weekend events toronto

Weekend events in Toronto December 18-20 2015

Weekend events in Toronto feature some of the most anticipated concerts and holiday shows of the season. If you're too strapped for cash to afford a ticket, there are a few free options that will keep your schedule full until Monday, such as the Shortest Day screening new, classic and award-winning short films.

For more events this weekend click on over to our Events section.


The Shortest Day (Dec. 18 - 21)
New, classic and award-winning shorts will be shown at venues across the city all weekend long (and Monday). The event features four programs: kids, family, musicals and drama and comedy, so there's something for everyone. This year's line-up includes Bacon & God's Wrath, No Fish Where to Go, The Little Deputy and many more.

Home Alone Quote-Along (Dec. 18)
If you want to catch a movie this weekend, you've got plenty of options. Gremlins, Love Actually and The Muppet Christmas Carol will all be screened for free at the Bloor Hot Docs Cinema. Want something more interactive? Opt to go on Friday night for the Home Alone Quote Along (unfortunately, this one will cost you a couple bucks).


Stars (Dec. 17-19)
If you're looking to kick off your holidays with an upbeat gathering that's not of the family variety, look no further than not one but three nights of sparkling indie-rock from these Canadian music staples. To celebrate the 10th anniversary of their acclaimed third album Set Yourself On Fire, they'll play the album in full, along with other "Christmas-themed surprises" on the 19th.

Daft Love (Dec. 18)
Want to see Daft Punk live? Well, unfortunately that won't be happening this weekend. However, if you are a fan of the electronic duo, The Love Orchestra will be performing their greatest hits while wearing robot masks on Friday.

Suma Winter Solstice (Dec. 18)
Geary Lane is known to host some killer bashes, and this weekend's Winter Solstice jam should be no different. The line-up includes Zum One, Spyne, Mike Lambert, LeeLee Mishi, Kristian Sunflower and Jonah K. When you need a break from the dance floor, check out the night's art installations (courtesy of Suma Collective and guests).

Cancer Bats with Lord Dying (Dec. 18-19)
Hardcore fans rejoice! Cancer Bats are returning Toronto on Friday to blow out your ear drums, and they're bringing Lord Dying along for the ride. The two night stint at Hard Luck Bar will showcase the Toronto-based band's metal/hardcore/punk sound and will probably leave you slightly def for the next week or so.

Zeds Dead (Dec. 18-19)
If you're longing for the return of EDM music fests, the Zeds Shows on Friday and Saturday will help tide you over. The dubstep duo will be taking the stage at the Danforth Music Hall, playing their latest and greatest. Prepare to get a few bruises on the dance floor.

Nightmare Before Christmas II (Dec. 19)
Last year, InvocationTO's holiday feast for music weirdos was a big hit, so it's good news to see it back for a second year. This Saturday, catch doomy Southern Lord signees BIG|BRAVE, Jessica Moss of Thee Silver Mt. Zion, Gates and Northumbria.

Mac Miller (Dec. 20)
It looks like Mac Miller's billionaire foe (who's come at him for some dubious song royalties) is currently preoccupied with making a mess of American politics, so that gives the Pittsburgh MC a good window for his first major-label tour. He'll be performing at the Sound Academy this Sunday.

Stay Warm Fest (Dec. 20)
This one-night-only event will bring some of the top hardcore and post-hardcore bands to the Danforth Music Hall. Silverstein, the fest's creators, will be headlining the show, with Cancer Bats, Beartooth, Seaway, Capsize, Cardinals Pride and Safe To Say also making appearances on stage.


Against The Grain's Messiah (Dec. 16-19)
This company filled with classically trained musicians takes operas and performs them in unconventional and unexpected ways. It does the same with Messiah, and for the third year in a row, it'll put a its spin on the Handel classic.

The FUGLY Xmas Sweater Party (Dec. 18)
Slip into your ugliest Christmas sweaters and head to Adelaide Hall for a holiday themed bash. Those with the most creative and horrendous gear will leave with prizes, so bring your a-game.

WinterFest (Dec. 18 - 20)
For those who fully embrace the holiday season, WinterFest is tried and true. While the pastry eating contest, dog stunt show, and a cappella concert will be entertaining, the Ugly Christmas Sweater Cocktail Cruise is the star of the show. Don your most horrendous holiday ensemble and head aboard the Northern Spirit for an evening of drinking, dancing, and good, old-fashioned holiday fun.

White Cowbell Oklahoma Annual X-Mess (Dec. 19)
If you're all Handel-ed out and looking for something decidedly less Baroque, the annual White Cowbell Oklahoma concert at Lee's Palace will definitely do the trick. This show isn't for the light-hearted, but it'll provide the perfect break from all that family time.

Tafelmusik: Sing-a-long Messiah (Dec. 20)
A compilation of holiday show's wouldn't be complete without the sing-a-long Messiah. This annual event always sells out are and it brings together nearly 3,000 voices, which is pretty spectacular. Despite the complexity of the music, non-singers are of course welcome.


Tallboys Christmas Craft Beer Carnival (Dec. 19)
Craft beer fanatics will be congregating at 918 Bathurst this Saturday for a day of sampling. Beverages from a dozen Ontario craft breweries will be available, including beers from Black Oak, Junction, Great Lakes, Nickel Brook, MacKinnon Brothers and Broadhead. Tickets are a mere $10.

Hip Hop & Breakfast (Dec. 20)
Skip waiting in line at Lady Marmalade this Sunday and head to The Den instead. The Little Italy eatery is throwing the a hip-hop themed breakfast where you can stack your plate with eggs and bacon and then hit the dancefloor.


Union Station Holiday Market (Nov. 30 - Dec. 20)
The Union Station Holiday Market has filled John A. MacDonald Square with some of the city's favourite local designers for the better part of December. You'll find everything from Tuck Shop Co. hats to Mad Mexican salsa. If you're looking for gifts that can't be found in big name stores, it's worth visiting. This is the last weekend it'll be around, so now's the time to go.

Toronto Christmas Market (Nov. 20-Dec. 20)
The European inspired Christmas market is finishing its stint in the Distillery District this Sunday. Go on Friday if you want to get in free, otherwise you'll be paying the $5 weekend entry fee.

Xpace Holiday Zine & Maker Fair (Dec. 19)
On December 19th, zine makers and fanatics will flock to the Xpace Cultural Centre on Lansdowne. There will be vendors hocking everything from comics to crafts, so if you've got some Christmas shopping left to do it's worth stopping by. If you can't drop any cash, DJ Grandmother Willow will be spinning music all day long, so you can dance your heart out instead.

Vintage Fashion Flea Market (Dec. 20)
If your wardrobe is littered with pieces from H&M, TOPSHOP and the like, it may be time to infuse it with a blast from the past. Head to The Garrison on Sunday to rifle through preloved clothing, shoes, accessories and more. Feel free to stop by the bar for a pick me up.

For more events this weekend click on over to our Events section. Have an event you'd like to plug? Submit it for free using this form.

With contributions by Shazia Khan, Amy Grief, Jess Huddleston.

Photo via the Zeds Dead Facebook page

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