Ontario
- Boss Hog’s – from London Ontario
- Smoke & Bones – from North Vancouver (and winner of the 2009 and 2012 Canadian National BBQ Championships)
- Prairie Smoke & Spice – from Winnipeg (and 14-time Grand Champion winner)
- Misty Mountain BBQ – from Hinton Alberta.
A new competitor in 2019 was Grizzly BBQ (from Vancouver Island).
The biggest challenge at Port Moody Ribfest is which vendor to get your ribs from! The second biggest challenge is deciding which craft beer to wash it down with (or root beer for the kids)!
TIP: Winners from the Port Moody Ribfest competition in 2015 were Boss Hog’s as the People’s Choice, Misty Mountain BBQ for the Best Ribs, and Gator BBQ for the Best Sauce. Maybe these Ribbers will win again this year, or maybe they won’t!
Kids Fun Zone
Port Moody Ribfest is definitely a family-friendly event. There is something for everyone, including for children at the Kids Fun Zone.
In the Kids Fun Zone you will find things like an Art Mosaic Sculpture activity, miniature golf, a climbing wall, henna tattoos and a face painting station. Plus, if that’s not enough, right in Rocky Point Park is one of the Lower Mainland’s best outdoor children’s playgrounds and water parks, as well as an outdoor swimming pool.
Kids – don’t forget your swimsuits! Also, don’t forget to point out to your parents the Rocky Point Ice Cream Store that’s located right close by!
The OpenRoad LEXUS Port Moody VIP Zone is a special area at Port Moody Ribfest where you get access to comfortable adults-only private seating and a complimentary beverage. The VIP Zone also features table service, which means you don’t have to stand in line for your barbecued ribs and drinks.
Last year there were two VIP Zone sittings on each of the three days of the event. One was from 12:00 until 4:30 pm and the other was from 5:00 until 9:30. 2020 details are to be confirmed.
Admission to the VIP Zone for any one of the above time periods costs about $30. Access to all other areas at Port Moody Ribfest are free.
For more details click OpenRoad LEXUS Port Moody VIP Zone.
Tips and Advice
Below are some tips and advice on how to make your visit to Port Moody Ribfest as pleasant as possible.
TIP #1: Take public transit if you can as parking will be ridiculous. If you can’t, put your bikes on the back of your car and then cycle part way to the venue (including from far away along the beautiful forested paths), or wear good shoes and plan to walk a fair ways. A bicycle valet service is available on site.
TIP #2: If you must take a vehicle, go early to improve your chances of finding a spot. There is a bit of parking available for early birds at Rocky Point Park, at the Port Moody Soccer Field on Murray Street just east of the park, and at Port Moody’s West Coast Express Train Station.
You might also find parking at the Community Recreation Complex at 300 Ioco Road in town (although you might not technically be allowed to park there). Otherwise, try your luck wherever you can find it, but be sure wherever you park is a permitted place and not limited to too short of a time.
TIP #3: Another transportation option is to take a taxi, either from your home or from a place you can get to close by (like the train station). It might be challenging finding a ride back however, depending on when you leave.
TIP #4: Some years Port Moody Ribfest offers a safe ride home service between 6:30 and 9:30 pm. Ask your server at one of the craft breweries or an onsite security person for details.
TIP #5: If you’re on a tight budget or have specific dietary needs, pack your own picnic. Or, other dining options nearby include the Boathouse Restaurant (but be sure to make reservations well in advance), or Pajo’s Fish & Chips. Of course for a snack or dessert there is also the famous Rocky Point Ice Cream store conveniently located near the children’s playground.
TIP #6: Rocky Point Park is a beautiful park to visit any time of the year. While you’re already there for Ribfest, take some time to explore. Also, return another day when it’s a little less crowded.
On hot days kids will love the playground, water park and outdoor swimming pool. The walking and cycling trails are beautiful and go on for miles. The pier is also very pleasant for a short stroll out into the water.
And finally, if you like outdoor live music, go back any Sunday in July or August for Summer Sundays when they have a free outdoor concert in the park at 2 pm.
- ACCESSIBILITY: Port Moody Ribfest is fairly stroller and wheelchair accessible. Just be patient getting around, however, as there will be thousands of people. There are a lot of lawns (which aren’t easy to get around on after a heavy rainfall), but there are also lots of paved pathways throughout Rocky Point Park.
- PET POLICY: Only on-duty service dogs are welcome at Port Moody Ribfest. Other pets are not allowed. That’s okay though as Fido will probably appreciate being left at home anyway as he’ll likely hate the crowds and go insane with all the tantalizing BBQ smells!
Rotary International is a volunteer service organization with members around the world. The Rotary Club of Port Moody is one of many Rotary clubs comprised of professionals, business people and folk who want to make a difference in their community.
The Rotary Club of Port Moody meets for breakfast on Wednesday mornings at 7:15 am at St. James’s Well Pub in Newport Village at 248 Newport Drive in Port Moody.
For more information on the fundraising group behind Port Moody Ribfest, see the Rotary Club of Port Moody website. It’s an exceptional organization to be a part of.
For more information on the July event at Rocky Point Park, see the Port Moody Rotary Ribfest website.
For ideas on other things to do this same weekend or at other times this month, see Vancouver’s July Calendar.
And for a list of other major events throughout the year in the Lower Mainland, click the Festivals & Events Calendar.