Museums

Holiday Season at Museums_Page_1.jpg

What's On

Looking for an adventure in the City? You'll find lots of fun things to do and explore at Toronto's Historic Sites! 

For details, click on the tabs of the Museum names below for lists of events at each site. Then, click on the name of the event and the description will open underneath it. 



Looking for Holiday Fun? Visit www.toronto.ca/holidays for a full list of festive events!

Colborne Lodge holds community events and seasonal workshops that highlight its location in High Park. Call 416-392-6916 or e-mail clodge@toronto.ca.


Christmas at Colborne Lodge - On until Jan. 4

On until January 4
Tuesdays to Sundays: Noon to 4 p.m.
Closed: Mondays, Dec 25, 26 and Jan 1
Warm up by the hearth at Colborne Lodge and take in the sights and smells of a Victorian Christmas.  Enjoy the natural greenery decorations, toast the season with a glass of hot mulled cider by the wood stove and nibble on special holiday treats.  The Lodge is nestled at the south end of High Park.  Holiday admission prices apply: Adults $7.08, Seniors/Youths/Children $4.42 (plus tax).

 

Christmas Cookie Creation for Children - For 8 to 12 year-olds - Dec. 20

Saturday, December 20, 9:30 to 11:30 a.m.
Children will have fun making unique and tasty treats for the holidays in this historic baking workshop that uses a Canadian gingerbread recipe from the 1830s. While their cookies bake, participants will tour the house and discover Victorian Christmas traditions and stories. Participants will then take home the Christmas cookies they've made. Pre-registration required. $22.50 plus tax (includes supplies and a dozen cookies to bring home). Call 416-392-6916

Christmas by the Hearth - For 5 to 7 year-olds - FULL!

Sunday, December 21, 1:30 to 3 p.m.
Youngsters enjoy the warmth of an historic Christmas by decorating gingerbread cookies prepared from an 1831 Upper Canadian cook book followed by an enchanting interval of Christmas stories from long ago, snuggled by the kitchen hearth. Afterward, the children will go upstairs to peek at the Howards' Christmas tree and the presents underneath. Pre-registration required. $17.50 plus tax (includes light seasonal refreshments). Call 416-392-6916

High Park Winter FUNshops for Kids - Mornings during the Holidays

Mon, Dec 29, Tues, Dec 30, Wed, Dec 31 & Fri, Jan 2, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Looking to engage your 6 to 10 year old kids over the holidays? Sign them up at Colborne Lodge for four fun-filled mornings preparing for the New Year!  Activities include playing Victorian games, crafts, outdoor interlude, and cooking over the hearth. Pre-registration  required, call 416-392-6916. Parents may book any or all mornings. $25 plus tax per child per morning, no tax if booking more than one morning. Call 416-392-6916.

Don't miss these great events at Fort York. Contact us at 416-392-6907 or fortyork@toronto.ca.

The Holiday Season at Fort York - Dec. 15 to 31

December 15 to December 31
Mon. to Fri.:10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Sat. & Sun: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Closed Dec. 25 & 26

Enjoy a visit to Fort York National Historic Site this festive season. Sample some baking from the 1826 Officers' Mess kitchen and soak up the warmth of a crackling wood fire. Be sure to browse the Museum Store to find that special gift you won't find anywhere else and features gifts suitable for all ages and interests. Regular admission applies.

 

Gingerbread Make and Bake for Kids - Dec. 27 to 31

Extra fun for children (ages 4 and up)
December 27 to 31 at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.

While you enjoy a tour of Fort York your kids can join the cooks in the Officers' Mess kitchen to create traditional gingerbread cookies. In this hands-on workshop, kids will use period cooking utensils and tools to sift flour, crush cinnamon, cloves or allspice, pound sugar and grate nutmeg and ginger as they prepare an 1800s gingerbread recipe. Samples can be taken home - if they last that long! Workshop is limited to 15 participants. Included with regular admission, sign up in the Museum Store when you arrive.

 

Queen Charlotte’s Birthday Ball - Saturday, January 17

Saturday, January 17, 1 to 10:30 p.m.

The Queen Charlotte's Birthday Ball is a recreation of a significant moment in Toronto's history, specifically a Ball offered by Officers' of the Garrison at York (Fort York) held in Toronto on January 23, 1817.

