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Ossington Street Festival Ossfest July 23

See Also: Ossfest Recap and Photos;  What to Expect During Ossfest

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On Saturday, July 23rd, Ossington will be closed to traffic for the first ever Ossington street festival.  Ossfest will highlight local businesses and the community and features Toronto’s only city bike races, outdoor music, and a lot of patios and partying. Mark off your calendars for Ossington’s first – but hopefully not last – street festival. In addition to the major events listed below, sidewalks will be open for shopping, drinking and dining. All of this is being organized and executed by the Ossington BIA.

The Ossington Street Festival

Ossfest is a local street fest in which every business can participate. Details of each business’ activities will be updated to the BIA’s Instagram account. To give you an idea, expect lots of outdoor patios for food and drinking, sidewalk sales, and activities for kids as all of these and more will be along Ossington on July 23rd. We’ve been informed that Pizza Libretto, The Painted Lady and Mamakas will have extended outdoor patios. Get ready for a great day and night! We’ll post here as we find out what other businesses have in store for the 23rd!

Oss Fest Free Live Music

An exciting component of the Ossington Street Festival is the live music stage at Ossington and Dundas. The music starts at 2pm and continues with various great local acts through until approximately 11pm. With acts ranging from the reggae stylings of Bredren, to Saul Torres’ Latin music, to a brass band parade featuring The Heavyweights Brass Band, and roots rock from Samantha Martin and Delta Sugar, everyone should be entertained. These are bands you would normally pay a cover to see at local spots like The Dakota Tavern or Painted Lady. More details on the musical line-up in the poster below:

Ossington Street Festival Live Music

Ossington Street Festival Live Music

The Ossington Crit

A key component of the Ossington street festival is the Ossington Crit. From 11am to 6:30 pm, you can watch and cheer during this series of bike races officially sanctioned by the Ontario Cycling Association. The races begin with kids races, by age group, at 11am so be there by 10:30am with your kids and their bikes and helmets so they can join the fun!

After the kids races, it’s all licensed adult riders from 12 noon. Participants will ride as many laps as they can within their allotted race time. The early races are shorter races for beginners, and they build up to the elites who race for 90 minutes, with the final race ending at 6:30PM. The map (below) shows the race route: along Ossington, east on Halton, south on Givins, and west back to Ossington along Rebecca. It’s a short and narrow route and should be exciting to watch the races!

Crit Map

Map of Ossington Crit Course

 Save the date: July 23rd

Ossington between Dundas and Queen – street party, music, cycling and shopping: 11am-11pm.

Meet me on Ossington!

Vector Festival Brings New Art to Ossington

Vector-Teaser-2-e1465493775720Do you want to stay current on the coolest digital and new media art in town? Then Vector Festival is for you and it’s happening this week! Hosted by Ossington’s own cutting edge art space InterAccess, the festival features music, video games, lectures, films and more.

We attended several of the events last year, and it’s interesting, eye opening and enjoyable. It’s all very accessible too, with multiple locations in our area. You can buy a festival pass for $25, or pay as you go for individual performances and showcases.

The festival kicks off this Thursday at InterAccess with a launch party from 7-11p. This party is free to the public and should provide a sneak peek at the rest of the fest, with a lot of the attendees contributors to the art.

Many of the Vector Festival’s workshops and shows will be held at InterAccess’ Headquarters at 9 Ossington, including the festival’s main exhibit The Algorithmic Imagination, running there through August. You can also attend a music making workshop at InterAccess on Saturday, with paid admission.

Artscape Youngplace on nearby Shaw Street is another locale for Vector Fest, and notably will be hosting a performance on Saturday night with music, coding, and more. This is a paid event, or included with the pass.

To top it all off, after a weekend of workshops and art, local tequila and music hotspot Reposado Bar hosts the final closing party on Sunday night from 8-11PM, with a live musical performance by Castle If.

The Vector Festival is bringing all sorts of new art methods and viewpoints to Toronto, and Ossington. In addition to parties, there are lectures and workshops, so lots to keep you entertained this weekend in our neighbourhood!

As always, look at our calendar for all the local Vector Fest events and anything else going on nearby.

Ossington Area Restaurants Offer Summerlicious Deals

summerliciouslogoSummerlicious is celebrating another year of prix fixe menus for lunch and dinner across Toronto. This year, there are over 220 participating Toronto restaurants. Three Ossington Village spots are offering Summerlicious discount menus for the duration of the promo, between July 8 – 24th. Here’s our guide to Summerlicious on Ossington.

All the restaurants offer 3 courses with vegetarian options. All 3 are participating in Summerlicious for dinner.

Hawker Bar, 164 Ossington

  • Enjoy some of the city’s best Singapore street food with their $28 dinner deal.
  • Options include their refreshing cucumber salad, highly regarded chicken wings, and trademark laksas for appetizers.
  • Entree choices are among the best: fried chicken and ribs or shrimp or a vegetarian entree, and you really must try the banana fritters for dessert.
  • In fact, all the dessert options sound good. Maybe bring 2 friends so you can try a little bit of everything!

