What to Do in Toronto This Labour Day Long Weekend

Canadas Wonderland Fireworks

School might start next week but that doesn’t mean that summer fun needs to come to an end just yet. This upcoming long weekend is packed with great activities that will entertain your family and help you create one last set of summer 2018 memories.

Here are a few Toronto events that will let you and your kids make the most of these final warm weather days. Now let’s just hope that the rain stays away!

Artfest Toronto

Artfest Toronto at the Distillery

Sep 1-Sep 3 at the Distillery District

Free admission

Get creative down in the always popular Distillery District. This three-day festival runs from 11 am until 6 pm daily and features free art workshops that will let your kids get in touch with their artistic side. There will also be live music and a giant arts and craft show.

Ashkenaz Festival


Aug 28-Sep 3 at Harbourfront Centre

Most events free

Billed as North America’s “largest festival of global Jewish music and culture,” this event stars over 250 artists from around the world. Some of these performers will be found in the kids’ zone, which features a number of live musical performances, including one where kids can join in playing such instruments as washboards, jugs and even bones! There will also be face painting, crafts and of course lots of delicious food, including a bagel battle.



Aug 30-Sep 2 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre

Tickets start at $25

Kids who love superheroes, Star Wars and comics will have a blast at Fan Expo. In addition to tons of photo ops, your family can challenge their problem-solving skills in a Harry Potter-themed escape room and have some old-school fun in the coin-operated video game arcade. And on Sunday, there’s a special costume contest for those 12 and under. Just note that while Fan Expo aims to be family friendly, some of the costumes worn by adult attendees can be a little intense so you might want to only take older kids to this event.

Fireworks at Wonderland


Sep 2 at Wonderland

Tickets start at $39.99

Cap off the summer with a spectacular firework show at the GTA’s largest amusement park. At 10 pm, over 6,000 colourful explosions will light up the sky for roughly 15 minutes during a custom show that is set to its very own soundtrack. Before the show, enjoy the park’s dozens of rides, games and of course Splash Works (and be sure to read these tips before you head out to Wonderland).

Jamaica Day Summerfest


Sep 1 & 2 at the Woodbine Outdoor Grounds

Tickets start at $10

Now in its 28th year, this two-day festival celebrates all things Jamaican. While live music is the star of this event, your children will love the kids’ zone, which organizers say will feature $100,000 worth of midway-style rides and games (including a zip line). And since this is a Jamaican festival, make sure to come hungry as there will lots and lots of yummy food available.

Toronto International BuskerFest


Aug 31-Sep 3 at Woodbine Park

Admission by donation

This annual fundraiser for Epilepsy Toronto features dozens of street performers who will wow you and your family with their wide variety of skills. While the whole event is child-friendly, the Family Fun Zone includes interactive experiences that will let you kids try out their busking skills. It also features a special tent where you can feed and change babies. New this year is the inclusion of the Mac and Cheese Festival, which will be serving up dozens of different kinds of everyone’s favourite comfort food.

Toronto Rib, Bacon and BBQ Festival


Aug 31-Sep 3 at Downsview Park

General admission $5, kids 12 & under free

What’s better than a Ribfest? How about a festival that also offers bacon and all things BBQ? Besides plenty of tasty food, this event includes a kids’ midway that will feature rides, a giant rock climbing wall, and every kids’ favourite activity: Bouncy castles. For the adults, there’s also live music and a beer, wine and spirits’ tent.

Canadian National Exhibition


Aug 17-Sep 3 at the CNE Grounds

Tickets start at $16

Of course, we can’t forget to include this end-of-summer institution. In addition to the rides, the food, and the Super Dogs, you can watch the air show from noon until 3 pm all weekend long. And if this latest heat wave is really getting to your family, take your kids to see Santa Claus (!) on Saturday, September 1, when the Claus family comes to the CNE.


Feature image credit: Canada’s Wonderland



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