161. Civic Holiday, Simcoe Day, August 1 Holiday


Lt. Gov. John Graves Simcoe. Artist: George Theodore Berthon.

If you find yourself in Toronto on this holiday, consider it an opportunity. The town doesn’t close up. There are a few free or almost-free events you can take in. Please add a comment to tell us about others.

The Island Soul Festival will be jumping at Harbourfront. The Caribbean Carnival Lime will be at Ontario Place. The IRIE Music Festival will be hopping at Queen’s Park, Yonge-Dundas Square, and Nathan Phillips Square.

August 1 will be the last day of the IRIE Green Art exhibition inside the Rotunda at Toronto City Hall. Toronto city museums will be free or by donation. Entry to Fort York will be free. Enjoy the parade with its 1812 uniforms, tours, exhibits, musket and cannon demonstrations, Regency dance, and historic cooking demos. The current Lieutenant Governor of Ontario will officiate. See: http://bit.ly/pBfQZF.

There’s free admission and parking at the Scarborough Ribfest at Thomson Memorial Park at Lawrence Avenue and Brimley Road in Scarborough. Visit www.ScarboroughRibfest.com for details and directions.

For websites and details not already mentioned, click on www.TorontoMulticulturalCalendar.com.

Simcoe Day is named after the first Lieutenant-Governor of Upper Canada. He is known for his fight against slavery. Banks, schools, government offices and many corporations and businesses are closed. Service industries, including shopping malls, restaurants and tourist attractions remain open. This day is also known as Emancipation Day, a recognition of Toronto’s historic role in the campaign to abolish slavery in the British Empire. Most people appreciate it as a holiday in hot, hot August. 

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