The May 2-4 weekend is here, Toronto!
And in case you’re not spending the weekend at a cottage in Muskoka, we’ve got plenty of events you can check out in the city.
From food and beer festivals to film screening, these are the 25 can’t-miss events happening all weekend long.
What: May is BBQ month and what better way to celebrate your favourite way to cook food than with a massive BBQ at the heart of downtown Toronto for FREE? Come out and celebrate the launch of Toronto’s newest annual summer kick off!
When: May 19 to 21, 10 am to 10 pm
Where: Yonge and Dundas Square
What: Beam Me Up will be setting up a temporary home along the lakeside, for an opening day disco soiree at the Slip! Let residents A Digital Needle and Cyclist take you from sunset to moonlight, with a waterfront soundtrack of underrated and obscure disco tracks.
When: May 19, 6 pm to 11 pm
Where: The Slip, 235 Queens Quay
What: Jamaican dancehall singer/songwriter, and a pal of Drake’s, Popcaan brings his reggae fusion to Toronto this weekend. Popcaan has made guest appearances on plenty of records (including Drake, Jamie xx and Gorillaz), and has released his own album Where We Come From back in 2014. Tickets start at $40.
When: May 19 at 10 pm
Where: Rebel, 11 Polson Street
What: There’s no better way to kick off Victoria Day weekend than with a drive in movie at the Toronto Docks. Car-less folks can also partake in the fun. Those without access to a vehicle are welcome to commute/bike in and watch on a lawn chair. BYO-portable AM/FM radio player.
When: May 19, 20, and 21
Where: 176 Cherry Street
What: With the Raptors out of the playoffs, there’s no better time to start working on your skills. This weekend, there will be an international basketball coaching clinic at U of T and Ryerson University that will feature Canada Basketball’s Olympic coaches and two Raptors’ alumni, Alvin Williams and Milt Palacio.
When: May 19 to 21
Where: 350 Victoria Street and 27 King’s College Circle
What: Get into the summer spirit by enjoying some free Polar Pizza Ice Cream from Baskin Robbins in celebration of National Pizza Party Day. The creation is described on the company website as a “novel and flavourful treat, in the shape of a 9-inch pizza,” built on a chocolate chip cookie or double fudge brownie crust and topped with various combinations of ice cream and dessert toppings – sighn us up!
When: May 19 to May 21
Where: Downtown Toronto (Friday); Hamilton, Burlington Waterfront, Mississauga, Brampton (Saturday); The Beaches (Sunday)
What: As part of Ontario’s 150th-anniversary festivities, the Culinary Ontario festival is a gourmet celebration highlighting Ontario’s diverse culinary culture with a variety of activities and entertainment for everyone. You can expect to see plenty of food trucks and beverage stations, art installations and live music.
When: May 19 to 22, 3 pm to 8 pm
Where: Ontario Place, 955 Lake Shore Blvd West
What: The Toronto non-GMO Coalition and the David Suzuki Foundation present Toronto’s 4th annual GMO-free festival and farmers’ market this May. Look forward to the chance to chat with organic farmers, chefs, business owners, and organizations all while enjoying music, family-friendly activities, and mowing down on Ontario-produced food and drinks.
When: May 20, 12 pm to 6 pm
Where: Christie Pits Park
What: Artfest Toronto celebrates painting, photography, sculpture, fine craft, live music and more from Canada’s top artists. Set throughout the cobblestone lanes of the Distillery Historic District in downtown Toronto.
When: May 20 to 22, 11 am to 6 pm
Where: Distillery Historic District, 55 Mill Street
What: Back for its second year, the Waterfront Artisan Market will make Toronto’s waterfront come alive every Saturday from May 20 until October at HTO Park. Here you’ll get to explore a curated mix of 75 artisans, crafters, chefs and bakers. Admission is free.
When: May 20, 11 am to 8 pm
Where: HTO Park, 339 Queens Quay West
What: Islamic Relief Canada, the leading Canadian Muslim NGO, will be hosting The Daily Show’s Trevor Noah in an event to mark ten years as an international NGO in Canada. Themed Hope, Faith and Solidarity, the charity hopes to send a message of togetherness and diversity in the wake of the Quebec mosque shootings and recent hate attacks across the country.
When: May 20, 3 pm to 7 pm
Where: Convocation Hall, 31 King’s College Circle
What: Calling all beer buffs: The fourth annual Spring Sessions of Toronto’s Festival of Beer returns to the historic Fork York: Garrison Common on the May long weekend. New to the festival this year is their Campfire Sessions, which feature live performances by the Juno Award winning trio, Elliott BROOD and Toronto-based rockers The Trews.
