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30 FREE Toronto events worth checking out this May

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Ainsley Smith Apr 30, 2018 3:30 pm 2,094

Whoever said that the best things in life are free, couldn’t have been more correct.

And, if you’re looking to have some fun this month, without breaking the bank, we’ve rounded up 30 free events that are taking place throughout the city this May.

Enjoy!Cheesecake on a stick

Heirloom Toronto/Instagram

Heirloom Toronto Cheesecake Pop Up

What: The viral sensation known as cheesecake-on-a-stick is popping up on Queen West for a delicious run.

When: Now until May 4
Time: All day
Where: 420 Queen Street West
Price: Admission is free

Oh Henry! 4:25 Pop Up

What: Still have the munchies? If so, head over to this awesome Oh Henry! pop-up where you can chill with the dudes from Epic Meal Time, try a delicious new Oh Henry! chocolate bar and take a quiz to discover your munchies personality.

When: Now until May 5
Time: Monday  to Thursday, 4:25 pm to 8 pm; Friday, 4:25 pm to 9 pm; Saturday, 12 pm to 9 pm; Sunday, 12 pm to 5 pm
Where: 55 Kensington Avenue
Price: Admission is free

Maximum Exposure

What: This year-end exhibition showcases the work of artists from Ryerson University’s School of Image Arts.

When: Now until May 6
Time: All day
Where: Ryerson School of Image Arts, 122 Bond Street
Price: Admission is free

What: Toronto-born artist Anthony Ricciardi, whose noteworthy style incorporates layers of colours, imagery and text, now has his first-ever floating gallery featuring his one-of-a-kind masterpieces on display in Yorkville Village.

When: Now until May 29
Time: 10 am to 6 pm
Where:
 Toronto’s Yorkville Village, 55 Avenue Road
Price: Admission is free

A Forest of Canoes at The Bentway

What: A Forest of Canoes by Dana Claxton, is a site-specific installation set up throughout The Bentway and is co-commissioned with Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival and curated by Bonnie Rubenstein. The installation highlights the iconic role and symbolism of the canoe in Canadian, Metis, and Indigenous histories.

When: Now until August 31
Time: All day
Where: The Bentway, 250 Fort York Blvd.
Price: Admission is free

The Bentway presents A FOREST OF CANOES

Free Hip Hop Classes

What: Spend your Tuesday evenings this month at a FREE hip hop dance class where you can learn the basics of locking, house, freestyle, and breaking.

When: May 1, 8, 15, 22 & 29
Time: 5:30 pm to 6:30 pm
Where: Sony Centre for the Performing Arts, 1 Front Street East
Price: The classes are free

Designer Shoe Sale

What: Get a head start on your summer shopping at this designer shoe sale where you can shop from over 30,000 pairs of shoes from designers like Louise et Cie, Sam Edelman, Vince Camuto, Cole Haan, and more.

When: May 3 to 6
Time: Thursday & Friday, 10 am to 9 pm; Saturday & Sunday 10 am to 6 pm
Where: Markham Fairgrounds, 10801 McCowan Rd
Price Admission is free

Electric Dreams

What: This free public event will bring together artists, technologist, and art critics to discuss how exponential technologies will impact the next 100 years of art, design and entertainment.

When: May 3
Time: 6:30 pm to 9 pm
Where: The Design Exchange, 234 Bay Street
Price: Free to attend

Tomorrow Tonight Panel

What: Absolut Vodka is hosting a panel that will involve cultural leaders discussing topics surrounding inclusivity and self-expression, and how progressive nightlife can support social progress. It’s all about building a better Toronto nightlife while raising funds for an important cause.

When: May 3
Time: 6 pm
Where: 68 Claremont Street, 3rd floor
Price: Panel is free to attend

Jane’s Walk 2018

What: Jane’s Walks encourages people to share stories about their neighbourhoods, discover unseen aspects of their communities, and use walking as a way to connect with their neighbours.

When: May 4 to 6
Time: All day
Where: Neighbourhoods throughout the city
Price: Free to participate

Free may events

Bumble Hive comes to Toronto

The Bumble Hive: Toronto

What: At the Bumble Hive pop-up, Torontonians can enjoy free drinks from Flow and Ace Hill Beer, treats from Girl Gang Goodies, piercings by Mejuri as well as three days of engaging programming from some notable women in Toronto. Full event schedule can be found here.

