St. Laurent Boulevard, also known as the Main, is an iconic Montreal thoroughfare peppered with shopping opportunities along its 11-kilometre stretch. Mind you, said stretch isn't quite as commercially dense as downtown Montreal's Ste. Catherine Street save for a few days a year during sidewalk sale season.
That's when the Main really comes alive. St. Laurent street fairs, sidewalk sales, or ventes trottoirs as well call them in Quebec, proposing clearance sale prices on apparel, housewares and accessories.
But they're not not just about sales. Ironically, sales are often the last thing on some people's minds. Street fairs and sidewalk sales tend to attract every walk of life, including the shopping aversive.
Locals and visitors get street massages. They visit art indoor and outdoor exhibits. They linger on terraces with a cold brewski, cocktail, or glass of wine, deciding which morsel of street food they'll try next. Mangoes-on-a-stick and fried noodles are de rigueur, Main street fair traditions, and if your timing is right, live entertainment, from DJ sessions to other surprises inevitably occur at the most vibrant street fair in the city.
Recent years have seen the addition of live mural art creation along St. Laurent and nearby nooks courtesy of Mural, a public arts festival attracting international talent weaved into the annual street fair experience since its inception in 2013, furnishing the urban landscape with stunning murals, some of the most impressive spray-painted art in the modern world.
St. Laurent Street Sales and Fairs in 2017
- Mural Public Art Festival: June 8 to Jun 18, 2017
- Grill St. Laurent: June 14 to June 16, 2017 (held in conjunction with Mural)
- Mix'Arts Festival: an August tradition in years past, there hasn't been a a Mix'Arts since its last edition in 2014.
- BLVD: September 7 to September 10, 2017 a brand new September street fair to celebrate summer's final days
Section of St. Laurent Boulevard Closed to Traffic
St. Laurent Boulevard, from Sherbrooke to de Pins, is always closed off to traffic during street fairs but street closures can extend all the way north at Mont-Royal (map). It really depends on the edition.
In 2017, Mural extended from Sherbrooke to Avenue Mont-Royal.