796. Christmas, Judicial, Challenging & Fun Events in Multicultural Toronto – November 21-28, 2017.

Meet Guatemalan plaintiffs involved in an anti-Canadian mining court case, or rock to live music at our annual Christmas tree lighting at City Hall. Watch a black-and-white Italian film starring Vittorio De Sica in his prime, or enjoy a Swedish Christmas fair with Santa Lucia wearing a crown of lighted candles.

Express your opinions at a community forum that brings together First Peoples and peoples of Colour sharing their respective visions, strategies and priorities. Get active and learn Bulgarian dancing. Relax with some Japanese films.

What other cities offer these kinds of international opportunities that are free or almost free? And Toronto has more that you can read about here or find for yourself in free weekly magazines like NOW, or The Villager at subway stations.

Bulgaria. OFDA Bulgarian Dance Café. Saturday, November 25. 6–10pm. Potluck Supper at 6:30pm. $10 for non-members of OFDA. Guest teachers Marija Zasheva and Mihal Kochankov, and performance group Golden Thrace. Ralph Thornton Center, 765 Queen Street East. http://ofda.ca/wp/.

Canada. Canadian Pacific Holiday Train. Only Saturday, November 28. 8:15pm-9:30pm. Free but food donation appreciated. 750 Runnymede Rd, in front of Lambton Yard. Live music. Santa. For more information:  http://www.cpr.ca/holiday-train/canada

Christmas. Markham. 45th Annual Markham Santa Claus Parade. Saturday, November 25. 11am. Free. Main Street Markham North, Markham. Markham claims to be more multicultural than Toronto. Its parade should be full of people from its many different cultures. http://www.markhamsantaclausparade.com/

Image from Markhamsantaclauseparade.com.


Christmas. Toronto. 51st Cavalcade of Lights. Saturday, November 25. 7pm. Free. The official start of the holiday season at Nathan Phillips Square. First lighting of Toronto’s official 18-metre (60-foot) Christmas tree, along with live performances by Charmie Deller, Matthew Barber & Jill Barber and Alex Cuba, a skating party and a fireworks display. All free! Full schedule at toronto.ca/cavalcade.

Image Courtesy of Calvacade of Lights website.

This is the most important of the many Cavalcade of Lights or Christmas season equivalents in Toronto. Other neighbourhoods will also light up their streets for the holiday season and/or have a Christmas-theme street parties; for example, Light up the Riverside is also on Saturday, November 25. 5-7pm. http://www.toronto-bia.com/component/jevents/icalrepeat.detail/2017/11/25/476/-/light-up-the-riverside?Itemid=1&filter_reset=1.

There’s also Bloor West Village’s Santa in the Village: http://www.shopbloorwest.com/events/?view=details&eventid=100045540/.  

Guatemala. Toronto. Seeking Justice for Rape, Murder & Repression in the Mining Industry: The Hudbay Minerals/CGN lawsuits. A landmark court case is currently in progress in Toronto with plaintiffs from Guatemala’s Indigenous Q’eqchi’ people.

On Thursday, November 23. 6-7:30pm. Free. Donations appreciated. Four of the plaintiffs, their lawyers, and representatives of Rights Action will speak at a public meeting. The Guatemalans are trying to “reclaim ancestral lands and to seek justice in Canadian and Guatemalan courts for murder, shootings and rapes committed by police, soldiers and private security guards working for Canadian mining company Hudbay Minerals and its Guatemalan subsidiary CGN.” Who is right? Who will win the case? Here’s a real-life court case mystery for you to ponder that will affect Canadian mining companies abroad and people in the developing world: https://us9.campaign-archive.com/?u=ea011209a243050dfb66dff59&id=aa7f6b9939

Friends’ House, 60 Lowther Avenue. For more background on the situation: https://www.thestar.com/news/world/2017/04/07/guatemala-murder-acquittal-could-have-far-reaching-canadian-consequences.html ; http://upsidedownworld.org/archives/guatemala/justice-possible-canada-guatemala-hudbay-mineralscgn-mining-repression

Italy. Pirandello 150: Screening of Ma Non e Una Cosa Seria (But It’s Nothing Serious). Part of a Film and Lecture Series. November 21. 6pm. Free. Innis College Town Hall, 2 Sussex Ave. Directed by Mario Camerini, starring Vittorio De Sica, Elisa Cegani, Assia Noris (1937 – Italian with English Subtitles, Black and White, 79 min.). In commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the birth of Italian writer, Nobel Prize laureate Luigi Pirandello. http://www.iictoronto.esteri.it/iic_toronto/en/gli_eventi/calendario/2017/11/pirandello-150-screening-of-ma.html

Japan. Free films but registration required. Japanese with English subtitles.

A Tale of Samurai Cooking 武士の献立. Thursday November 23, 6:30pm. “Haru has an excellent sense of taste and great talent as a chef, but her ‘spirited character’ was too much for her first husband, who divorced her after only one year of marriage…”

Time of Eve イヴの時間 劇場版. November 27 & 30, 6:30pm. Directed by Yasuhiro Yoshiura 2010. “The story is set in the not-too-distant future, where androids are considered home appliances.”

Both at The Japan Foundation, 2 Bloor Street East, 3rd Floor (at Yonge Street). http://jftor.org/events/list/

Image from Japan Foundation website.

Multicultural. Equity, Inclusion & Racial Justice Change-Making Conversation. Tuesday, November 28. 5:30-8pm. Free. Toronto Central Grosvenor Street, YMCA Centre, 20 Grosvenor Street. A community forum to bring together First Peoples and peoples of colour to share their respective visions, strategies and priorities: http://bit.ly/2B3lEv4 

Image from Moving Beyond Canada 150.

South Asia. ROM Speaks Culture. Inaugural Annual South Asia Lecture. November 28. 7-8pm. Reception to follow. $20. Signy and Cléophée Eaton Theatre, Level 1B, Royal Ontario Museum, 100 Queens Park.

“Join Ontario-based artist Panchal Mansaram and Mumbai-based journalist Sidharth Bhatia of TheWire.in to talk art, culture, and journalism in India and the world today.”  This annual lecture series brings a cultural innovator from the South Asia region to Canada and is generously supported by the Ancient Echoes Modern Voices South Asia Programs Fund. https://www.rom.on.ca/en/whats-on/inaugural-annual-south-asia-lecture

Image from Royal Ontario Museum website.

Sweden. Swedish Christmas Fair. November 25-26. Free. Harbourfront Centre. This is a beautiful festival with its Santa Lucia pageant and folk dancers. It also has Swedish food and goods for sale, and a Sami art exhibition. http://www.harbourfrontcentre.com/festivals/swedishchristmasfair/index.cfm ; http://www.harbourfrontcentre.com/whatson/dance.cfm?id=9787&festival_id=278

Image from Harbourfront Centre website

Note: TorontoMulticulturalCalendar.com chooses to promote events that encourage a peaceful world in our diverse city. Mention doesn’t mean endorsement but we try to include events we think readers will find stimulating 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 multiculturalism. 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.

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  1. Update: On November 23, former Ontario Premier Bob Rae will join human rights activist Dr. Maung Zarni in a report on “Rohingya in Peril: Crisis in Myanmar”. Thursday, November 23 from 6 PM – 8 PM in the Toronto City Hall, Council Chambers. Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, recently named the Honourable Bob Rae as his Special Envoy to Myanmar to engage in diplomatic efforts to address the crisis regarding the country’s Rakhine State. He has been visiting refugee camps in southern Bangladesh..

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