The 2019 Busker Pilot Program commences May 1st and will end October 31st, 2019.

Busking is welcome in the City of Fredericton’s downtown as it provides entertainment and enjoyment to its people. Likewise, it provides buskers and opportunity to showcase their talents and for their audience to show their appreciation.

The busking permit is applicable within the following boundaries: East to West – Regent Street to Westmorland Street, and North to South – Queen Street to King Street.

Busking Permit holders agree to abide by all the guidelines (below). Busking permits may be confiscated should the holder not comply with the guidelines.

General Guidelines:

Buskers may showcase such artistry as vocal or acoustic music, acting/mime, poetry/spoken word, comedy, dance, juggling, magic or related. Buskers do not include face painters, portrait artists, crafts makers or any other artist that produces a specific fabricated product for sale.

Buskers must display an authentic talent for their chosen form of entertainment and must be legitimately entertaining in an appropriate manner for the audience. References are required and an audition may be required at time of application before a permit will be issued.

In 2019, 2 types of permits will be issued:

  1. Seasonal Permit – issued between May 1 and May 31 only, which will be good for the entire season, expiring on October 31, 2019.
  2. Visitor Permit – issued from May 1 to October 1, which will only be valid for 7 days, and which any busker may only apply for and receive a maximum of 2 times through the season.

Those wishing to apply for a permit may do so in person at the Downtown Fredericton Inc. office at 349 King Street, Suite 1, Monday – Friday, 8:30-4:30.

Busking permits are administered by Downtown Fredericton Inc. with the exception of:

  1. The week of Harvest Jazz and Blues Festival (Sept. 11-16, 2018). During that week, the DFI Busker program will be suspended within the boundaries of the Festival, allowing the HJB executive to oversee and sanction the week’s street entertainment program.
  2. At the Garrison Night Market to be held on Thursday nights from June 20th until September 5th on Carleton Street. Buskers wishing to perform at the Garrison Night Market must apply separately to the organizers at: (506) 292-0686.
  3. Other big festivals may be planned in 2019 and DFI maintains the right to suspend its Busker program upon notification.

There is no fee for the Busker permit. Permits are uniquely assigned and are non-transferable.

The Busking Permit Holder MUST:

  • Conduct themselves in a safe and cooperative manner and abide by the guidelines.
  • Treat members of the public with respect. Performers must refrain from the use of lewd or offensive conduct or language in the course of their performance.
  • Perform entertainment that is suitable for a general family audience.
  • Carry a valid Busker ID Permit at the time of the performance/activity and display the Permit in a visible place.
  • Be actively busking when they have their permit on display.
  • Produce the Busker ID Permit upon request by representatives of Downtown Fredericton, the City of Fredericton or it’s Police Officers. Buskers who cannot produce a valid permit will be asked to close down their performance and vacate the area.
  • Comply with all General conditions by representatives of Downtown Fredericton, the City of Fredericton or it’s Police Officers and Parking Commissionaires and must cease the activity immediately if directed to do so.
  • Parental consent will be required for buskers under the age of 18, and a parent or guardian must be present at all times with approved buskers who are under the age of 16.
  • Pick up and lawfully dispose of any and all garbage or other litter associated with the performance.
  • Common courtesy is a must. Maintain a reasonable distance from other buskers that are in close proximity.
  • Amplifiers must be used responsibly and with respect to the location and cannot violate the Noise By-Law. The performance cannot cause a nuisance to nearby businesses and their customers. If complaints are received, or if police, by-law officers or DFI staff determine the amplification is too loud, it can result in the permit being temporarily or permanently recalled and the busking privilege withdrawn.

The Permit Holder MUST NOT:

  • Obstruct or allow his or her audience to obstruct fire exits, fire hydrants and host connections, transit stops or store front entrances, or undertake the activity in doorways, driveways or other access points.
  • Obstruct or impede the free flow of pedestrian or vehicular traffic or otherwise prevent such movement.
  • Adversely affect or disturb the peace, comfort or convenience of users of the Public Place.
  • Use equipment or props that pose any danger or risk to the public. Dangerous goods include the use of substances that are flammable, toxic or hazardous and implements such as swords and knives. It includes substances that present an immediate danger to people, property or environment and extends to instruments that may have been modified for safety but can still be perceived as dangerous. Dangerous goods include but are not limited to swords, knives, fire, bed of nails, chainsaws.
  • Stand, climb or otherwise use street furniture (including benches) to undertake the activity or cause damage to any Infrastructure.
  • Convey, whether verbally, in writing or on signage, a message or communication which jeopardizes public order or otherwise might encourage a breach of the peace.
  • Leave any equipment in a position that may cause a hazard to the general public or cause an obstruction to vehicular or pedestrian traffic flow.
  • Use a generator.
  • Advertise any product, service or sponsor other than their own work.
  • Be sleeping or panhandling when their Busking Permit is displayed.
  • Buskers may not charge a minimum or set fee for their performance. Aggressive or persistent solicitation of donations is not permitted.
  • Represent themselves as employees of the City of Fredericton or of Downtown Fredericton Inc.

The Busking Permit Holder MAY:

  • Passively receive monetary appreciation volunteered by an audience for their performance.
  • Supply for sale a small amount of approved original merchandise such as CD’s or DVD’s that directly relate to the busker’s own work. Please disclose your intentions and seek approval when submitting your application.

Suggested Busking Locations

  • Busking is permitted in outdoor public spaces within the following boundaries: East to West – Regent Street to Westmorland Street, and North to South – Queen Street to King Street with the exception of the Historic Garrison District and Officers’ Square.
  • You must seek permission from the private property owner if you locate on private property.