Downtown Countdown

Saturday, December 31, 2022 | 6:00–11:59pm

Event Type
Barrie City Hall

Downtown Barrie is once again the place to be to ring in the New Year! Since 1998, the Downtown Countdown has brought thousands from near and far together to celebrate the arrival of the new year at Barrie City Hall. Thank you to Rock 95 and 107.5 Kool FM for their support!

This year’s free, family-friendly celebration features rock band Sloan as the headliner, Splash’N Boots as the children’s performer, and Grant Boyer and The Straits as the featured local artists.

Every year, the City of Barrie invites bands from Barrie and area to submit for the opportunity to perform on the Downtown Countdown stage. From over 60 submissions, both Grant Boyer and The Straits were selected to be featured as we ring in 2023!

In addition to the musical performances, the Downtown Countdown celebration will include family activities, roaming buskers and two fireworks shows—the first at approximately 8pm and the second at midnight.

Event Schedule

Times are approximate and subject to change
6pm to midnight: Activities & vendors open
7pm: Splash’N Boots
8pm: Family countdown & fireworks
8:30pm:  The Straits
9:30pm: Grant Boyer
10:45pm: Sloan
11:55pm:  Greetings from dignitaries
Midnight: Countdown & fireworks


Between 6pm & midnight, under the twinkling lights on the arch of Old City Hall, enjoy:

  • Skating on the Circle at the Centre rink (open weather-dependent).
    Indoor change rooms available.
  • Roaming performers
  • Family fun: face painting, Snow Valley's mini tube slide,
    inflatables, and more!
  • Bonfire warming zone
  • Food vendors
  • Two fireworks shows! The first at 8pm following the family celebration and the second at midnight to ring in 2023. Fireworks will be viewable from various vantage points along the waterfront, but best viewed closer to Barrie's downtown. 

Transit & Parking

Barrie Transit bus service will be free on New Year’s Eve starting at 5pm, and Routes 1 and 8 will operate until 3am. Downtown parking is FREE and available within walking distance, (including the Collier Street Parkade).

Road Closures

The following road closures are in effect for the Downtown Countdown: 

Collier Street, Owen to Mulcaster 6am December 30 to 12 noon January 1
Collier Street, Mulcaster to Poyntz 3pm December 31 to 2am January 1
Mulcaster Street, Dunlop to Worsley3pm December 31 to 2am January 1

About Sloan

Sloan is a Toronto-based rock band that originated in Halifax, Nova Scotia. The quartet possessed a rare chemistry from the first time they performed in 1991 and are credited as being the main instigator for the East Coast alternative scene. Throughout their 30-year history, these Canadian indie rock heroes have remained true to their sound that is quintessentially Sloan and have been named one of Canada’s top five bands of all-time in a CBC critics poll. Over the course of their quarter-century career, they have amassed an outstanding collection of over 250 songs, 30 singles with airplay at Canadian Rock Radio, 9 Juno Award nominations, and 1 win for Best Alternative Album. Sloan have just recently released their newest album Steady along with lead single ‘Scratch the Surface’.

black and white photo of four band members sitting facing camera

About Splash’N Boots

Just off the heels of their second Juno Award, as well as a 2022 Canadian Folk Music Award, Splash’N Boots are bringing their nearly 20-year legacy in children’s music to new generations with a family show filled with connection, music, and heart. They have appeared in over 8.5 million homes across Canada with their number one TV show, are streamed all over the world, written and produced an episode of Sesame Street, and collaborated with Alice Cooper, Alan Doyle, The Wiggles, and more. They believe in a world where music can be enjoyed across all generations and have created a global community dedicated to making every child feel seen, heard, and loved for exactly who they are. They just released their newest album I Am Love in October.

man and woman seated on couch smiling, holding guitar
Splash’N Boots

About Grant Boyer

Grant Boyer is a Canadian Rock Artist from the Barrie area, who’s recent single “Alarm Bells” climbed to #37 on Canada’s Active Rock radio chart (Aug 2022). He was a founding member of Golden Gate Graves and has shared the stage with many great Canadian acts over the years, including Big Wreck, The Sheepdogs, The Tea Party, Mother Mother, April Wine, Honeymoon Suite, and Hollerado. You could say is sound is edgy rock with a dash of humour, but don't call it Dad Rock.

Grant Boyer

About The Straits

Comprised of family and friends from Barrie and area, The Straits are a 6 piece band that delivers. They will rock the Downtown Countdown stage with a mix of original material as well as popular rock covers from the 60s to now, including The Rolling Stones, Jimmy Hendrix, The Black Crowes, The Police, Tragically Hip, The Beatles, Bryan Adams, and more. 

Event Sponsors

Downtown Countdown is Generously Supported By: