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October 24, 2014

Toronto Festivals & Events

Fall/Autumn Colours

If you're unable to drive out of the city to see the Fall Colours - popular for any avid photographer - you can still admire them, here in Toronto, in the Don Valley, High Park and Sunnybrook/Allan Gardens.

Autumn in Toronto

If you have a car and love to drive, take yourself (and family) out of the city (camera in hand) and experience the many vibrant colours of nature fondly known as the "Fall Colours". Before heading out on your drive, check the Fall Report - will save you a lot of frustration and make sure you don't miss the best!

Pedestrian Sunday Festivals ~ Kensington Market

On select Sundays, Kensington Market becomes a family-friendly area when the streets close for Pedestrian Sunday Festival. The streets become a stage for live entertainment, street performers & more! There is only one Sunday left this year: October 26 (12 to 7pm)

Just one of the roads in Kensington Market, Toronto

Definitely a favourite of the locals and a great way to experience the Market area!

Live Comedy

FREE live comedy shows - now you can't beat that can you?! The Comedy Cabaret is a monthly show of Stand-Up Comedy held at The Charlotte Room (19 Charlotte St) on the last Monday of every month.

Next performance is on Monday, Oct 27 (8-9:30pm). You can reserve your seat by booking online via Uniiverse (or just show up).


My Waterfront Photo Exhibit

Explore Toronto’s striking Waterfront through original and inspiring images from some of Toronto’s best amateur photographers. Showcases images from the 50 winning finalists of the My Waterfront Photo Contest.

collage of winning photos for waterfront exhibit

When: Sept 26-Nov 2, 2014
Where: Queen’s Quay Terminal, 207 Queens Quay West

Fall Symphony Series

The Casa Loma Fall Symphony concert series, starring the Toronto Concert Orchestra, takes place every Tuesday. There are a limited number of passes available for purchase.

To purchase the package, you can email katie.mclellan@casaloma.org and a representative from Casa Loma will be in contact within 2 business days by email with details as listed on the weblink. If all packages sell out you will receive an email notification within 2 business days.

Casa Loma Fall Symphony Series poster

When: Oct 21-Dec 9, 2014 (Tuesdays)
Where: Casa Loma

Friday Night Live

Friday Night Live "FNLs" are always a big hit. Admission: $12 (Adults), $10 (Students) and Members are Free. If you pay online there is a service fee of $2/ticket. You will be dancing, celebrating and exploring the Museum in a way you'd never imagine. There's also themed Events throughout the Museum on the night. Drink and food tickets available onsite and Don't forget your ID as it's an ADULT ONLY event!

  • Oct 17: Africa Alive
  • Oct 24: Fashion Global
  • Oct 31: Boo!
  • Nov 7:  Dinos, Dodos & Disco
  • Nov 14: Heroes
  • Nov 21: Get Wild!
  • Nov 28: Celestial Blast

For details of what Eats/Food Trucks and DJ's will be there on the night, you can check here closer to the date.

When: Oct-Nov 28 (7-11pm): Fridays
Where: Royal Ontario Museum (ROM)

AGO's First Thursdays

On the first Thursday of every month, AGO presents an evening of entertainment throughout its galleries that include pop-up talks, "Out of the Vaults" installation and hands-on art making. There's also food and bar stations throughout the AGO.

Time: 7-11:30 pm
Admission: Online: $12 (+$2 fee); At door: $15 1 2 [Tickets]

1 Buy your tickets early as this event tends to sell out - they don't hold back tickets for door purchase.
2 If you want to see the Alex Colville Exhibition, you will have to pay more.

This is an 19+ Event so don't forget your ID. Don't forget to take CASH.

Shows of Interest

KURIOS™– Cabinet of Curiosities

Cirque de Soleil returns to Toronto with another amazing show at the end of this summer. The show will run until October 26, 2014 under the Grand Chapiteau at The Port Lands [map].

Cirque de Soleil's logo for Kurios With this venue (a large blue/yellow striped tent), there's not a bad seat in it, but the higher up you go the more you will see. The stage is round and open so you don't really need to buy the tickets facing the 'stage entrance' (usually the most expensive) to enjoy a Cirque de Soleil show at this venue. It's relatively small and you will be amazed at how intimate the setting is for such a grand show.

