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Honda Indy 2014

James Hinchcliffe.  Source - Chuck Carroll (Wikipedia).

James Hinchcliffe. Source – Chuck Carroll (Wikipedia).

With all of the summer road construction projects going on in Toronto right now, seeing cars speeding down city streets is a rare occurrence.  A notable exception will be this weekend (July 17-20), when the Honda Indy lands at Toronto’s Exhibition Place!

Race fans are thrilled that there are not one, but two separate races scheduled for the 28th edition of the Honda Indy!  Taking place on the Saturday AND the Sunday of this coming weekend, both races will be of equal length, and both will count for full championship points!  Many of IndyCar’s top drivers, such as Brazil’s Helio Castroneves, Australia’s Will Power, and Canada’s very own James Hinchcliffe will be participating.  There will also be several other races for the IndyLights series (the racing series one step below IndyCar), and the F1600 series.  Even for those who aren’t race fans, there will be plenty to do at the Honda Indy site.  Tastefest will feature many popular food and beverage companies offering free samples of new products.  Muskoka Brewery and Amsterdam Brewery will be participating in Craft Beerfest, which means Ontario craft beer will be available across the event site.

Get out of the traffic and speed on down to the Honda Indy!  Exhibition Place can be accessed via CitySightseeing Toronto’s hop on hop off city tour by getting off at stop # 17 and taking the TTC’s bus 509 the rest of the way.

Published by Dave, on July 18th, 2014 at 1:16 pm. Filled under: Events,Family Fun,Food,Sports,Stop #17No Comments

Summerlicious 2014

Summerlicious is back!  One of Toronto’s best culinary events, Summerlicious features hundreds of top notch restaurants offering a rare opportunity to indulge in their best dishes with affordable fixed price menus.

Some of the participating Summerlicious restaurants this year are among Toronto’s finest.  Ganzi Osteria is a recently opened Italian restaurant located in a beautiful old mansion at 504 Jarvis Street.  The Rosewater Room is an elegant establishment serving Continental cuisine that is located in an historic building at 19 Toronto Street.  Houston Avenue Bar and Grill at 33 Yonge Street serves fare catering more to the meat and potatoes crowd, but with plenty of tacos, rolls and buns on offer as well.  Finally, for Asian cuisine enthusiasts, Matagali, a Thai/Indian restaurant at 69 Elm Street, offers a cozy setting with plenty of authentic dishes, with a 3-course meal for only $25!  These are just some of the fantastic restaurants that are participating in the 2014 edition of Summerlicious.  A full list can be found here: http://www1.toronto.ca/wps/portal/contentonly?vgnextoid=04deaf2c85006410VgnVCM10000071d60f89RCRD.

All of the restaurants listed here are close to the route of CitySightseeing Toronto’s hop on hop off bus tour.  Summerlicious ends on July 20.

Published by Dave, on July 12th, 2014 at 4:43 pm. Filled under: Festivals,Food,Stop #1,Stop #21No Comments

North by Northeast 2014

Do you like free concerts?  Who doesn’t!?  This week Toronto music venues will be overtaken by the always-popular North by Northeast music festival, which will also feature plenty of free outdoor shows in Toronto’s premier public gathering space, Yonge-Dundas Square!

Some of the biggest names in music will be performing for free in Yonge-Dundas Square between Thursday, June 19 and Sunday, June 22.  On Thursday night, Brooklyn’s Sleigh Bells will rock the stage with their unique brand of noise pop.  On Friday night, guitar virtuoso St. Vincent will be shredding starting at 9:10 PM, supported by experimental rockers Swans.  Legendary rockers Spoon will be the headlining band on Saturday evening, with Canadian lo-fi master Mac DeMarco opening.  Finally, Sunday night will feature plenty of great hip hop, with Run the Jewels and Juicy J taking the marquee billing.  There will also be plenty of other bands playing at venues throughout the city for a price.  A wristband that allows access to all events starts at $149.00.  North by Northeast will also feature some film and comedy events in addition to the musical performances.

Yonge-Dundas Square is located directly beside stop # 1 on CitySightseeing Toronto’s hop on hop off city tour.  Most of the music venues for North by Northeast are also located on or close to stops along the city tour.

Published by Dave, on June 19th, 2014 at 2:12 pm. Filled under: Art,Festivals,Film and Theatre,Music,Stop #1No Comments

Mirvish Productions Spring 2014

The Ed Mirvish Theatre.  Source - Tony Hisgett (Wikipedia).

The Ed Mirvish Theatre. Source – Tony Hisgett (Wikipedia).

Toronto’s theatre scene is heating up as much as the weather outside with the arrival of several hot new shows!  Mirvish Productions, Toronto’s premier theatrical production company, has brought several acclaimed new shows to Toronto which have to be seen to be believed!

