Have you ever wanted to go to a massive music and arts festival—for free? Great news: the first-ever CONVERGENCE 2023 festival is just around the corner. This large music and arts festival will be taking over Downtown Oshawa from September 22 to 24 and features both free community events and various ticketed events.
With events throughout the weekend, you won’t want to miss the main stage on Saturday, September 23—featuring big-name performers, a punk rock flea market, an international street food alley, entertainment like pro wrestling, theatre and circus performers, and even a nerd alley. This is a festival that combines all things art and music into one free extravaganza—a convergence, if you will.
To help make the most of your weekend, we created this insider's guide to navigating what will be the most epic music and arts festival ever.
Where and when is CONVERGENCE?
CONVERGENCE 2023 will occur in Downtown Oshawa between September 22 and 24. Free community events will take over the downtown core on King Street East between Simcoe Street and Mary Street from noon to 10 p.m. on Saturday, September 23.
What artists are featured?
The CONVERGENCE 2023 lineup is being announced leading up to the event, with new artist names dropping each week. From big-name local performers to emerging artists, there are a wide variety of genres of music to enjoy and new favourites to discover. To learn more about the lineup of performers, visit the music page.
Check out the performance schedule for Saturday, September 23:
Event Kickoff - noon 12:30 p.m., Main Stage
Cale Crowe (Alt Folk) - 12:30 p.m. 1:15 p.m., Main Stage
NERiMA (Alt Rock) - 1:15 p.m. 2 p.m., Emerging Stage
Eddy Jones (Rap) - 2 p.m. 2:45 p.m., Main Stage
Haddix (Alt Pop) - 2:45 p.m. 3:30 p.m., Emerging Stage
Delon Om (Pop) - 3:30 p.m. 4:15 p.m., Main Stage
Matthew Holtby (Folk) - 4:15 p.m. 5 p.m., Emerging Stage
Chastity (Punk) - 5 p.m. 6 p.m., Main Stage
Preston Pablo (Pop) - 6:15 p.m. 7:15 p.m., Main Stage
Strumbellas (Alt-Country) - 7:30 p.m. 9 p.m., Main Stage
Where can you see the art?
As for art, there are art installations featuring painted works, experiential installations, circus arts, and even pop-up theatre performances. View the art page to learn more about the artists and art installations.
What kind of food will be there?
Always thinking about food? Same friend, same. And what is a festival without great food? The 360insights International Street Food Alley has everything from Philly cheesesteaks to halal gourmet kebabs, wood-fired pizza and jerk chicken. If you are looking to follow up your delicious eats with an alcoholic beverage, you can purchase and consume them at any licensed establishment within the event footprint, as CONVERGENCE 2023 is a dry event.
Will there be art and collectibles to buy?
What is an arts festival without a vendor market? The CONVERGENCE festival features two alleys where you can meet the makers of some really cool creations.
The Punk Rock Flea Market features prints, cross-stitch artwork, candles, clothing, stickers and more. This area may have 18+ content, with some items a little on the saucy side. Participants under the age of 18 should enter at the discretion of a parent or guardian.
Nerd Alley is a celebration of all things nerd culture—think Cosplay, board games, science fiction and fantasy, comic books, collectibles, video games, and so much more! The alley will feature interactive installations, artist meet and greets, board game demos, vendor booths, and other awesome attractions.
How do I get there?
Getting to Downtown Oshawa is easy by bike, transit, walking or even with your roller skates. If you feel like scooting, pick up a Neuron or Bird scooter and roll on down.
Here are some more resources for getting around the Durham Region:
PULSE 900 operates every 10 minutes between Pickering and Downtown Oshawa, connecting to Trent University (Durham).
PULSE 901 operates every 10 minutes between Downtown Oshawa and the Durham College North Campus Terminal.
View the Durham Transit map.
What should I wear?
Glad you asked. And honestly, we can’t wait to see! This is the first year of CONVERGENCE, and we’re thinking a vintage T-shirt and some overalls sound great. A cool hat and suspenders? Also great. sweatpants and leggings? You do you and come as you are! But also, definitely wear clothes. It’s not that kind of festival. CONVERGENCE 2023 is a rain-or-shine event, so bring a rain jacket or umbrella.
Is this a family-friendly event?
Kids rock! CONVERGENCE is a family-friendly event, and children are welcome to participate. Please note that there may be 18+ content at the Punk Rock Flea Market.
What hotels are nearby to make a weekend of it?
We thought you’d never ask. There are lots of hotels and bed and breakfasts throughout Durham Region for you to choose from. If you’re hoping to be walking distance of the festival, be sure to book at the Holiday Inn Express and Suites or La Quinta Inn and Suites Downtown Oshawa.
Want to get involved in the CONVERGENCE community? Volunteer!
Festival planners are looking for volunteers who will help make this the best festival Downtown Oshawa has ever had. Get in touch with them to learn more.
Where do I get all the updates?
Follow Oshawa Tourism on Instagram.
Join the Facebook event page.
Bookmark the CONVERGENCE Oshawa website.
What can I do to get pumped up?
Check out the festival playlist on Spotify!