Toronto Hit List: Just Kick It, City of Craft, Promise German Sparkle Party, The Bazaar of the Bizarre & more!

December 4th-22nd Toronto Christmas Market @ The Distillery District. Rediscover the magic and romance of the holidays at the Toronto Christmas Market. There will be vendors selling locally handcrafted products, entertainment, Santa and his elves, light canopies, heated mulled wine, and lots more. Admission is free on weekdays until Friday at 5 pm, after which tickets cost $6. 

 

December 4th-31st WinterFest @ Canada’s Wonderland, 1 Canada’s Wonderland Drive (Vaughan). Canada’s Wonderland will be magically transformed into a winter wonderland full of enchantment and holiday cheer! Become immersed in the season’s spirit with spectacular holiday lights and décor, world-class live entertainment, savory treats, and fanciful experiences.

 

December 4th-January 5th Toronto Aurora Winter Festival @ Ontario Place (West Island), 955 Lakeshore Blvd. W. Experience Canada’s largest winter festival this holiday season. Ontario Place will be transformed into a magical winter wonderland with a beautiful skating rink, tube park, massive light displays, a Christmas Market, amusement rides, food gardens, magical characters, and plenty of other exciting activities. 

 

December 4th-January 5th A Nutcracker Christmas at the Castle @ Casa Loma, 1 Austin Terrace. Celebrate the holiday season at Casa Loma! Guests will be surrounded by holiday magic throughout the castle, which will be resplendent with holiday décor, including a 40-foot tall tree and eight other signature trees by talented Canadian designers. Enjoy shows by famed illusionist entertainer Professor Wick, ice skating performers Glisse on Ice, a dazzling lighting display, outdoor holiday Christmas market, performances by the Casa Loma Holiday Orchestra, and more. 

 

December 6th-8th City of Craft @ The Theatre Centre, 1115 Queen St. W. The 12th annual City of Craft returns to Toronto with 50 of the city’s finest artists and makers, workshops, and breath-taking installations. This is the place to be for all things crafty! First 100 guests on Saturday get a free hand-printed, limited edition tote bag designed by Toronto artist Nick Rubi. Runs 6-10 pm Friday and 11-6 pm Saturday and Sunday. $5.

 

December 6th-8th Junction Holiday Flea @ Junction Yacht Club, 2880 Dundas St. W. Though Smash may have left the Junction, the annual Holiday Flea lives on! Shop from local artisans, have your photo taken in the holiday photo booth, and enjoy a drink at the licensed bar. Runs 6-9 pm Friday, 10-6 pm Friday, and 12-5 pm Sunday.

 

December 7th-8th The Leslieville Flea Holiday Market @ Jimmie Simpson Recreation Centre, 870 Queen St. E. One stop shopping for everyone on your list! Over 65 vendors selling a curated selection of vintage and handcrafted items, an old school photo booth with donations going to The Royal Lepage Shelter Foundation, and lots more. Runs 10-5 pm both days.

 

December 7th-8th Swedish Christmas Fair @ Daniels Spectrum, 585 Dundas St. E. Enjoy food, traditional performances, and a market overflowing with arts and crafts at the Swedish Christmas Fair. Runs 11-5 pm Saturday and 11-4 pm Sunday.

 

December 7th-8th Pink Xmas @ The 519, 519 Church St. Pink Xmas is Toronto’s queer (holiday) art, craft, fashion, and lit fair. PWYC ($5 suggested). Runs 11-6 pm Saturday and 11-5 pm Sunday.

 

December 7th-8th Parkdale Flea Holiday Market @ Toronto Designers Market, 1605 Queen St. W. The Parkdale Flea hosts a two-day marked filled with amazing vendors to help with your holiday shopping. Four-legged buddies welcome! Runs 11-6 pm both days.

 

December 7th-8th Tranzac Holiday Gift Fair @ Tranzac Club, 292 Brunswick Ave. The Tranzac Holiday Gift Fair, now in its third year, is a great place to find original, handmade gifts by local artists and artisans. Dozens of different vendors each day + delicious food for sale. Runs 12-6 pm both days.

 

WEDNESDAY

 

5:30 pm VICE Festive Night Market @ VICE Canada, 78 Mowat Ave. VICE is making holiday shopping easier this year. Swing by their Festive Night Market for all the presents and stocking stuffers you need. Featuring vendors I Have a Crush on You, Philistine, Bare Market, Kops Records, Sudsatorium, and Rosehound Apparel + drinks, snacks, and live music all night from DRFTR. All ages (dogs welcome too). Until 9:30 pm.

