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Summer, Festivals, Events

66 amazing summer festivals to check out in Toronto

Summer, Festivals, Events

66 amazing summer festivals to check out in Toronto

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Ainsley Smith Jun 19, 2017 2:17 pm 2,017

If one thing’s for certain it’s that summer festivals take over Toronto every year.

Whether you’re into food, beer, art, music or all four, there’s definitely a festival in the city that you should be checking out. So to help make your summer events bucket list even stronger, we’ve rounded up pretty much every summer festival taking place in the city.

From food and drinks, to music and art, here are the top 66 festivals taking place in Toronto this summer.

Luminato

  • What: Now in its 11th year, the multi-arts and multi-platform event will take over David Pecaut Square for its run of free outdoor programming this June.
  • Where: David Pecaut Square, 215 King Street West
  • When: Now until June 25

Toronto Japanese Film Festival

  • What: Now in its sixth year, the Toronto Japanese Film Festival showcases the finest Japanese films that have been recognized for excellence by Japanese audiences and critics, international film festival audiences and the Japanese Film Academy.
  • Where:  Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre, 6 Garamond Court
  • When: Now until June 28, 1 pm to 7:30 pm

TD Taste of Asia

  • What: This three-day festival will feature non-stop multicultural foods, over 150 booths to cater to your taste buds and curiosity, and plenty of performances. This year’s feature country is Cambodia.
  • Where: Milliken Mills, Kennedy Road and Steeles Ave
  • When: June 23 to 25

TD Toronto Jazz Festival

  • What: The TD Toronto Jazz Festival has come to be recognized as one of North America’s premier jazz festival and has attracted some of the biggest names in jazz and blues. This summer, the festival will be moving to Yorkville Village, where it will play host to over 100 free concerts across 10 days (NOON-10 pm).
  • Where: Various locations
  • When: June 23 to July 2

Toronto Craft Beer Festival

  • What: This two-day event is the craft beer aficionado’s dream turning the massive venue of West Island, Ontario Place into one huge beer garden featuring indie brews, live music, and sizzling food vendors.
  • Where: West Island of Ontario Place, 955 Lake Shore Boulevard West
  • When: June 23 to 24, 3:30 pm to 10 pm

Vegan Wine & Cheese Fest

  • What: This delicious event will showcase products of regional vineyards and artisan vegan cheese makers. Look forward to sampling an array of dairy-free cheese, talks from vegan entrepreneurs, and cooking demos that go beyond your typical cheese platters.
  • Where: 101 Lisgar Street
  • When: June 24, 12:30 pm to 7 pm

Christie Pits Film Festival

  • What: This year, the Christie Pits Film Festival’s theme is EYES ON THE PRIZE, and will be screening films about competition and beating the odds. Locally organized, the Christie Pits Film Festival has attracted thousands to its free weekly series of outdoor films. Sundays throughout the summer, the screenings will include a mix of old and new. Although all screenings are free of charge, there is a suggested donation of $10.
  • Where: Christie Pits Park, 779 Crawford Ave West
  • When: Beginning June 25 and runs until August 20

Open Roof Festival

  • What: Things will be bumping again at 99 Sudbury this summer when Open Roof Festival returns for its 8th season. It’s #MOVIESMUSICBEER all summer long with #OPENROOFFEST17. The event organizers have yet to announce the films and bands, but check back on their website for information.
  • Where: 99 Sudbury
  • When: Beginning June 27 and runs until August 29

Toronto Ribfest

  • What: There’s no better way to enjoy a summer’s day than with some mouth-watering ribs! The 17th annual Ribfest is set to take the stage, and Rotary Etobicoke invites you to join. The event offers a Kid Zone, two stages, and lots of ribs.
  • Where: Etobicoke Centennial Park
  • When: June 30, 7 pm to 9 pm

Heritage Ontario Festival

  • What: Come and celebrate the heritage, culture and traditions of Ontario through music on multiple stages, interactive exhibits, food and drink vendors, spread out all around the Ontario Place grounds.
  • Where: Ontario Place, 955 Lake Shore Blvd West
  • When: June 30 to July 3

Redpath Waterfront Festival

  • What: The annual Redpath Waterfront Festival promotes Toronto locally and internationally as a premier waterfront destination. With music, food, nautical programs and entertainment, the Festival has something for everyone to enjoy!
  • Where: Sherbourne Commons, 61 Dockside Drive
  • When: July 1 to 3

