It's a new year, and even though it's still early, you can start getting your event calendar ready and updated. Most festivals and events have confirmed dates, especially the popular ones like horse races and music festivals. So, we picked the top five that should be on your must-attend list for this year. With so much going on in Toronto, it was quite a task, but here we go:
Toronto Jazz Festival
This year's jazz festival will run from the 21st to the 30th of June 2024. This festival has become a destination for jazz lovers and celebrities worldwide. This year's festival promises to be no different, with 1500 artists performing over the ten days. Most shows are free at the festival, but there are a few ticketed shows; Colin Stetson and Anomalie are just a few confirmed artists on the lineup. Tickets are on sale already for the ticketed shows. Last year's lineup included R&B superstar Ashanti and Canada's queen of R&B, Jully Black, so it's not exclusively jazz music on offer. The 37th edition of the festival promises to be fun, entertaining, and a must-see for every music lover. So dust off your sneakers, download the map, and get ready for a week of entertainment.
This year will be the 165th edition of this prestigious race, making it one of the longest-running horse races in North America. This year's race will occur on the Woodbine race track on the 17th of August. The Kings Plate is the first race in the Canadian Triple Crown, with the Prince Wales Stake and the Breeders Stake following the King's Plate. So, if you are a betting person, get on to Zed Run horses and pick your favourite. You might get lucky; this year's purse is $1,000,000.
So put on your most glamorous outfit and enjoy the races. The Kings Plate has become an event to be seen at, and the organizers have extended an invite to Buckingham Palace for the 2024 edition of the race. Imagine having a picture of the King on your Instagram.
Toronto Motorcycle and Powersports Show
The Toronto Motorcycle Show returns to the Enercare Centre for two days in February. The show features motorcycles and quad bikes; this year, there will be the latest electric models. The show appeals to all ages and experience levels, and there are live demos, information booths and vehicles you can test drive. Children under five have free entrance, ticket prices start at $14 for juniors, and family packages are available. This is the perfect show if you are a biker or thinking about getting a two-wheel machine.
The Toronto Festival of Beer (Beer Fest) will run from the 26th to the 28th of July in Bandshell Park. For out-of-towners, it would be advisable to book accommodation near the venue. The festival features over 100 exhibitors with over 400 different styles and brands of beer; these range from locally produced to well-known international brands. Whether you prefer draught or craft beer, this is the place to be. There will also be food stalls where you can pair your beer with the right food. The festival was launched in 1996, and in its 27 years of existence, it has attracted over 40,000 participants every year. There are also live performances at the festival; this year, you can expect IllScarlett, Alli Walker and Souls of Mischief on the lineup.
Canadian National Exhibition
This year's Canadian National Exhibition (CNE) will take place between the 16th of August and 2nd of September. The CNE started as a fair in 1879 but has grown exponentially since then. Now, it's an extravaganza showcasing all Canada has to offer. There are music shows, live air shows and exhibits; it also caters to children with rides and games. Speaking of games, there is a gaming garage where avid gamers can get immersed in games for hours on end. The CNE combines a trade show, fair, exhibition and festival.
There are many more festivals and events throughout the year, but these are the ones we liked the most and believe you will too. So get out your planner and your budget and get ready to have some fun experiences this year. Toronto has plenty of activities, from arts and culture to dining and dancing the night away.