What's the show about? Cirque's website states: "Step into the curio cabinet of an ambitious inventor who defies the laws of time, space and dimension in order to reinvent everything around him. Suddenly, the visible becomes invisible, perspectives are transformed, and the world is literally turned upside down in a place that’s as beautiful as it is mysterious."

As you can see, the video isn't really giving away too much but whatever it promises to be, it's a Cirque de Soleil show and shouldn't be disappointing. [Tickets]

Save on Attractions

We all look for a deal, especially if you're visiting as a family. The following are just some ways of catching a deal when in Toronto.

City Passports offers booklet of discounts and usually sells out quickly, so keep in mind for future visits to the city.

City Pass (not to be confused with the City Passports) offers discounted admission to five of Toronto's main tourist attractions including CN Tower. Cost is US$60.89+tax

Fun Pass will get 1 free child's general admission to 19 different Ontario attractions when you purchase an adult or senior admission! Valid June 28-October 31, but the attractions may have different dates of operation.

Ticketmaster's 2 for 1 ticket deals as well as discounts on other events! Again, worth checking out regularly.

Ripleys Aquarium of Canada

The newest addition to Toronto's tourist attractions is open for business! The aquarium finally opened its doors to the public on Oct 16 and already has been experiencing an overwhelming demand for its tickets online. It's open 365 days of the year and the times vary during the week.

picture of the aquarium building

The 135,000 sq. foot (12,500 sq. metre) interactive attraction will showcase more than 16,000 marine animals and over 450 species. Features:

Jelly Fish Exhibit

Planet Jellies

Dangerous Lagoon’s underwater tunnel showcasing Sharks, Green Sea Turtles, and Sawfish

Touch pools with Horseshoe Crabs, Stingrays, and Bamboo Sharks

Rare and unique lobsters, daily live dive shows and more!

It's situated right at the bottom of the CN Tower at 288 Bremner Boulevard, Toronto. You can purchase your tickets online or at the door. They also offer passes but these aren't available online. Prices are as follows:
Adult: $29.98
Youth (ages 6- 13): $19.98
Child (ages 3-5): $9.98
Senior (+ 65): $19.98
*Kids under 2 yrs: complimentary with adult guardian.

LEGOLAND® - Adult Nights

LEGOLAND® is, of course, a fantastic place to take your kids! But, you gotta know that if you're an adult, you MUST be accompanied by a child otherwise you will NOT be allowed to enter. For this reason, they hold "Adult Nights" - always on a Wednesday. More information

Yonge/Dundas Square

picture of Yonge and Dundas SquareYonge & Dundas Square is a place where you can experience Free live music, Free movies (during the summer), many FREE events. Or you can just hang out in one of the central spots for people to gather as there is outdoor seating available.

Better still, if you're from out of town, need quick access to online info, especially to help you find your way quickly around Toronto, you will appreciate the FREE Wi-Fi offered by Yonge & Dundas Square, compliments of Wireless Toronto. You can also pick up your concert or show tickets from the "TO Tix" booth which is partly covered from the 'elements'.

Country 'n' Western Bars in Toronto

Picture of cowboy boots and hatYep, you read that right.. Toronto is now home to not just one, but TWO 'saloons'. They not only serve up excellent eats but are bringing some good up-and-coming Country artists to Toronto.

If you want to pull out and dust off your boots, just head on down to either the Rock ’n’ Horse Saloon (250 Adelaide St. W., above Adelaide Hall) in the Entertainment District Downtown OR over to the Boots & Bourbon Saloon (725 Queen St E) in Riverside (East Toronto).

Both have those infamous Mechanical Bulls and will not disappoint even the hardcore country guy or gal... Yeee Hawww!!

PATH Information

PDF map of Toronto's underground Pathway through the downtown coreI am keeping this information on the front page as I believe it's definitely worth checking out, especially when weather's not so good. Now in the Guiness World Record book, this underground heaven is busy throughout the year.

During the summer, using the PATH is a great way to keep cool whilst checking out the numerous stores hidden under the downtown core of Toronto and during the winter, you stay warm and dry. And if you're in the downtown core (financial district at King/Bay area) and it appears to be kinda quiet on the streets during the week, just head underground and you'll find everyone there.

Remember, if you feel lost (and it's so easy to do on the PATH! - just ask, hopefully you'll ask a local!!

Updated: Oct 13