Victoria Day events

Victoria Day weekend events in Toronto

Weekend events in Toronto is our guide to events happening this Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Here's what's happening in Toronto this May 16-18, 2014.

Victoria Day Festivities
It's May long, and you're reading this from a car on the way to somewhere far less scarred by cranes, condos, and Rob Ford. Or else, the joke's on you as much as it's on me, meaning our big nature plans won't extend beyond the blossoming cherry trees in High Park and trying to find a rooftop to take in sky-sparklies. From Canada's Wonderland to Ashbridges Bay and Dundas Driving Park, we've got the full details on Victoria Day fireworks here and what's open and closed for the holiday here. If you don't have a ride out of town, read on for more things to do this weekend.



Just a gentle reminder that the world's biggest photography event is already halfway over for the year. The AGO's show is now open (check out our review here) and artists from Hamilton to China are displaying fine artworks across Toronto. While it only takes a few minutes to take in the average Contact show, try not to see too many, or you might never be able to log into Instagram again. Here's our full preview of must-sees, plus a shortlist of underrated shows.

See also

For more art listings, check out our Top 10 Must-See Art Shows This Spring post.


Toronto-based video artists Francesco Gagliardi, Thea Jones, Manolo Lugo, Eugenio Salas, and Leslie Supnet are going super niche - and you can eat while watching their food (Delicatessen, 1991) themed work. On the menu: a "bloody Andalusian gazpacho", eggplant stuffed fingers, and a wild rice dessert with ginger, coconut and cardamom. If dinner isn't weird, why eat it? Friday, May 16, 6pm, Trinity Square Video (401 Richmond St. West, Suite 376)

Toronto Underground Market
The Toronto Underground Market is on at 99 Sudbury this Saturday from 5pm. TUM gathers "food entrepreneurs," chefs, and home cooks for an event that's part party, part reason to stuff yourself silly. Which is actually just a good party, come to think of it. Saturday, May 17, 5pm, 99 Sudbury, $15 (tickets available online).

Build Tilde for Tacos
Tilde, a new contemporary taquiera currently in the works at Danforth and Pape, is employing a novel crowdsourcing scheme to help meet the deadline for its intended June opening. The restaurant is appealing to the public to participate in renovations for the promise of free tacos, earned one for each hour of painting or moving furniture on Sunday. You'll be able to redeem them when the restaurant opens. Yeah, that's not minimum wage, so hopefully this doesn't become the next Toronto food service trend. Sunday, May 18, 12-4pm, Tilde (699 Danforth Ave.).

For more food events, check out our Toronto Food Events, Spring Food Events, and Spring Beer Events post.


Yes Yes Y'all's Sprin-a-ling-a-ling
YYY are here to save you from a weekend of boredom and cottage envy with a night of hip hop, dancehall, R&B, and sweat. Lissa Monet is DJ-ing too. Friday, May 16, CODA (794 Bathurst St.), $6 before midnight.

Sweaty Betty's 10th Anniversary Party
Ten years on Ossington. Will Betty's be tight lipped about the changes she's seen (accidentally instigated?), or will you buy her so many shots she begins to reminisce about the time when no one drove to Ossington and the heels were strictly vintage and scuffed? One time I saw Ryan Gosling in the bar and didn't care because I was too scrappy/shy. Now I'd def say hi. Say hi & happy birthday this Sunday over oysters and cocktails with less than three ingredients in them. Sunday, May 18, 3pm-2am, Sweaty Betty's (13 Ossington Ave.).

See also

For more dance listings, check out our Top Dance Parties in Toronto in May post.


Next Music from TOKYO Vol. 6
Japan is sending us some of their favourite bands as part of non-profit program Next Music from TOKYO. In Toronto you can see Kinoko Teikoku, Happy!Mari, Uchu Conbini and Jizue tonight at Rivoli and Saturday at Lee's Palace. Friday, May 16, Rivoli (334 Queen St. West) and Saturday, May 17, Lee's Palace (529 Bloor St. West), $10 advance.

