For the second year, locals and visitors are finding their way to the Breakwater Barge on Friday evenings for live music, local beer, cider, and wine, and food truck eats. It’s become one of the most popular events of the summer season, animating the waterfront and bringing more people down to Ogden Point. “It’s such a great way to spend your Friday night,” says Deanna Young, who created the event last year and is overseeing it in 2017. “You don’t have to cook or clean, you can enjoy delicious food and drinks, and a beautiful ocean view. And being right beside the breakwater and the cruise ships makes it a unique, one-of-a-kind venue.”
Deanna works with Michael Helm from the Breakwater Bistro, who manages food and beverage for the event, and with talent booker Morgan Brooker, who coordinates the music lineup for the season. Morgan’s goal is to appeal to all demographics, while avoiding genres such as heavy rock. This season, Barge-goers have heard local indie favourite Jesse Roper, The Band tribute musicians The Great Divide, and “west coast folkie” Jessica Benini, among others.
The Barge sits just below the popular Ogden Point breakwater, and attracts people who come for the evening, and people who stop during a stroll to listen to a few tunes. “I have a video of people dancing on the Breakwater, and it’s beautiful,” Deanna says. “I love it when people say ‘great job, Victoria needed this,’ and seeing the people who come down for Barge nights, from 70 year olds to families with children who can come down and enjoy a night out without needing to find a babysitter.”
Every month the Barge has a sponsor from the community – including The Butchart Gardens in June, and Zapco in July, and part of the proceeds from the $2 cover go back into the James Bay community.