The Toronto festivals and events calendar is full for this summer for all ages. The list is so long that I am breaking it up in various blog posts. So if you are looking for something to do in Toronto this summer, then enjoy our first installment of What’s on in Toronto this Summer for a calendar of events. All events and festival are walking or streetcar access from the Boatel.
Doors Open Toronto is a popular annual city-wide weekend celebration, now in its 13th year that features FREE access to more than 135 architecturally, historically, culturally and socially significant buildings.
In commemoration of the War of 1812 bicentennial, this year’s Doors Open Toronto theme is 200 Years of Building Our City. The event will take place on May 26 and May 27, highlighting the city builders of these significant buildings; the fascinating personalities who shaped Toronto’s architecture and history. “Toronto’s Waterfront played an important role in the development of our city,” states Carol Jolly, Executive Director, The Waterfront BIA. “Through Doors Open on Toronto’s Waterfront, visitors will be able to see and experience the excitement of the Waterfront like never before. Tour the ships docked along the water’s edge and take an historical journey of Toronto on the Water, through a unique photo exhibit in Queen’s Quay Terminal featuring over 100 archival images displayed publicly for the first time ever.”
Experience the waterfront’s most distinctive ships at Gangways Open! The charter boat business is one of the main tourism attractions at the Toronto Waterfront and has a rich history. There is no better way to experience Toronto than from the water!All of the 15 participating ships will open their doors (and their gangways!) for FREE public dockside tours. The ships along the dock walls will be open for viewing from 10am to 5pm, subject to availability.
Toronto International Circus Festival – May 19 to May 21 Featuring extraordinary circus artists from around the world, the Toronto International Circus Festival features outdoor stages, rain or shine. Visitors to the festival will experience side-splitting comedy, eye-popping acrobatics and mind-bending daredevil stunts! The show features world-class acrobats, unicyclists, fire-eaters, stilt walkers, live musicians, face painters, balloon sculptors and more. FREE Event Festival location: Harbourfront Centre 235 Queens Quay West Toronto
Toronto Taste Sunday, May 27th Tease your taste buds with a gastronomic adventure showcasing 60 of Toronto’s top chefs and 30 beverage purveyors at the Royal Ontario Museum. Toronto Taste is presented by The Daniels Corporation, a supporter of Second Harvest for the past 17 years. Proceeds from the event go to Second Harvest. Tickets are available for purchase for $250 each (with a tax receipt issued for $125). Event location: Royal Ontario Museum 100 Queen’s Park Toronto ON Telephone: 416 625-6774
Toronto Festival of Clowns – May 31 to Jun 03 Clowns, mimes, bouffons, physical comedians and other performers from across Canada unite to provoke, disturb and treat you with that mysterious and delightful art form known as clowning. FREE Event. Festival location: 6 Noble St. just west of Queen W and Dufferin Toronto ON http://www.torontoclown.com/
Annual InspiraTO Theatre Festival – Jun 01 to Jun 10 Canada’s biggest ten-minute play festival is back and it’s bigger than ever! Featuring 16 exciting new plays by a diverse array of playwrights, this festival is Toronto’s only chance to experience the thrilling genre of the ten-minute play. The InspiraTO Theatre Festival kicks off at the Alumnae Theatre for a limited run. Tickets: $12 – $17 Festival location: Alumnae Theatre, 70 Berkeley St Toronto ON
Worldwide Short Film Festival – Jun 05 to Jun 12 Some of the most outstanding short films from Canada and around the world hit the screen at this festival. Competitions (both Canadian and International), special programs and gala screenings are just part of the event. Promotion and launching of films, as well as networking for filmmakers, is the goal at the Festival Symposium and Marketplace. Festival location: Various Locations Toronto ON Telephone: 1 416 445-1446
Toronto Tango Festival – Jun 07 to Jun 10 Toronto Tango Festival is a four day celebration of Argentine Tango, with workshops for all levels, practicas, milongas, performances and more. Festival location: Address: Lithuanian Hall, 1573 Bloor St W, Toronto ON
LuminaTO Festival of Arts and Creativity – Jun 08 to Jun 17 For 10 extraordinary days in June, the vibrant city of Toronto’s stages, streets and public spaces are illuminated with arts and creativity. Luminato is an annual multidisciplinary celebration of theatre, dance, classical and contemporary music, film, literature, visual arts, design and more. For more information on both free and ticketed LuminaTO events, including dates, locations and schedules, visit www.luminato.com.
