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2014 Downtown Countdown

Tuesday, December 31, 2013
7:00pm – 12:15am

The City of Barrie is proud to present the 16th annual Downtown Countdown.  Traveling from near and far, thousands join together in downtown Barrie to ring in the New Year with a free evening of fun and entertainment for the whole family!  The celebration began in 1998 and has quickly become a tradition for the community and one of the largest New Year's Eve events in Central Ontario.

Festivities begin at 7:00pm and include skating on the Circle at the Centre rink, horse-drawn wagon rides, face painting, food vendors, and fireworks.  The highlight of the night is a line-up of amazing live entertainment featuring a special performance for kids, local up-and-coming talent, and a Canadian headline act not to be missed.


7:00pm - Splash 'n Boots
7:45pm - Fireworks presented by Laurentian University
8:15pm - Swaying Tuesdays
9:15pm - Autumns Cannon
10:30pm - Big Wreck
11:55pm - Countdown to midnight
12:00am - Happy New Year!  Fireworks presented by Laurentian University 

*Times are approximate 


The City of Barrie and Rock 95 welcome Big Wreck, one of Canada's best live rock acts, to headline the Downtown Countdown.  After reaching success in the 90s with two albums and hits such as 'Blown Wide Open', 'That Song', and 'The Oaf', Big Wreck took a ten year hiatus.  Ian Thornley pursued a successful solo project, Thornley, and then reunited with Brian Doherty to release Big Wreck's third album 'Albatross' in 2012.  'Albatross' reached number one on the Canadian rock charts and was nominated for Rock Album of the Year at the Junos.

Their unique sound and exceptional songwriting combine with unmistakable vocals to deliver an amazing live show that will rock Barrie into the New Year.

For more information about Big Wreck, visit


Splash 'n Boots

The Downtown Countdown will also feature entertainment for the young and young at heart with the return of Splash 'n Boots.  They are one of Canada's top acts for children and a Barrie favourite!  They have been voted Canadian Children's Group of the Year, performed more than 1200 shows around the world, are featured on Treehouse TV, and have six award-winning albums.  Splash 'n Boots are sure to put on a show the whole family will love, so come prepared to dance!

For more information about Splash 'n Boots, visit

Autumns Cannon

Autumns Cannon, one of Ottawa's most promising acts, will lead up to the headliner.  Their debut album 'Open Letter' was produced by Gord Sinclair of the Tragically Hip and Steve Bays of Hot Hot Heat, and includes singles 'Shake it Off' and the catchy title track 'Open Letter'.  The songwriting crosses a wide emotional scope from love, hope, and redemption to  loneliness and despair all leading to a message of perseverance backed by guitars.  They have opened for ZZ Top, Platinum Blonde, Tom Cochrane, and most recently Serena Ryder right here in Barrie.  Early in 2014, they will depart on a cross-Canada tour with the Goo Goo Dolls.

For more information about Autumns Cannon, visit


Swaying Tuesdays

Swaying Tuesdays is a five piece, independent rock outfit that formed just outside of Barrie two years ago. Sway was founded by brothers Brent and Greg Lee, cousin Alex Cockburn, and friend Scott Walker.  The band was joined by friend Sean Worster in late 2013.  Together they are focused on creating melodic, harmony-laden, pop music inspired by the likes of The Band, The Beach Boys and The Beatles all while maintaining their own unique and contemporary sensibilities.

The City of Barrie invited local acts to apply for the opportunity to perform on the Downtown Countdown stage.  Swaying Tuesdays was selected to play in front of a hometown crowd from the over 30 submissions received and they will put on a performance not to be missed.

For more information about Swaying Tuesdays, visit

  Getting Around

On New Year's Eve, Barrie Transit offers free service from 6:00pm to 9:00pm with service extended to 3:00am at the regular fare.

Click here for more information about parking in downtown Barrie. 

When making your way around downtown, road closures for the event will include:

  • Collier street from Owen Street to Mulcaster Street from December 30th at 6:00am to January 1st at noon
  • Collier Street from Mulcaster Street to Berczy Street from December 31st at 5:00pm to January 1st at 2:00am and
  • Mulcaster Street from Dunlop Street to Worsley Street from December 31st at 5:00pm to January 1st at 2:00am.

Barrie's Downtown Countdown is Generously Sponsored By