People who identify as visible minorities are now a majority in Toronto. 51.5%. The Toronto Star pointed this out last week following the release of Canada’s *2016 Census figures.
I feel great about this. Our growing culturally diverse city is so stimulating. I love its many exotic events, even its older traditional festivals like Halloween. How about you?
So here are some upcoming happenings I’d like to attend and hope you will too. Most are free. Going to these is an opportunity to meet interesting people as well as experiencing their cultures. – Ruth
Armenia. Multicultural. Sunday Interlude Concert Series. Narek Hakhnazaryan. November 5. 2pm. Free event but tickets are necessary. Mazzoleni Concert Hall in Ihnatowycz Hall, Royal Conservatory of Music, 273 Bloor Street West.
This Armenian-born, Russian-trained cellist won the Cello First Prize and Gold Medal at the XIV International Tchaikovsky Competition in 2011 at the age of 22. He was named a BBC New Generation Artist in 2014.
Videos of Narek Hakhnazaryan: https://www.facebook.com/pg/Narekcello/videos/?ref=page_internal.
Christian. Italy. Annual All Souls’ Day Mass. Some liturgy in Italian and English. Saturday, November 4. 2-3pm. All Souls Day is a Christian feast commemorating those who have died and are now in Purgatory. For list of masses in Toronto’s cemeteries: https://www.archtoronto.org/catholic-outreach/calendar-events/chancery-events/nov2017-annual-all-souls-day-mass
Congo. Exhibition and Book Discussion: Tram 83 by Fiston Mwanza Mujila. November 4. 1pm. Free. Power Plant, 231 Queen’s Quay West. Read this Congolese author’s debut novel Tram 83, which author Mujila said aimed “to be able to represent a form of exploitation and neocolonialism that happens throughout Africa, not just in the Congo.” then join Toronto’s African Literature Book Club for a lively book discussion.
Tour Sammy Baloji’s exhibition Urban Now: City Life in Congo for background: http://thepowerplant.org/ProgramsEvents/Programs/Other-Programs/Book-Discussion–Tram-83-by-Fiston-Mwanza-Mujila.aspx
European Union. European Union Film Festival. November 9-23. Free but you can reserve space for $10. Films from Malta, Spain, Belgium, Ireland, etc. All films subtitled in English unless otherwise noted. Main venue. The Royal, 608 College Street. http://www.eutorontofilmfest.ca/
First Nations. Lecture. Reconciliation is Negotiating the Rapids Together. Wednesday, November 8. 1:30–4:30pm. Free but please register. Knox College. Speaker: The Rev. Dr. Margaret Mullin, Executive Director, Winnipeg Inner City Missions. “Dr. Mullin will speak out of her experience and expertise on the continuing journey of healing and reconciliation between settlers and indigenous peoples. She has been working in the inner city since 1999 and has received a Woman of Distinction award for her work... Margaret is an ordained minister ... Ojibwe and Irish/Scottish in origin, she follows both Christian and Aboriginal Traditional Spiritual ways... panel discussion and reception.” http://www.knox.utoronto.ca/macdonald2017
Hindu. India. Hindu Heritage Day Celebration. November 4. 11am-3pm. Free. All welcome. “Food most of which will be cooked in front of you, live music and dances, museum open house, wellness sessions, temple booths, etc. Other Hindu organizations across Ontario are partnering with us for an event that will showcase our pride as vibrant Hindus in Ontario.” Vishnu Mandu, 8640 Yonge Street (at Highway 407), Richmond Hill. Tel. 416-886-1714. http://vishnumandir.com/upcoming-event/hindu-heritage-month-celebration-on-sat-nov-4-from-11am-to-3-pm/
Japan. Tokaido Megalopolis: the Megacity Region that Swallowed Japan. November 1. 6:30-8pm. Free but registration necessary. The Japan Foundation, 2 Bloor St. East, 3/F, 416-966-1600. http://jftor.org/event/andre-sorensen.
This could be a lesson for Toronto about cities that could be too big. The Tokaido Megalopolis extends from Tokyo to Osaka. – Ruth.
Laos. Tuckbath of Boon Phra Thatluang festival. November 5. 10am-1pm. Free but donations appreciated. Wat Lao Veluwanaram, 17969 Airport Road, Caledon East. Telephone for time. 905-584-6886.
Phra Thatluang is a holy shrine and spiritual worshiping place in Laos. It is a symbol of the culture and art, and inspired by the 15th century Kingdom of LaneXang. It is the biggest Buddhist holiday in Laos and is special in the GTA too. Much of this is in the Lao language but many attenders speak English. You can ask questions.– Ruth.
