365. Ring in the New Year!

December 31, 2011

2012 is upon us, and this is our last 365Toronto posting. It has been such a pleasure to explore the City of Toronto over the year, and we truly hope you have had the opportunity to discover some of the events, attend some of the festivals, and learn more about your city! We are so fortunate to live in a city where there is truly something going on every single day of the year – whether it’s a fantastic business to visit, a neighbourhood celebration to enjoy, or a new and exciting exhibit or performance to take in, there is never a dull moment in Toronto! Though 365Toronto is coming to a close as 2011 wraps up, I encourage you to continue your exploration of Toronto – come up with your own list of 365 Things to Do in Toronto! Today we encourage you to “ring in the New Year” with your fellow Torontonians. Whether you take in the fireworks, attend a New Year’s party, or make a resolution to get out there and explore your city, may we be the first to wish you and yours a wonderful 2012!

Happy New Year!


364. Skating at Nathan Phillips Square

December 30, 2011

If you’ve ever seen a photograph of Toronto in the winter, you’ve probably seen skaters enjoying the ice in front of City Hall at Nathan Phillips Square. Skating at the Square is a must for anyone in Toronto, whether you’re a long-time resident or are just visiting for the holidays. The rink is open for skating until mid-March each year (weather permitting), so bundle up, grab your skates, and get ready to make your own picture-perfect memory of Toronto in the winter! For a full list of City operated skating rinks, go to the City of Toronto’s website.

Skating at Nathan Phillips Square

363. The Archaeology of Godin Tepe, Iran

December 29, 2011

Head to the Royal Ontario Museum today to check out The Archaeology of Godin Tepe, Iran. The 30-metre high ruins called “Godin Tepe” contains amazingly well-preserved artifacts from 4500 to 500 BCE, much of which is on display at the ROM, including jewelry, pottery, jars and cups. In the 60s, the ROM sent an archaeological expedition to Iran to dig through Godin Tepe, the result of which was “the longest and best-preserved sequence of human occupation in the region, which as changed the way scholars understand the prehistory of Iran.” Enjoy the fruits of those archaeologists’ labour today, as you discover the history of Iran’s ancient communities.

The Archaeology of Godin Tepe, Iran

For more information on this exhibit, and to purchase tickets to the ROM online, go to www.rom.on.ca!


362. Chagall and the Russian Avant-Garde: Masterpieces from the Collection of the Centre Pomidou – Paris

December 28, 2011

Check out the “magic, whimsy and wonder of Marc Chagall…with a major exhibition organized by Centre Pomidou!” Chagall and the Russian Avant-Garde: Masterpieces from the Collection of the Centre Pomidou, features the colourful, dreamlike art of Marc Chagall as well as Russian modernism pieces including the work of Sonia Delaunay, Natalia Goncharova, Wassily Kandinsky, Kasimir Malevich and Vladimir Tatlin. Showing at the Art Gallery of Ontario, the exhibit examines Chagall’s Russian heritage and influences in his development of his beloved style of creating. For more information on this exhibit, go to www.ago.net.

Chagall and the Russian Avant-Garde


361. Skiing/Snowboarding at Earl Bales Park and Centennial Park

December 27, 2011

Did you know that you can go skiing and snowboarding, right here in Toronto?

Earl Bales Park

Save some gas and some money and head to Earl Bales Park at 4169 Bathurst Street, one light south of Sheppard Ave. W. Get some lessons, rent some equipment, take advantage of night skiing, or grab a bite at the snack bar and warm up at the fireplace. You can also check out Centennial Park, located 1 block west of Renforth Drive. Facilities at Centennial include a ski and snowboard school, rentals (including limited helmet rentals) snowmaking, night skiing and a snack bar.  Next time you have the urge to ski/snowboard it’s all right here in Toronto! For more information, go to www.toronto.ca/parks/skiing


360. The 36th Annual Christmas Treats Walk

December 26, 2011

You may have had a delicious Christmas dinner yesterday, but what about the animals at the Toronto Zoo? It’s time for them to have some of their favourite treats at the Annual Christmas Treats Walk!

Christmas Treats Walk

Each Boxing Day the animals get some of their favourite seasonal food, and keeper talks take on a festive tone so you can learn while the animals snack! Admission is half price, but be sure to bring a non-perishable food item for the food bank. This is an outdoor event, so please dress accordingly. For more information, go to www.torontozoo.com.