When: May 4 to 6
Time: Friday, 12 pm to 9 pm; Saturday, 10 am to 9 pm; Sunday, 10 am to 8 pm
Where: 950 Queen Street West
Price: Admission is free, you just need to download the Bumble app and show it at the door

Park & Bark Dog Show

What: Thr first Saturday in May, Toronto dog owners, their dogs, experts and exhibitors will gather together to exchange information, shop, sample, hear and see great new products and valuable services for their canine pets in Toronto.

When: May 5
Time: 9 am
Where: Yonge Street at Davisville Parking Lot, 1957 Yonge Street
Price: Admission is free

Really Really Free Market

What: Whether you’re looking to clear up some space in your closet or find some new one-of-a-kind treasures, the Really Really Free Market is the place to be this weekend. Taking place at Campbell Park, everything you see at the market is absolutely free. Seriously, no money is required, and there’s no swapping involved.

When: May 5
Time: 10 am to 4 pm
Where: Campbell Park, 225 Campbell Avenue
Price: Free

47th annual Forsythia Festival

What: Every May, Cabbagetown residents gather to welcome spring at the annual Forsythia Festival. The spring festival is Cabbagetown’s official welcoming of the new season, and like every year, there will be a parade and a dress code that includes the colour yellow.

When: May 6
Time: 10 am to 3 pm
Where: Wellesley Park, 500 Wellesley Street East
Price: Admission is free

Pampered Pooches TO

What: This west end doggie festival powered by the Toronto Art Crawl, bills itself as “a one-stop-pooch-shop for the urban dog owner,” and offers a combination of socializing, shopping, and “infotainment.”

When: May 12
Time: 11 am to 6 pm
Where: Liberty Village Presentation Center, 80 Lynn Williams
Price: Admission is free.

spring into parkdale

Parkdale Village/Facebook

Spring Into Parkdale

What: The sixth annual outdoor street festival promises 100 vendors, live entertainment, and free family-friendly activities in addition to the Foodora Night Market, an evening event featuring food, DJs, patio seating, and more!

When: May 12
Time: 11 am to 9 pm
Where: Parkdale Village, along Queen Street West from Roncesvalles Ave to Dufferin Street
Price: Admission is free, but food dishes range from $5 to $12 each

Toronto Comic Arts Festival

What: This two-day exhibition is a celebration of comics and graphic novels and their creators and features hundreds of comic creators from around the world

When: May 12 & 13
Time: Saturday, 9 am to 5 pm; Sunday, 10 am to 5 pm
Where: Toronto Reference Library, 789 Yonge Street
Price: Free to attend

Blossom and Bloom Mother’s Day Market

What: This Mother’s Day pop-up market returns to Toronto for another season of floral and creative bliss, alongside some of our city’s finest music, art installations, interactive workshops and more.

When: May 12 to 14
Time: 8 am to 6 pm
Where: Union Station, 65 Front Street West
Price: Free to attend

Wonder Exhibit

What: Take a look inside one of the East End’s most famous landmarks, as the owners of the Weston Bread Factory opens its doors to the public as part of Scotiabank’s CONTACT Photography Festival. The Wonder exhibit will feature exclusive photos by Toronto photographer Laird Kay, celebrating the former factory and its industrial workings.

When: May 12 & 13, 19 & 20
Time: 10 am to 4 pm
Where:
 462 Eastern Avenue (Former Weston Bread Factory)
Price: The exhibit is free

Evergreen Brick Works Saturday Markets

What: The Evergreen Brick Works Saturday market has grown to become the largest farmers’ market in Toronto. Here you’ll find a wide variety of local and seasonal food from local farmers and producers.

When: May 12, 19 & 26
Time: 9 am to 1 pm
Where: 550 Bayview Avenue
Price: Admission is free

Toronto flower market

Toronto Flower Market

Toronto Flower Market

What: Now in its 6th year, the Toronto Flower Market will kick off what organizers are calling its ‘biggest season ever’ just in time for Mother’s Day on Saturday, May 12. This year, flower enthusiasts can look forward to even more shopping days, as three extra markets have been added to the calendar this year.