Mexico. Day of the Dead. This festival is very popular in Toronto, not only among Mexicans. We found three different venues celebrating the day:
November 4-5. Free. Harbourfront, 235 Queens Quay West. Mexican food for sale, bands, ofrenda, demonstrations, arts and crafts. Daily schedule: http://www.harbourfrontcentre.com/whatson/today.cfm?discipline_id=&mode=day&&month=11&year=2017&day=4&week=44&searchvenue=
November 5. 10am-3pm. Free. Evergreen Brick Works, 550 Bayview Avenue. Shuttle bus on Sunday. https://www.evergreen.ca/whats-on/event/annual-day-of-the-dead-celebration/
- Mexico and the Day of the Dead Photo Exhibit. October 21-November 1. 7pm. Free. Artscape Wychwood Barns, 601 Christie Street. Tel. 416-392-1038. http://artscapewychwoodbarns.ca/event/mexico-day-dead
- Multicultural. Redesigning Life: Synthetic Biology. New Genetic Engineering and Ethics. November 3. 7-9pm. Free. YWCA, 87 Elm Street. Cban, the World Council of Churches and Canadian Friends Service Committee discuss a world-wide concern. Www.cban.ca/events.
Sikh. India. Guru Nanak’s Birthday. November 4. Free but donations appreciated.
The birthday of the founder of the Sikh religion is its most important festival of the year. Sikh gurdwaras or temples are full of life. Sacred music is played. Worshipers line up at a shrine to donate food or money to the temple or sit and meditate. Vegetarian food is served to everyone in the basement without charge. It is a good time to experience this religion and some Indian food. Please leave your shoes at the door and cover your head. You can borrow head wear upon arrival. You can ask questions of the volunteers and take pictures if you ask permision. — Ruth
One of our largest Sikh temples is the Ontario Khalsa Darbar, 7080 Dixie Road, Mississauga. 905-670-3311. http://dixiegurdwara.com. There is also the Scarborough Gurdwara Sahib at 905 Middlefield Road, Scarborough. www.gsabha.com
My favourite Sikh temple is the exquisite new Gudwara Dashmesh Darbar at 4525 Ebenezar Road in Brampton. http://www.gurdwaradasmeshdarbar.com/ – Ruth
Sudan. Afro-centric. Sudanese singer Rasha. November 3. 8pm. $20. Small World Music, 180 Shaw Street. Rasha is a “celebrated Sudanese singer based in London, making her first Toronto appearance… her debut album Sudaniyat, named among the 10 best of 1997 by fRoots, brought the diversity of Sudanese music to the fore, ranging from Arabic poetry and Sufi music and even touches of reggae… “ http://smallworldmusic.com/
Here is an opportunity to hear Sudanese-influenced music live: http://smallworldmusic.com
One of Rasha’s videos is at: https://smallworldmusic.thundertix.com/events/115813?utm_source=Small+World+Newsletter&utm_campaign=b0436ce169-
Toronto. In celebration of its 50th anniversary, Mackenzie Investments is offering FREE regular admission to Market Gallery and eight other Toronto History Museums until November 30, 2017. This offer is especially good for families who want to experience Toronto’s cultural history. Thank you Mackenzie Investments. For information about events at our nine history museum: https://www1.toronto.ca/wps/portal/contentonly?vgnextoid=9e3833e8d171c510VgnVCM10000071d60f89RCRD
Toronto. Pumpkin Parades. What can you do with used jack-o-lanterns the day after Halloween? Why not take them to join a parade? No, you don’t have to march with your jack-o-lanterns. Parades are hosted at Rennie Park, Lambton-Kingsway Park, Vine Avenue Playground, Carlton Park, Henrietta Park, Earlscourt Park, Bartlett Parkette, Dovercourt Park, Wychwood Barns Park, Sorauren Avenue Park and McCormick Park. For more information, visit www.toronto.ca
For video and information at Sorauren Avenue Park’s parade for example: https://soraurenpark.wordpress.com/park-features/pumpkin-parade/ .
Ukraine. Remembrance Day. Sunday, November 5. 1:30-3:30pm.
1:30pm. Veteran and “Vanguard” Marching Band Procession from St. Demetrius Church, 135 LaRose Avenue to the Cenotaph at the Canadian Ukrainian Memorial Park that is dedicated to Canadians of Ukrainian origin who served in the Canadian Military.
2:00 pm Memorial Service with “Orion” Male Choir; Wreath Laying at Monument.
Note: I choose events that shows us how much different cultures have in common. Mention doesn’t mean endorsement but included are those we think readers will find interesting in the cultures of other groups. Please let us know what interests you.
Please continue to send us posters and pictures about other upcoming affordable events that give the rest of us a chance to experience Toronto’s exemplary cultural diversity. We don’t charge to post them and we don’t accept paid advertising. We will try to post as many as we can that fit our criteria.
Tell us about your adventures in multicultural Toronto. Subscribe to our mailing list for newsletters above. Follow us on www.twitter.com/torontomulticul. – Ruth
*2016 Census figures: Toronto by place of birth: http://www12.statcan.gc.ca/census-recensement/2016/dp-pd/hlt-fst/imm/Table.cfm?Lang=E&T=22&Geo=535