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Vancouver Indian Summer Festival

Indian Summer Festival

Vancouver’s Indian Summer Festival is a festival featuring music, art, and public speaking events by Canadian, South Asian and Indigenous artists in July.

It’s an 11-day arts festival that brings artists, writers and thinkers from across Canada and overseas. Some of its events are free, and others are ticketed.


VIRTUAL EVENT IN 2020

In response to the coronavirus pandemic and government orders that large gatherings not take place this summer, Vancouver’s Indian Summer Festival won’t be happening as usual this year. Instead of the live in-person event in July, as originally planned, in 2020 the festival is an online series of activities taking place between May 16th and July 18th.

For details about the virtual event see the Indian Summer Festival website.

For a list of other festivals impacted by the pandemic, see our article about COVID-19 and Vancouver Event Cancellations.


Indian Summer Festival

In 2020 the Indian Summer Festival was going to take place from July 9th until July 19th. The theme for this year’s festival was Rivers of Language.

Some of the festival’s originally-schedule events are listed below. Now, because of COVID-19, organizers of the festival are instead presenting a series of online events between mid-May and mid-July.

Opening Party

In years when the event doesn’t get cancelled, the Indian Summer Festival’s Opening Party is a major culinary event on the first day of the festival. In 2019 it took place on Thursday, July 4, and featured celebrity chef Vikram Vij.

The Opening Party is usually held at the Roundhouse Community Centre at 181 Roundhouse Mews in Yaletown. Last year it ran from 7:00 pm until 11:00 pm. Tickets cost around $125 and they usually sell out well in advance.

Indian Summer Festival at Vanier Park
Pause in the Park at Vanier Park

Pause in the Park

Pause in the Park is a day with free programming in Vanier Park which is located at 1600 Whyte Avenue on the grass between the False Creek waterfront and the H.R. MacMillan Space Centre building.

In 2019 it took place just once, on Sunday 14th, from 11:00 am until 2:00 pm. In the past Pause in the Park has been a series of small events that typically attract less than a hundred people. Similar to previous years, the event in 2019 featured a mix of workshops and performances.

Hari Kondabolu

An acclaimed, New York City-based comedian, writer and political debater, Hari Kondabolu came to the festival to bring the laughs. The event took place last year on July 13th from 9:00 pm until 10:30 pm at the Vancouver Playhouse which is located at 600 Hamilton Street. Tickets cost between around $25 and $45.

Indian Summer Pause in the Park Performer

Other Indian Summer Festival Performances

Other events during the Indian Summer Festival include talks by artists, live music performances, workshops and various other contemporary art-related activities. Some are free and some are ticketed.

Other Information

For more information about the festival, check out the Indian Summer Festival website.

For a list of other events taking place at other times and places, see Vancouver’s July Calendar or click Festivals & Events.

(Note: Musicians appearing in the above photos are Amarjeet Singh and Baljit Singh).