 

The biggest hit of the season thus far is The Lion King, which returns to the Princess of Wales Theatre until June 15.  Created by acclaimed director Julie Taymor, the production features all of the most popular songs from the film, as well as some spectacular choreography and special effects.  1980s film buffs will want to check out the theatrical production of Flashdance, which again features all of the most famous songs from the movie, as well as 16 brand new tunes!  It runs from now until June 8 at the Ed Mirvish TheatreDead Metaphor is a hilarious political black comedy that runs until June 8 at the Panasonic Theatre and stars some familiar faces, like Noah Reid of Franklin fame and Eric Peterson from Corner Gas.

 

It’s a great time to check out some live theatre in Toronto!  All of the theatres mentioned above are accessible via CitySightseeing Toronto’s hop on hop off city tour.

Published by Dave, on June 5th, 2014 at 3:18 pm. Filled under: Family Fun,Film and Theatre,Music,Stop #1,Stop #13,Stop #5,TheatreNo Comments

Francis Bacon and Henry Moore: Terror and Beauty

Henry Moore sculptures at the Art Gallery of Ontario.  Source - Montrealais (Wikipedia)

Henry Moore sculptures at the Art Gallery of Ontario. Source – Montrealais (Wikipedia)

Modern art enthusiasts will no doubt be flocking to the Art Gallery of Ontario over the next few months as the work of two infamous British artists, Francis Bacon and Henry Moore, will be showcased in the spectacular new Francis Bacon and Henry Moore: Terror and Beauty exhibit.

Despite working during the same time period, Francis Bacon and Henry Moore were never known to be collaborators or even friends.  However, their respective works complement each other in numerous ways, particularly in regards to their use of the distortion of the human body.  Much of their art was inspired by the immense pain and suffering caused by warfare throughout the course of the 20th Century, especially in regards to Moore, who lived through the horrors of the London Blitz in the early 1940s.  Themes of Christianity are also present in the oeuvre of both Bacon and Moore, with Bacon in particular utilizing the Crucifixion and portraits of popes in his work.  Finally, yet another prominent feature in the artwork of both is the fusion of humans and animals, which Moore used to full effect in his painting Man Kneeling in Grass, where his subjects strongly resemble animals with their positioning and appearance.  This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to view the artwork of two of the 20th Century’s most famous artists in one place!  Don’t miss out!

To get to the Art Gallery of Ontario, take CitySightseeing Toronto’s hop on hop off city tour to stop # 11.

 

Published by Dave, on May 16th, 2014 at 2:34 pm. Filled under: Art,Events,History,Museums,Stop #11No Comments

2014 Hot Docs Film Festival

The Bloor Hot Docs Cinema.  Source - EclecticEnnui (Wikipedia)

The Bloor Hot Docs Cinema. Source – EclecticEnnui (Wikipedia)

Sometimes the truth is more interesting than fiction, and that will certainly be the case for the next 10 days in Toronto thanks to the Hot Docs Film Festival!  From now until May 4, hundreds of the most compelling new documentaries will be screened to rapturous audiences at several Toronto cinemas.

This year’s festival will feature almost 200 documentaries produced by filmmakers from around the globe.  Some of the noted films at this year’s Hot Docs Festival include Love Hotel, a film documenting the fascinating phenomenon of Japanese love hotels, and how their very existence is being challenged in contemporary Japanese society.  Another popular entry will be To Be Takei, a documentary about the fascinating life and times of George Takei, originally best known for his role as Sulu in the original Star Trek, but who is now more popular as an unstoppable internet activist.  The Internet’s Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz documents the tragically short life of Reddit founder Aaron Swartz, whose death stirred up a firestorm of controversy surrounding the prosecution of internet piracy.  Finally, music fans will want to check out Pulp, a concert film documenting the eponymous British band as they reunite for a show in their hometown of Sheffield.

There are plenty of fantastic documentaries to check out at this year’s Hot Docs!  The Bloor Hot Docs Cinema, which will present many of the aforementioned films, is only a 10-minute walk from stop # 8 on CitySightseeing Toronto’s hop on hop off city tour.

Published by Dave, on April 30th, 2014 at 3:50 pm. Filled under: Festivals,Film and Theatre,Music,Stop #8No Comments

Toronto Art Expo 2014

Metro Toronto Convention Centre.  Source - Raysonho (Wikipedia)

Metro Toronto Convention Centre. Source – Raysonho (Wikipedia)

The Toronto Art Expo, one of the city’s premier artistic events, is on this weekend at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.  Many fantastic pieces of paintings, sculptures, and glass objects will be available to purchase from some of the world’s best artists.

Artists from 7 different countries will be featuring their work this year at the Toronto Art Expo.  Some features include a showcase by contemporary glass artists, including such renowned figures as Keith Clayton and Jack Schmidt.  Sculptors such as Al Green (who also happens to be one of Toronto’s biggest construction magnates) and Patricia Genois-Mussica will be showcasing some of their work, as will abstract painters such as Susan McLennan and Lori Mirabelli.   Finally, the opening night of the Expo will feature Indian traditional dances from the Dance Ensemble of Menaka Thakkar.  Anyone thinking of purchasing some original artwork for their home or business should definitely visit the Toronto Art Expo!

