25 things to do in Toronto this weekend: November 23 to 25

Nov 22 2018, 8:19 pm

The weekend is finally here Toronto and we couldn’t be more excited.

For starters, the 52 annual Cavalcade of Lights returns this Saturday, which will include the lighting of Toronto’s official Christmas tree.

Not to mention there’s a number of foodie and cultural events happening throughout the city all weekend long.

So keep your calendars free, here are 25 hot events happening this weekend.

Friday, November 23

Gourmet Food and Wine Expo

Drink wine cross-provincial booze


What: This one is for the foodies. The 24th annual Gourmet Food and Wine Expo returns to the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, filling it with food, wine and spirits of all kinds.

When: Now until November 25
Time: Friday, 2 pm to 10 pm; Saturday, 12 pm to 10 pm; Sunday, 12 pm to 6 pm
Where: Metro Toronto Convention Centre, North Building, 222 Bremner Blvd.
Price: From $20

Google Home Mini Gingerbread Smart Home

What: To celebrate the beginning of the holiday season, Google is bringing the ultimate Gingerbread House, the Google Home Mini Gingerbread Smart Home, to the Toronto Eaton Centre this month.  Visitors can see how the Google Home Mini can help be that extra set of hands through the busy holiday season and beyond. All guests will walk away with either a Google Home Mini or a gingerbread cookie.

When: Now until November 29
Time: Monday to Friday, 10 am to 9:30 pm; Saturday, 9:30 am to 9:30 pm; Sunday, 10 am to 7 pm
Where: Toronto Eaton Centre
Price: Free to attend

Bombay Sapphire Gin Pop-Up Canvas Bar

What: This month, Bombay Sapphire Gin has set up Canvas Bar, the first-ever, interactive cocktail bar where guests can enjoy DIY drinks and play the role of master mixologist.

When: Now until November 30 (Thursday to Sunday)
Time: Thursday to Saturday, 6 pm to 12 am; Sunday, 11 am to 5 pm
 950 Queen Street West
Price: Free to attend

One of a Kind Winter Show

What: This year’s winter show is back and bigger than ever, featuring thoughtfully made items from hundreds of artisans including thousands of festive foodie treats, home décor, artsy offerings and everything else you’ll need to get your festive shopping done. In addition to shopping, attendees can unleash their creative side at the One of a Kind Creative Lounge where you’ll find various art and DIY related workshops.

When: Now until  December 2
Time: Monday to Saturday, 10 am to 9 pm; Sunday, 10 am to 6 pm; extended hours on November 29, 10 am to 11 pm
Where: Encare Centre Exhibition Place
Tickets: $13 for adults

Cinesphere Fall Film Series

What: Toronto’s Cinesphere theatre at Ontario Place will be screening several iconic films over the next few months as part of its fall and winter programming. The Cinesphere will screen a number of iconic films including Blade Runner: The Final Cut, Blade Runner 2049 in IMAX, The Fifth Element and Die Hard. 

When: Screenings running till December 23
Time: Showtimes vary by day
Where: Cinesphere at Ontario Place, 955 Lake Shore Blvd West
Price: $15 for adults

Toronto Christmas Market

Courtesy Toronto Christmas Market

What: Rediscover the magic of Christmas at the Toronto Christmas Market. Here you’ll find an assortment of artisan vendors, an Instagram-worthy Christmas tree, live music, incredible Christmas decorations and so much more.

When: Now until December 23 (closed on Mondays)
Time: Tuesday to Thursday, 12 pm to 9 pm; Friday and Saturday, 12 pm to 10 pm; Sunday, 12 pm to 9 pm
Where: The Distillery District
Price: $6 admission fee on weekends only

Bloor-Yorkville Holiday Magic

What: Toronto’s Bloor-Yorkville will be transformed into a winter wonderland this winter, turning the neighbourhood into a unique destination for patrons to shop, dine and take in the area’s art and culture while surrounded by festive lighting.

