Culture Days is about to kick off a multi-week celebration from September 22 to October 15, 2023, with thousands of free arts and culture events happening across Canada, including Winnipeg.
The festivities include a mix of tours, art projects, visual art, Indigenous arts, street parties and so much more. Nuit Blanche is the first big event of Manitoba Culture Days and it really sets the tone for the rest of the month.
The Winnipeg creative community’s biggest one-night celebration is back! Nuit Blanche takes place Saturday, September 23 throughout some of Winnipeg's most vibrant and diverse neighbourhoods and this year, will focus on contemporary art, performances and independent curators within four zones including: The Exchange District, The Forks/Canadian Human Rights Museum, Downtown and Saint-Boniface.
You can join an estimated 30,000 people from 6:00 p.m. until midnight as they interact with innovative installations, revel at parties and just generally have a fantastic time at more than 40 creative events–all of which are free! Walking, rolling, biking or hopping on the Winnipeg Trolley is highly encouraged. Download the Nuit Blanche App for Android or iOS to track the Trolley, view its route and pin point certain exhibits.
Though the direct translation of Nuit Blanche is “white night,” the context of the French translation means “a sleepless night” and a sleepless night it will be! Here's the map to start planning your route or don’t plan, just wing it. That’s one of the best parts about exploring these venues within walking distance to each other.
The Exchange District
Old Market Square
There are more than 27 events and installations scattered throughout the Exchange District this year with everything from the Winnipeg Design Festival featuring installations created by design students, a photo gallery and live local bands to a video DJ set with Winnipeg’s own, DJ Hunnicut as he plays tribute to 50 years of Hip Hop alongside a live graffiti mural collab.
Little Brown Jug – Nuit Blanche Street Party | 336 William Ave
Plan to indulge! There will be beer gardens, food vendors and music acts starting from 6 p.m. until late in addition to two installations. One installation- Primary Tones Beacon (on LBJ Patio) will challenge the perception and spatial connectivity through the association of colour and sound.
If you need a late-night snack, you can choose from the following food trucks: The Churro Stop, Tot Wheels or La Taqueria Mexican Street Tacos. Here's our 2023 Food Truck guide for some descriptions.
Stephen Juba Park | Waterfront Drive
Take Waterfront Drive and enjoy the immersive experience of The Garden of Illuminated Tales - you can't miss it as it will be filled with handmade lanterns with written and illustrated stories.
Not far from the Garden is Kookums Lounge, an interactive space of light in a teepee. The Kookums Lounge encourages an intercultural exchange in offering a place of refuge and reflection. Instead of hide, upcycled water resistant sails from sailboats and tarp material will be sewn together for the teepee covering.
NonSuch Brewing Co. | 125 Pacific Ave
Join NonSuch Brewing as they celebrate their 5th birthday! They will be dropping new beers, feature a one-night-only food menu while showing live AI art projections and performances.
Patent 5 Distillery | 108 Alexander Ave
Grab a cocktail, listen to some incredible live music (thanks to Festival du Voyageur), indulge in a food menu being offered exclusively for Nuit Blanche and witness a reconstructed Winnipeg through Artificial Intelligence.
Make note of the following street closures which will be pedestrian-only:
- Arthur St between Bannatyne Ave and McDermot Ave
- Bannatyne Ave between Main St and King St
- Albert St between Bannatyne Ave and McDermot Ave
- Hargrave St at William Ave.
- Alexander Ave between Lily St and Waterfront Drive
Darling Bar (VA Cafe) | 171 McDermot Ave
Prepare to be transported to the 1920s with prohibition style cocktails, supernatural live music and interactive theatre by phantoms from a bygone era. Make sure to get there early to watch the unveiling of a new Ghost Sign!
Immerse yourself in HYPERART – a multidisciplinary festival that blends music, visual art, digital art, Drag and dance into the heart of Winnipeg’s French Quarter.
In collaboration with Synonym Art Consultation, HYPERART is being presented by different organizations and partners throughout Saint-Boniface. Sound, colour and movement will encourage you to explore both indoor and outdoor spaces of 340 Provencher Blvd including Centre Culturel Franco-Manitobain (CCFM) and Le Patio 340.
From Lights on L’Esplanade which will be brimming with colourful projections and collective murals, to living murals on asphalt with Glow on the Pavement and live music outside, 340 Provencher is sure to be a memorable stop along the way.
Kilter Brewing is hosting Berliner Fest on both September 22 and 23, 2023. If you're looking for a party, this is the place to be. They will be dropping four new beer/cider releases, featuring special drinks, serving Berlin-style street food and hosting interactive art installations inside and out with DJs playing beats the whole time. The theme is 90s Berlin Street Style and dressing up is encouraged!
The Forks | 1 Forks Market Rd
From a beer choir, theatrical multi-media performances and projections to immersive experiences and interactive installations – The Forks will be filled with activity.
This year, The Forks will have five installations sprawled across creative spaces and iconic locations with experiences like stories from the fur trade with Parks Canada and special guest performances by members of Li Keur, Manitoba Opera's upcoming show. Or, you'll be able to take a walk through Winnipeg's past as told in a series of photos of modern graffiti at the Graffiti Gallery at the Plaza.
If art on wheels is more your thing, grab your roller skates and join IllumiSkate, a moving installation that showcases their diverse styles of roller skating while they make their way from The Forks to WAG-Qaumajuq with lots of twists and turns in between.
Canadian Museum for Human Rights | 85 Israel Asper Way
This is the first year CMHR will be opening its doors for Nuit Blanche with featured programming including an installation called Synapses by Montreal artist Caroline Monnet, which will be installed outside the Museum’s Group Entrance; an interactive performance with Savant Flaneur and in partnership with Manitoba Music, six stellar musicians performing while projections by Manufacturing Entertainment play.
Visitors will be able to enjoy lounge seating and bar service in Buhler Hall.
WAG-Qaumajuq | 300 Memorial Blvd
WAG-Qaumajuq is throwing a FREE street party and you're all invited! WAG-Qaumajuq will be celebrating community and will build on the calls to action and decolonizing initiatives of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission through ceremony and culture. They will be closing the corner of Memorial Blvd and St. Mary Ave for what is sure to be an epic outdoor street party.
There will be art installations, projections and DJs spinning tunes plus performances of Indigenous Drag performers. You'll be able to enjoy a Pop Up Powwow with food and beverage options from Bright Side Kitchen, Knapsack Coffee and alcoholic drinks and mocktails at the WAG Bar.
True North Square | 242 Hargrave St
Wander through 'Prism House' and imagine yourself as a work of art that will contribute to a collective art piece in motion. You'll be a part of an interactive multimedia art experience.
There will be a Prism House photo booth, creative labs and DJs will be taking the public on a journey through sound from Latin to Bossanova, Funk, Soul, R&B, and Hip Hop while painting the dance playground with a colourful palette of music.
The beauty of Nuit Blanche is that there's something for everyone–from sustainable fashion shows, a Kid Zone and Winnipeg Ghost Sign installations to hauntings, old theatres, a collaborative music experience on wheels and a 90s sing-along. Winnipeg is bursting with creativity and this year's Nuit Blanche promises to be one for the books!
Visit nuitblanchewinnipeg.ca for a full list of events with descriptions, addresses and times.