To get to the Toronto Art Expo, take CitySightseeing Toronto’s hop on hop off city tour to stop # 14 or # 16.

Published by Dave, on April 12th, 2014 at 10:14 am. Filled under: Art,Conventions,Family Fun,Stop #14,Stop #16No Comments

The 2014 Toronto Blue Jays

RA Dickey.  Source - Keith Allison (Wikipedia).

RA Dickey. Source – Keith Allison (Wikipedia).

As the Toronto Maple Leafs playoff hopes appear to be slipping away yet again, many Toronto sports fans are now turning their gaze towards the return of Toronto Blue Jays baseball.  The Blue Jays’ always eagerly anticipated home opener is scheduled for Friday, April 4 against the New York Yankees at the Rogers Centre.

This year’s Toronto Blue Jays are hoping to bounce back from an extremely disappointing season in 2013.  After making a series of highly publicized trades following the also-disappointing 2012 season, fan expectations for the Blue Jays were very high one year ago at this time.  However, countless injuries and consistently poor play from underperforming stars kept the Blue Jays well out of the playoff race for most of the season.  Blue Jays fans are hoping that many of the stars picked up in the 2012 trades, such as pitchers Mark Buehrle and RA Dickey, as well as shortstop Jose Reyes, will finally perform up to expectations in 2014.  Along with the newly-acquired players, longtime fan favourites such as home run kings Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion will also be returning.  Many popular Major League Baseball teams will be coming to Toronto to play the Blue Jays this season, including division archrivals such as the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox, as well as some less frequent visitors like the Milwaukee Brewers and the Chicago Cubs.

There will be over 80 opportunities to catch a Blue Jays home game this season!  Ask your hotel concierge for tickets.  The Rogers Centre is accessible via CitySightseeing Toronto’s hop on hop off city tour at stops # 14 and # 16.

Published by Dave, on April 4th, 2014 at 3:05 pm. Filled under: Family Fun,Sports,Stop #14,Stop #16No Comments

Canada Blooms 2014

Source - Alan Pennington (Wikipedia)

Source – Alan Pennington (Wikipedia)

It may not be very green outside yet, but Torontonians will be green in spirit this weekend for the Canada Blooms festival!  Starting this weekend at the Direct Energy Centre, the Canada Blooms festival is one of the premier flower and garden festivals in the country.

This year’s edition of Canada Blooms will feature spectacular floral arrangements, including a ‘floral runway,’ where some of the best floral arrangers in the country will assemble breathtaking displays.  Top gardeners will create amazing gardens throughout the floor of the show, many of which will feature innovative designs, vibrant colours, and appealing fragrances.  A special exhibit featuring foliage inspired by Ireland’s spectacular Wild Atlantic Way will surely be popular among patrons celebrating St. Patrick’s Day, especially considering it offers the chance to win an all expenses paid trip to the Emerald Isle!  Finally, for those wishing to become expert green thumbs, numerous demonstrations featuring some of the foremost gardening authorities in Canada will take place throughout the course of the week.

Canada Blooms offers a wonderful chance to get a taste of spring during a winter that just never seems to end!  To get to the Direct Energy Centre, take CitySightseeing Toronto’s hop on hop off city tour to stop # 17 and then take a taxi or the TTC’s 509 route the rest of the way.

Published by Dave, on March 15th, 2014 at 2:18 pm. Filled under: Events,Family Fun,Festivals,Stop #17,Winter ActivitiesNo Comments

March Break 2014

As any Toronto parent doubtlessly already knows, next week is March Break, when all local students have a week off from hitting the books.  As a result, many Toronto attractions are offering special programming to give all the bored munchkins something to do!

The Hockey Hall of Fame's Olympic hockey exhibit.  Source - Aude (Wikipedia).

The Hockey Hall of Fame’s Olympic hockey exhibit. Source – Aude (Wikipedia).

The Hockey Hall of Fame will be celebrating Canada’s double gold medal performance in women’s and men’s hockey at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic Games with over 50 new artifacts from both teams.  Casa Loma is hosting a Dr. Seuss’ Grinch-themed week that will include a huge scavenger hunt, storytelling sessions, animated short screenings, and, of course, appearances by The Grinch himself!  At the Bata Shoe Museum, children can go on a secret spy mission throughout the museum with plenty of espionage-themed arts, crafts, and activities!  Finally, for those a bit older, Comicon will be taking place at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre this weekend (March 8-9).  Special guests include Orphan Black’s Tatiana Maslany, Lord of the Rings’ Sean Astin, Dollhouse’s Eliza Dushku, and Superman’s Brandon Routh, among many others.

There is plenty to do for March Break in Toronto next week!  All of the attractions listed here are accessible via CitySightseeing Toronto’s hop on hop off city tour.  Check them all out!

Published by Dave, on March 8th, 2014 at 3:42 pm. Filled under: Conventions,Events,Family Fun,Holidays,Sports,Stop #14,Stop #18,Stop #7,Stop #9,Winter ActivitiesNo Comments