326. Toronto’s Free or Nearly-Free Nov. 17-18 Multicultural Weekend


Santa Claus Parade. 2011. Copyright ©2012 Ruth Lor Malloy

This weekend, our giant Santa Claus parade marches and waves it way through downtown Toronto. Our 60 ft. (18.29 metre)-high Christmas tree gets lit at City Hall. Our holiday season starts. Free outdoor ice skating begins at Harbourfront, and three international film festivals, one of which is free, will be available for the sedentary. Many of these following events are free.

Details like links, addresses, times, prices, and schedules for these free or nearly-free ethnic and cultural events are in www.torontomulticulturalcalendar.com. Click on “Calendar.” Please let us know if we’ve missed any. The email is: ruthlormalloy@gmail.com.

New Ethiopian Orthodox Church. Toronto. Copyright ©2012 Ruth Lor Malloy


On Saturday, unique storytelling with a combined South Asian and Cree bent will be on at Daniels Spectrum in Regent Park. A contemplative Shabbat service takes place at the Miles Nadal Jewish Community Centre. The Reel Asian festival will show flicks from Taiwan, Japan, and Canada in Richmond Hill. Amnesty International’s Reel Awareness Festival will have films from Iran, China and India (on gendercide), Egypt, and Guatemala and Mexico. The European Union festival will have films from the U.K., Portugal and Denmark.


Cavalcade of Lights. Toronto City Hall. 2010. Copyright ©2012 Ruth Lor Malloy

On Sunday, the Ethiopian Orthodox Church just west of Dufferin between Eglinton and Lawrence is consecrating its impressive new building. The rituals and speeches go on from 3:00am to about 3:00pm — but if you arrive at 12:20 noon or so, you will see the colourful procession of the Ark of the Covenant. Please cover your head and expect to take your shoes off at the door. An RSVP is expected.

On Sunday also, there’s a lecture on Religious Pluralism and Canadian Law at the Noor Cultural Centre. The Vishnu Mandir in Richmond Hill has a Diwali Fair. And children should love learning Samba drumming at Drum Artz near Lawrence and Dupont.

The Reel Awareness Film Festival will show documentaries on Third-World Canada, Finland, and Hebron. A Swedish film attempts to discredit the food company Dole. The U.E. Film Festival will show Hungary and Romania.

The Santa Claus Parade starts at Christie and Bloor St. W. at 12:30.

I will try to add other events as soon as you tell me about them, and please let me know your impressions of these events. There’s something for everyone. Have a great weekend!

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