TD Salsa in Toronto Festival

  • What: One of Canada’s largest Latin-themed celebrations is Toronto’s TD Salsa in Toronto Festival, which takes place over three weeks and features music, food, dance and family events.
  • Where: St. Clair Avenue West, between Winona Drive and Christie Street
  • When: July 3 to 23

Toronto Fringe Festival

  • What: With over 60 ticketed events and over 50 free, drop-in events that includes live theatre, music, dance, arts, buskers, and performances, there’s something for everyone at the Toronto Fringe Festival.
  • Where: Various venues
  • When: July 5 to 16

Cultura 2017

  • What: Cultura is a Free family friendly outdoor festival presenting music, art, food, and film every Friday evening in July at Mel Lastman Square. Cultura celebrates Toronto’s rich diversity featuring world renowned Musicians, tasty international street food, explosive buskers and dance, interactive art activities, and evening film screenings under the stars.
  • Where: Mel Lastman Square
  • When: July 7, 14, 21, 28

Dreams Music Festival

  • What: For the electronic music and neon loving-set, Dreams Music Festival (formerly Digital Dreams) is a must-attend, as long as you rest up well beforehand. Tickets start at $125.
  • Where: Echo Beach
  • When: July 7 to 8

Taste of Lawrence

  • What: The East end’s biggest food and cultural festival returns this summer. The annual Taste of Lawrence celebration takes place over the July 8 weekend, featuring over 130 vendors serving up local flavours and lots of family fun.
  • Where: Lawrence Avenue East, from Warden Ave to Birchmount Road
  • When: July 7 to 10

Beaches International Jazz Festival

  • What: A festival that needs almost no introduction, the Beaches International Jazz Festival is celebrating its 29th year.
  • Where: The Beach Neighbourhood
  • When: July 7 to 30

Afrofest

  • What: Come and celebrate African music and culture in the heart of the city. The festival features music, dance, drumming, and theatre, with over 35 bands both local and international, workshops, and spoken word artists, making this festival have something for everyone.
  • Where: Woodbine Park, 1695 Queen Street East
  • When: July 8 to 9

Anatolia Fest

  • What: Come and celebrate Turkish Culture in downtown Toronto. This free event will feature Turkish folk dance, foods, and live music.
  • Where: Dundas Square, 1 Dundas East
  • When: July 9, 11 am to 11 pm

Fusion of Taste

  • What: This one-day festival will feature over 40 diverse food vendors, a food eating contest, local performances, a kid zone, buskers and much more. This year’s theme is Canada 150, so come and experience the best that Canada has to offer.
  • Where: Albion Road and Islington Ave, 2621 Islington Ave
  • When: July 9, 12 pm to 10:30 pm

Under The Stars – Regent Park Film Festival

  • What: The annual outdoor summer screening series takes place on Wednesday evenings. The screenings are free, and snacks will be available for sale with proceeds going towards the Regent Park Film Festival. Bring a blanket and get ready for some activities before each film.
  • Where: 585 Dundas Street East
  • When: Every Wednesday from July 12 to August 16

Summer Craft Beer Fest

  • What: Discover some craft beer while enjoying the hot summer nights of Toronto, in one of the city’s beloved neighbourhoods.
  • Where: Liberty Village, 171 Liberty Street East
  • When: July 13, 6 pm to 10 pm

UNITY Festival

  • What: Every July, UNITY Festival celebrates hip-hop diversity in an action packed event incorporating beatbox, dance, concerts, and spoken word.
  • Where: Multiple locations
  • When: July 13 to 15

Vector Festival

  • What: The 2017 Vector Festival will showcase emergent, critical, and experimental new media, curated by Skot Deeming and Martin Zeilinger.
  • Where: 9 Ossington Avenue
  • When: July 13 to 16, 11 am to 12 am

Toronto Summer Music Festival

  • What: From jazz to classical, the Toronto Summer Music Festival will explore the music of Canada and feature the very best of Canada’s many world-renowned classical performers.
  • Where: Venues throughout the city
  • When: July 13 to August 5