 

7 pm Music Bingo @ The Gladstone Hotel, 1214 Queen St. W. Music Bingo is a FREE weekly event combining the love of music with the traditional bingo format. Host Kaleb Robertson plays a song, and if it’s on your bingo card, you get to hit it with the dabber. It tests your musical knowledge too – you’ve got to know what the song is to be able to cross it off the card. 

 

8 pm Drake Trivia @ The Drake Hotel, 1150 Queen St. W. Teams of four or less put their random knowledge to the test as the hosts fire off questions ranging from sporting records and celebrity scandals to geographic discoveries and culinary lingo. $2 to participate. Email host@thedrakehotel.ca or show up early to reserve a spot.

 

THURSDAY

 

6:30 pm Drag King Decades Cabaret @ The Gladstone Hotel, 1214 Queen St. W. Drag King Decades, a tribute show to male impersonators, drag kings, gender performers, and events returns to the Gladstone Hotel. Come learn some history. Best thing, it’s FREE. Doors at 6:30 pm, show starts at 7.

 

7 pm Pop Culture Trivia @ The Ossington, 61 Ossington Ave. A trivia night with the emphasis on entertainment (movies, TV, music). This is the payoff for all the television you’ve been watching. Prizes and cheap drinks all night!

 

10 pm Psychedelic Soul Shack @ Swan Dive, 1631 Dundas St. W. DJ D.B. Bux plays the best soul, funk, psych, and classic disco tracks all night long.

 

FRIDAY

 

10 pm Just Kick It @ The Drake Hotel Lounge, 1150 Queen St. W. The brothers from Sweet Touch Foundation take you on a journey through the ’90s, playing everything from hip-hop, R&B, reggae, and afrobeats to house. $10.

 

10 pm Le Pas – “Confirmation” @ The Boat, 158 Augusta Ave. DJ Kyas and Dr. Mephisto heat you up with France’s best electro, house and hip-hop. Stay late to enjoy some famous (and extremely cheesy) French hits! Special French drinks all night (Pastis, Ti-Punch, and Leffe) + free snacks after midnight. $15 early bird tickets available online.

 

10 pm The Hook Up @ Clinton’s, 693 Bloor St. W. A party where the jams are just as hot as the gossip! Banging out the best music from the 2000s all night. $10.

 

10 pm Emo Night @ Sneaky Dee’s, 431 College St. Revisit your teen angst! Spinning your favourite emo anthems all night every Friday at Sneaky Dee’s. $5 early bird tickets available online.

 

10 pm Rhythm & Booze @ Stones Place, 1632 Queen St. W. R&B, soul, and funk

from the ’60s, ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s with DJ Blush! $5. 

 

10 pm Where Does This Disco? @ Farside, 600 Gerrard St. E. Fun, silly, and strange pop transmissions received from an alternate-dimension Earth. Mutant disco, Italo, electronic indie pop, psych-pop, and unusual cover versions selected by DJ Digits.

 

10 pm Strangelove @ The Black Eagle, 457 Church St. New wave and synthpop with DJ Lazarus and Castelvi. All gender expressions and sexual orientations welcome. $5.

 

10 pm Tutti Frutti Apocalypse @ Swan Dive, 1631 Dundas St. W. DJ Nora Noise spins from primitive rock ‘n’ roll to garage, psych to power pop, punk rock to glam, and old school hip-hop to soul.

 

10 pm Global Boogie Banquet @ Handlebar, 159 Augusta Ave. This edition of Global Boogie Banquet features the talented Astrolope doing a one-man live performance of energetic percussive electronica followed by DJ Oreku throwing down some dance floor bangers from around the globe.

 

10 pm Wax Candy Disco Party @ The Piston, 937 Bloor St. W. DJ Efsharp and Cyclist serve up platters of the sweetest soulful, refreshing, and uplifting disco in one of the best sounding rooms in the city. $10.

 

10:30 pm Big Primpin’ @ ROUND Venue, 152-A Augusta Ave. Hip-hop and hot times for LGBTQ+ people and their guests. DJs Blackcat and Craig Dominic on the decks. $10.

