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July 31, 2014

Toronto Festival Guide - August 2014

Remember: Please ALWAYS check with website for exact dates, etc. as details may change after the listing is posted here. More festivals will be posted whenever dates, etc have been confirmed.

Scotiabank Caribbean Carnival Toronto

Jul 8-Aug 4, 2014

See July for details.

TD IRIE Music Festival

Aug 1-4, 2014

The TD IRIE Music Festival is a multi-day festival that takes place over 2 weekends at 2 different venues:

  • Aug 1-4: Nathan Phillips Square
  • Aug 23-24: Celebration Square, Mississauga (near Square One)

Join the celebration of music from Reggae to Salsa, Soul to African; dance from the African Diaspora presented in association with dance Immersion, spoken word, visual arts exhibition, delicious tropical food & drinks and more.

Island Soul

Aug 1-4, 2014: 10am-10pm

Celebrate everything Caribbean at this festival. Enjoy the rich artistic and cultural offerings of the Caribbean islands celebrating music, dance, language, food, film, workshops and more!

Scarborough Rib Fest

Aug 1-4, 2014

Organized by the Rotary Club of Scarborough, Scarborough Ribfest is an annual community favourite over the August long weekend. It's East Toronto's largest community event.

There are Free shuttle buses for seniors and handicapped at the parking lot. Leave your pets at home.

  • Where: Thomson Memorial Park (Corner of Lawrence Ave. & Brimley Rd.)
  • Times: Friday-Sunday (11am-11pm) || Monday (11am-8pm; Entertainment ends: 10pm)
  • Parking: FREE


  • Enjoy delicious ribs, hot dogs, french fries, corn on the cob and more...
  • Midway rides
  • Skill testing games
  • Karaoke competition everyday
  • Creative designs by crafters and vendors
  • All day beer garden and much more!

ArtFest at the Distillery

Aug 2-4, 2014: 11am-6pm

Outdoor Craft Show celebrating the top 85 artists & artisans from across Canada. Featuring pottery, glass, jewellery, paintings, wood turning, gourmet foods, live music and more.

Rogers Cup - Mens' Tennis Tournament

Aug 2-10, 2014

It's the Mens' championship this year in Toronto with many of the top ranked players confirmed to play. Tickets for the semi-finals and finals usually sell out - so pick them up as soon as you can! The Women's tournament will be held in Montreal (Aug 1-10).

Pirate Festival

Aug 2-4, 2014: 10am-6pm

This festival has pirate stages with entertainment for the family, interaction with pirates, a marketplace, games of skill and loads of fun and of course, there will be food 'n' drink. Entertainment with a pirate flare, provides a little bit of everything for everyone!

The Captains Keg on Saturday night will be overloaded with piratical enjoyment for adults after the children are tucked into their hammocks.


Aug 3-4, 2014

jambana logoJambana is an exciting 'Fun for the Family' event with the opportunity for marketing, networking and socializing with delicious food and excellent entertainment to celebrate Jamaica. Experience the rhythms of Gospel, Dance, Comedy, the "Lick A Six" Domino Tournament and Entertainment.

Toronto Queer Arts Festival

Aug 7-10, 2014

Formerly known as "Queer West Fest" this is an Arts and Culture festival put on by the queer community.

It has something for everyone. From a film festival to spoken word, to a political unConferences, to art shows, to classical music concerts. From a ramble in the ART AND DESIGN DISTRICT to a QUEER CABARET whether you’re gay, straight, lesbian, bi, trans, queer or confused there’s something to inspire, challenge or entertain you.


SummerWorks Theatre Festival

Aug 7-17, 2014

The SummerWorks Theatre Festival is the largest juried theatre festival in Canada, producing approximately 40 plays, 10 nights of music, performance and more from Toronto and across the country.

Held throughout Toronto in many different venues, this is definitely a festival for all theatre-goers.

Oakville Jazz Festival

Aug 8-9, 2014

The Oakville Jazz Festival is held in Downtown Oakville with outdoor patios, shopping, great restaurants, pubs and street vendors. The event plays host to local, regional, national, and international jazz acts. For more information, please check their website.

Taste of the Danforth

Aug 8-10, 2014

Taste of the Danforth bannerIf you enjoy Greek food and everything associated with Greek culture, this is the festival to attend. Best way to get there - TTC (Broadview Stn, Chester or even Pape) as parking can be a nightmare. If you're not one for crowds, go early (10/11 am) as you will be able to see everything and still manage to pick out your spot on one of the many patios. Pick up a 'snack' or a full meal from one of the many stalls along the Danforth.

Pan American Food Festival

Aug 8-10, 2014: Noon-11pm

The second annual Pan American Food Festival celebrates the best food and great cultural diversity of the 41 countries of North, Central and South America, and the Caribbean. It showcases leading restaurants, food producers, chefs and the variety of national and regional cuisines of the Western Hemisphere. New Location!