Budweiser County Fair

  • What: MRG Events and Budweiser are throwing a County Fair this summer that will bring the spirit of the country to the heart of the city with an outdoor boot-stomping party in downtown Toronto. The two-day festival will feature live music from tomorrow’s country music stars, BBQ from some of Toronto’s top chefs, games, and classic carnival eats.
  • Where: 525 King Street West
  • When: July 14, 5 pm to 11 pm; July 15, 12 pm to 11 pm

Festival of India

  • What: Splashing some spiritual culture into the city, the 45th Annual Festival of India returns on July 16 for two days of nourishing festivities. The event will begin with a euphoric parade down world-famous Yonge Street, followed by a day of festivities for the entire family.
  • Where: Various locations throughout the city
  • When: July 15 to 16

Toronto Caribbean Carnival

  • What: Now in its 50th year, the Toronto Caribbean Carnival (formerly Caribana) is a five-week cultural celebration featuring Caribbean music, dance, costume, and food.
  • Where: Various locations throughout the city
  • When: Starts July 17

Toronto Burlesque Festival

  • What: The tenth annual Toronto Burlesque Festival is back for another sultry season.  This sizzling four-day extravaganza will feature performances and parties with a dazzling cast of innovative artists from all across the globe.
  • Where: Venues throughout the city
  • When: July 20 to 23, 7 pm to 11:30 pm

Burlington Food Truck Festival

  • What: New this season, The Canadian Food Truck Festival is expanding to Burlington! The weekend event takes place in July and will feature food trucks from across Southern Ontario as well as live performers.
  • Where: Spencer Smith Park, 1400 Lakeshore Road
  • When: July 22, noon to 9 pm; July 23: noon to 9 pm

Big on Bloor Festival

  • What: A festival of arts and culture, Big on Bloor is a unique summer street fest featuring hundreds of culturally significant events, activities, displays, and exhibitions.
  • Where: Bloor Street between Dufferin and Lansdowne
  • When: July 22 to 23

Brazilfest

  • What: Now in its 14th year, Toronto’s Brazilfest will offer its attendees the opportunity to experience authentic Brazilian performances and to enjoy Brazilian style foods.
  • Where: Earlscourt Park, 1200 Lansdowne Ave
  • When: July 23, 11 am to 10 pm

Irie Music Festival

  • What: The TD Irie Music Festival has been held since 2002 in collaboration with the Toronto Urban Music Festival. Irie offers Toronto some awesome reggae, world music and gospel.
  • Where: Mississauga Celebration Square
  • When: July 23 to 24

Tirgan Festival

  • What: Tirgan is a non-profit, non-religious and non-partisan cultural celebration for Iranian-Canadians with four days of music, dance, food, discussions and historical programming
  • Where: Harbourfront Centre, 235 Queens Quay West
  • When: July 27 to 30, 9 am to 11 pm

Toronto International Youth Dance Festival

  • What: The Toronto International Youth Dance Festival will be taking over Nathan Phillips Square for three days this summer for a multi-cultural celebration of dance.
  • Where: Nathan Phillips Square, 100 Queen Street West
  • When: July 28 to 30

Toronto’s Festival of Beer

  • What: Hosted by the Beer Store, Toronto’s Festival of Beer is home to over 60 brewers featuring more than 300 brands from all over the world.
  • Where: Bandshell Park Exhibition Place, 200 Princes’ Blvd
  • When: July 28 to 30

WayHome

  • What: Back for its third year, the very fun multi-day arts and music festival is everything we crave about summer festivals. The WayHome Music & Arts Festival is fast becoming one of the largest festivals in the region, all due to its wicked vibes, and incredibly diverse lineups, which includes Flume, Cage The Elephant, Imagine Dragons, Solange, and School Boy Q.
  • Where: Burl’s Creek Event Grounds, 180 8th Line South
  • When: July 28 to 30

Caribana

  • What: For another exciting weekend, Caribana will be taking over the entire city. Don’t forget to check out the massive parade, parties, concerts and Caribean events taking place throughout the city.
  • Where: Various venues
  • When: August 3 to 7

SummerWorks: Performance Festival

  • What: Canada’s largest curated performance festival of theatre, dance, music and live art is back, and runs for 10 days along Queen Street West.
  • Where: Various venues
  • When: August 3 to 13

