Kayak Concert Takes to the Water in Sturgeon Bay

Have you ever attended a concert seated inside a kayak or standing atop a paddleboard? If not, you’ll have your chance Saturday, Aug. 27, when the Door County Kayak Concert returns to Sturgeon Bay. 

“We’re excited to be bringing back this popular event,” said organizer Adam Peronto of Peninsula Charities. 

Rent a watercraft or supply your own; then paddle along the shore of the Sturgeon Bay canal, past Dunlap Reef and up to Bullhead Point near the Empire State shipwreck. Along the route, Minneapolis-based bluegrass group Buffalo Galaxy will lead the way while performing a live concert from a pontoon boat, with its fast-paced sounds sending toe-tappin’ – or is it paddle tappin’? – sounds across the water. 

“Buffalo Galaxy is a bluegrass band that has been on our radar and picking up a lot of speed recently,” Peronto said. “They also came recommended by the band we had last year, so it was sort of a get-them-while-you-can sort of thing.”

Last year’s inaugural event featured live music by Feed the Dog, an eclectic, jam-rock-grass band from Wisconsin. 

“Bluegrass music also feels like a good vibe for an outdoor kayak event like this,” Peronto added. 

There were 75 boats on the water last year, a number Peronto said this event will meet, if not exceed, especially because it’s an easy outing that’s suitable for even the most novice paddler.

Buffalo Galaxy performs at this year’s concert.

“Experience helps, but the route we take is user friendly,” he said. “It’s more about the music and the experience than the kayaking, plus we also have a lifeguard and kayak instructor.” 

Not a kayaker? No problem. The event – though called the Door County Kayak Concert – is also open to any nonmotorized watercraft, from kayaks to canoes to stand-up paddleboards. 

“It’s a totally unique experience and just a great way to enjoy a Door County summer day,” Peronto said. 

The cherry on top, he added, is that all proceeds go to local communities. 

“We’re thrilled to have people out enjoying the waters of Door County, and the fact that this event benefits local, environmentally focused nonprofits makes the day even more meaningful.”

Funds from the event will be used to preserve the beauty and natural environment of Door County lands. 

The event kicks off from Otumba Park, 212 W. Locust Court, at 11 am, with public parking available and volunteers on hand to assist paddlers with launching their watercraft. 

Find out more by following Peninsula Charities on Facebook, or direct questions to Adam Peronto at [email protected] or 920.362.6234.

Door County Kayak Concert
Saturday, Aug. 27, 11 am

Otumba Park, 212 W. Locust Court in Sturgeon Bay


Supply your own watercraft: $25 (no motors allowed)

Rent a watercraft: $50 (rentals provided by Bay Shore Outfitters)
Purchase tickets at

The concert is weather dependent, so in case of a rainout, all ticket holders will be offered a pass to attend next year’s event for free. No refunds will be offered.