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Summer, Events

The top 10 must-see attractions at the 2018 CNE

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DH Toronto Staff Aug 13, 2018 8:13 am 10,291

No summer in Toronto is complete without paying the Canadian National Exhibition a visit.

From August 17 to September 3 (Labour Day Monday), the annual jamboree will transform 192 acres of Toronto’s Exhibition Place into a colourful midway, complete with pavilions, rides and games, live entertainment, and plenty of outrageous eats.

Whether you’re going with your friends, with a special someone or taking your kids for the day, the CNE is an absolute must. 

Here’s what to look forward to at the 2018 CNE.

Legends of the Silk Road Come to Light

indoor lantern festival

Legends of the Silk Road Lantern Festival/CNE

The CNE will “come to light” this year with a spectacular indoor lantern festival. A stunning series of 17 illuminated sculpture installations will create a kaleidoscope of colour, themed around legends and myths associated with the ancient Silk Road. The awe-inspiring displays were created by 90 artists using 4,000 metres of synthetic silk, 55 metres of steel, and arrived in eight shipping containers that travelled more than 12,000 km from China to Toronto. The indoor lantern festival is co-produced by DDM Entertainment and Events Inc.

When: August 17 to September 3 
Time: 
10 am to 10 pm
Where: Enercare Centre, Hall D
Price: Free with CNE admission

East Coast Kitchen Party

2018 cne attractions

East Coast Kitchen Party

Get ready for a tidal wave of Maritime merriment throughout opening weekend, August 18 and 19 as the East Coast Kitchen Party returns to the CNE. Indulge in East Coast cuisine and craft beers, watch the city’s best mixologists face off in a Caesar competition or cheer on a race to see who can shuck the most oysters for bragging rights. Seal the experience with a Newfoundland tradition by kissing a cod and getting screeched in.

When: August 18 and 19
Time: Saturday, 6 pm to 12 am; Sunday, 11 am to 11 pm
Where: Princes’ Boulevard
Price: Free with CNE admission

CNE Gaming Garage Powered by AMD

2018 cne attractions

CNE Gaming

Back by popular demand, the Gaming Garage Powered by AMD is bigger and better. From August 24 to 26, gamers can rally in eSports tournaments and compete in pinball tournaments for a shot at prize money, enjoy play-to-win tabletop games, interactive VR experiences, gaming demonstrations, and more. 

When: August 24 to 26
Time: 10 am to 10 pm
Where: Enercare Centre, Hall F
Price: Free with CNE admission

Free Concerts at the Bandshell

2018 cne attractions

Free Bandshell Concerts

Over the course of the CNE, visitors can enjoy a range of free concerts from incredible Canadian musicians including The Trews, Marianas Trench, Hollerado, Bedouin Soundclash, Fateh, and more.

When: August 17 to September 2
Time: Concert times vary by day
Where: Bandshell Park
Price: Free with CNE admission

RUSH: Parkour Competitive Demonstrations

2018 cne attractions

Rush: Parkour Competitive Demonstrations

Adrenaline flows on the west end of the grounds with parkour, where athletes free-jump from one obstacle to another during a sensational gravity-defying show outside the Food Building.

When: August 17 to 19; 20 to 23; 24 to 26; 27 to 30; 31 to 3
Time: Showtimes vary by day
Where: Outside, west of the Toronto Star Food Building
Price: Free with CNE admission

CNE Aquarama

2018 cne attractions

Aquarama

Back by popular demand, the CNE’s sensational in-water show returns daily to make an even bigger splash this summer with the CNE Aquarama show, chockfull of waterskiing tricks, ballet skiing and human pyramids.

When: August 17 to September 2 and 3
Time: Showtimes vary by day
Where: Toronto waterfront
Price: Free with CNE admission

Food Truck Frenzy & Craft Beer Fest

One of Canada’s largest food truck rallies just got bigger with six new food trucks ready to take position along Princes’ Blvd. from August 24 to 26. Foodies can rejoice in more than 20 unique offerings from Toronto’s trendiest food innovators including two new food trucks, Dang Good BBQ and Spice Rack. Enjoy a refreshing cold one in the heart of the Food Truck Frenzy from 11 local master brewers to sample including Pommies Cider, Sawdust City Brewing Co., and Boshkung Brewing.

When: August 24 to 26
Time: 11 am to 11 pm
Where: Princes’ Boulevard
Price: Free with CNE admission

Butter Sculpting

2018 cne attractions

Butter Sculpting

Remember when the “Justin Trudeau” butter sculpture went viral last year, or the “IKEA Monkey,” and previous year the “TO Raccoon” butter sculpture grabbed headlines.  You gotta see it to believe it as artists work with more than 1000 lbs of butter inside a chilled fridge to create the next viral buttery art sensation. 

Where: Hall A, Enercare Centre
Price: Free with CNE admission

Silent Disco

Dance the night away on Princes’ Blvd. to tunes that only you can hear at the CNE’s first-ever Silent Disco, August 27 and 28. Participants are encouraged to don a pair of the 300 headphones that will be available on a first-come, first-serve basis (deposit required), and let loose to the music of two energized DJs spinning a variety of genres and songs.

When: August 27 and 28
Time: 7 pm to 11 pm
Where: Princes’ Boulevard
Price: Free with CNE admission

TELUS Asian Market

Colourful, aromatic and bustling with energy, the TELUS Asian Market at the CNE takes over Princes’ Blvd. starting Thursday, August 30 through to Labour Day with an eclectic mix of vendors, artisanal crafts, cultural entertainment, and authentic international street food to feast on.

When: August 30 to September 2; September 3
Time: August 30 to September 2, 10 am to 11 pm; September 3, 10 am to 8 pm
Where: Princes’ Boulevard
Price: Free with CNE admission

Daily Hive is a proud media sponsor of the 2018 Canadian National Exhibition

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DH Toronto Staff

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