Events, Family Events

Cap Off Summer with Your Family with these Five Local Events

You and your family may be relieved to see the summer months dwindling and the back to school season ramping up. Whether that’s true or not, the city still has a few great celebrations to take advantage of before school gets back into full swing.

Here are five low-cost events that you just can’t miss:

  • The Canadian National Exhibition (CNE): Open from August 19th– September 5th, the CNE has been an end-of-summer ritual in the city for over 130 years! Your kids will love its three parades, extreme pogo stunt show, and kids’ world. You’ll be able to catch Bob the Builder, Splash’N Boots, and many more on its Kids’ World Stage while trying out pizza making and games in Toddler Town on KidStreet. Here’s a one-time free child’s admission ticket available until August 18th. The Exhibition has great ticket specials including Kids’ Toonie Mondays and $6 after 5pm on weekdays, so make sure to take advantage of them. If you’re hoping to hit up the the rides at the CNE, keep in mind that they cost extra. And finally, here’s some info specific to attending the Ex with kids!

    Image of ferris wheel and starship play area lit up against dusky sky

    “cne” CC image courtesy of basic_sounds on Flickr

  • Toronto International Busker Fest: Busker Fest’s moved to Woodbine Park this year for its Labour Day celebration. Over 100 buskers will be performing from September 2nd– 5th including favourites Silver Elvis and The Budapest Marionettes. They even have a family fun zone for kid-specific entertainment. You can’t beat the spontaneity of this free festival.

Image of busker balancing flaming baton on chin

“World Buskers Fest” CC image courtesy of Charlie Fox on Flickr

  • Ukrainian Fest: Head to the Ukrainian Festival in Bloor West Village Friday September 16th– Sunday September 18th for a three-day celebration of Ukrainian culture and hospitality! You’ll find an artisan market, a children’s midway, cultural pavilions, and sidewalk sales. Make sure that you catch a dance lesson from the Desna Ukrainian Dance Company and that you grab some handmade varenyky or else you’ll have to wait until the next year!

    Image of four female dancers in traditional Ukrainian dance outfits

    “Ukrainian Festival” CC image courtesy of Chris Phutully on Flickr

  • Roncesvalles Polish Festival: You can’t miss North America’s largest Polish Festival! Happening this September 17th and 18th and easily accessible by transit, you and your family will find six stages of non-stop entertainment, two midway areas for family-friendly fun, and delicious traditional Polish food. Their “Dance Under the Stars” polka party on Saturday night is one of their most popular events.

Image of two young women in traditional Polish dress

“Days of Poland 2015- 06” CC image courtesy of Garry Knight on Flickr

  • Word on the Street: Word on the Street, a book and magazine festival, is a can’t-miss for bibliophiles of any age. The Harbourfront Centre hosts the festival on Sunday September 25th; there you’ll find incredible vendors, performers, storytellers, and authors. Have some fun at Kidstreet and the TVOKids stage, watch a spoken word performance, and get a book or two signed by your favourite authors!

Image of child standing, looking onto TVO Kids stage where musicians are performing

“IMG_8655.jpg” CC image courtesy of Angus Chan on Flickr


Gabriele Simmons is a Women and Gender Studies graduate. When not obsessing over comma placement Gabriele can be found doing recreational modern dance, reading fiction, and working at the University of Toronto.


Dan Pettigrew

Where did the free kids Ex admissions tickets link come from? Is that legit? When something is too good to be true, it usually is … is free children’s admission limited UofT employees, or is this a public link?


Hi there, Dan.
This is a public link! It’s from the CNE itself. If you click the link it’ll take you to the CNE’s Online Kid’s Pass page where you’ll be prompted to type in your child’s age. You’re able to download a free pass for up to 10 children/family.
Hope you enjoy!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *