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Pride Parade and other festivities jazz up the weekend, but there are road closures

Last Updated Jun 24, 2018 at 8:31 am EDT

People hold a giant flag during the Pride parade in Toronto, on June 25, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Mark Blinch

The first weekend of summer is going to bring rain and cooler temperatures, which goes against everything the season stands for. But regardless of the weather, Pride festivities will bring rays of sunshine to the city, topped off with the parade on Sunday.

There will be several road closures this weekend for Pride and other events, so plan ahead before you head out. Line 3 will also be shut down on Sunday for TTC work.


Pride weekend, include parade finale
Pride month will come to a close this weekend in the most spectacular way — one of the highlights being the parade on Sunday. Ahead of the Pride Parade, two marches and a street fair will round up the festivities.

First up is the Trans March on Friday. A rally will be held at 7 p.m. followed by the march at 8 p.m., which starts at Church and Hayden streets and ends at Allan Gardens. Then on Saturday, the Dyke March will take over Church and Hayden at 2 p.m. A rally will be held afterwards in Allan Gardens, which will include performances and community-building activities.

“Pride Parade is not only about Pride in Toronto’s LGBTTIQQ2SA community, but celebrating diversity and the variety of life in Toronto while respecting differences amongst its citizens and visitors, and creating an inclusive experience for all.”

While you are out enjoying Pride festivities from Friday until Sunday, stop buy the Pride Streetfair taking place in the area of Church, Wellesley and Alexandra streets. The fair features local artisans and businesses, health-and-wellness groups, community groups, vendors, and more.

The grand finale is on Sunday with the Pride Parade at 2 p.m. The parade starts at Church and Bloor streets and makes its way to Yonge-Dundas Square. This year, the parade will mark a sombre tone, honouring the victims of alleged serial killer Bruce McArthur. Organizers say the parade will culminate with the “Until We’re Safe March,” which will be led by organizers and volunteers wearing black. As the march makes its way along the parade route, other people will join in. During the parade, a moment of silence will be held for the victims and also members of the community who died because of HIV/AIDS, homophobic and transphobic laws and hate crimes.

I’ve got rhythm, I’ve got music
The sounds of jazz will be heard across the city over 10 days starting on Friday for the TD Toronto Jazz Festival. The area of Yorkville will be the major hub with more than 165 free shows, while the ticketed venues are spread across the city. Opening weekend includes shows by Seal, Herbie Hancock, Alison Krauss, Gregory Porter, and Holly Cole, and free performances that include gospel legend CeCe Winans and R&B singer Macy Gray. On Friday, they Royal Ontario Museum will be turned into a jazz club for a special edition of Friday Night Live at the ROM. The festival runs until Canada Day.

No rubber duck this time
There may not be a giant inflatable rubber duck this year, but the Redpath Waterfront Festival is promising to impress with something just as large … and inflatable. A total of six beach balls — each six feet five inches tall — will be suspended from a large truss frame, swinging back and forth like a pendulum. The HTO Pendulum Wave stands 22 feet tall, 42 feet wide and 12 feet deep, and weighs a whopping 19,000 pounds. It was custom made for this year’s festival by Canadian event design firm Décor & More. The festival bounces into HTO Park, Sugar Beach, and Sherbourne Common from Friday until Sunday.

Irie it up in Mississauga and Toronto
Everything will be Irie at Mississauga Celebration Square this weekend. Starting Friday night, the 16th annual TD Irie Music Festival will be taking over the square at Burnhamthorpe Road and Duke of York Boulevard. The festival features musical performances from Junior Kelly and Patrice Roberts. Admission to the party is free from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Friday, and 2 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Saturday. Then on Sunday, the celebration wraps up in Toronto with a boat cruise on Yankee Lady III. Boarding time is at 12:30 p.m. at Harbourfront Centre, with the cruise around the harbour from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Tickets are $49.50 online, or $55 at the dock.

TTC service

Line 3 closure
If you live in the east end and are heading to the Pride Parade on Sunday, trains won’t be running on Line 3 due to track and infrastructure work. Shuttle buses will be running, and Wheel-Trans buses will be available upon request.

Road closures

Starting on Friday

Pride Streetfair: Church Street from Dundas to Bloor streets will be closed from the north side of Dundas Street East to the south side of Hayden Street from 10 a.m. on Friday to 6 a.m. on Monday. Wellesley Street East from Yonge to Jarvis streets will also be closed at that time.

Pride Trans March: The march, which is on Friday, starts at Church and Hayden streets, heads north to Bloor Street East, west on Bloor Street East, south on Yonge Street and east on Carlton Street to Allan Gardens. Roads along the route will be closed from 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

TD Toronto Jazz Festival: Road closures start at 12 a.m. on Friday and continue until 6 a.m. on Monday. Click here for a full list.

Starting on Saturday

Pride and Remembrance Run: Wellesley Street East between Jarvis Street and Queen’s Park Crescent East, and Queen’s Park Crescent West between College and Bloor streets, will be closed from 8:30 a.m. to noon on Saturday.

Pride Dyke March: The march on Saturday starts at Church and Hayden streets, heads north to Bloor Street East, west on Bloor Street East, south on Yonge Street and east on Carlton Street to Allan Gardens. Road along the route will be closed from noon to 6 p.m. Click here for a closure list.

Rotary International: Bremner Boulevard from York Street to the Air Canada Centre will be closed daily Saturday to Wednesday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Fairbank Village BIA – Flavours of Fairbank: Eglinton Avenue West between Ronald Avenue and Dufferin Street will be closed from 2 a.m. on Saturday to 5 a.m. on Monday.

Junction BIA – Summer Solstice: Dundas Street West from Keele Street to High Park Avenue and from Keele to Indian Grove will be closed from 5 a.m. on Saturday to 1 a.m on Sunday. Click here for other road closures in the area.

Starting on Sunday

Pride Parade: The parade on Sunday runs from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. It starts at Church Street and Bloor Street East, heads west on Bloor Street East, south on Yonge Street and east on Dundas Street East to Victoria Street. Rosedale Valley Road between Park Road and Bayview Avenue will be closed from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Several roads in the area will also be closed from noon to 7 p.m.

At 12 p.m., road closures will come into effect on:

– Park Road, from Rosedale Valley Road to Bloor Street East
– Church Street, from Park Road to Hayden Street
– Bloor Street East, from Yonge Street to Ted Rogers Way

At 1 p.m., road closures will come into effect on:

– Bloor Street, from Bay Street to Ted Rogers Way
– Yonge Street, from Bloor Street to Queen Street
– Dundas Street, from Bay Street to Church Street
– Victoria Street, from Dundas Street to Shuter Street

All roads are expected to be reopened by approximately 7 p.m.

Luminato Festival: The southbound curb lane of Victoria Street from Shuter Street to Queen Street East will be closed from 10 a.m. on Sunday to 10 a.m. on Monday.

Kensington Market Pedestrian Sundays: Parts of Kensington Avenue, Augusta Avenue and Baldwin Street will be closed on from noon to 10:30 p.m. on Sunday.