20 things to do in Toronto today: Saturday, February 16

Feb 15 2019, 7:38 pm

Toronto, it’s the first day of the Family Day long weekend and we couldn’t be happier about it.

Whether you’re planning on spending today with your family or you’re looking for something to do with your friends, there are tons of awesome events happening in the city to keep you busy.

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Love at the zoo

The Toronto Zoo

The Toronto Zoo/Facebook

What: Looking for a wild way to spend Valentine’s Day in Toronto this year? The Toronto Zoo is hosting dinner date nights this week. Possibly one of the most exotic locales in the city to celebrate the annual day of amore, this evening event promises special animal encounters, an interactive and informative presentation on the elaborate, awkward, and sometimes hilarious lengths to which animals will go to attract a mate.

When: Now until February 16
Time: 6 pm to 9 pm
Where: Toronto Zoo, 2000 Meadowvale Road
Price: $95

Sugar Sammy in Toronto

What: After an incredible year, marked by a series of prestigious events, Canadian comedy superstar Sugar Sammy returns to Toronto this week. Those looking for a laugh can expect a fun evening that touches on cultural, social and political topics.

When: Now until February 16
Where: Randolph Theatre
Price: From $29.99 to $49.99

Progress Festival

What: Progress is an international festival of performance and ideas, with shows ranging from theatre to dance to music. The festival is co-presented by the SummerWorks Festival and the Theatre Centre and it brings groundbreaking work from around the world to Toronto for three weeks.

When: Now until February 17
Time: Varies by day
Where: Theatre Centre, 1115 Queen Street West
Price: Single tickets are $25

Wavelength Winter Festival

What: Wavelength Winter Festival will be taking over the Garrison this weekend, giving Toronto an epic lineup of music all weekend long.

When: Now until February 17
Time: Showtimes vary by day
Where: The Garrison, 1197 Dundas Street West
Price: From $15

TIFF Next Wave Film Festival

What: The TIFF Next Wave Film Festival features FREE movies, amazing guests and Q&A sessions, industry workshops and panels, and a Young Creators Showcase, which is a showcase of student shorts.

When: Now until February 17
Time: 11 am to 11 pm
Where: TIFF Bell Lightbox, 350 King Street West
Price: Free

Toronto Black Film Festival

Toronto Black Film Festival

Ellen: The Ellen Pakkies Story

What: It there’s one thing that you don’t want to miss this week, it’s Toronto’s Black Film Festival. Throughout the city, participating theatres will be showing a wide variety of films: short films, narrative feature films, docs, and animated films.

When: Now until February 18
Time: Varies by day
Where: Various locations throughout Toronto
Price: Available online here

Ice Breakers

What: Now in its third year, temporary winter art exhibit Ice Breakers is returning to Toronto’s waterfront. Organized by Winter Stations and The Waterfront Business Improvement Area (WBIA), Ice Breakers will provide the city with five temporary wintertime art installations that are 100% free to the public.

When: Now until February 24
Time: All day
Where: Queens Quay from Harbourfront Centre to the Toronto Music Garden
Price: Free to the public

Canadian International Auto Show

What: Experience the total automotive experience with over 600,000-sq-ft of dazzling displays, big prize giveaways and engaging exhibits.

When: Now until February 24
Where: 
Metro Toronto Convention Centre
Price: Adults are $25

Rose: A New Musical

What: From Sarah Wilson and Mike Ross, co-creator of Spoon River, comes an inspiring and joyful musical about acceptance, love, and finding your own path, even when that path isn’t what you thought it would be.

When: Now until February 24
Time: Showtimes vary by day
Where: Soulpepper Theatre, Young Centre for the Performing Arts, 50 Tank House Lane
Price: From $36

Toronto Light Fest

What: For the third year in a row, the historic Distillery District will be home to the Toronto Light Fest this winter. Designed to entertain and inspire, the free to attend light festival will feature curated light installations and illuminated sculptures created by a number of local and international artists.

When: Now until March 3
Time: After sunset
Where: Distillery District
Price: Free

Winter at Ontario Place

December 24

Ontario Place/Facebook

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

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

The 7

What: Come and check out The 7 this weekend, a new pop-up that features eight unique, picture-perfect rooms. The concept is to help Torontonians beat the winter blues with fun out-of-the-box and Instagrammable rooms full of colour, art and 3D visuals.

When: Open now until the end of winter
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: Seventh floor Hudson’s Bay, 176 Yonge Street
Price: Free to the public

Niagara Icewine Daytrip

What: Tired of cakes and cookies? Savour a different kind of sweetness by indulging in some Icewine. Learn about how this nectar is made, and enjoy it at the best time of year to try it: the middle of winter, when it’s just been released.

When: February 16
Time: 9:30 am to 6:30 pm
Where: Starting at Union Station
Price: $295

Greektown Food Tour

What: Calling all foodies! You can explore Toronto’s historic Greektown this weekend and visit a number of authentic Greek restaurants and cafes that are more “off-the-beaten-path.” Participants can look forward to delicious Greek coffee, traditional street-style food, and fresh pastries. It’s the ultimate balance of comfort foods and sweets.

When: February 16
Time: 10 am to 12:30 pm
Where: Meet in front of Pape Station, Danforth Village
Price: $50

Natural Soap Workshop

What: If you want to try a fun, hands-on experience, you can spend an afternoon learning how to make natural soap the “old fashioned way,” by hand. Learn from an experienced soap maker, step by step, what is involved in the cold process of making natural soaps.

When: February 16
Time: 10:30 am to 1:30 pm
Where: 
Yonge and Eglinton
Price: $100

Lunar New Year: The Year of the Pig

Chinese New year Ball/Shutterstock

What: You can celebrate the Year of the Pig as you learn how an Italian painter became one of the most beloved artists for three emperors in the Qing Dynasty and contributed to the Chinese paintings today. Visitors can also get hands-on and make their own Pig Hero paper lantern, then take a money bath and hit the “gong” for good fortune.

When: February 16
Time: 11 am to 4 pm
Where: Varley Art Gallery of Markham, 216 Main Street
Price: Free

Roses and Rosé

What: This two-hour workshop will teach you how to ice picture-perfect layer cakes, with decorative roses to boot. Enjoy the learning over a glass (or a few) of wine, and get into the spirit of loveee.

When: February 16
Time: 2 pm to 5 pm
Where: 230 King Street East
Price: $75 to $85

Après Skate Saturdays

What: If you’re in the mood for ice skating, head to the Bentway where skaters over 19 can enjoy complimentary samples of Kahlúa with coffee or hot chocolate on Saturday evenings from 5 pm to 9 pm. Après Skate Saturdays run every Saturday until February 16.

When: February 16
Time: 5 pm to 9 pm
Where: The Bentway, 250 Fort York Blvd.
Price: Complimentary samples, but skate rentals are available on-site for $10

Arkells Rally Cry Tour

What: In honour of their fifth studio album, the Hamilton five-piece is bringing its nation-wide tour with special guests, Lord Huron to Toronto this week for a local show.

When: February 16
Time: 7:30 pm
Where: Scotiabank Arena, 40 Bay Street
Price: From $54

DJ Skate Nights

What: You can sharpen your skates and skills at Toronto’s number one outdoor winter party. Each weekend you can expect a different DJ who will be spinning the hottest tracks. The best part? This skating party is totally free.

When: February 16
Time: 8 pm to 11 pm
Where: Harbourfront Centre, 235 Queens Quay West
Price: Skating is free