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Start planning your Northern Lights weekend: The schedule's up on the website

Arkells and Bill and Joel Plaskett among the headliners at July 5-8 event
northern lights festival 2016
In case you'd like to start planning your Northern Lights Festival Boréal weekend, the festival just put its full lineup and schedule online on its website, (Supplied)

In case you'd like to start planning your Northern Lights Festival Boréal weekend, the festival just put its full lineup and schedule online on its website,

The festival is scheduled for July 5-8 in Sudbury's beautiful Bell Park. 

Iconic Canadian roots and rock names fill the headline slots: Canadian rock sensation Arkells; international indie stars Alvvays; father-son duo Bill & Joel Plaskett; and Acadian folk-rocker Lisa LeBlanc

The lineup also includes 45+ other musical gems, including: Afro-beat pioneer Orlando Julius, instrumental guitar-rock veterans Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet, Prairie Oyster frontman Russell deCarle, and locals like Sudbury roots-rock outfit JoPo & The Rize

But wait, there's more! NLFB has a few more lineup surprises to announce, as well as details on accommodation packages.

Lee Harvey Osmond is the brainchild of Canadian music veteran Tom Wilson (Blackie & The Rodeo Kings, Junkhouse etc.), in collaboration with members of Cowboy Junkies and Skydiggers. Beautiful Scars is the Juno nominated third album, and follows two albums, A Quiet Evil and The Folk Sinner which were previously longlisted for the Polaris Prize and nominated for a Juno. 

At 53, Wilson discovered he was adopted and had Mohawk ancestry – a story (among others) he told in his 2017 memoir, Beautiful Scars (recently released to much acclaim). 

The festival weekend will include a special, exclusive literary/music performance based on the book, aboard the William Ramsey Cruise boat. Lee Harvey Osmond will also perform on the festival's Main Stage. 
Festival-goers are going to be blown away by the Tunisian infused dancehall reggae of Montréal's King Abid. King Abid will play an exclusive club show, at Sudbury's Townehouse Tavern, the Thursday night of the fest.
Audiences will also be hypnotized by the jazzy-alterna-folk of Binaeshee-Quae, a singer-songwriter, actor & community arts enthusiast from Biigtigong First Nation. 
Donné Roberts is a guitarist, singer and songwriter from Madagascar, who will join the 2018 festival lineup. He has released two vibrant solo albums and was one of the members of the African Guitar Summit project, which won a JUNO in 2005 and was nominated for another one in 2007.
Casper Skulls is a Toronto based art-rock band with ties to Sudbury, creating alot of buzz in the indie world. They will headline the after-hours show, Saturday night of the festival at The Townehouse Tavern. 
The festival will also include a workshop and after-hours performance paying homage to the hip-hop arts: rapping, DJing, and beat making. 

These elements will include such artists as: Winnipeg's Indigenous hip-hop veteran HellnBack; internationally acclaimed 5-time World Champion DJ and producer Vekked; live sampler master and producer Fresh Kils; and Toronto-based rapper NiLLa. 

"Hip-hop music is folk music, as far as I'm concerned," said the festival's artistic/executive director, Max Merrifield, "People finding a voice with whatever they've got - that's what we're trying to show here." 
Cruises aboard the William Ramsey will also be offered, with varying themes and atmospheres. Saturday afternoon will include a raucous bluegrass/outlaw-country party with Sudbury's Murder Murder, as well as a literary/musical cruise with Tom Wilson (Lee Harvey Osmond). Sunday afternoon will include a rock n' roll cruise, in collaboration with local concert presenter Party Cannon, performers TBD. 
For those travelling to the festival from out-of-town, NLFB has accommodation packages for 2018. 

Packages include festival passes and accommodations for three or four nights. Camping packages (with shuttle service) are available in partnership with Mine Mill Campground, and hotel packages are available in partnership with Clarion Hotel Sudbury.

Information on accommodation packages, musical cruises, and more can be found online at

The (almost) full festival schedule is now posted, with a few final details TBA. 

Advance pricing for festival passes is currently in effect. NLFB has playlists on Youtube and Spotify where the lineup can be previewed.


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