 

10:30 pm Beam Me Up Disco @ The Baby G, Dundas St. W. The Patchouli Brothers play a disco mix of gospel, funk, soul, boogie, rare groove, house, and jazz sounds surrounded by smiling faces.

 

SATURDAY

 

10 am Really Really Free Market @ Campbell Park Clubhouse, 225 Campbell Ave. Everything is free. No money. No swapping. (You don’t have to bring anything, but if you’d like to bring items to give away, do so before 12 pm. Must be clean and in working condition. No big items.) Until 1 pm.

 

11 am FAN EXPO Holiday Market @ Metro Toronto Convention Centre, 222 Bremner Blvd. (South Building, Hall F). Find the ultimate gifts for the geeks in your life at the annual FAN EXPO Holiday Market. A one-day holiday shopping event and festive celebration for the whole family, featuring local retailers, comic artists, makers, and creators. Shop from over 150 retailers and artists featuring unique gift options including toys, collectables, cosplay fashion, and one-of-a-kind artwork from local and professional artists. Until 5 pm. $10.

 

11 am Hygge Holiday Market @ Stackt Market, 28 Bathurst St. A cozy shopping experience for the sustainable shopper. Browse goods from brands like Lights of All, Jewels and Aces, Logan & Finley, and more + treat yourself to a meditation or mindful movement class! Until 6 pm.

 

12 pm SKETCH Holiday Marketplace @ SKETCH Working Arts, 180 Shaw St. Discover handmade, local, and one-of-a-kind pieces, as well as crafting workshops led by young people from SKETCH’s arts programs from the fall season, at this holiday market. Until 6 pm.

 

9 pm Deep&Disco @ Wayla Bar, 996 Queen St. E. A night of disco, funk, house music, and classics. Guiding your musical journey will be resident DJs Marrs Barrs, Big Fun, Iced Misto, and Andy Roberts. $5 drink specials from 9-11 pm. $5 cover before 11 pm, $15 after.

 

9:30 pm Rude’s 3rd Year Anniversary @ The Garrison, 1197 Dundas St. W. Rude is turning three and they’re looking to the future with an Afrofuturism-themed party, performance, and art showcase. New Jersey rapper Cakes Da Killa headlines, with support from local DJs Myst Milano, Blackct, and Tam Ika. $22.23 in advance, $25 at the door.

 

10 pm Promise German Sparkle Party @ The Lithuanian House, 1573 Bloor St. W. A party inspired by the cheeky music video gone worldwide sensational and spotlighting the best parts of our holiday season: Sparkly headbands, makeup, rubber boots, and party pants. All fun, without the boring obligations! 3 rooms of DJs playing house, techno, and DnB. $49.72 advance tickets available online.

 

10 pm With It @ The Piston, 937 Bloor St. W. ’60s mod, soul, R&B, R&R, garage, and funk record dance party with DJ Nico + special guest DJ Misty, making her return from Japan. Sponsored by Kops Records. $10.

 

10 pm Lovers + Machines @ Handlebar, 159 Augusta Ave. Synthwave, retro pop, rock ‘n’ roll, and ’80s classics with DJs Radio Wolf, Parallels, and Nina (special guest from the UK).

 

10 pm Polar Express Yourself @ Jam Factory, 2 Matilda St. The Polar Express is making a stop in Toronto on its way to the North Pole! This musical journey will take you through incredible peaks and valleys, guided by an expertly trained crew of DJs – Atoms, Sophie Jones, and John Caffery. Get into the holiday spirit as you shake your caboose all night long to the best pop remixes, house, and disco tracks. $15 tickets available online, with all proceeds from the party going towards Rainbow Railroad, which helps LGBTQ+ people as they seek a safe haven from state-enabled violence and persecution. 

 

10 pm Lucky Bitches @ The Ossington, 61 Ossington Ave. West side’s longest running glam-positive, dance party, blowout spectacular! Party jams and freedom.

 

10 pm Saturday Night Jukebox Dance Party @ Stones Place, 1255 Queen St. W. Sweat it out to the sweet sounds of the golden age of rock ‘n’ roll and soul music! DJ Blush plays pop, rock, and soul from the ’50s, ’60s, and ’70s. $10.

