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Kingston Penitentiary closed in 2013 after the federal government deemed it outdated and too expensive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 It formally closed in 2013 after the federal government deemed it outdated and too expensive to run.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.

Just Posted

Play revolves around teenagers in thought-provoking dialect

Chemainus Theatre’s I & You focuses on the development of an unlikely friendship

Stouffer in a class of her own without Proteau in the field

Fairwinds golfer captures Mount Brenton ladies’ golf tournament by 15 strokes

Tour de Rock cyclists gear up on training ride

Stops in Ladysmith and Chemainus part of the fanfare and preparations

Sculpture relocation plan works perfectly in Chemainus

Heavy lifting required to place Cline’s work into Heritage Square

Police seek tips in 2015 death of Brown

Four years has passed since the body of Penelakut Island teen was discovered

VIDEO: Could we BE any more excited? ‘Friends’ fans go crazy for merch

Movie theatres will show select episodes to mark the NBC series’ 25th anniversary

Vancouver Island RCMP hunt for man after pair of indecent exposure incidents

Elderly Qualicum Beach woman grabbed by man who had been masturbating in the woods

Bodies of two missing Surrey men found near Ashcroft

Ryan Provencher and Richard Scurr have been missing since July 17

Pile of wood mulch ‘spontaneously combusts’ at Vancouver Island industrial site

Business owner thanks fire department for quick response

Five hedgehogs quickly adopted after being left at BC SPCA

Lucky new owners picked up their pets from Maple Ridge branch on Aug. 20

B.C. cricket players get interrupted by racist remark

Community has had protocols in place for years to respond to prejudice

Groovy B.C. wedding a throwback to Woodstock ‘69

Couple hosts themed wedding 50 years after legendary festival

Nearly 50% of Canadians experience ‘post-vacation blues’: poll

48 per cent of travellers are already stressed about ‘normal life’ while still on their trip

Most Read