By Lori Bosworth
Ever since Dalton McGuinty’s Liberal Government introduced Family Day in Ontario in 2008, families are now enjoying a mid-winter break holiday between New Year’s and Easter. Family Day in Ontario falls on Monday, February 17, 2014. We’ll still be enjoying the Sochi 2014 Olympics, which close on February 23, 2014. If you want to break away from watching Olympic events on TV, there are many Toronto events and activities to celebrate Family Day in Toronto in 2014.
Okay, NHL hockey is taking a hiatus while the Sochi 2014 Olympics are on, but you can still get your hockey fix by visiting the Hockey Hall of Fame during Family Day Weekend. And with the purchase of one adult ticket on Family Day (Monday, February 17, 2014) on site, you can get free admission for up to four youth (13 and under). You’ll also be able to touch Sidney Crosby’s gold-medal winning puck. If you visit Marché Restaurant in Brookfield Place right next to the Hockey Hall of Fame before of after your visit to the Hockey Hall of Fame on Family Day, you will receive a free kids’ meal with a minimum purchase of $25. The Hockey Hall of Fame is located at 30 Yonge Street, 416-360-7735.
Cabaret at Lower Ossington Theatre
Cabaret is playing at the Lower Ossington Theatre, 100 Ossington Avenue. The musical focuses on the seedy Kit Kat Club in 1930s Berlin. The well-known film version, which starred Liza Minelli as nightclub performer Sally Bowles and Joel Grey as the Master of Ceremonies, won eight Academy Awards. The Lower Ossington Theatre’s production of Cabaret will be performed during Family Day weekend on Fri., Feb. 14, 2014 at 8 p.m., Sat., Feb. 15, 2014 at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. and Sun., Feb. 16, 2014 at 4 p.m. Tickets are $59 and can be purchased online.
Family Snowshoeing at Humber Arboretum
Take the family snowshoeing at Humber Arboretum, 205 Humber College Blvd. (Hwy 27 and Finch Avenue West) on Sat. Feb. 15, 2014 from 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Hosted by the Humber Arboretum, the event features snowshoeing through meadows and forests and stopping to feed chickadees along the way. Snowshoeing is $8 per person (with personal snowshoes); $10 per person (with snowshoe rental); $28 per family of four (with personal snowshoes) and $36 per family of four (with snowshoe rental). Prices include HST. Call 416-675-5009 for more information.
Justin Timberlake at Air Canada Centre
Justin Timberlake brings his 20/20 Experience World Tour to Toronto’s Air Canada Centre on Thursday, February 13, 2014 and Friday, February 14, 2014. Tickets are $67.25, $107.75 and $192.75.
Enjoy blues, folk and roots music at the Winter Folk, Blues and Roots Festival, which takes place Family Day Weekend from February 14-16, 2014 at venues on Toronto’s Danforth. This year, the festival features Ron Hynes, Jack De Keyzer Band, Lynn Miles, JoJo Worthington, Lorne Allan, Peter Verity, Mira Meikle, Danny Marks, Dinah Thorpe, Brent Titcomb and more. Artists perform on stages at The Black Swan Tavern, Globe Bistro, Dora Keogh’s and Terri O’s. Tickets are $10 advance and $12 at the door.
TIFF Next Wave Film Festival 2014
The TIFF Next Wave Film Festival, which takes place February 14-16, 2014 at TIFF Bell Lightbox, is specifically tailored for youths 14-18. The festival features films for young people including Mean Girls, Juno, Donnie Darko, Final Recipe, Fly Colt Fly, A Birder’s Guide to Everything, Palo Alto, I Learn America, Camp Takota, G. B. F., Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, Leap 4 Your Life, Rushmore, For No Eyes Only. Tickets for Festival Film Screenings are Adults $12, High School Students Free, Students/Senior $9.50 and Child $8.50.
Sears Great Canadian Chill at Yonge-Dundas Square
Take a dip at the chill pool at Yonge-Dundas Square on Family Day 2014 to support Sears Cancer Research Fellowship and Sears Cancer Clinic at SickKids. weekend while raising money for the Hospital for Sick Children and pediatric cancer research. Raise pledges to jump in the pool on Sunday, February 16 and Monday, February 17, 2014. You’ll also enjoy DJs, hot tubs, live entertainment, Kids Zone, heated change tents and face painting.
Heritage Week Free Tours at The Elgin and Winter Garden Theatre Centre
The Winter Garden Theatre is 100 years old and to celebrate, the theatre will be offering free tours for the public on Family Day, February 17, 2014 from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. You’ll hear all about the theatres’ history as you tour both the Winter Garden and Elgin Theatres. Call 416-314-2871 for more information. The Elgin and Winter Garden Theatre Centre is located at 189 Yonge Street (just north of Queen Street).
Brings the kids to Family Fun Fest at Downsview Park from February 15-17, 2014 to enjoy a 30,000 square foot indoor fun zone including jumping castles, 30 rides, giant slides, games, clowns and entertainment “The Trevor Show,” and “Doo Doo The Clown.” Tickets are Children $25 ($20 online), Adults (18+) $8, Family Pass $50 (general admission for 2 adults and 2 children ages 2+). Downsview Park is located at 40 Carl Hall Road, Studio 3.
Harbourfront Centre is offering free activities for families on Family Day Weekened including:
- Wise Daughter Snowy Crafts on February 16-17, 2014 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at West Arcade, York Quay Centre, 235 Queens Quay West. Make DIY projects such as a snowman out of a sock or a snowman portrait using marshmallows.
- RBC Play Hockey on February 17, 2014 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Natrel Rink, 235 Queens Quay West. Meet former Toronto Maple Leaf Wendel Clark and get your photo take on the Olympic podium.
- Le Patin Libre on February 16-17, 2014 from 12:30 p.m. to 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. on the Natrel Rink. Enjoy performances by the skating troupe.
- Ice Carving Demos on February 16-17, 2014 from 1:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. at Zone 6, 235 Queens Quay West.
- Cool Canvases on February 16-17, 2014 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Ontario Square, 235 Queens Quay West. Use water-based tempra paint to create art on four-foot-tall ice canvases.
- LEGO on February 16-17, 2014 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Miss Lou’s Room, York Quay Centre, 235 Queens Quay West. Build colourful snow castles or a ski slope out of LEGO.
- Natrel Slo-Skate Zone o February 16-17, 2014 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Natrel Rink. Part of the Natrel Rink will be designated for young children to skate at their own pace and improve their skills.
- Let’s Talk Science on February 16-17, 2014 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at West Arcade, York Quay Centre, 235 Queens Quay West will allow kids to view snowflakes thorugh a magnifying glass, create bubbles from dry ice, see how different salts melt snow, create hot air balloons with plastic bags and catch an ice cube with a lasso made of string as they discover all about snow, fire, ice, freezing and melting.