The Sound of Change Music Festival
In the spirit of putting a lot of bands on one stage over the course of one night and calling it a festival, The Elwins, Fast Romantics, Aukland, John River, Iris, and The Soul Proprietor [DJ] will gather at Adelaide Hall for a good cause - Raising the Village, a charity working to eliminate extreme poverty through sustainable, community-based projects in Uganda. Friday, May 16, 7pm, Adelaide Hall (250 Adelaide St. West), $15.

Menace to Society: Kathleen The Dancing Crossing Guard edition
Kathleen Byers (a.k.a. the dancing crossing guard) was suspended without pay from her job dancing in a local music video while in uniform. After ten years on the job 60-odd year old Byers decided to quit, confessing she's tired of fighting City Hall to make people smile. To counter Toronto war on dancing, Vag Halen singer Vanessa Dunn is organizing a fun video shoot / protest at Byers' crosswalk. Don a uniform and dance the safety dance before Toronto's Footloose claw extends to our bedrooms, where all the best dance parties are. Sunday May 18, 12pm, Dufferin, just south of Dundas.

See also

For more music listings, check out our This Week in Music, May Concerts, Spring Concerts, and Spring Music Festivals posts.


Canadian Sport Film Fest
TIFF is screening movies for those who generally would rather be at the park/rink/court/on the field/whatever it is you people do. Twenty-two films will screen at this three-day mini festival, spinning reels for soccer fans, rugby lovers, and much more. May 16-18, TIFF Bell Lightbox (350 King St. West).

See also

For more film events, check out our Top film events this spring post.


Outside the March has presented dynamic site-specific work to much acclaim at various locations throughout the city. Vitals, their most recent production, is set to be the most alarming. Based on interviews conducted with Toronto EMS personnel, the play takes audiences on an emergency 9-1-1 call alongside a paramedic named Anna. Written by playwright-to-watch Rosamund Small, directed by Mitchell Cushman, and starring Katherine Cullen, Vitals first unfolds at the corner of Roncesvalles and Garden Aves. May 1-25, 149 Roncesvalles Ave., $25-$30.

For more events on stage, check out our The top theatre productions in Toronto May 2014 post.


Roncy Flea
While not as hip as some of Toronto's other markets, the dog action on Roncesvalles alone is worth a trip to Roncy Flea. Ask before you pat (they might have fleas. Just kidding - no Roncy dogs have fleas). Saturday, May 17, 10am-4pm, Emmanuel-Howard Park United Church (214 Wright Ave.).

Junction Flea
If you want to step up your flea game, the Junction Flea is is Sunday in its new digs at Brick Works. RIP, parking lot tent hangs. Sunday, May 18, 10am - 4pm, Brick Works (550 Bayview Avenue), $2.

For more fashion listings, check out our This Week in Fashion post.


Axe Throwing: Like Darts, But Not (11th Edition)
You don't need to go to the woods to get drunk and throw axes anymore, so delete that judgmental high-school friend with the Muskoka property from your phone right now. BYOB. Friday, May 16, 8pm, BATL (213 Sterling Rd.), $40.


Game of Thrones at TIFF
You have until Sunday, May 18 to get down the the TIFF Bell Lightbox to bask in Game of Thrones stuff like props, costumes, weaponry, and storyboards. Take a look at what last year's exhibit was like here. Until May 18, 10am-10pm, something bad happens at a wedding, TIFF (350 King St. West).


Circus Festival
From acrobats to clowns, the Harbourfront is hosting this colourful family-friendly (it's okay to cry when the clown makes eye contact) fest all May long weekend. May 17-19, Harbourfront Centre (235 Queens Quay West).

Have an event you'd like to plug? Submit your own listing to the blogTO Toronto events calendar or contact us directly.

Contributions by Keith Bennie, Liora Ipsum

Lead photo by Aaron in the blogTO flickr pool

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