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Radar: Refugee Camp in the Heart of the City, Hope House After Party, Pitter Patter Music Festival, God Loves Hair Book Launch, dance Immersion's Annual Showcase, Full Moon Flash Mob

COMMUNITY | Refugee Camp in the Heart of the City
For the next four days Christie Pits will be transformed into a refugee camp in an effort to raise awareness of the plight of the 42 million people around the world who have been displaced by conflicts and disasters. Doctors Without Borders is creating the free 8,000 square foot exhibit out the same materials it uses in its emergency aid work in places like Sudan and Cambodia, and will be giving visitors 40 to 60 minute guided tours of the facility, urging Torontonians to imagine living every day with the risks of poor sanitation, sporadic food and water supplies, and the threat of violence. The exhibit was first staged in Europe in 2005 and is currently on a four-city Canadian tour.
Christie Pits, Free, Thursday and Friday 9 am - 8 pm, Saturday and Sunday 9 am - 5 pm

FUNDRAISER | Hope House - the After Party
The 2004 Academy Award-winning film Born Into Brothels introduced the world to the plight of India's so-called "Red Light Kids." Soon after they made the film, director Ross Kauffman and Geralyn White Dreyfous founded the Kids With Cameras, an innovative NGO that helps children overcome trauma and take control of their lives by documenting the world around them. This year, Kids With Cameras is breaking ground on its latest project called Hope House, which will give 100 girls born into the sex trade a place to live and a first-rate education that will lift them out of poverty. The group's throwing a fundraising party for the project at Palais Royale tonight that features performances from Scarborough hip hop legend Meastro, Ivana Santilli, and DJ Rekha. It ain't cheap, but ticket prices have been slashed from their original value and it's for a very worth cause.
Palais Royale, 1601 Lakeshore Boulevard, $100 for one or two people, 8:30 pm

MUSIC | Pitter Patter Music Festival
The Pitter Patter Music Festival prides itself on being friendly to both musicians and concertgoers, offering fair compensation for performers and affordable shows to music-lovers. That please-all business model means there's not much in the budget to attract top-notch international acts like you might find at NXNE or CMW, but Pitter Patter's strength has always been its promotion of local talent like the Hoa Hoas, the Mark Inside, and the Diableros. The festival takes place over the next four days at venues across the city, wrapping up with a day-long show in Kensington Market for Pedestrian Sunday.
Various venues and times, check schedule for full details, all shows PWYC

BOOKS AND LIT | God Loves Hair Book Launch
In between writing synth-pop albums and performing with acts like Tegan and Sara and Dragonette, Edmonton-born artist and musician Vivek Shraya has found time to pen a collection of short stories. God Loves Hair is his first book and centres around a young boy's humorous and moving first encounters with gender politics, queer sexuality, religion, and the importance of the right hairstyle. Each story is lovingly accompanied by illustrations from quirky Toronto artist Juliana Neufeld. Although he's released five records, it shouldn't surprise anyone that Shraya's become an author; he's an English lit graduate from the University of Alberta and has been writing informally for years. He'll be joined at the book's launch party tonight by poets Kathryn Payne and Karine Silverwoman.
The Ossington, 61 Ossington Avenue, Free, 8 pm

DANCE | dance Immersion Annual Showcase
For the next three days, Toronto-based dance Immersion is celebrating 16 years of supporting dancers of the African diaspora with a program of performances by emerging black artists. The group promotes African Canadian dance through productions, workshops, and youth arts programs and for its annual showcase is bringing in talent from across the country that reflects the diversity of African artistic heritage. This year's performers include The Aya Dance Collective, KasheDance, Edmonton's Movements, Ghislaine Dote from Montreal, and local artists Sharon Harvey and Mafa Makhubalo. Runs til Saturday.
Fleck Dance Theatre, 207 Queen's Quay West, $25 - $30, 8 pm

PARTY | Full Moon Flash Mob
Of all the movie monsters, werewolves get a bad rap. Too hairy to be sexy like their vampire counterparts and with none of the campy cool of zombies, there's not a lot of love for lycanthropes. But urged on by tonight's full moon, Toronto's wolfmen, wolfwomen, and their admirers are representing for all the werewolves out there by gathering in the heart of the city as the Full Moon Flash Mob to let loose, howl at the moon, and freak out the tourists.
Yonge-Dundas Square, Free, 9 pm

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Photo: "Sleep" by King Sebas, member of the blogTO Flickr Pool.


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