Festivals in Toronto


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A pirate ship sways back and forth, whisking youngsters away on virtual high-seas adventures. Elsewhere, inflatable jumping castles invite bouncers to defy gravity while contemplating future positions in parliament. In the free-for-all Fun Game Zone, carnival mirrors distort giggling guests? reflections, and ping-pong and air hockey test competitors? skills. These are just a few of the many activities that fill the days at Family Fun Fest, an annual family-friendly extravaganza that entertains and enchants its myriad visitors. As youngsters and their parental units explore the various areas of the gargantuan indoor playground, they can make a pit stop for live entertainment. Helmed by the titular Trevor, The Trevor Show dazzles audiences with interactive song and dance numbers, followed by Doo Doo the clown, who had no choice but to become a clown, what with the name Doo Doo.
35 Carl Hall Rd.
Toronto,
ON
CA
In addition to the sense of perseverance and accomplishment that comes with finishing a 5K, the organizers of the Bacon Chase have added another incentive: bacon. During their two races?the 5K Piggy Pilgrimage, which is a traditional 5K, and the 0.05K Blitz to Bacon, which is a 164-foot sprint?runners can munch on unlimited bacon bits before feasting on unlimited amounts of bacon at the finish line. Runners 21 and older can wash down the savory strips of bacon with a bloody mary, and all runners get a Bacon Chase T-shirt and a signature bacon-scented bib. The festival opens at 8 a.m. and features many bacon-themed activities, plus music. The festive day serves a greater purpose, too. Attendees will be able to register to become a St. Jude Hero, raise money for St. Jude Children?s Research Hospital, or both.
181 University Ave.
Toronto,
ON
CA
Lights stream down from all directions onto the stage at Sound Academy as audience members stand transfixed. Heightening the kaleidoscope, the crystal-clear sound system allows concertgoers to hear even the most subtle hiccups of the performers.
35 Carl Hall Road
Toronto,
ON
CA
Initially conceived as a one-off event in 2010, The Smoker's Club has since expanded, presenting fans with tours that unite skilled rappers and expert beat makers. One of the original members of the Wu-Tang Clan, Grammy-winning wordsmith Method Man spouts off dexterous rhymes in a gravely voice obtained by chugging asphalt smoothies everyday for breakfast. Curren$y gently cradles ears with laid-back flow, and frequent Smoker's Club collaborators such as Smoke DZA and Fiend buoy the evening with additional verbal fireworks. The Kool Haus provides a vibrant environment for the musical proceedings, ensconcing guests in a hip nightclub atmosphere with music mixed by Toronto-bred DJ Agile. An enormous dance floor proffers guests with ample space for unabashed rug cutting and wind sprints between marching bands.
147 Danforth Avenue
Toronto,
ON
CA
X92.9 flexes a muscular mix of alternative-rock legends and tomorrow’s darlings as this summer’s outdoor X-FEST Calgary fills historic Fort Calgary with good vibrations. This year’s lineup springs from the earth like a talented series of Whac-a-Mole, featuring Jane’s Addiction. Recharged, regroomed, and sporting their first new album in years, Perry Farrell and the crew rock and rampage like veteran teenagers. Returning to Calgary to thank fans and get their toothbrush back, Weezer take the fest by the scruff of its neck and stroke its chin, eliciting audiences to purr along to their deep bowl of hits. X-FEST also features appearances by warhorse punkers Social Distortion, bounding enthusiasts House of Pain, and throbbing adventurists AWOLNATION. A slew of prime Canadian rockers is also on hand to charm attendees, including The Rural Alberta Advantage and Michael Bernard Fitzgerald.
190 Princes' Boulevard
Toronto,
ON
CA
As residents of one of North America’s most diverse cities, Torontonians are steeped in the traditions of a globe’s worth of cultures. Perhaps nowhere is that multifaceted heritage more obvious than in the wealth of teashops in and around the city. So it is no surprise that the Toronto Tea Festival attracts experts from all over the country to discuss and serve Indian, Korean, Chinese, and Japanese tea in a soothing, informative environment. In addition to learning about tea’s numerous varieties and the specific health benefits of each, visitors can sample and purchase tea ranging from traditional varieties to contemporary blends, and they can pick up tea-ware for brewing and drinking. The festival celebrates tea-related art as well, with live classical music, presentations from ceramicists, and plentiful opportunities to practice tea etiquette, such as sipping tea with your pinkie finger in your neighbour’s cup.
789 Yonge Street
Toronto,
ON
CA
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