The Saint, 227 Ossington

  • Joanne Kates ranked this place among her best “spend a lot” spots for 2016.
  • Here’s your chance to live the good life for only 28 dollars for dinner!
  • Includes the option of one of the city’s best burgers along with the fish meuniere, hot fried chicken or penne ala vodka
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The Saint’s much lauded burger

  • For dessert: choose from creme caramel, ice cream or profiterole
  • Again, we suggest you bring friends who share

Ufficio, 1214 Dundas W

UfficioSummerlicious

Ufficio’s branzino

  • This is a new-ish restaurant on Dundas West so Summerlicious will give diners more opportunity to try their delicious seafood!
  • Options on their special $28 dinner menu range from apps like swordfish crudo and tomato panzanella salad
  • Entrees include branzino (photo above) and veggie spaghetti

It may seem like planning ahead, but you can make your reservations now! Try all three and let us know how much you loved it!

 

Toronto Jazz Fest Events On Ossington

tdjazzfestlogoThe Toronto Jazz Festival is one of the world’s biggest jazz events with music superstars performing across the city. Two local music venues are featuring some Toronto Jazz fest acts right here on Ossington.

Toronto Jazz Fest starts this Friday and runs from June 24 – July 3.  As part of the “club series” of Jazz Fest, two Ossington clubs,  Reposado and The Painted Lady, have full schedules of live music.

Many of the club acts are Toronto natives, and the jazz fest is a great opportunity to check out some of these talented locals.  You will also have the chance to hear and see performers from Montreal and further afield.

Below are some of the highlights of the local club series for Jazz Fest. As always, check our calendar for full listings of events in Ossington Village:

Reposado:

  • Parc X Trio: This Montreal instrumental jazz trio has won awards at the Montreal Jazz Fest, is influenced by rock and urban music, and supposedly puts on a lively show. Playing Reposado on Saturday, June 25 at 9:30pm. Cover $8
  • Rob n Bob Power Duo: Great Bob Scott is widely recognized as one of Toronto’s best drummers. See him perform at Reposado on Saturday, July 2 at 9:30pm. Cover is $8
  • Reposado is hosting Jazz Movie Nights both Sundays of Jazz Fest. They’ll be showing Ken Burns Jazz episodes and other vintage TV jazz. No cover

The Painted Lady

  • Elise LeGrow: A solo artist and member of Whale Tooth, Elise LeGrow’s music is pop and her voice is jazz standard. Enjoy her in the intimate Painted Lady on Saturday, June 25 at 8P for $10 cover.
  • Donne Roberts: An accomplished guitarist and singer-songwriter with roots in Madagascar, Russia and Toronto, check him out on Thursday, June 30th at 8pm. Cover is $10

As in past years and for other festivals, participating venues have extended hours during Jazz Fest. The Painted Lady usually offers a late night jam session with jazz musicians, staying open until 4am. So get out there and enjoy some jazz on Ossington.

Two Music Festivals Near Ossington This Weekend

greatheartfestGood news for local music fans: this weekend we’ve got not one but two music festivals nearby. No heavy fees and no trekking to The Portlands to hear quality music.

From Friday June 17- Sunday June 19, the Live in Bellwoods Great Heart Festival brings free music to Trinity Bellwoods Park. On Friday and Saturday, The Garrison hosts No Fest for a small entry fee.

The Great Heart Festival has been a constant in Trinity Bellwoods the last several years. While there were issues with permits in the past, our Mayor is helping make this year’s fest a go!  No charge. The mostly acoustic music Friday from 4p-7p, Saturday and Sunday from 2-6p. Acts include Toronto rockers Sam Cash & The Romantic Dogs on Saturday at 4pm, and Jane’s Party on Sunday at 4:30PM. Look for the group near Dundas north of the Dog Bowl. Bring a blanket, picnic, and enjoy.

greatest-heart

 

The inaugural No Fest brings two nights and a day of local music to The Garrison. This will feel more like what we used to have with NXNE.  Toronto indie bands are filling the back room both Friday and Saturday nights. Plus, Beau’s is sponsoring a free day party in the front room on Saturday afternoon. (remember those?) The No Fest music festival passes are on sale for $20 and each night alone for $12. Below are the schedules for Friday and Saturday nights:
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Enjoy good music at a good price this weekend! And, as always, check our calendar for info on all local events.

2016 Portugal Day Parade Photos

This year’s Portugal Day Parade was a beautiful, if windy, day for the marchers and the onlookers.
We took lots of photos of the musicians, organizations, and politicians who participated in the annual parade that travels on Dundas West from Landsdowne to Ossington. Some photos are below, but check out our Facebook post for more.

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The crowds waiting for the parade

politicians

Mayor John Tory and Councillor Ana Bailao

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Dancers

Smiles at today's #portugalparade #parade #toronto

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Pictures from the Dundas West Fest

Yesterday was the 4th annual Dundas West Festival.

