Don’t be so blue about the Pan Am Games — cheer up! Toronto is a hub of activity this weekend with events galore shaking things up.
From swingin’ jazz to a “La Fête Nationale” party, and some Pan American fanfare, there is something for everyone — even the “woe is me” type. Remember, summer in the city is a good thing.
July 10-12, 2015
Beaches International Jazz Festival: The Beach will be a “whoopee spot” as jazz musicians take over the neighbourhood for the annual festival from Friday until July 26. So, come on, Toronto, it’s time to get your groove on with “all that jazz.” Click here for the show schedule. Drivers, take note: Queen Street East will be closed daily from Woodbine to Beech avenues from 6 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. on July 23-25. beachesjazz.com
Toronto Bastille Day 2015: Experience the “joie de vivre” as the city celebrates Bastille Day on Sunday, ahead of La Fête nationale — France’s national holiday marking the start of the French Revolution — on Tuesday. The free event at David Pecaut Square at John Street and King Street West features French gourmet fare, music and a picnic. torontobastilleday.com
Panamania: Celebrate the Pan Am Games with Toronto’s lively arts and culture scene. Starting Friday and until Aug. 15, Torontonians and visitors alike can take in more than 250 free and ticketed performances and exhibitions at Nathan Phillips Square, CIBC Pan Am Park and the Distillery District. Athletes and fans can mingle at the nightly victory celebrations at Nathan Phillips Square. toronto2015.org/panamania
Pan American culture in film: Get out of your funk and into the spirit of the Pan Am Games by immersing yourself in documentaries about the diverse cultures that make up the Americas. Some of the films are from Peru, Cuba, Argentina, Brazil and Chile, and will be shown Saturday and Sunday, and Aug. 8-9, at the Hot Docs Bloor Cinema. bloorcinema.com
Union Summer: Once bland and dreary, the new Sir John A. Macdonald Plaza in front of Union Station boasts a food market in a bistro-type atmosphere. Too long a lineup at Uncle Tetsu at Bay and Dundas streets? Check out the popular cheesecake at this market, along with a host of other vendors. On now until Aug. 30, in partnership with Front Street Foods. frontstreetfoods.com