Here are some free or almost-free events to amuse or educate you in our diverse city.
Celts. Celtic Studies Speakers Series present “The Invisible Irish” a talk by Dr. Rankin Sherling followed by the launch of Dr. Sherling’s book The Invisible Irish: Finding Protestants in the Nineteenth-Century Migrations to America.Thursday, November 17, 6pm. Free. Charbonnel Lounge, Elmsley Hall, St. Michael’s College, 81 St Mary Street. For information email: firstname.lastname@example.org. This lecture is made possible by grants from the Irish Cultural Society of Toronto and McGill-Queen’s University Press. For this and other events in the Toronto-area Irish diaspora, please join the mailing list of Maureen Oleary: email@example.com.
France. (Danceweavers). Toussaint: Traditions Of The Dark Months. Storytelling and music from the Celtic tradition of Breton folklore with Bruce Carmody, Emilyn Stam, and Balfolk Toronto. November 20, 7:30pm. $20, stu/srs $15. Montgomery’s Inn, 4709 Dundas West. Free Parking. http://danceweavers.ca/toussaint.html.
Image from Danceweavers website.
Cuba. Night of the Assassins. A play by Cuban playwright Jose Triana. $10-$20. November 18, 19. Arcadia Studio, 680 Queens Quay West. http://www.pacunperastheatro.org/about-the-play.html
Europe. Multicultural. Netherlands. The Christmas Market at the Distillery District, Friday November 18th thru Thursday December 22. Free admission Tuesday to Fridays, $5 on Saturday and Sundays. Closed on Mondays. This market, inspired by European Christmas markets, has a wide variety of stalls and performers from many cultures such as the Caribbean (November 23), Estonia (November 24), and Sweden (November 27). St. Nicholas (Sint Nikolaas), the Dutch Santa Claus, will appear on his white horse at 6:15pm on November 29. For more information: http://www.torontochristmasmarket.com.; for daily schedule: http://www.torontochristmasmarket.com/event-calendar.html.
First Nations. Canada. Indigenous and Ingenious. Show & Sale. November 19 & 20. 11am-6pm. $5. Ralph Thornton Ventre, 765 Queen Street East, 2/f.
Goa. India. CanOrient’s Goan Fair and Talent Show. November 20. 1:30-4pm. $1-$3. One of my favourite food fairs is Goan, that part of western India that was once Portuguese. This year the CanOrient’s fair is at the Agincourt Community Centre, 31 Glen Watford Drive. http://canorienttoronto.com. For our previous blog about this fair, see: http://bit.ly/1PSP1CL
Japan. Legendary Loyalty: The 47 Ronin in Japanese Prints. Co-presented by Stuart Jackson Gallery and The Japan Foundation. November 15. 2016 – March 4, 2017. Free. The Japan Foundation, Hudson’s Bay Centre, 2 Bloor Street East #300. A collection of original 18th and 19th century woodblock print illustrations of theatrical performances of the story of Chushingura, and artistic depictions of the actual ronin (masterless samurai fighters). http://jftor.org/events/exhibitions/legendary-loyalty/
Jewish. Noshfest. Jewish Food Festival. November 13. 11am-4pm. $10. Kids free. Food, entertainment. Artscape Wychwood Barns, 601 Christie Street. http://www.noshfest.ca/
Korea. Coreyah. Korean traditional music combined with ethnic music styles such as African/Brazillian/Mid-Eastern, jazz and more. November 19. 5 & 8 pm. $20, advance $15. Small World Music Centre, 180 Shaw studio 101. For this and other worldwide performers, see: http://smallworldmusic.com
Morocco. Independence Day of Morocco and the Green March. November 20, 12-3pm. North York Civic Centre, 5100 Yonge Street. “The members of the Moroccan Association of Toronto (AMDT) are pleased to invite you to the official raising of the Moroccan Flag.
Multicultural Bazaars. The season for Christmas arts and craft bazaars at churches and community centres has started. These places are full of unique hand-made goods, seasonal bake goods, and good prices. Proceeds usually benefit the organizations. You can frequently find the dates and times on bulletin boards outside these institutions, listed in neighbourhood newspapers, or on websites. They also provide good opportunities to meet people from different cultures.
Among those that sound interesting — and there are many more — have been:
Japan. Tao Sanghe Silent Auction and Sale. November 19. 11am-4pm. Tao Sanghe, 375 Jane Street. http://taosangha-na.com/toronto-news-events/baby-its-cold-outside/
Toronto. Swansea Craft and Bake Sale, Swansea Community Recreation Centre, 15 Waller Ave. 416-392-6796. November 19. 10-3pm. $2 for adults with proceeds to charity. Expect 70 vendors selling jewellery, Christmas decoration, candles, cookies, knitted goods, handmade chocolate, cheeses, toys, greeting cards, etc. www.swanseacraftsale.com. Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/swanseacraftandbakesale. More bazaars next week.
Muslim Womenpreneurs. Sunday, November 20, 11am-6pm. Free admission. Optional donation to Syrian Fund. Royal Banquet Hall, 185 Statesman Drive, Unit #1, Mississauga. “Shop, eat, have fun,and support your community business. Variety of stalls ranging from: Beauty, Apparel, Henna, Kid Stuff, Jewelry, Art, Life Coaching, food and much more… Free entertainment: clown, face painting, etc. 100 swag bags for the first visitors! Lucky draw prizes drawn every hour!”
Muslim. 4th Annual Kids’ Bazaar. Shoppers are free. Here’s a chance to encourage a new generation of entrepreneurs. Palestine. Visualizing Palestine: Data Visualization and Storytelling. The final exhibition at Beit Zatoun. Friday, November 18 to Wednesday, November 30. Reception: Friday, November 18 at 7-8pm. $5. 612 Markham Street (Bathurst subway station). http://beitzatoun.org/event/visualizing-palestine-data-visualization-and-storytelling/?mc_cid=6e258f81b2&mc_eid=5ea6ae1ea2
Scotland. Scottish Holiday Traditions. November 16. 1-5pm. Learn how the Gibson family celebrated the season in the 19th century, plus tours and treats by the hearth. November 16-December 31, Wed-Sun 1-5 pm (Thursdays to 8 pm). $5-$8. Gibson House, 5172 Yonge Street. Festive Season, 416-395-7432
For other holiday traditions at Toronto’s Historical Museums, see: http://www1.toronto.ca/wps/portal/contentonly?vgnextoid=f3119d16a0ba9410VgnVCM10000071d60f89RCRD
Sikh. India. November 14 this year is Guru Nanak’s birthday. He was the founder of Sikhism and the first of the ten Sikh teachers. He lived from 1469 to 1539 in what is now Pakistan. Today is a good day to visit a Sikh temple, of which there are many in Toronto. Just join the crowds there, leave your shoes at the door, and sit quietly, men and women separated, to watch and be inspired by the worshipers and the music. Enjoy a meal in the basement of the temple. It is free. Ask questions. Sikhs are very hospitable. Some might be shy.
Sweden. Swedish Christmas Fair. November 19-20. Beautiful Santa Lucia pageant, Swedish folk dancers, and Swedish market. http://www.harbourfrontcentre.com/festivals/swedishchristmasfair/2016/events/index.cfm?id=8878&festival_id=251.
Toronto. Santa Claus Parade. November 20. 12:30. Free. The 12th annual parade starts at Christie Pits, goes along Bloor to Avenue Rd, south to Wellington and east to end at St Lawrence Market. Free. Map of route: http://thesantaclausparade.com/. How observant are you? What proportion of visible minorities are taking part in this parade this year?