Muthadi International Drumming Festival – Jun 09 to Jun 10 Celebrating rhythms from around the globe, this annual music fest features an impressive line-up of live local, national and international acts. Drum workshops, dancing, food and craft vendors, kids’ activities and a parade of drums are added highlights. Festival location: University Avenue & College St Toronto ON
North By Northeast Music and Film Festival – Jun 11 to Jun 17 Known as The NXNE, this festival showcases emerging artists from Canada, the United States and other countries. Musical genres performed have included folk, punk and funk. The event, usually held in June, takes place in clubs, outdoor stages and special venues in the downtown area. A conference unites the movers and shakers of the industry with many budding performers. The relatively new film portion of the festival offers special screenings of new films. Festival location: Various Venues Toronto, ON
Toronto Wine and Spirits Festival – Jun 14 to Jun 16 From tastings in the original Fermenting Cellar of the former Gooderham and Worts distillery and gourmet fair in the Boiler House, to seminars in tented pavilions on the brick lined paths, this truly is a unique setting for this kick off to summer … a summer solstice. Festival location: Distillery District Toronto ON
Taste of Little Italy – Jun 15 to Jun 17 Live music, a crafters showcase and extensive opportunities to sample authentic Italian cuisine are just a few of the festivities available at this three-day, open-air street festival. The events occur in Little Italy along College street from Bathurst street to Shaw street. Festival location: College St., between Shaw St. and Euclid Ave. Toronto
Ontario Craft Beer Week – Jun 17 to Jun 24 Held at various venues across the city, this annual festival celebrates craft beer brewing through an array of tasting events, brewery tours, live music, cooking demos and much more. Festival location: Various Venues, Toronto.
Bonjour Toronto! Sur le magnifique site d’Harbourfront, en plein centre-ville et en bordure du lac Ontario, Toronto célèbre la francophonie du 22 au 24 juin prochain dans le cadre de la 30e édition de la Franco-Fête – Festival de la Francophonie internationale. The magnificent Harbourfront Centre site on the shores of Lake Ontario is where Toronto will celebrate La Francophonie From June 22 to 24. This will be the 30th edition of the Franco-Fête – Festival de la Francophonie international (FFT).
TD Toronto Jazz Festival – Jun 22 to July 1 For ten days in June a number of jazz types take over Toronto’s downtown venues to enjoy the music of Toronto’s Downtown Jazz Festival. Internationally acclaimed musicians delight the large crowds that flock to one of Canada’s largest jazz music events Festival location: Address: Venues throughout downtown Toronto
Toronto International Dragon Boat Race – Jun 23 to Jun 24 Combining both sport and ancient Chinese culture, the Toronto International Dragon Boat Race includes races for adults, youth and families. Over 125,000 spectators and participants attend each year to see dance companies, attend workshops, watch an onsite parade, visit the multicultural village, cheer on race teams and more. Festival location: Toronto Islands.
Toronto Waterfront Redpath Festival June 21- 24 We agree that it IS better by the water! The Waterfront Festival will expose the best of Maritime Canada to southern Ontario residents in a four-day, non-stop street-level kitchen party on the Toronto Waterfront. The Wharf at York, Sweet Smokin’ Suga’ Beach Jam or Saltscapes. Sponsored by the Waterfront BIA Festival location: HtO park along the Toronto waterfront west of Harbourfront Centre. www.waterfrontbia.com
Toronto Pride Festival – June 22 to July 1 -Toronto Pride Week is an annual event that takes place in downtown Toronto during the last week of June. The event is one of the largest of its kind in the world and celebrates diverse sexual and gender identities, histories, cultures, creativities, families, friends and lives. The week long festival includes a three-day arts fest, a weekend street fair (including a community fair and market place), a Dyke March and a Pride Parade.
Stay tuned for another installment of What’s on in Toronto this Summer. If we have missed an event of festival happening in Toronto, then please let us know and we will include it.