Summer events along the future route of the Ontario Line

There are lots of summer events & year-round destinations to see across the future Ontario Line route.

With summer in full swing, there are many community events of all sizes opening across the city.

Notably, Exhibition Place is back with a busy schedule of long-awaited events, including the Canadian National Exhibition (CNE), the region’s most well-known end of summer celebration that runs from Aug. 19 to Sept. 5 this year.

You can get to the CNE easily on GO Transit, which has been a staple of ‘The Ex’ since 1967. But Metrolinx has also begun construction on the Ontario Line subway project, which will be another convenient way to take transit to this major event once it opens.

The Ontario Line will run from Exhibition, travelling through the heart of Toronto’s downtown, all the way to the Science Centre. It will connect to dozens of communities with events of their own along the way. Work on the Ontario Line is already underway with preliminary construction work ongoing at Exhibition Station and the site of the future Corktown Station. More preparatory activities are getting underway across the line and major work on stations and tunnelling will start next year in the city’s downtown area.

Many of these hotspots within the city are still offering summer events throughout the second half of the season. Read on to learn how to fill the remaining gaps in your summer to-do list.

Canadian National Exhibition (CNE)
Future Ontario Line station: Exhibition

After a two-year hiatus, Canada’s largest annual community event is back with all the favourites, including rides, food, the Air Show, SuperDogs and more. This well-renowned fair takes place on Exhibition Place Grounds, south of the GO Station, and will run from August 19 to September 5. PRESTO card holders can also get discounted CNE tickets online. Check out the sneak peek at the concept for the design of the future combined Ontario Line and GO station.

Ferris wheel, lights and rides at the CNE at night.
CNE Ferris Wheel and Mega Drop at night. (Canadian National Exhibition photo)
Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF)
Future Ontario Line station: King/Bathurst

TIFF is not only one of the largest film festivals in the world, but also one of the city’s most iconic and highly anticipated annual events. The festival returns this year, from Sept. 8 to 18, for its 47th edition, celebrating the art of Canadian and international filmmaking.

Riverside Common Sundays
Future Ontario Line station: Riverside/Leslieville

Stop by the Riverside Common Park every Sunday for live music, games, food and special events run by the Riverside BIA like Art in the Park (Aug. 14), The Leslieville Flea (Aug. 21), Riverside Local Vendors Market (Aug. 28) and more.

Two Metrolinx employees smiling in an outdoor Metrolinx booth.
The Metrolinx community engagement team at a Riverside Common Sunday event on June 5. (Metrolinx photo)
Withrow Park Farmers’ Market
Future Ontario Line station: Pape

Rain or shine, you can visit the Withrow Park Farmers’ Market every Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., from spring until fall. You can also find the Withrow’s Community Seed Library at the market, where you can give, take or share seeds to help support a diverse local food system.

Pape Village Summerfest
Future Ontario Line station: Cosburn

September doesn’t mean the end of summer fun – the Pape Village BIA’s Summerfest is back this year on Saturday, Sept. 17 from 12 to 8 p.m. Come celebrate Pape Village and all it has to offer, including food, shopping and entertainment.

Thorncliffe Park Community Market
Future Ontario Line station: Thorncliffe Park

Every Friday from May to September between 3 and 9 p.m., the Thorncliffe Park Women’s Committee transforms R.V. Burgess Park into a bustling community market. The Thorncliffe Park Community Market brings residents together to share their cultures and talents. It also empowers local women by creating space for socio-economic opportunities in the neighbourhood.

Clothing garments being sold at an outdoor market.
Clothing garments being sold at the community market. (Thorncliffe Park Women’s Committee photo)
Year-long fun

In addition to a bustling schedule of seasonal events, the Ontario Line route will also connect to several year-round destinations in communities across the city. But there’s no need to wait for the Ontario Line or a special occasion to visit the following attractions, which are available no matter what the season.

Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO)
Future Ontario Line station: Osgoode

With an impressive collection of more than 120,000 pieces, there is no shortage of artwork to take in during a visit to the AGO. Beyond the array of exhibitions, the museum also regularly hosts special events, family and youth programs, workshops and talks with artists and curators.

Moss Park Market
Future Ontario Line station: Moss Park

The Moss Park Market is Canada’s first-ever market hosted inside a shipping container. Run by Building Roots, the container allows the market to operate year-round on Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The market also uses a pay-what-you-can model to make healthy, fresh food available to everyone in the community.

Metrolinx employees setting up at the Moss Park Market.
The Metrolinx community engagement team visited Moss Park Market last November. (Metrolinx photo)
Ontario Science Centre
Future Ontario Line station: Science Centre

One of the first interactive science museums in the world, the Ontario Science Centre is a place where visitors of all ages can actively participate in exhibits and, through play, how to think like a scientist. The Science Centre isn’t only for school trips – the exhibits, live demonstrations, films, special events and programs are open year-round.

The Distillery Historic District
Future Ontario Line station: Corktown

On any given day, visitors can take a stroll through The Distillery District and enjoy a scene of red brick, restored 19th century architecture. Artisanal shops, restaurants, galleries and more also line the streets of The District, to be enjoyed during any season. In addition to these staples, The District also hosts numerous events throughout the year, including The Distillery Local Market during the warmer months, and The Distillery Winter Village come holiday season.

Street with pedestrians and buildings at the Distillery District.
The Distillery District is made up of more than 40 Victorian buildings. (Metrolinx photo)

Think there’s something missing? Email us at OntarioLine@metrolinx.com and let us know about exciting events and destinations in your community.

Story by Caitlin Docherty, Metrolinx communications senior advisor, subway program