We are so proud to be celebrating our 25th Anniversary this year, September 8,9 and 10 2023. Since 1999 The non-profit Tim Hortons Southside Shuffle Blues & Jazz Festival is always a cause for celebration amongst music lovers around the world. It was recognized as such at the 2018 Mississauga Arts Council’s Awards Gala in May, receiving the MARTY award for “Mississauga’s Best Festival”.
“In 1999 when we started there were four bands – Downchild Blues Band, Fathead, Jack de Keyzer, and Jake & The Blue Midnights playing in a soccer field at Lakeshore and Hwy 10. We didn’t even have a liquor license. I think we might have seen 2,300 people on the two days,” recalls Jackson, The founder of the festival and a Port Credit resident for 56 years “Now we have close to 150 bands. And over the last 24 years, we’ve employed probably 35,000 bands and over 15,000 musicians.”
The music encompasses the whole Village of Port Credit with Memorial Park as the center piece featuring the best in Canadian and International Blues and Roots performers.
On the Saturday of the Festival The Rabba Fine Food Street Shuffle turns Lakeshore Road into a Musical Mardi Gras featuring performers from Mississauga and throughout Ontario. All weekend long the Bars, Restaurants and Coffee Shops offer live music that makes the Village a Blues Disneyland. The annual Beggars Blues Banquet offers a sneak preview of the performers appearing at the festival in early August and a preview of our Festival Program.
Festivalgoers can also purchase Merchandise and crafts in the vendor’s village, and indulge themselves in the food court at Memorial Park and throughout the Village.
To pull together such a production, Jackson credits the “great” Board members, a dedicated crew of 300-plus volunteers, festival sponsors, and the help of the City of Mississauga, the Port Credit BIA, and the various levels of government which provide funding. The Southside Shuffle has consistently raised funds for charities over our 25 years.
“I just want to emphasize it’s a great team effort,” he says. “In crunch times, it’s quite hectic. It’s like a little village there in the park that week and our whole community pulls together to make The Tim Hortons Southside Shuffle the pride of The Mississauga Delta.”