Toronto Food Truck Festival

  • What: Returning to the Toronto Beach(es), this food truck festival takes over Woodbine Park over the civic holiday long weekend. As always, admission is free and in addition to street foods expect live-eating challenges and other entertainment on site.
  • Where: Woodbine Park, 1695 Queen Street East
  • When: August 4, 5 pm to 10 pm; August 5, noon to 10 pm; August 6, noon to 8 pm; August 7, noon to 8 pm

Art and Music Ontario Festival

  • What: Enjoy a weekend filled with all forms of artistic expression with a focus on Ontario and newcomer artists in music, theatre, dance and more!
  • Where: Ontario Place, 955 Lake Shore Blvd West
  • When: August 4 to 7, 1 pm to 11 pm

VELD

  • What: If you didn’t get enough of your electronic music fill at Dreams Festival, you can make up for it in your costume-clad glory at Veld Music Festival. Headliners include Major Lazer, Future, Tiesto, and Zedd.
  • Where: Downsview Park, Downsview Park Allen Road
  • When: August 5 to 6

Jambana

  • What: Jambana One World Festival represents Canada’s growing cultural diversity in its finest form. Attendees can experience Canada’s multicultural communities through performances by internationally acclaimed bands, artists, and JUNO Award winners, and experience the sights, sounds, taste and global diversity.
  • Where: Markham Fairgrounds, 10801 McCowan Road
  • When: August 6 to 7, 1 pm to 9:30 pm

Kultura Filipino Arts Festival

  • What: This festival celebrates all things Filipino, and features vibrant and contemporary arts, culture, fashion, and food.
  • Where: Daniels Spectrum, 585 Dundas Street East
  • When: August 10 to 13, 12 pm to 7 pm

Boots and Hearts

  • What: Dust off your cowboy boots and get ready to experience Canada’s biggest country music festival. This year’s headliners include Keith Urban, Luke Bryan, and Brantley Gilbert.
  • Where: Burl’s Creek Event Grounds, 180 8th Line South
  • When: August 10 to 13

Jerkfest

  • What: Come and experience a weekend filled with arts, crafts, cultural entertainment, and plenty of jerk-style food.
  • Where: Centennial Park, at the base of Ski Hills, Etobicoke
  • When: August 10 to 13

Pickering Food Truck Festival

  • What: Friends, kids, pets are all welcome to this park turned foodie haven in mid-August. Admission is free for the weekend of outdoor eating, plus there will be a beer garden, children’s village, beer garden, and stage showcasing live entertainment.
  • Where: The Esplanade Park, 1 The Esplanade
  • When: August 11, 5 pm to 9 pm; August 12, noon to 9 pm; August 13, noon to 8 pm

Krinos Taste of the Danforth

  • What: One of Toronto’s most famous summer events, The Krinos Taste of the Danforth is Canada’s largest street Festival and is back for its 24th year with plenty of Greek-style eats at this massive street festival.
  • Where: Danforth Avenue
  • When: August 11 to  13

The Roundhouse Craft Beer Festival

  • What: Hosted by Toronto’s beloved Steam Whistle Brewing, the Roundhouse Craft Beer Festival samples the province’s finest brews with the accompaniment of some of the city’s best food trucks.
  • Where: Roundhouse Park, 255 Bremner Blvd
  • When: August 11 to 13

PanAmerican Food Festival

  • What: We really are a city all about food. The fifth annual Pan American Food Festival showcases the best food products while celebrating the cultural diversity of the Americas.
  • Where: Yonge-Dundas Square
  • When: August 12 to 13

Sweetery Toronto

  • What: The Sweetery Toronto is Canada’s largest sweets festival, bringing everything sweet together for its third year.
  • Where: David Pecaut Square, King Street between Simcoe and John
  • When: August 12 to 13

The Big Feastival

  • What: The Big Feastival is a massive summer festival that began in 2011 on a farm in Kingham, UK. And now, the festivities are crossing the pond to Burl’s Creek. The Feastival promises to bring its unique blend of live music, incredible food, and all around family entertainment, giving Canadians a chance to join in on the fun.
  • Where: Burl’s Creek, Oro-Medonte
  • When: August 18 to 20

Toronto Vegan Food & Drink Festival

  • What: You definitely don’t have to be a vegan to enjoy the Toronto Vegan Food & Drink Festival! Here you’ll find lots of comfort food, craft bevies, music and more.
  • Where: Fort York & Garrison Common, 250 Fort York Boulevard
  • When: August 19, 11 am to 7 pm

