Toronto Summer Events & Festivals

We pride ourselves on our Pride, one of the world’s biggest, part of a packed summer in the city!

We pride ourselves on our Pride, one of the world’s biggest, part of a packed summer in the city that sees the debut of a massive Pink Floyd exhibition, the return of Luminato and one of the biggest Caribbean festivals in the world.

Pride Toronto Events

( June 1–30) Various locations

We really are proud of Pride Toronto, an annual series of events that has grown to be one of the biggest and best in the world and that largely manages to be supported across broad ideological lines, where even “conservative” politicians chose to or feel obliged to participate. We’ll take it!

Spend time on the website because there are dozens of events — including parties, panels, art shows and theatre — as massive as the community itself.. The Dyke March is Sat., June 24, at1 pm. followed by outdoor DJs and afterparty. On Sun., June 25, it’s the massive Pride Parade with a 2 pm start. Cupcakke plays the Til Sunset: Beach Party in the Portlands on Sat., June 10. And so much more.


(June 7–18) Various locations

Putting the “Hi, how are ya?” in highbrow, Luminato seeks to bring highbrow to the masses with free and ticketed events offering experimental theatre, avant-garde art and, some years, environmental installations. This year’s productions include: Scott Joplin’s Treemonisha, Aalaapi, and Nuit along with two long-anticipated world premieres: Dragon’s Tale and Loss. Today, Luminato also features the Canadian premiere of global phenomenon The Walk (Little Amal). Little Amal is a 12-foot puppet of a 10-year-old Syrian refugee, who has travelled through 13 countries to 90 cities. She arrives in Toronto on June 7 and will walk across the region for five days, looking for hope and her new home. She will be welcomed by musicians, dancers, children and elders, civic leaders, community organizers, newcomers and fellow refugees (and, possibly, you) in a journey of art and hope.

Na-Me-Res Pow-Wow

(June 17), Fort York

Enjoy a full-day celebration of National Indigenous People’s Day. This welcoming celebration features traditional dancing, drumming, giveaways, food and craft vendors, and a closing feast. Admission is free.

Mermaid Ball

(June 9) Drake Hotel

Live action The Little Mermaid left you hankering for more mermaid fun? This underwater extravaganza takes place across all three floors of The Drake Hotel (themes include: Beach Life, Under the Sea and The Trench). Glitter and coral will adorn the Drake, and aquatic-themed costumes are recommended but not mandatory.

The Lust of Us

(June 17) Red Sandcastle Theatre

A night of burlesque, drag and music inspired by the hit show The Last of Us. Masks required. Performances by ArraKiss, CoCo LaCreme, Dante Legend, Delicia Pastiche, Dottie Champagne, El Toro, Henrietta VIII, Lacy Jane, Loretta Jean, Sweet Delilah, and musical guests Estefany Franco and Carlos Colmenares.

Toronto International Dragon Boat Race Festival

(June 17 &18), Centre Island

In lieu of Game of Thrones dragons, we’ll settle for the amazing 35th year of dragon boat races at Centre Island. Over 5,000 athletes will be involved. Hope for a sunny weekend and may the best dragon (boat) win!

Art Battle TO Championship

(June 20) The Great Hall

Live painting, but talented artists create new works on the spot. And then you can bid and buy them. Watch canvases come to life right before your eyes in three 20-minute rounds. There can only be one winner.

Taste of Lawrence

(July 7–9) Lawrence Avenue East, between Warden and Birchmount

Come and celebrate Scarborough with the community’s biggest street party. Featuring three days of midway rides, food choices as diverse as the neighbourhood, tribute bands and local acts on stage, artisans and more. All for free. Wexford Heights awaits.

Rhythms of Canada

(June 30- July 4) Aga Khan Museum

Around the corner from the Ontario Science Centre, in what could be another “museum district” if Doug For left it alone, the Aga Khan Museum spends the Canada Day long weekend celebrating the rhythms and diversity of Canada.  four days of delicious food, special programming, music from local and international artists. From magic shows and face painting to papermaking and poetry workshops, get moving in a Bollywood workout class, and catch an unmissable lineup of evening performances featuring Salim-Sulaiman, The Halluci Nation, Balaklava Blues, Mas Aya, and Borelson.

Salsa on St. Clair Festival

(July 9 & 10) St. Clair West, from Winona to Christie

“They’ll be dancing in the street” — St. Clair to be specific, salsa to be exact. Since 2005, this neighbourhood event has grown into Canada’s biggest salsa party, with live Latin music and food, carnival rides with hundreds of thousands of your new best friends.

The Pink Floyd Exhibition

Opens June 16 at the Better Living Centre, Exhibition Place

Used to be, the only way to “immerse” yourself in Pink Floyd was really good head phones and a bag of weed. A massive new exhibit is changing all that. The Pink Floyd Exhibition: Their Mortal Remains, is an immersive and interactive journey through rock’s trippiest band’s rich history of music, art direction staging and more. Rare artifacts including stage props, handwritten lyrics instruments, costumes, long lost video and more are presented in a music-drenched environment. Created by Toronto’s Michael Cohl and his S2BN team.

Toronto Caribbean Carnival — what everyone calls Caribana

(July 11–Aug. 5) Various locations

Toronto’s legendary Caribbean Carnival — we all call it Caribana — is as big or bigger than many on the Caribbean islands as the city becomes one big soca-fuelled, even-dance-with-a-cop-crazed frenzy of fun. The parade takes over Lakeshore, Sat., Aug. 5, and you can watch for free from the street or pay admission for a food–and-beer-garden-packed viewing area. Almost a full month of fun starts Sun., July 16, with the Junior Carnival King and Queen parade at Scarborough Town Centre and many events happening across Toronto all month.

Honda Indy Toronto

(July 14–16, race at 1 pm on July 16)

Much like the air show, polarizing the city has become part of the tradition around this annual event as Indy roars into Parkdale with a race and a weekend-long car-a-palooza celebration of all things auto. The big race is Sunday afternoon.


(July 21–23) Earlscourt Park, St. Clair W.

Rio comes to west St. Clair as Earlscourt Park is transformed for three days into Brazil north with a packed lineup of Brazilian music, food and more.

Something Strange One Ring Circus Wrestling and Sideshow

(July 22) Prehistoria Natural History Centre & SkullStore Oddity Shop, 1193 Weston R.

Spend an afternoon among freaks — no, seriously, they won’t be offended; it’s all part of the sideshow at Something Strange One Ring Circus, Wrestling and Sideshow event. And yes, there will be absurd sideshow shit along with wrestling and circus stuff. The weirdness begins at 2 pm.

Canadian National Exhibition

(CNE) Aug 18 - Sept 4) at Exhibition Place, 210 Princes’ Blvd.

‘The Ex seems to be rebounding, crowds are back representing the diversity of the city with rides, weird food, spooky carnies, a variety of actual exhibitions, dog and skating shows but, alas, no skating dogs — yet. They also have a packed concert line-up at the Bandshell and is usually good mix of vintage acts and some emerging talent. And there’s the air shown which you either love or hate.

Fan Expo

(Aug 24–27) Metro Toronto Convention Centre (222 Bremner Blvd.)

Four days of cosplay, comics, celebrities, gaming fantasy and fun at Fan Expo, Canada’s largest pop culture convention for fans of comics, sci-’, horror, fantasy, anime, cosplay and gaming.A long weekend of geek shopping, celebrity meet-and-greets, photo ops and more. This year’s celebrity guests include: Hayden Christensen, Ethan Peck, Christina Ricci, Chevy Chase and Bonnie Wright.

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