Pan American Food Fest logo

This year's festival features demonstrations from some of the world's best chefs from the Pan America's, including the Father of New World Cuisine Norman Van Aken, Top Chef finalist Rich Francis, Diablo's Fuego hot sauce founder Rossy Earle, and many more.

Expressions of Brazil

Aug 8-10, 2014

Explore South America’s biggest country over a mammoth 3-day festival featuring a kaleidoscope of arts, cultural and culinary events.

Fergus Scottish Festival & Highland Games

Aug 8-10, 2014

If you've never been to Scotland, attending this festival will make you feel you have. Held out in Fergus (map), it celebrates everything Scottish and you don't have to be part of a Clan to enjoy yourself!! There are children's activities such as dance lessons, story-telling; competitions, e.g., tossing the caber; Highland dancing; piping; scotch tasting and many other entertaining events to watch or participate in.

Mississauga ITALFEST™

Aug 9, 2014: Noon–11pm

Ferragosto in the City coming to Mississauga. With expectations of 5000+ attendees, the event will be filled with food, fun and festivities as you spend the day exploring all that is Italian! For the latest updates, you should visit their website.

The Roundhouse Craft Beer Festival

Aug 9-10, 2014

Steam Whistle celebrates craft beer and hosts The Roundhouse Craft Beer Festival! Showcasing beers from Ontario Craft Brewers. Created to provide beer lovers the opportunity to sample Ontario’s finest craft brews and delicious eats from some of Toronto’s best Food Trucks.

Time: Noon - 7PM
General Admission: $20 in advance / #25 at gate (incl. sampling cup)


Aug 9-10, 2014: 11am-10pm

JerkFest celebrates the world renown jerk cuisine. Its a fusion of jerk food, pulsating music, family friendly entertainment and good vibes – all under the Toronto sun.

TO Food Fest

Aug 10, 2014: 1-6 pm

TOFoodFest LogoThis festival brings together the best hidden gem restaurants in Scarborough ranging from the top Middle Eastern pastries in the GTA to the highest rated shortbread cookies in the city. Anyone who wants to taste the best burger, oyster, shortbread cookie, or milk tea in the GTA must come to this show! Food samples will vary by vendor.

Admission: $2 Donation or bring a Food item for donation to the Food Bank.

Hot & Spicy Food Festival

Aug 15-17, 2014

This year's festival dips into food and culture rooted in the past and renewed for the future. Enjoy a range of culinary delicacies, as well as hot rhythms and spicy grooves from the past and present.

Dundas Cactus Festival

Aug 15-17, 2014

The Cactus Festival of Dundas, Ontario is a large, street festival showcasing Dundas businesses & area artists. The festival includes 3 entertainment stages, event zones and over 100 street vendors and kicks off with the Parade. Highlights:

  • Parade
  • Musical Entertainment
  • Cactus Family Fun Zone! (King St - between Market/Church)
  • Fortino’s Baby Cactus Contest (with babies 3-17 months)
  • Robertson’s Midway
  • Art in the Alley

The Canadian National Exhibition (CNE)

Aug 15-Sept 1, 2014

The Canadian National Exhibition (aka The Ex) is an 'end of summer' celebration held at Exhibition Place. Once you've paid the entrance fee, all entertainment is free. But in order to go on the amusement rides, you must have the RAD pass (includes admission AND rides).

The Midway

The following are some dates you should keep in mind:

  • Buy your tickets before Opening Day and SAVE $$ (avail from Jul 25) - this special ends Aug 14
  • $8 @ the Gate Opening Day Special: Grounds admission is only $8 on Friday, August 15
  • $6 after 5pm: Just pay $6 after 5pm each Mon, Tues, Wed and Thurs but NOT on Labour Day Monday

Bandshell Concerts

The following are artists performing FREE concerts (with admission) at the CNE.

  • Aug 15: Down With Webster
  • Aug 16: The Mavericks
  • Aug 17: Kailash Kher
  • Aug 19: Christopher Cross
  • Aug 20: The Mighty Diamonds
  • Aug 21: Jose Feliciano
  • Aug 22: Platium Blonde
  • Aug 24: Gord Bamford
  • Aug 26: These Kids Wear Crowns & Eleven Past One & PRTY H3RO
  • Aug 27: April Wine
  • Aug 30: Tom Cochrane

Special Events

The following are just some of the special events.

  • Ribfest [Every day except Aug 18 & 25]
  • Food Products Day [Aug 16]
  • Kids Toonie Mondays [Aug 18 & 25]
  • Food Truck Frenzy [Aug 22-24]
  • Cat Show [Aug 23-24]
  • Free Till 3 For 19 yrs & Under [TBA: 10am-3pm]
  • Canadian International Air Show [Aug 30-Sept 1]

Annual Bloorcourt Arts and Crafts Street Fair

Aug 16, 2014: Noon-11pm

The Annual Bloorcourt Arts and Crafts Fair will be presenting a free, family-oriented event that includes:

  • A kids zone
  • Musical entertainment
  • Arts and crafts vendors
  • Sidewalk sales, and more!