 TAIWANFest

  • What: What began in 1990 as a way to introduce Taiwanese composers to the Canadian public is now an annual festival. This year’s theme is Kan Pai Japan.
  • Where: Harbourfront Centre, 235 Queens Quay West
  • When: August 25 to 27

Toronto Cider Festival

  • What: This year’s Toronto Cider Festival will showcase amazing ciders paired with delicious food, live entertainment, and local Canadian talent. In honour of Canada 150, the Cider Festival will allow you to celebrate the end of summer in true Canadian style.
  • Where: Sherbourne Common, 61 Dockside Drive
  • When: August 26, 11:30 am to  10:30 pm

Leslieville Beer Fest

  • What: Come and bid farewell to summer at this old fashion neighbourhood street party. Ticket are $20 and include three beer tokens and a beer mug.
  • Where: Dundas Street East
  • When: August 26, 1 pm to 8 pm

Scarborough Afro-Carib Fest

  • What: The 6th annual Scarborough Afro-Carib Fest will feature live musical performances, exciting entertainment from local and international artists, mouth-watering ethnic cuisine, visual arts, drum and dance workshops, kid’s zone, dance competitions, and much more! Definitely not an event to miss.
  • Where: Albert Campbell Square, 150 Borough Drive
  • When: August 26 to 27, 12 pm to 9 pm

Buskerfest

  • What: The Toronto International Buskerfest for Epilepsy Awareness is hitting the beach this year and will be taking place at Woodbine Park.  This year you can expect a beer garden, car show, and plenty of exciting surprises.
  • Where: Woodbine Park, Coxwell Ave at Lakeshore Boulevard
  • When: September 1 to 4

Richmond Hill Food Truck Festival

  • What: The largest park in Richmond Hill plays host to this food truck rally and festival in September. Participating trucks have yet to be announced, but parking, food, drinks and entertainment are all promised.
  • Where: Richmond Green Park, 1300 Elgin Mills Rd East
  • When: September 2, noon to 8 pm; September 3, noon to 8 pm

Hot & Spicy Food Festival

  • What: Savour the flavour of the south! Come and enjoy this free food festival that features Southern BBQs, brass bands, and much more.
  • Where: Harbourfront Centre, 235 Queens Quay West
  • When: September 4 to 7

Toronto International Film Festival

  • What: There’s no better way to say goodbye to summer than with the city’s biggest film festival! Whether you catch a flick or go celeb-spotting, there’s something for everyone at TIFF.
  • Where: Various venues throughout the city
  • When: September 7 to 17

Vegetarian Food Festival

  • What: Local and international chefs will delight your taste buds with a lot of vegetarian and vegan dishes.
  • Where: Harbourfront Centre, 235 Queens Quay West
  • When: September 8 to 10

Toronto Ukrainian Festival

  • What: A three-day entertainment experience celebrating the Ukrainian Canadian community. From music to food, check out this massive Bloor West festival.
  • Where: Bloor West Village
  • When: September 15 to 17

Food Truck Festival Ontario

  • What:  FTFO has yet to release its 2017 line-up but the time and place are dates are set for the third weekend in September on Toronto’s waterfront.
  • Where: Sherborne Common, 61 Dockside Drive
  • When: September 16 and 17

Roncesvalles Polish Festival

  • What: Wrap up summer by attending North America’s largest celebration of Polish culture in Toronto’s best neighbourhood. The festival will feature local and international music, fantastic cuisine from over 40 renowned restaurants, cafes, bakeries, and bistros, along Roncesvalles, and of course, lots of traditional Polish fare.
  • Where: Roncesvalles Avenue from Queen Street West to Dundas Street West
  • When: September 16 to 17

Toronto Garlic Festival

  • What: Taste delicious garlic-themed dishes paired with Ontario craft beer and wine at this amazing Garlic themed festival. Attendees can enjoy sweet and savoury garlic inspired dishes from 20 chefs this year include, meet farmers, chefs, artists and garlic historians.
  • Where: Artscpape Wychwood Barns, 601 Christie Street
  • When: September 17, 9 am to 5 pm

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Ainsley Smith

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