When: Now until December 31
Time: After sunset
Where: Bloor-Yorkville Village
Free to attend

Spiders: Fear & Fascination

What: This summer, the ROM welcomed a new exhibit, Spiders: Fear & Fascination and trust us, it’s definitely not for the faint of heart. The exhibit explores the hunting, burrowing, and weaving world of these eight-legged creatures and will feature more than 400 live and preserved spiders, cutting-edge interactive experiences, and new scientific discoveries.

When: Now until January
Time: 10 am to 5:30 pm
Where: The Royal Ontario Museum, 100 Queen’s Park
Price: $32 for adults

Happy Place Toronto

What: Happy Place is an interactive, 20,000-sq-ft immersive exhibit with larger-than-life installations and multi-sensory themed rooms, and it’s on a mission to spread happiness here in Toronto and around the world.

When: Now until January 1
Time: Friday to Sunday, 10 am to 8 pm
Where: Harbourfront Centre
From $32

Winter at Ontario Place

What: Following last year’s successful inaugural winter program, Ontario Place will once again come alive this winter season. Running from November 23 to March 17, the West Island of Ontario Place will be home to the Winter Light Exhibition, free public skating on a synthetic rink and community bonfires. This year, visitors can also look forward to a series of DJ nights at the iconic waterfront venue and bring a range of beloved films to Cinesphere.

When: November 23 to March 17
Time: 6 pm to 12 am
Where: 955 Lake Shore Blvd. West
Price: Free to attend

Macarons for Everyone


What: Macarons are a luxurious treat, often bought from little pastry shops on Queen Street West. While they may seem like an intimidating recipe to try, this workshop’s goal is to change your mind.  You’ll get to practice important techniques for sweet, sweet success.

When: November 23
Time: 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm
Where: The Kitchen at St. Lawrence Market
Price $85

ROM Friday Night Live

What: Spend your Friday nights this November on the dance floor with top DJs and live artists, or explore our stunning galleries with tasty food and drinks.

When: November 23
Time: 7 pm to 11 pm
Where: Royal Ontario Museum, 100 Queen’s Park
Price: $19.21

$15 Beer Beer Comedy Show

What: Two tall cans and a night of belly laughs sounds like the perfect way to unwind on a Friday night. Tickets for this chill weekly event run between $5 and $15.

When: November 23
Time: 9:30 pm to 11 pm
Where:¬†The Social Capital ‚Äď 154 Danforth Avenue
Price: From $5 to $15

Saturday, November 24

41st Annual CN Tower Climb for United Way

What: Get ready to get your climb on. This weekend, the 41st annual CN Tower Climb for United Way returns, giving you the opportunity to get your sweat on for a good cause.

When: November 24 and 25
Time: Saturday, 6 am to 10 am; Sunday, 6 am to 10 am
 CN Tower
Price:¬†A non-refundable registration fee applies ‚ÄĒ $10 for students¬†and¬†$20 for adults

Swedish Christmas Fair

What: This weekend, warm up to the sounds of children singing carols at the Lucia Pageant, grab some Fika, discover the story behind IKEA founder Ingvar Kamprad and participate in folk dancing, craft making and more. It’s the perfect place to sample delicious Scandinavian food and have a drink of glögg. And you can check off your gift list with imported handmade crafts, unique Christmas décor, textiles and tasty Swedish delicacies.

When: November 24 and 25
Time: 10 am to 6 pm
Where: Harbourfront Centre, 235 Queens Quay West, Toronto
Price: Admission is free

King West Holiday Pop-Up


What: This free two-day event takes place in the heart of King West and features a highly curated collection of Toronto’s finest makers, designers and brands to kick off the holiday season.