 

10 pm Queer Slowdance: A Midnight Queer Edition @ Dovercourt House, 805 Dovercourt Rd. With a lending library of designated dancers for all the wallflowers, and a dance card-booklet to set up dances in advance (should you choose to), Toronto Queer Slowdance has all slow songs, all night long! (Except for the occasional intermission when they play the fastest songs they can find.) Come and experience why slow is beautiful, and why love is not ironic. Fabulous and inspired attire, while desired, is not required, but feel free to dress festively for the holiday season! $10.

 

10 pm Tapette: Édition Papa Noël @ Bambi’s, 1265 Dundas St. W. Phillippe spins French disco, house, and global sounds. $5 before 11 pm, $10 after.

 

10 pm Worst Behavior @ Clinton’s, 693 Bloor St. W. Saturdays are for getting loose and being on your Worst Behavior! Bangs & Blush roll out rap and hip-hop from now and then. $10.

 

10 pm The Groove @ Swan Dive, 1631 Dundas St. W. Motown, soul, and rock ‘n’ roll with Brother Wayne. Dust off your dancing shoes and get your groove on!

 

10 pm PPParty @ The Boat, 158 Augusta Ave. Why all the the P? ’Cuz this party is golden! 24 Karat hits from all decades.

 

10 pm Swiftmas Dance Party @ Sneaky Dee’s, 431 College St. Swifties, get ready to shake it off at this holiday dance party! Sneaky Dee’s will be playing enough Taylor Swift to satisfy the most loyal of Swifties. Toss in a Christmas tune or two and you’ve got yourself a banger. Limited tickets available at the door.

 

10:30 pm Love Saves the Day @ The Beaver, 1192 Queen St. W. Maximal house, maximal disco with DJs Kevin Ritchie and Jaime Sin. 

 

11 pm Never Forgive Action @ The Drake Underground, 1150 Queen St. W. DJs Numeric and Dalia spin hip-hop, R&B, and dancehall anthems all night long. $10.

 

SUNDAY

 

10 am The Land Before Time @ Paradise Theatre, 1006 Bloor St. W. The newly reopened Paradise Theatre hosts a screening of the Don Bluth classic The Land Before Time, sure to enchant family members young and old. $6-14 tickets available online.

 

10 am Leslieville Winter Market @ The Redwood Theatre, 1300 Gerrard St. E. The Leslieville Farmers’ Market is extending the season and bringing east end’s largest weekly celebration of local farmers, chefs, and community indoors. Enjoy music, kids activities, wellness programming, a full bar serving wine and local breweries, an array of Toronto’s diverse prepared food, and of course, the best produce from local farms. Until 2 pm.

 

11 am The Bazaar of the Bizarre: FrostBite 2019 @ The Native Canadian Center, 16 Spadina Rd. This isn’t your typical holiday market. The Bazaar of the Bizarre brings you arts, fashion, and crafts that are different, interesting, weird, strange, one-of-a-kind, macabre, whimsical, or just things to flip your brain out! It showcases a wide variety of independent artists, designers, and crafters + entertainment from dancers, stilt walkers, DJs, and magicians. Until 7 pm. Free entry. 

 

7 pm Brass Facts Trivia @ The Ossington, 61 Ossington Ave. Test your knowledge and win prizes! Hosted by Famous Kirk Hero. Until 10 pm.

 

7 pm Poetry Slam @ The Drake Underground, 1150 Queen St. W. Local wordsmiths and performers provide an evening of spoken word, lyrical mastery, and friendly competition before an always packed house. $80 goes to the best performance of the night. Doors at 7 pm, sign-up starts at 7:30. $7.

 

7:30 pm The Star Wars Holiday Special @ Handlebar, 159 Augusta Ave. This year for their annual Xmas screening, Handlebar invites you to watch the iconic, the dreadful, the… surprisingly horny? Star Wars Holiday Special. There will also be a raffle with all proceeds going to COSTI and the work they do to help refugees build new lives for their families. 

 

10 pm Sinful Sundays Burlesque: BurlesqueUni Showcase @ Cherry Cola’s, 200 Bathurst St. Come be entertained at this weekly “temple of tease,” where you’ll find a fresh lineup of burlesque entertainers, drag, and variety acts. This week features a special showcase of fresh talent from Burlesque Uni, hosted by founders and instructors Patel Supernova and Rosie Mae.

Free entry; tipping encouraged.

 

~ For event submissions, email Caitlyn Holroyd at caitlyn_holroyd@hotmail.com

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