Ruth writes: I look forward every year to the Doors Open opportunities coming up again this weekend. It gives me a chance to just drop into buildings I’m curious about, but not curious enough to make a phone call to book a private visit. Usually Doors Open insures that there’s a warm welcome inside and a chance to talk with people who are prepared to answer questions. And visiting is free.
The top on many multicultural lists this year should be the Aga Khan Museum which opened late last year in the Don Mills-Eglinton area. That one sounded so intriguing I couldn’t wait until this year’s Doors Open to see it. I liked it so much I asked my husband for a museum membership for Christmas. If you haven’t inspected it yet, your chance for a free tour of the exotic building is this Saturday or Sunday. The Mughal paintings especially are amazing.
Last year I visited the new Jing Yin temple in Scarborough, which is on the list for this year. This Buddhist temple had a lion dance (at its opening), offered tea to all visitors as is Chinese custom, and had a demonstration of its rituals. It was very well organized with several guides explaining one of the largest collection of religious statues in the city. More pictures are on my Blog http://bit.ly/1Fn7C5p.
Last year I also went to the Canadian Sufi Cultural Centre in Etobicoke, which has opened its door this year too. What fascinates about the Sufi is its tradition of whirling, an attempt to “tame one’s ego.” This year visitors are also invited at 9pm Saturday for the weekly evening of whirling and music.
I like the Native Child and Family Services of Toronto at College and Yonge. It’s got a sweat lodge on its roof top and a ground floor meeting room in the shape of a longhouse. For an exquisite Tibetan temple, there’s the Riwoche Tibetan Buddhist Temple in the Junction.
This year there are walking tours also. You might want to spend time with the lovely outdoor murals of old Toronto on Dundas Street West in Etobicoke west of Montgomery’s Inn at Islington Ave. You can actually do this on your own as each mural has a description beside it. But you might prefer going with a group and a guide.
Check out the full list of buildings at: http://www1.toronto.ca/wps/portal/contentonly?vgnextoid=0d0bfa2cd4a64410VgnVCM10000071d60f89RCRD.
And among Toronto’s many other events, consider Carassauga weekend too in Mississauga. Its pavilions are showcasing 72 different heritage groups. See: http://www.carassauga.com. Yes, there’s much from which to choose.
We regret that we can no longer list most of the many free or nearly-free multicultural events in Toronto. We can only suggest you visit our Blog that will help you find daily events that might especially interest you. See: http://bit.ly/1Ptpfa4
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