When: Kicks off Saturday, May 12 and runs until October 20
Time: 
10 am to 3 pm
Where: CAMH, 1001 Queen Street West
Price: Free

Leslieville Flea Mothers Day Market

What: The Leslieville Flea is heading to The Broadview Hotel this Mother’s Day.  Shop with your mom or for your mom at the Mother’s Day Market in Lincoln Hall; also enjoy a BBQ and beverages on Lincoln Terrace while you’re here.

When: May 13
Time: 11 am to 5 pm
Where: The Broadview Hotel, 106 Broadview Avenue
Price: Admission is free

The Chef Collective Pizza Battle

What: The Chef Collective, sponsored by Kraft Heinz present this battle featuring four chefs and four bloggers teaming up to master the all-time classic: pizza! Doors open at 6 pm, the battle starts at 7 pm sharp!

When: May 14
Time: Doors open at 6 pm and the battle starts at 7 pm sharp
Where: District 28, 28 Logan Avenue
Price: You can reserve your free ticket online

Rib Fest

What: Ribs, BBQ chicken, burgers, blooming onions, funnel cakes, and more! This four-day Rib Fest takes place in the heart of downtown and Yonge-Dundas Square.

When: May 17 to 20
Time: Thursday to Saturday, 10 am to 11 pm; Sunday, 10 am to 9 pm
Where: Yonge-Dundas Square
Price: Admission is free

Waterfront Artisan Market

What: Back for its third year in 2018, the Waterfront Artisan Market kicks off on May 19 and will run every weekend until the first week in October. The outdoor festival, presented by The Waterfront BIA and operated by the Scadding Court Community Centre, will feature 50 bakers, chefs, and artisans hawking summery street foods and locally-made products.

When: May 19 to October 6
Time: Saturdays 11 am to 8 pm; Sundays 11 am to 5 pm
Where: HTO Park, 339 Queens Quay West, Toronto
Price: Admission is free

chinese food takeout

Shutterstock

The Art of Regional Chinese Cuisine in Toronto with Tea Tasting

What: Professor Chef Leo Chan will talk about the art and culture of regional Chinese cuisine at this afternoon celebration “reflecting the diversity, unique cooking methods, ingredients, global culinary influences and the migration of people and food to the current Toronto restaurant scene.”

When: May 24
Time: noon to 2 pm
Where: City Hall, 100 Queen Street West
Price: Tickets are free online

Toronto Poutine Fest

What: A caravan of poutine purveyors will land in Toronto this spring for a four-day festival devoted to the fries, curds, and gravy at Yonge-Dundas Square!

When: May 24 to 27
Time: 11 am to 10 pm
Where: Yonge-Dundas Square
Price: Admission is free

Doors Open Toronto 2018

What: This year, during the 19th annual event, the city will be celebrating Toronto’s thriving film industry. This month, Doors Open will showcase some of the most architecturally, historically, culturally and socially significant buildings across Toronto. The theme, Film: The Great Romance, will explore the city’s film and television industry.

When: May 26 & 27
Time: All day
Where: Various venues throughout the city
Price: Admission is free

The Trinity Bellwoods Flea – Spring Market

What: This month, the Trinity Bellwoods Flea is hosting its annual Spring Market, where you can shop local from a range of vendors and artisans for locally made eats and delicious spring sweet treats. Four-legged friends are also welcome!

When: May 27
Time: 10 am to 6 pm
Where: The Great Hall, 1087 Queen Street West
Price: Admission is free

Kensington Market Pedestrian Sunday

What: The 15th season of Pedestrian Sundays brings back one awesome way to spend your Sundays this over the coming months. Performers, musicians, artists, and shopping, basically an awesome Sunday Funday.

When: Kicks off on Sunday, May 27
Time: 12 pm to 7 pm
Where: Kensington Market
Price: Free

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Ainsley Smith
Ainsley is a Staff Writer at Daily Hive. She's a former Vancouverite turned Torontonian who is passionate about avocado toast, aesthetics, and avocado toast aesthetics. Story idea? E-mail her at [email protected]

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