359. Go out for Christmas Dinner

December 25, 2011

So you couldn’t find that box of Stovetop stuffing and decided to can the whole homemade-Christmas dinner thing. Don’t settle for cold pizza or a package of instant mashed potatoes; give yourself the gift of a great Christmas dinner at one of these five establishments that are open for dinner today:

1. Fran’s Restaurant: 210 Victoria Street

So you’ve had too much, uh, Christmas cheer, and you need a greasy meal to soak it all up. Head to Fran’s – they’re open 24/7, 365 days a year. Not only will you get a great diner meal, you’ll also get some old-style hospitality without being guilted into doing the dishes.

2. Fairmont Royal York Hotel: 100 Front St. W.

If you really want to treat yourself today (and why not? It is Christmas!), head to the Fairmont Royal York where you can be served a holiday meal that even your Great-Aunt Mildred won’t stick her nose up at. Seatings are at 3:30pm, 3:30pm, 6pm, 6:30pm and 8pm. Call the festive desk at 416-860-5050 to inquire about the different meals.

3. Vaticano Trattoria: 25 Bellair Street

Craving an Italian meal? (You don’t have to have turkey on Christmas!) Head over to Vaticano Trattoria, where they’re open 365 days a year for both lunch and dinner. Today you can get traditional Italian meals from noon to 2am, so put away that box of mac and cheese and give yourself the gift of some real, delicious, Italian cooking this Christmas!

4. Dhaba: 309 King Street West

Bite into some butter chicken for your Christmas dinner! Dhaba serves up dinner tonight from 5pm until 10:30pm, and this unbeatable selection of delicious Indian food could become a tradition for your holiday meal! Conveniently located downtown, Dhaba is a great option for condo-dwellers who can’t be bothered with all of the fuss of a big Christmas dinner in a 600-square foot space.

5. Chinatown

Several restaurants are open on Christmas day in Chinatown; a few include Bright Pearl Seafood (346 Spadina Ave, open from 9am until 11am), E-Pan Chinese Cuisine (369 Spadina Ave, open from noon until midnight), and Xam Yu (339 Spadina Ave, open from 11:30am until 1am).

Christmas Dinner

358. Visit the Trail of Lights at Downsview Park

December 24, 2011

Christmas is tomorrow, and if you’ve been good and finished all of your Christmas shopping (we’ve certainly suggested enough opportunities for you to cross everyone off of your Christmas list!) you’ll have the chance to relax (unless you are busy defrosting a turkey, putting cookies in the oven, or hunting for that box of Stovetop stuffing you were sure you had leftover from Thanksgiving). Why not begin a family tradition and head to the Trail of Lights at Downsview Park? The Park has been transformed by LED light displays, and though it was started as a pedestrian-only trail, it is now mostly a drive-through tour, which is perfect if you’re not into getting bundled up, but definitely want to take in some festive fun.

Trail of Lights at Downsview Park

For more information about the Trail of Lights at Downsview Park, go to http://www.downsviewpark.ca.


357. Go tobogganing in Trinity Bellwoods Park

December 23, 2011

Remember the thrill of tobogganing – the wind whipping in your face, tumbling off your sled and onto the powdery snow, climbing up that hill time after time without even caring that you were out of breath? Revisit those childhood memories and go tobogganing in Trinity Bellwoods Park! Not only is it great exercise (you’re probably more likely to note how many times you climb up the hill as an adult), its free and combined with brunch on Queen Street or Ossington, you have an excuse to eat all the eggs benny with homefries you can – you’ll need your energy! Trinity Bellwoods Park is located between Queen and Dundas Street and is bordered on the west by Crawford and on the east by Gore Vale Ave.

Tobogganing in Trinity Bellwoods Park

356. Kensington Market Winter Solstice

December 22, 2011

Formerly known as the Festival of Lights, the Kensington Market Winter Solstice is a celebration of light on the longest, darkest night of the year – the winter solstice! Gather at Oxford & Augusta for an official send-off, then make your way with your lantern through the market, to Alexandra Park for an 8:00pm finale. Though you have missed the lantern-making workshop, you can certainly make your own lantern (there are plenty of kits available for sale, or you can find out how to make your own lantern online) to participate in the fun.

Kensington Market Festival of Lights

For more information about Kensington Market Winter Solstice, go to www.redpepperspectacle.wordpress.com.