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Arts & Culture

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Steeped in historical and military roots, Quinte West offers a range of cultural festivals, events and attractions that honour the unique heritage defined by the people and industries that came here. Throughout the year, residents and visitors have many opportunities to enjoy unique events that blend art, theatre, and music with interesting locations both old and new, and often outdoors.

Pat Clark singing at Fraser Park

LIVE MUSIC

You can find live music at downtown Trenton locations throughout the year. The City of Quinte West hosts Summer Concert Series, which showcases live music performed four nights of the week, from Thursday night to Sunday night. Local talent is frequently showcased in downtown businesses, and  The Royal Canadian Legion Branch 110.

Photo: Pat Clark at the Trenton DBIA Concert Series

 

 

 

  

Trenton DBIA Concert Series The Fiddleheads , playing at the Trenton DBIA Concert Series

The Trenton DBIA puts on free concerts in beautiful Fraser Park in Trenton each Friday night during the summer from approximately the beginning of June through to September.

Each week showcases a different local artist. Don't forget to bring your lawn chair! Click here to see the concerts on our events calendar.

Photo: The Fiddleheads -Trenton DBIA Concert Series

 

 

Riverfront Square Concert Series

The RiverFront Square Concert Series runs every Saturday evening from approximately the end of June through to the first week of September and concerts are held right on the waterfront at RiverFront Square, Trenton.

These are also free musical performances for the community where you can bring your lawn chair to enjoy various local artists. Alternatively, you can view this concert series from the patios of the eateries located along the waterfront while enjoying food and drinks at the same time.

Photo: The Starpainters Trip - Riverfront Square Concert Series 

Live Music Year-Round

 

In addition to taking in the Summer Concert Series, you can ejoy other livemusic performances in many downtown Trenton venues throughout the year.

For downtown Trenton live music listings, see our events calendar

Photo: Little Red Wagon - The Port Bistro Pub

 

 

Close up of a man in a leather jacket playing an acoustic guitar MUSIC LESSONS 

 

Downtown Trenton is lucky to have two outstanding music stores that both hold music lessons for all ages--Riverside Music and Arden's Music. These stores also provide a range of musical instruments for sale and more.

Riverside & Arden's music can be found in our business directory 

 

 

ART CLUBS & ORGANIZATIONS

Trenton Art Club

A group of oil and watercolourists who meet each week to paint, sketch, and share activities. For information: call (613) 392-7743.

Arts Quinte West

Quinte West is rich in artistic talent and venues that present and support the arts. For more information on local artists and upcoming exhibitions, visit Arts Quinte West and download a copy of the newsletter.

Click here to visit the Arts Quinte West website

Tel: 613-392-7635 (Quinte West Chamber of Commerce for more information)

A young child in a blue baseball hat reaches out to touch a large circulate statue covered in butterflies.

Art in the Park

Arts Quinte West also puts on the annual Art in the Park, an outdoor art show held in Compass Court in downtown Trenton during the Festival on the Bay each year.

Visual Art Lessons

Riverside Music in downtown Trenton provides lessons in sketching and drawing as well as in watercolour painting. The Quinte West Public Library offers workshops and programs, including 'Culture Days' activities,  where children create art and crafts.

 

 

THEATRE AND CINEMA


Centre Theatre logo, with red text and "theatre lights" on top and bottom

Centre Theatre

In the year 2003 the historic Centre Theatre was purchased by Joe and Carm Donato. In the next year the entire theatre was renovated and renewed with a new vigor and imbued with a love of cinema.

With many structural and cosmetic renovations the Centre Theatre is a grand old lady that has been resurrected and restored to her former glory. In 2009, the Centre Theatre became the FIRST independent theatre in Canada to go completely digital.

With the purchase of three new, state of the art, digital projectors the Centre Theatre became a leading source of movie entertainment in the Quinte area. With the addition of new silver screens which provide high quality and crisp video the Centre Theatre was able to further expand to offering the latest in 3-D entertainment. With quality picture comes quality sound and all three cinemas have been upgraded to include new DTS surround sound systems. Even with all those upgrades and improvements the Centre Theatre maintains its commitment to the community of Quinte West with the same affordable prices to enjoy a night out at the movies. The tradition of the Centre Theatre will continue for years to come and even after all these upgrades one thing continues to remain true: they continue to have the best popcorn around!

The Centre Theatre was built nearly 100 years ago in the early beginnings of the city of Trenton and has grown with the community ever since!

Originally it provided entertainment to the people of Trenton not with movies but as a local playhouse. Actors and actresses delivered performances of many different plays in the same screening rooms that we use today to deliver the latest Hollywood blockbusters!

Years later, as movie houses became more common, the theatre was named the "Odeon" and featured a single screening room for the public to watch some of the earliest classics to come from Tinseltown.

In 1978 the Odeon was renamed the Centre Theatre and in 1979 it was renovated to provide three separate screening rooms instead of just the one.

Click here to see the Centre Theatre website.

 

Quinte Canadian Film Fest          

Quinte Canadian FilmFest exists to celebrate Quinte West's heritage as a leading film centre from 1917 to 1934, and to promote our local artists, connecting them with a local audience and supporting them in their work while reigniting a vital film culture in the City of Quinte West.

The inaugural 2017 QCFF showcased the best in Local and Canadian films over a three-day period, promoting and exhibiting our local filmmakers and their work as well as providing opportunities for the general public and filmmakers to connect at the festival.

The festival was held from September 29 to October 1 in 2017.

The festival featured film screenings in several venues in Quinte West (including the Trenton Town Hall -1861, the Fiesta Lounge, and Centre Theatre) accompanied by an opening reception, red carpet interviews with filmmakers and dignitaries, a filmmakers' reception, and Q&A sessions following screenings.

Click here to view the Quinte Canadian Film Fest website.     

 

Hollywoood North Film Festival        

The Hollywood North Film Festival (HNFF) is a community driven organization focused on bringing quality films, workshops & networking events to the Bay of Quinte Region. Via the annual festival, we hope to re-establish what was once in the 1920's, a vibrant and flourishing filmmaking area. Today, we once again have a growing artistic community that we believe can be brought together through the presence of film. 

 Click here to view the Hollywood North Film Festival website.

 

Literature

Wide shot of the public library, which is mainly constructed from blue glass windows, framed by a bright cloudy sky and the Trent river along the bottom.

The Quinte West Public Library  (photo by Elizabeth Arden Foote)

Public Library

The Quinte West Public library is a state-of-the-art facility located right on the water in a serene setting that is a book lover's dream. The library houses more than books. The library offers many programs and workshops for children, teens, and adults as well as free computer use.

Many renowned authors such as Terry Fallis, Marina Nemat, and Heather O'Neill have paid a visit to the Quinte West Public Library to speak about their work.

Click here to read more about the Quinte West Public Library and its programs.


J&B bookstore logo

J&B Books

Downtown Trenton is also home to J&B Books. Recently expanding to a new larger size, the back half of J&B Books offers a wide range of quality used books for children, teens, and adults. The front half of the store stocks a variety of comics for great prices, inclduing vintage and rare editions. J&B Books also offers game nights where youth gather to play a variety of strategy games, such as Magic the Gathering and Dungeons and Dragons.