Come Rock N Roar – Little Festival – Big Noise

David Wilcox with Ron and Janice Stolar
David Wilcox with Ron and Janice Stolar

Ron Stolar is facing a serious problem as he prepares to execute the fifth annual Come Rock N Roar music festival Friday August 15th and Saturday August 16th at the scenic Four Seasons Waterfront Park in Spanish, Northern Ontario, located on the northern shore of Lake Huron. Things are so well organized, the local concert promoter doesn’t know what to do with himself!

“I’m waking up in the morning and looking for something to do,” explained Stolar who doubles as a Sudbury miner and the voluntary head of the town’s recreation department. “With previous festivals, I used to face a major list of challenges right up to the start of the event. But now, by the fifth festival, you do things by second nature, I am a lot more confident dealing with these challenges.”

 Icebreakers' Carter Morin
Icebreakers’ Carter Morin

With Trooper and Helix due to perform Friday and Randy Bachman and Honeymoon Suite set to headline on Saturday, Come Rock N Roar boasts another solid lineup following last year’s event which featured Loverboy, Streetheart, Nick Gilder, Coney Hatch, Lee Aaron and David Wilcox.

What is even more novel about this year’s event is that local bands are being elevated  to support status on the evening’s lineup  with Sudbury’s Icebreaker set to open for Bachman and Honeymoon Suite on Saturday and two more local bands; Espanola’s  Nye Nye  and popular Spanish band Railroad Steele opening Friday for Helix and Trooper.

Icebreaker, a band the combines music teachers and students (including 12-year old guitar wiz Carter Morin) from Sudbury area public schools, was last year’s winner of the festival’s Battle of The Band’s contest and were so popular that they have been brought back to play a starring role this year along with last year’s contest runner’s up ,  Nye Nye who also went over well with the locals.


Stolar continues to enjoy success staging his Battle of the Bands contest with the winning band receiving $1,000 and also getting to play in the lineup along with four other runners’ up bands which each receive $500 plus a spot on the Saturday show. This year’s winning entry is Broke Hustlers from Espanola while the four runners up bands are Fifth Column, Anxiety, Of Tall Tales and Suicide Kings.

“It’s amazing that we actually had 12 quality entries just from the local area,” noted Stolar. “Not all great  talent just comes from the Toronto area. Our contest proves that good talent can come from anywhere. These young bands get to experience what it’s like playing on the main stage at a major festival whilst rubbing shoulders with some of their heroes. “

The average attendance for this festival is around 2,000 people, drawing mainly from Northern Ontario, which is fine for Stolar who wants to contain the numbers.  “Our motto is the bigger the crowd, the less service we can provide,”he informed. “As long as we can stay within our budget and not go in the hole financially we like things the way they are. ”


Initially organized as a `Homecoming Event’ to attract the miners back to the North shore region who had been displaced by the closing of the uranium mines in Elliot Lake and had scattered to other mining centres across Canada, Stolar wanted to stage a function that would give those people a reason to return.

We didn’t just want to put on a `Pancake Breakfast’, we wanted a stronger event than that, “mused Stolar. “So it’s great to see old friends come back and meet new friends. We have people now planning their holidays around the festival so that’s great to keep the attendance figures consistent.”

People wishing to attend this excellent festival can still obtain tickets, $75.00 for both days, by contacting Concert event goes this Friday (August 15th) and Saturday (August 16th) Lots of camping spots still available.

Photos By Ted Van Boort.
6 2


Related posts