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A hippie invasion

In spite of the economic windfall brought by the colourful fauna gathering at the Butte à Mathieu, several residents failed to see this “invasion” in a good light and made it known to the town council.

Black and white photo of a group of young women in summer dresses among the spectators outside La Butte.

Today’s grandmothers!


They were not entirely wrong. With the opening of the Butte à Mathieu, Val-David would never be quite the same again. Not only did thousands of young people invade the village to go to the Butte, but in the wake of the hippie movement of the 1960s, many artists also saw an opportunity to get away from the city to live from their art and blossom in a community of like minds.

Despite the sometimes-strained relations between the village and the Butte, the fact remains that the boîte à chansons was the cultural engine of Val-David and the surrounding area for several decades.

If Val-David’s cultural reputation is what it is today, it is in large part thanks to Gilles Mathieu and his Butte à Mathieu.

Black and white photo of about 100 spectators attending an outdoor performance at La Butte. At the top of the picture, the feet of people sitting on part of the roof of La Butte can be seen.

Even on the roof!