When: November 24 and 25
Time: Saturday, 10 am to 6 pm; Sunday, 10 am to 5 pm
Where: The Portland Market, 105 Portland Street
Price: Free admission

Norden: The Festival of Cool

What: Norden: The Festival of Cool, is taking over the Harbourfront Centre for nine days, inviting Toronto to discover the richness of the Nordic region. Featuring some of the most creative driving forces in Nordic contemporary art, music, and thought leadership, this inaugural festival promises to make you think differently about the dark nights of winter. Throughout the festival, visitors can look forward to Nordic music, visual arts, films, panel talks, a pop-up holiday market, and of course, food.

When: November 24 to December 2
Time: 10 am to 6 pm
Where: Harbourfront Centre, 235 Queens Quay West
Price: While many events are free, ticketed events start at $20


What: It’s a day all for our little ones! Kidzfest includes stage performances from hosts from TVOKids, exciting stage shows, meet and greets with characters from PJ Masks, arts & crafts stations, bouncy castles, and more.

When: November 24
Time: 11 am to 5 pm
Where: Yonge-Dundas Square, 1 Dundas Street East
Price: Admission is free

Coffee Cupping at Boxcar Summerhill

What: Boxcar Social wants to include you in their menu decisions, which is why they offer free coffee cupping sessions to the public. Learn about the origins of different coffees and sample different blends to help decide what will be on next week’s menu.

When: November 24
Time: 1 pm to 2 pm
Where:¬†Boxcar Social ‚Äď 1208 Yonge Street
Price: Free

Cavalcade of Lights 2018

What: The 52nd annual Cavalcade of Lights returns to Toronto this month and will feature the first lighting of Toronto’s official Christmas tree along with some spectacular fireworks. Each year, the holiday traditions bring thousands of people down to Nathan Phillips Square and besides all the lights, the event will include live musical performances from some of Canada’s top performers and a skating party on the iconic outdoor rink.

When: November 24
Time: 6 pm to 10 pm
Where: Nathan Phillips Square, 100 Queen Street West at Bay Street
Price: Free to attend

Calabrian Christmas Dinner

Pasta Mondo


What: If you’ve been looking for an opportunity to eat Spaghetti alle vongole, Frittura di calamari, Insalata mista, broccoli, rapini, roasted chestnuts, tangerines, Pignolata (and more!) all in one sitting… you’ve found it. Tickets for this delectable holiday meal are going for $75.

When: November 24
Time: 6:30 pm  to 10 pm
Where:¬†Cucinato Italian Culinary Studio ‚Äď 1338 Lansdowne Avenue
Price: $75

Sunday, November 25

Etsy Toronto Christmas Market

What: If you’re looking to give more one-of-a-kind gifts this holiday season, you’ll find them at the Etsy Christmas Market. Hosted by the Toronto Etsy street team, this festive marketplace will feature awesome handmade, vintage, and delicious wares all made by the team members. Admission is FREE and first 50 visitors receive a complimentary swag bag.

When: November 25
Time: 10 am to 5 pm
Where: The Great Hall Toronto, 1087 Queen Street West
Price: Free to attend

Toronto’s Chanukah Market

What: Presented by NoshFest, Toronto’s Jewish Food Festival, the Chanukah Market will welcome kosher and kosher-style food vendors, and vendors selling everything from jewellery and beauty products to toys and gifts.

When: November 25
Time: 10 am to 4 pm
Where: The Warehouse at Downsview Park, Toronto
Price: $10

Toronto Veg Holiday Market

What: A vast list of vendors come together to offer market visitors cruelty-free food and gift options for the holiday season. Pick up bites from Chocosol and Culcherd to give to loved ones… or yourself.

When: November 25
Time: 11 am to 5 pm
Where: Artscape Wychwood Barns, Toronto
Price: $3.50

ABBA on Ice

What:¬†Calling all ‘Dancing Queen’! This Saturday,¬† you’re invited to lace up and hit the ice at Toronto’s Natrel Rink for ABBA on Ice.

When: November 25
Time: 3:30 pm to 6:30 pm
Where:¬†Natrel Rink, 235 Queen’s Quay West
Price: Free

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