Free events in Toronto: March 24 - 30, 2014
Free events in Toronto this week will allow you to pop by a circus freakshow, a bingo event featuring a drag star, a live concert in a library, and a short film fest -- not bad, Toronto, not bad. But since a little constructive criticism never hurt anyone, you could still use some work on the weather front, FYI.
If you're house-bound with a sinus infection (Wait! I'm not psychic or spying on you) check out the Book of Kells, which I (also sick) recently discovered is all online at hi-res for free. The only Toronto tie-in to that would be that it's pretty expensive to fly from Toronto to Ireland to see this baby in person.
For the rest of you, here are the week's cheap date (or anti-date) nights in Toronto.
A Decade's Dose of Imagery by Sam Javanrouh
Here's a special gallery show to drop in to. The Daily Dose of Imagery, Sam Javanrouh's photography website with a ten year run and fans worldwide, will take his work offline this Monday at an exhibit presented by Spacing Magazine. Read our interview with Javanrouh from 2013 here. Monday, March 24 - April 26, Urbanspace Gallery (401 Richmond Street West).
LUKA & Thom Gill & Tradition
Thom Gill's voice is one of Toronto's best. Catch him on this three-band-bill at cozy Holy Oak (just remember to toss whatever you can in the donation jar when it comes around). Tuesday, March 25, 9pm, Holy Oak Café (1241 Bloor Street West).
True Stories Told Live March
The March edition of this lively story-telling event is a no-notes, no bullshit outlet for the truth (or at least Mulder's version of the truth, which Scully cannot verify because she wasn't in the room at the time). One of the five speakers is a musician, who will include music with their story. Intriguing. Tuesday, March 25, 7:15pm, The Garrison (1197 Dundas St. West).
Punk Rock Bingo
Punk on the stereo all night, cheap alcohol, and drag queen Jenna Syde guarantee the total domination of bingo by fun. There's no cover plus plenty of drink specials and prizes to be had at PRB (last Wednesday of every month, so mark it down), and proceeds from bingo cards go to charity. Bonus: this is our Tinder date pick of the week. Wednesday, March 26, 9pm, Beaver Cafe (1192 Queen Street West).
The film fests just never end in Toronto, and this weekend Cinéfranco, English Canada's largest showcase of international Francophone cinema, begins at The Royal. Royal films are all ticketed, but! March 26's program of Canadian shorts is free, free, free! It also includes a Q+A with the filmmakers. Learn more here. Wednesday, March 26, 6:30pm, Carlton Cinema (20 Carlton Street).
Pivot, our lit pick of the week whether you're broke or not, is PWYC/suggested $5, but if you don't have the full five bucks don't worry, just be sure to donate what you can to these talented up and coming writers. Jeremy Hanson-Finger, Liz Lochhead (Scotland), Guillaume Morissette, and Stuart Ross are reading. Wednesday, March 26, 8pm, The Press Club (850 Dundas Street West).
Queer As Fuck
It's another PWYC (so not free, but come on, you have a polar bear or two kicking around in your purse) LGBTQ comedy night again at the Steady. The "Kathy Bates of Toronto Comedy," Catherine McCormick, hosts, the food is hot, the drinks are quick, and there's some kind of lottery going on. See the line up here. March 26, 9:15pm, The Steady Cafe & Bar (1051 Bloor St W).
Feedback Film Festival
Warning for eager film fans: not absolutely free, The Feedback Film Fest is a PWYC event: you can pay what you like for seats online here. Click that link for a full program of the shorts they'll be screening, too. Thursday, March 27, 7pm, Carlton Cinema (20 Carlton Street).
Spacing spring 2014 release party and Jane Jacobs Prize ceremony
Spacing's all bike-talk this month, and you can attend the launch party for free on Friday. Transportation is also free! Like, if you bike there. Or walk. Speaking of, the party will also honour the 2014 recipients of the Jane Jacobs Prize live. The winners will receive their awards and speak. Magazines are $9. Friday, March 28, 5:30pm, 918 Bathurst Centre (918 Bathurst Street).
DJs Jay Holy, Nyles Miszczyk & J.M. Ladd are on the decks DJ-ing vinyl only at this kraut rock, experimental pop, and psych dance party. BUT. Show up after midnight, and you have to pay $5, probably to some guy who describes his personal style as "Neukölln." Yeah, at Smiling Buddha. Times, they are a-changing. So don't be late. Friday, March 28, Smiling Buddha (961 College St.), 10pm (free before midnight).
PUP & Alvvays Live in the Stacks
This is a treat for Toronto music fans: loud-as-hell PUP and indie-pop break outs Alvvays are going to play their music in the library for you, for free, brought to you by Toronto Public Library's Make Some Noise series. These events combine the best of both worlds: checking out cuties at indie shows where the lights are a little too bright, and checking out cuties at the library (except the lights will be a bit dimmer than usual). Saturday, March 29, Yorkville Branch (22 Yorkville Avenue).
We Will Riot
CINSSU is bringing you a free movie -- you know how this works! Together with the Canadian Lithuanian Youth Association CLYA they're screening We Will Riot, 24-year-old Lithuanian director Romas Zabarauskas NYC - Vilnius spanning love story about a DJ's quest to start an alternative night club in Lithuania. Saturday, March 29th, 1:30pm, Innis Town Hall (2 Sussex Avenue).
The Bazaar of the Bizarre: Circus Side Show 2014
Mental Floss Sideshow and Pia Bouman School for Ballet and Creative Movement present an all day "Bazaar of the Bizarre," a circus-esque marketplace with a circus sideshow theme. You don't have to spend a dime to have a good time at the show: DJs will be spinning and there will be art to take in and friends to make. Sunday, March 30, 11am-8pm, Pia Bouman (6 Noble St).
Also check out these regular free events in Toronto
- Elvis Mondays at the Drake
- Art Gallery of Ontario free evening, Wednesday, 6-8:30pm.
- CINSSU's Free Friday Film Screenings
- Canadian Opera Company's Free Concerts series
- While nearly all art galleries in the city are free to enter, it's worth noting The Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art (MOCCA) is always pwyc.
- The ROM (Royal Ontario Museum) offers discounted tickets on Fridays ($10).