T-PainFor the first time ever, a New York tradition traveled north of the border in late July. Summer Jam, usually held in New Jersey and thrown by Hot 97, headed to Kitchener, Ontario to take over Bingemans Park’s new outdoor “concert bowl”, attracting 5,000 people from across Canada and the US.

Some attending fans waited as long as two hours in line to see headlining acts Busta Rhymes, T-Pain, Rick Ross and Fabolous.

The first act ever to step foot on the Summer Jam stage in Canada were Kitcheners very own Step Dee, Lil J and Dizi — all of whom served as the bill’s openers.

Organized by local promoters, the event drew one of the largest hip hop crowds that Kitchener has seen in years.

“We’re happy with the turnout and we’ve had nothing but positive feedback so far,” says Andy Sukhani, owner of Front Row Productions, the company responsible for organizing the event. “The artists were explosive, the crowd was awesome and I think everyone really enjoyed the show. It was very safe and we’re happy with how the weather cooperated.”

“It’s something that we are definitely interested in doing again next year,” he added.

T-Pain performed his unreleased single, entitled “Rap Song” from his upcoming rEVOLVEr album, which made its way to Youtube since the show, garnering thousands of views.

Summer Jam Canada also included a dance crew battle, which consisted of four crews. In the end, the title went to GeekFreaks of Oshawa with a dynamic four-minute performance that amazed the judges. The 10 members received platinum backstage access and will receive all expense paid night out in their favorite hometown nightclub.

In the “Best Bottom in North America” competition, Kate Massicotte walked home with the honor, and received a trip for two to Jamaica.

Summer Jam Canada spokesperson Jason Paul says, “As a public relations student, it was an amazing learning opportunity to get some real experience. Even my professors are proud. I’m glad I was able to work with such a great team”

Paul volunteered over 100 hours of time to the event in the past six weeks to help things run smoothly.

“There were a lot of skills from the classroom used & a lot of lessons learned. I’m still in awe about the magnitude of this event. I think it has elevated awareness of the Waterloo Regions hip hop,” he said.

For more info, and for future events, visit SummerJamCanada.com.

Below is some pics from Summer Jam Canada, courtesy of Melissa Moffat (melissamoffat.com):

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