One of Canada’s favorite comedians, Ron James, is bringing his brand of funny with a distinctly national viewpoint to Haliburton County June 10, sticking around after the show to sign his bestseller, Ron James, All Over the Map. The marquee tent at Abbey Gardens opens its flaps at 6:30 p.m. with refreshments for purchase before the show.

James has been performing for 40-plus years. After years on television in Canada and the U.S., he is still going strong with his stand-up shows.

He spent years crisscrossing Canada, performing at comedy festivals and theatres until COVID. Even a lockdown could not stop this man from working. He started streaming original one-hour comedy specials, Live from My Living Room on Zoom and wrote his book.

When scheduling the summer series, Ashley McAllister, director of operations and strategic initiatives at Abbey Gardens, said it almost always comes down to a community connection. “Ron James had done an interview on CanoeFM, talked about how he fell in love with the area, expressed an interest in doing a show in Haliburton County, and the station connected him with us.”

She also said most of the events have a similar story. “Someone knows some band, or agent and recommended it to us, or rather us to them. Or what I call ‘cottage roots,’ when someone has a cottage, knows someone who does, a friend of a friend.”

McAllister said there’s a variety of people that come to the area in the summer, from seasonal residents to cottage renters and resort-goers and she wanted to, “create different opportunities for them to experience Abbey Gardens.”

On June 30, the marquee tent will be having a country hoedown with the Rob Watts Band. On July 8, there’s a little taste of the Maritimes when Shipyard Kitchen Party takes the stage.

More laughter comes in the form of Girls Night Out, a comedy trio, on July 15. If tapping your feet and clapping your hands is more your thing, then July 22 is the night for good old rock’n’roll with a tribute band that spans the decades. To finish the month, a Frankie Valli tribute band is featured July 29.

August 11-13 will close out the summer series with Music @ the Gardens. A showcase of musicians, and magicians, with Great Lake Swimmers on Friday night, John McDermott Saturday night, with Susan Aglukark on Sunday night. Brent & Sarah Comedy Magic Show provides fun for all in the afternoon.

McAllister said, “They are all so different and hopefully that gives everyone the opportunity to do something here at the Gardens.”

For more information, go to AbbeyGardens. ca/events.