Head on over to Bloor Street West (which will be closed between Montrose Ave and Dufferin St for the day's festivities) on Saturday (rain or shine) and have some fun!

Wheels on the Danforth

Aug 16, 2014: 11am-11pm

Toronto’s only "on the street" judged Car show featuring Classics, Exotics, Tuners, Muscle Cars, Hot Rods, and Motorcycles all lined up on the closed section of Danforth Ave/Danforth Rd. Local cycle groups will be participating in a structured ride to the event. Highlights of the day/evening:

  • Variety of vendors and artisans in the Market Place
  • Food Trucks along with local restaurants offer food
  • FREE Kid’s Zone
  • Rides and bouncy castles and lots of family entertainment
  • Main stage: Emerging local talent
  • Beer garden
  • Tuner Show in the evening
  • Summer street dance party (evening)


Aug 16-17, 2014

Yogapalooza is a celebration of music, movement and meditation (held in Sept last year).

This two-day festival includes belly dance, bollywood grooves, martial arts mash-up and some hard core yogis. Be part of this much anticipated event. Don't forget to take your yoga mats and your friends!

York-Eglinton International Street Festival

Aug 16-17, 2014

This festival is a family event providing international experiences that include Caribbean, Italian, Portuguese, Latin to name a few.

Please note there will be street closures: Oakwood Ave. to Dufferin St.

Himalayan Mela

Aug 17, 2014: 2-8pm

The Himalayan Festival celebrates the culture and heritage of Nepal at the heart of the City of Toronto. It features various facets of Nepalese culture and tradition such as folk dances, ethnic costumes, varieties of Nepalese cuisine, art/craft and music. Taste and experience that what is Nepalese!

Scotiabank Buskerfest

Aug 21-24, 2014

Spontaneous, colourful and bursting with the unexpected, the festival is a showcase for over 100 of the most remarkable street performers on earth.

Over 4 days and nights, Toronto’s international busker festival will entertain audiences in its NEW LOCATION: Yonge Street between Queen and Gerrard Streets, as well as surrounding areas. There is a Buskerball on Aug 19 at the Mattamy Athletic Centre (50 Carlton St, formerly Maple Leaf Gardens), tickets are $150. After that:

  • Thurs [Aug 21]: Noon - 11pm
  • Fri [Aug 22]: Noon - 11pm
  • Sat [Aug 23]: 11am - 11pm
  • Sun [Aug 24]: 11am - 8pm

Scotiabank Buskerfest is produced by Epilepsy Toronto as a fundraiser in support of people with epilepsy and their families. So it's no surprise that the proceeds collected at the festival will go towards Epilepsy Toronto. So, take lots of change for the performers - PLEASE GIVE GENEROUSLY!

Telus TaiwanFest

Aug 22-24, 2014

Taiwan is a country built on the legacy of global traditions and cultures that have marked its shores.

Enjoy a weekend wander down the path of music, dance, art and food that invigorates the island nation.


Aug 22-24, 2014

Experience the Caribbean in Vaughan: Family-friendly Caribbean festival, celebrating the culture with Live music, food, kids zone and beautiful carnival costumes.

Visitors can participate in culinary and rum,cocktail workshops.


Aug 23, 2014: 4:00pm

Last year was the first year for this festival at CityPlace. Details are still to be announced.

Scarborough Afro-Caribbean Festival

Aug 23-24, 2014: Noon-8pm both days

A Fun-filled family event that offers live performances by local and international artists, visual art exhibitions, Afro-Caribbean cuisine and dance competitions for adults and children. There's a Kids Zone which includes games, face painting and more!

40 vendors featuring food, crafts, local businesses, Non profit organizations will be present to showcase their products and services.

Festival of South Asia

Aug 23-24, 2014: Noon-11pm

Much like the Italian and Greek festivals, this festival offers the taste of South Asia. If you are interested in sampling their food, it's a great way to.

The main stage features dancing, fashion shows, and authentic South Asian cultural programs reflecting Indian, Afghani, Pakistani, Bengali and Sri Lankan cultures. There are several stores along Gerrard St where you may pick up a bargain or two.

Coconut Festival Canada

Aug 24, 2014: 10am-6pm

A fun day awaits the foodies and the adventurous as hundreds of products from coco jams to full meals will be presented by a diverse lineup of vendors.

Coco Fest flyer

Immerse your taste buds with different international cuisines showcasing wonderful coconut ingredients!

Ashkenaz Festival

Aug 29-Sept 1, 2014

North America's premier festival of global Jewish music and culture returns with its 10th biennial celebration.

Over 200 artists from more than a dozen countries will showcase the vibrancy and brilliance of Jewish artistic traditions, from traditional styles to cutting-edge, cross-cultural fusion.

Hispanic Fiesta

Aug 29-Sept 1, 2014

Experience the sounds, tempting treats and colourful culture that the Hispanic heritage is famous for. Hispanic Fiesta will feature the best known local & International Hispanic performers covering 20 different countries, that speak Spanish. More than 300 local, national and international performers will be taking part in the festival.