The opening of our CNE signals the upcoming end of summer. In a couple weeks we will have fewer outdoor festivals. Among these mid-August events here are those from South Asia, China, the Kurdish Community, Vietnam, India, Philippines, Ukraine, Jamaica, and Italy. Harbourfront’s offerings will include music inspired by Mali, Morocco and Cuba.
Among indoor events are a special exhibit of jewellery from the 16th and 17th Mughal emperors, and an exhibition by controversial and brilliant First Nations artist Kent Monkman. Our Muslims will be celebrating a major festival with roots in the Old Testament, an event all children can enjoy.
Among the CNE’s international performers will be those from Ukraine, Slovakia, Mexico, the Caribbean, Spain. China and South Africa. Special will be a giant Chinese lantern exhibit. Our local First Nations will have a speakers’ and cultural booth and the National Ethnic Press will have its usual display of newspapers in our many different languages.
There’s also a run to benefit “Gazan children suffering from mental health disorders.” The Jesuits will be raising funds for medical education in the Philippines.
Here’s our survey of some of the many opportunities to experience the world in our very diverse city for free or almost free.
Asia. South Asia. Afghanistan. India. Bengal. Pakistan. Sri Lanka. TD Festival of South Asia. August 18-19. 12pm-11pm. Free entry. Little India, Gerrard Street west of Coxwell. Dancing, fashion shows, and authentic South Asian cultural programs. Beer Garden, Bollywood Pop-Up Museum, Bollywood Parade, Culture Alley, A Dinosaur in the city, Gully Cricket (back on demand), Lego Taj Mahal, Tasting Tables & sidewalk sales. Kids Zone. 200 artists performing. http://gerrardindiabazaar.com
China. Vietnam. 18th Annual Chinatown Festival. “Leap through the Dragon’s Gate.” August 18. 12–11pm; August 19. 11am–8pm. Free. Food vendors, performances. West side of Spadina Avenue (between St. Andrew Street & Sullivan St). For more information: 416-260-9800. http://www.chinatownbia.com/eventsnews/toronto-chinatown-festival/
First Nations: Cree. Kent Monkman: Miss Chief’s Praying Hands. Now until September 1. Tuesday-Saturday. 11am-6pm. Free. Project Gallery, 1210 Dundas Street East. 416-315-1192. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. A must-see exhibition of works by Canada’s brilliant and very controversial painter.
India. Kuwait. Emperors & Jewels: Treasures of the Indian Courts from The al-Sabah Collection, Kuwait. August 18, 2018 – January 27, 2019. $10-$20. Hours: https://www.agakhanmuseum.org/visit/tickets-hours.html. Aga Khan Museum, 77 Wynford Drive. Princely jeweled adornments of the 16th and 17th centuries from the Mughal emperors, exclusively on display at the Aga Khan Museum.
India. India Day Festival & Grand Parade. August 19. 1-5pm. Free. Nathan Phillips Square, 100 Queen Street West. Parade 3-4:30pm or so, during which our Indian neighbours walk in groups according to their heritage states like Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, or Bengal. Food vendors and cultural performances including Bollywood singing star. http://panoramaindia.org Italy. Italian Jazz. August 15. 6:30pm. Free. Istituto Italiano di Cultura, 496 Huron Street. Concert with Laura Campisi feat. Michael Occhipinti (guitar) and Roberto Occhipinti (bass). “… a contemporary image of Italy and its culture… Italian songs from the 1960’s to the present and revisits them through the fine lens of Jazz, combining intimate arrangements and intense Latin-inspired rhythms… . Outdoor Concert (weather permitting)”: http://iictoronto.esteri.it/iic_toronto/resource/doc/2018/08/laura_campisi.pdf
Jamaica. Rastafest. August 18. 1-10pm. Free. Multicultural. Canadian National Exhibition – CNE. August 17-September 3. Hours: https://theex.com/main/hours. General admission at the gate costs $19.99, but you can save money by buying your tickets at www.theex.com. Online, they cost $15 per ticket, plus a $1.99 service fee per transaction until Aug. 16. https://theex.com/. “All Programming Subject to Change.”
As in previous years, the CNE has several international exhibits or performances.
Legends of the Silk Road Come to Light. 10am-10pm. Enercare Centre, Hall D. “In celebration of the year of Canada-China Tourism, the CNE enlisted 50 artists to create 17 illuminated larger-than-life synthetic silk lanterns. These lanterns will stand stories-high in stature and create a luminous kaleidoscope of colour bringing the ‘CNE to light’ in a dramatic new way.”