When: May 20 to 21, 12 pm to 8 pm
Where: Fort York: Garrison Common, 250 Fort York Boulevard
What: Lobster Clam Jam is a highly acclaimed outdoor food festival, that’s not just for seafood lovers. This affordable, family-oriented culinary showcase offers guests the opportunity to experience the creations of a variety of renowned local chefs and restaurants.
When: May 20 to 21, 12 pm to 9 pm
Where: Cabana Pool Bar, 11 Polson Street
What: If this doesn’t give you flashbacks to Frosh Week in university, we don’t know what else will. For one unforgettable evening, you and your friends can get covered in foam with photographers on hand to capture every embarrassing moment.
When: May 21 at 10 pm
Where: Orchid Entertainment Complex, 82 Peter Street
What: Get ready to dance Toronto, beloved American DJ and producer Kaskade returns to Toronto during his Spring Fling Tour. His last album Automatic was released in 2015, and fans are lucky as this is his only Canadian date on this tour. Tickets start at $25.
When: May 21 at 10 pm
Where: Rebel, 11 Polson Street
What: This weekend kicks off the start of a summer-long Sunday BBQ Party hosted by Smoke Hills and Ace Hill. Come and enjoy incredible food, local beer and cocktails and listen to tunes with no roof over your head.
When: May 21, 12 pm to 8 pm
Where: Smoke Signals Barbecue, 1242 Dundas Street West
What: There’s no better way to kick off a holiday Monday than with some good old-fashioned fireworks. Canada’s Wonderland will present its spectacular fireworks display when the park closes and the firework display will feature a unique performance with an original soundtrack and over 6,000 colourful explosions.
When: May 21, 10 pm
Where: 1 Canada’s Wonderland Drive
What: Put on your dancing shoes and get ready to get down to the sounds of Toronto’s biggest electronic DJs. Woodbine Park is plugged in for the Victoria Day weekend with this massive concert and picnic. (Note the location change due to flooding at Hanlan’s Point)
When: May 22, 1 pm to 11 pm
Where: Woodbine Park
What: If you didn’t make it up to Muskoka for the long weekend, make sure to check out English band, The xx, as they’re performing for two nights over the long weekend at Echo Beach. This tour promotes the band’s third studio album, I See You.
When: May 22 to 23, 7 pm to 11 pm
Where: Echo Beach, 909 Lake Shore Blvd West
What: If you’re looking to unwind before heading into work on Tuesday, we recommend checking out a free movie at Hot Docs Cinema. Catch four landmark Canadian documentaries (Married Couple, Lonely Boy, Foster Child and Manufacturing Consent) starting at Noon.
When: May 22, 12 pm to 7 pm
Where: Hot Docs Cinema, 506 Bloor Street West
What: Toronto’s Drake Hotel is hosting a can’t miss evening of film and art. Heart on, a Toronto film screening series that celebrates female filmmakers, presents Earth Angel that will feature a pop-up gallery, film screening, and performances.
When: May 22, 8 pm to 12 pm
Where: The Drake Hotel, 1150 Queen Street West
What: The Brewer’s Backyard returns with its annual Victoria Day event entitled Queen Victoria’s Secret. For those interested in attending, the beer list will only be revealed when the event starts– so you’re going to have to check out the event to find out what’s pouring.
When: May 22, 11 am to 5 pm
Where: Evergreen Brickworks, 550 Bayview Ave #300
What: Wrap up your long weekend with an amazing fireworks display at Ashbridges Bay. The annual favourite features over 2,000 fireworks and closing with a grand finale of pyrotechnic wonders.
When: May 22, 8:30 pm to 12 pm
Where: Ashbridges Bay Park, 1675 Lake Shore Blvd. E.
What: If you’re not near Ashbridges Bay, there will be a smaller fireworks show taking place at Woodbine Beach.
When: May 22, 10 pm
Where: 1675 Lake Shore Blvd. E
What: There’s no better way to celebrate Victoria Day than to visit the birthplace of Toronto. Take tours, kids enjoy activities such as soldier’s drill, see demonstrations of Georgian-era cooking techniques in one of the oldest kitchens in Toronto as well as English country dancing.
When: May 22, 10 am to 5 pm
Where: 250 Fort York Blvd.