Lots of great music, food, shopping and entertainment were enjoyed. Here’s some pictures from the event. We’ve also posted a lot more on Facebook.

Matrox

 

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Continue reading Pictures from the Dundas West Fest

4th Dundas West Fest Coming June 11

Poster_V6_nocropThe Dundas West Fest is going to be entertaining crowds next Saturday, June 11. We’ve got a long list of reasons why you won’t want to miss this one, for one, after 3 years, it’s already being touted as a top summer festival in Toronto.

First, the logistics: Dundas West will be closed to traffic between Ossington and Landsdowne all day Saturday, June 11. The streets will be for people, and for the businesses to fill as they wish. This means many of the retailers will have sidewalk sales, and the bars and restaurants will have patios, plus there are kids’ zones, art areas and music stages scattered throughout. With the wildly diverse businesses on the street, you will be able to choose from a lot of entertainment and dining.

I mentioned we had some highlights, but check out the site linked above because there is a lot going on this Saturday:

  • The Garrison is curating a full day of free live music from the parking lot of The Beer Store: headliners are The Dears, other bands range from the local old favorites The Shuffle Demons to the more current Run with the Kittens
  • For more music, the Lulaworld stage at Dundas and Brock features dance lessons, drumming and a variety of international performers all sponsored by Lula Lounge
  • Kids zone at Dundas and Sheridan will feature fun activities for the kids all day, including soccer and a kids’ stage
  • Check out the patio at West Neighborhood House: there will be games, music and community discussions
  • Milk Glass Co is hosting a party with music all day
  • Sports fans, take note! Euro Cup begins on June 10, and Opera Bob’s and likely many other local sports bars like Dock Ellis and The Contender will be airing the games all throughout the tournament
  • Food glorious food! From the Portuguese butchers grilling meats, to the Italian, BBQ, Thai and more, there will be outdoor seating and take-away all along the street

If you want to see what went on in previous years, click here and here.

 

 

 

Jane’s Walks Near Ossington

janeswalklogoThis year would have been Jane Jacobs 100th birthday, and the annual Jane’s Walk festival in her home city of Toronto is going to be a great way to celebrate. Free volunteer-led walks are happening all over the world this weekend, and we’ve got some you can join locally.

The local walks are starting either on Dundas West or Trinity Bellwoods Park, they focus on a number of different topics, and they aren’t even all walks! Leaders come in all varieties: we’ve been on walks led by historians and professors, to students and actors. Each walk has a write-up on the Jane’s Walk website so find something that interests you, or go on a local walk:

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  • May 8 at 11am: Dundas West, The Real Deal: Glaciers and Beyond: This 2 hour walk being led by an architectural and social historian begins at Dundas West and Crawford and covers the evolution of Dundas West all the way to Sorauren Park
  • May 8 at 4pm, Anatomy of a Street Festival: 1 hour walk led by the Dundas West Fest coordinator and leader of the BIAs for both Dundas West and Little Portugal. He’ll take you from Dundas and Landsdowne to Ossington, telling stories about the creation and execution of the 4 year old festival and prepping you for this year’s on June 11.

All of these local walks are listed in our calendar, along with most local events. As you journey on any Jane’s Walks this weekend, be sure to share with the hashtag #JanesWalk

CMW Hits Ossington Music Venues This May

CMW16_Festival_Creative_Website_Header_1200x100Canadian Music Week is in Toronto next week, and Ossington Village will have a lot of CMW music. CMW is a 7 day long annual event with an industry conference, and a festival of music and comedy, and even films about music. for the public. The fest runs May 2nd-8th, and a lot of our local music venues are hosting shows.

CMW has taken over the mantle dropped by NXNE by hosting loads of musical acts from Canada and abroad at multiple music venues across the city. The lineup is extensive, with large acts at bigger venues like The Danforth Music Hall and Mod Club, and plenty of club shows at local places like The Dakota Tavern, The Garrison and The Painted Lady. Other nearby venues include The Great Hall and The Drake Underground.

Shows run Monday-Sunday next week. You can buy tickets to one showcase at one venue for $10-15, or $75 wristbands are still available online with access to most shows all week long.

Noteworthy shows:

  • Painted Lady, Saturday night: A hiphop showcase featuring Modo 495, a hip hopper from Long Island, who raps about how great beards are; plus Living Proof, a collaboration between young Winnipeg rapper Abstract Artform and Doodlebug of Digable Planets
  • The Garrison hosts a “Day Rager & Vendor Market” on Saturday, from 12-7pm – 7 bands play for free
  • Shows at The Dakota stick to their usual singer-songwriter/country-blues every night from Tuesday-Saturday: Friday night, international acts hit the stage, including, from Germany, Jesper Munk, and Australia’s Timberwolf 

We’ve included the local shows in our calendar. Enjoy the music!