This weekend is Doors Open Toronto, which allows visitors free access to properties that are not usually open to the public or offer an entrance fee. Even buildings you’ve been in many times may offer tours of sections you wouldn’t normally be allowed to see. It’s a great way to learn more about the city’s history and architecture, for free! And, this year, there are a few local spots offering admission and even tours.
A local bank, IC Savings at 1168 Dundas West, is also the Real Canadian Portuguese Museum, and offers a look into Portuguese influence on Canadian culture. The exhibit is open Saturday and Sunday from 10a-4:45p.
On Shaw Street, the newest Artscape, Artscape Youngplace, will be open Saturday and Sunday from 10a-4p. Admission is open to this new arts hub in the former Shaw Street school. There will also be tours of secret spaces which will reveal historical details of the building.
At nearby CAMH, there will be tours of the patient built walls on the grounds of the hospital. Hour long walking tours on the hour Saturday and Sunday from 10a-4p. All tours will start at the southwest corner of Queen Street West and Shaw Street.
If you’ve been to a concert at The Great Hall, you may think you’ve seen it all. Apparently, there’s lots more to see, including the backstage, studio space and basement, and some of it may be haunted! Doors are open Sunday, May 25 from 10a-4:30pm. The Great Hall is at 1087 Queen St West at Dovercourt.
A little further west, The Theatre Centre, a brand new live arts hub and incubator, is also open for Doors Open at 1115 Queen West. They took over the former library space in March, so here’s a chance to see what they’ve done with it, and also catch a glimpse of some live performances. Hours are Saturday and Sunday from 10a-4p.
Doors Open is May 24-25. For more information on locations, check their site and twitter @Doors_OpenTO