Musician Tom Cochrane poses in Toronto on Friday, February 6, 2015. The grounds of an infamous Ontario prison will be transformed into a rock music festival later this year. Darren Calabrese/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Headstones, Tom Cochrane, Tragically Hip members to perform at the Kingston Pen

Kingston Penitentiary closed in 2013 after the federal government deemed it outdated and too expensive

The grounds of an infamous Ontario prison will be transformed into a rock music festival later this year.

Singer Tom Cochrane and members of the Tragically Hip are among those expected to perform at the former Kingston Penitentiary for a charity concert on Sept. 14.

The Headstones, fronted by singer, actor and Kingston native Hugh Dillon, will headline the show called “Rockin’ the Big House” that’s expected to draw 2,500 people.

The Trews, Pursuit of Happiness and Kasador are also on the bill, as well as the Hip’s Paul Langlois, Gord Sinclair and Rob Baker, who are special guests.

Tickets are $75 and go on sale through Ticketmaster on Saturday at 10 a.m., with proceeds supporting the United Way of Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington.

The Kingston Penitentiary was once home to some of Canada’s most dangerous criminals including killers Clifford Olson and Paul Bernardo. It formally closed in 2013 after the federal government deemed it outdated and too expensive to run.

Now, curious visitors can book tours at the site through a program run by the City of Kingston, Correctional Service Canada and the St. Lawrence Parks Commission.

VIDEO: Tragically Hip singer-songwriter Gord Downie dies at 53

Bhavana Varma, president and CEO of the United Way of KFL&A, which is organizing the concert, said the organization used to run those tours and was familiar with the location.

They got the idea for the event when brainstorming a new way to approach their annual fundraiser, she said.

“It just seemed like, what’s unique in Kingston? And certainly the Pen is.”

The bands are performing without a fee and local breweries are donating beer to help raise money, she said.

READ MORE: ‘It only lacks your presence’: truth, art, words and the legacy of Gord Downie

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Homes evacuated in Fairmont due to localized flooding from heavy rainfall

RDEK has issued a state of local emergency, RCMP going door to door in affected areas

Kimberley Arts Council keeping the arts alive during pandemic

Centre 64 is Kimberley remains closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but… Continue reading

The Weed Warrior: an invasive weed, new to the East Kootenay

Wild Parsnip is a plant that most of us don’t want to have a Close Encounter of any Kind with

Selkirk graduation in Kimberley will look very different this year

We have all had to change things in the face of the… Continue reading

Council to write letter of support for Kimberley Dynamiters

KIJHL teams all seeking financial support from the provincial government in wake of COVID-19

VIDEO: Injured bald eagle rescued in B.C. First Nations community

Bird suspected injured in fight, whisked off to Coquitlam rehab

Toronto Raptors’ Ujiri says conversations about racism can no longer be avoided

Thousands have protested Floyd’s death and repeated police killings of black men across the United States

B.C.’s Central Kootenay region declares state of emergency, issues evacuation orders

The evacuation alert covers all areas except the Cities of Castelgar and Nelson

‘I’m afraid’: Witnesses of wolf attack on senior near Prince Rupert worried about safety

Frank Russ shows where the unprovoked wolf attacked his father

Protesters prepare to rally against racism in front of Vancouver Art Gallery

Rally is in response to the deaths of black Americans and a Toronto woman

Introducing the West Coast Traveller: A voyage of the mind

Top armchair travel content for Alaska, Yukon, BC, Alberta, Washington, Oregon and California!

Protesters rally against anti-black, Indigenous racism in Toronto

Police estimated the crowd to be between 3,500 and 4,000 and said there was no violence

Feds earmark $1.5M to support recovery of B.C., Indigenous tourism

B.C. money will be split between Vancouver Island and Indigenous tourism

‘We’re sick of it’: Anger over police killings shatters U.S.

Tens of thousands marched to protest the death of George Floyd

Most Read