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Harvest History

1991

Harvest is founded, spanning over 4 days, with 9,500 patrons, 25 musical acts and 17 venues around downtown Fredericton.

1992

First big top tent venue goes up.

1993

Grand Opening of Harvest Central, first CD compilation (of the 1992 Festival), and birth of the Festival’s own Harvest cocktail.

1997

Debut of the famed Mojo Tent, as well as the coveted Ultimate Pass and nightly passes, and the must-see nightly impromptu jam sessions were finally put on the program.

2000

The number of community members who volunteer for the Festival rises to 400, which is a five-fold increase from 1991. Also, the first year Queen Street was shut down during the Festival.

2001

The debut of Kidsfest (now known as Congo Square), a family-oriented day-long event of music, cultures and fun activities.

2002

Harvest introduces the Rising Star showcase, where a young Matt Andersen and his band Flat Top becoming Harvest’s first Rising Stars.

2003

Blues in the Schools is introduced where Harvest performers and clinicians tour local schools during Festival week to perform for school children and teach them the importance and history of the blues.

2005

Blues tent gets a new home behind City Hall. The Festival expands by a day by introducing the Opening Night Gala at the Fredericton Playhouse on Tuesday night.

2006

Officers’ Square becomes the hub of Harvest’s free music programming, with headline acts playing free outdoor shows in the afternoons

2007

The year of the Volunteer! Harvest’s community of volunteers reaches a staggering 1000 strong.

2008

Harvest gets serious about greening efforts, beginning to reduce its carbon footprint and do everything it can to be a green festival.

2009

No more tent poles! Harvest invests in clear-span tent in the Blues Tent to keep the sightlines crystal clear for patrons, and the new “Room to Groove” policy is enacted to allow for a little more elbow room in the most popular tents.

2010

Harvest celebrates its 20th anniversary in a big way. Wednesday night sees the addition of a headline show in the Blues Tent, and a specially-commissioned 20th Anniversary Orchestra of the region’s finest talent is assembled to celebrate the Festival’s milestone. Also, Harvest sends New Brunswick bluesman Matt Andersen to the International Blues Challenge in Memphis, TN, where he places first, becoming the first Canadian ever to win the IBC!

2011

Harvest reinvigorates the jazz lineup with an all-new venue – Jazz Central – in the Fredericton Convention Centre. Blues in the Schools is expanded with two week-long residencies in local schools by Harvest musicians.  The Queen Street closure is expanded to all day and all night, all festival weekend long, with plenty more vendors, artisans and street performances for patrons’ pleasure.

2012

Harvest makes its biggest commitment to being green yet by investing in 100% biodegradable cups in all venues. The Street Closure expands even further and Harvest introduces the Officers’ Quarters, an outdoor bar in Officers’ Square to grab a drink between tents.

2015

Harvest celebrates its 25th Anniversary in style with all-time favorite acts, including Colin James, Michael Franti & Spearhead, Galactic, JJ Grey & Mofro and more.

2016

In a year where festivals across the country are shutting down or pulling back, Harvest once again affirms itself as Eastern Canada’s premiere musical experience, presenting one of the best line-ups in its history.