Also in the Enercare Centre’s International Stage, are performances inspired by many cultures, including that of Ukraine, Slovakia, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Spain. Look for the Yate Dance and Acrobatic Team (Chinese culture), and Mazansi Youth Choir (South Africa). For schedule: https://theex.com/main/entertainment/international-performers/
Read about the daily speakers at the Mississaugas of the New Credit First Nations Booth. Arts, Crafts & Hobbies Pavilion. This is an opportunity to ask questions about culture, history, treaties, etc. http://mncfn.ca/mncfnevent/mncfn-cne-booth/
The National Ethnic Press and Media Council of Canada will have a display of its member newspapers at the International Market, Enercare Centre as in previous years. Contact: email@example.com. Telephone: 416–921-8926
Multicultural. Open Streets TO 2018. August 19. 10am-2pm. Also September 16. Free. Open Streets closes portions of Bloor Street and Yonge Street to motorized vehicles and open them to people on foot, bikes, roller blades, wheelchairs, skateboards and more. You are invited to join in all the free activities for people of all ages and abilities. At press time, we couldn’t find details of performances but in the past you could find lessons in different kinds of ethnic dances: https://www.openstreetsto.org/
Multicultural. Small World Music Festival. August 17. Mali. Morocco. August 18. Italy. Cuba. France. August 19. Afro-Mexican/USA. Free. Harbourfront Centre, 235 Queens Quay West. For schedule, click on date at: http://www.harbourfrontcentre.com/whatson/today.cfm?discipline_id=&mode=day&&month=08&year=2018&day=17&week=33&searchvenue=.
Muslim. Eid al-Adha, (Eid ul-Adha). August 21-25 honours the willingness of Abraham (Ibrahim) to sacrifice his son Ishmael (Ismail) as an act of submission to God’s command, and his son’s acceptance to being sacrificed, before God intervened to provide Abraham with a lamb to sacrifice instead. The story is in the Old Testament as well as the Koran. (The Jewish holiday of Rosh Hashanah has similar roots.)
Muslims who can afford it should sacrifice a goat, sheep or cow. Heads of households should slit the animal’s throat with a knife, at the jugular, to minimize its suffering. They can also just touch the knife before someone else kills the animal on their behalf. That act connects them to the ritual and makes them aware of where their food really comes from.
Eid al-Adha is a time for thanksgiving, compassion and forgiveness, and the exchange of gifts. Every Muslim home is required to share the meat with relatives and the poor. The sharing can be monetary like a donation to the Toronto Food Bank, the Muslim Women’s Shelter, and the Edhi Foundation.
Here are some of the many places where Muslims celebrate this important festival with prayers and bazaars, Bouncy Castles, clowns, face painting, balloons, food, and ice cream. Non-Muslims can take part in these events too.
Grand Eid Bazaar 2018. Saturday, August 18. 12pm-12am. Free entry. The International Centre, 6900 Airport Road, Mississauga. https://muslimlink.ca/events/toronto/event/7731-grand-eid-bazaar-mississauga-international-centre .
AC Eid El-Adha Festival at the ICCO – Mississauga. Tuesday, August 21. 10am-5pm. Free entry. Islamic Community Centre of Ontario, 2550 Dunwin Drive, Mississauga. “Come Celebrate & Enjoy Bouncy Castles, Clowns, face painting, Balloons Food, Ice Cream & Candies. First Prayer at 7:15am.” https://muslimlink.ca/events/toronto/event/7975-eid-mississauga-mac-festival-eid-el-adha; https://www.facebook.com/events/296220457613542/. ** Please note that the Festival will be on the first day of Eid whatever the date is.
Eid Al-Adha Prayer & Festival. August 21. Free admission. Woodbine Park, 1695 Queen Street East. https://maceidfest.com/toronto/. CANCELLED DUE TO BAD WEATHER.
Palestine. Run for Palestine – Toronto Run/Walk. August 18. 9am-2pm. $11.17-$58.68. Fund Raiser for “much needed humanitarian projects helping the Palestinian people.” Budapest Park, Martin Goodman Trail, 1575 Lakeshore Blvd. https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/run-for-palestine-toronto-runwalk-aug-18-2018-tickets-45422243152?aff=erelexpmlt. Organizer: http://www.runforpalestine.com/about-us-2-2/ Philippines. This year’s Taste of Manila has been on, off, and now on again. August 18-19. Bathurst Street (corner Wilson Avenue). Free. Food, performances, vendors, etc. Filipino stores in area but no Jollibee. http://tasteofmanilacanada.com/about.html
Philippines. Open Doors on Mindanao. August 19. Lady of Lourdes, 520 Sherbourne Street. Canadian Jesuits International supports a scholarship fund and immersion program for promising young men and women during their four years of medical training at the Ateneo de Zamboanga University – School of Medicine (ADZU-SOM) in the Philippines. The primary purpose of this Jesuit school is to train physicians to provide urgently needed community-based healthcare.
Speakers: Dr Angeles PhD is a graduate of ADZU-SOM and Sr Lao, RNDM, is involved in community development among indigenous people in Mindanao. RSVP to 416-465-1824 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ukraine. 27th Annual Celebration of Ukrainian Independence Day. North America’s largest. Saturday, August 18. Free. Centennial Park, Mississauga. https://culture.mississauga.ca/event/celebration-square/mississauga-ukrainian-festival.
Note from Ruth: TorontoMulticulturalCalendar.com chooses to promote events that encourage a feeling of community in our culturally 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. If you go to any of our mentioned events, please send us corrections or an account of your impressions so we will know whether or not to promote these events in future. Please continue to send us posters. We don’t charge to post them and we don’t accept paid advertising. Post comments on “Leave a Reply” below. Email us at: email@example.com. Subscribe to our Newsletter above.