The event is a costumed ball which recreates an early 19th century social gathering and includes instruction in period dance, an extensively researched and authentically prepared Georgian dinner representing the culinary history of early 19th century Toronto and concludes with an evening of English country dancing. 

This annual event features an illustrated talk by Dr. Larry Ostola, Director of Museum and Heritage Services with the City of Toronto. This year's theme is the Treaty of Ghent and the promise of peace after the war of 1812. Costumes Welcome.

Pre-registration required - Click here for details

Gibson House is a welcoming place for the community to find out about the history of the area or to gather and share crafts, traditions and recipes. Contact us at 416-395-7432 or gibsonhouse@toronto.ca

Festive Adventure Holiday Camp! For ages 7 to 11 - Dec. 22 or 23

Monday, December 22 OR Tuesday, December 23, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
A fun-filled day spent baking treats in the historic kitchen, making seasonal crafts, playing games and meeting new friends. Pre-registration required. $30 plus tax.

Extended Care available 8-9 a.m. and 4:30-5:30 p.m.

$10 plus tax for morning or afternoon. $15 plus tax for both.

To the New Year: A Hogmanay Dinner - Dec. 29 or 30

Monday, December 29, and Tuesday, December 30, 6:30 p.m.
Gather at the historic Gibson House for a special evening inspired by the traditions of Hogmanay. (Scottish New Year celebrations). Share a scrumptious dinner with familiar and new friends. Be lulled by the fire and moved by the music. Take an imagined journey through story and drama to a New Year of another time. As the evening closes, come together with staff to welcome our First Footer, celebrate our 2014 season and bring luck and best wishes to Gibson House Museum for 2015. Pre-registration and pre-payment required. $55 plus tax per person.

Tea and Tour Sundays 

Sunday afternoons from 1 to 5 p.m.
There's a seat for you at the harvest table in the historic kitchen on Sunday afternoons this winter. Relax and have a chat over tea and homemade cookies. Enjoy a tour of this lovely, 1850s farmhouse. Included with regular admission.

 

 

Keeping You In Stitches – Knitting and Crochet Sunday Socials

Every Sunday afternoon from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Join us in the parlour for a relaxing afternoon of knitting and crocheting. All ages and skill levels are welcome! Bring your own projects from home or try out one of our fun patterns and add something to our #yarnbomb. Extra needles, hooks, corkers, and yarn for practice and experimentation will be available. It is FREE to participate, however, donations are always welcome.

Pay What You Wish Thursday Night Socials

Open to 5 to 8 p.m.
The last Social for this year is on December 19.
We will resume our weekly Thursday get-togethers on January 16
Enjoy a relaxing, social evening 1850s style. Have some tea and sit by the fire in the kitchen, play board games and chat with neighbours and friends. Drop by the community quilt group and see what they are creating – add a stitch or two, if you wish. Children may explore hands-on activities and crafts. Activities will vary each week and we welcome your ideas and suggestions for future Thursdays. Admission is pay-what-you-wish.

Thursday Board Games Night – For All Ages
The First Thursday of each month
6 to 8 p.m. Part of our Pay-What-You-Wish Thursday Nights.
The Gibson family didn't have cable, a phone or wi-fi, so what did they do when the chores were done? They played games! Finished your work and chores for the day? Then come to the museum to play the featured games of the month as well as the classic games in the Discovery Gallery.


Community Quilt Group Get-togethers - Thursdays, 6 to 8 p.m.

Thursdays, 6 to 8 p.m.
Relax and meet new friends while you improve your sewing skills. We invite members of all ages from North York's diverse communities to join us for informal evenings of learning and sharing. Both historic and contemporary quilting techniques are explored in a comfortable, social setting. Work on a group project or pay a small fee for materials and make your own piece. Even if you have never picked up a needle and thread before you are welcome to join in. It is FREE to participate; however, donations are always welcome.

Wartime in Willowdale - The Dear Sadie Exhibit - March 3

Opens March 3 and runs until May 29
'Dear Sadie: Love, Lives and Remembrance from Ontario's First World War', a travelling exhibit from the Archives of Ontario, will be on display at Gibson House Museum this Spring. This exhibit uses letters between soldier Henry Mason and his sweetheart, Sadie Arbuckle, to tell the moving story of their relationship while also exploring the reality of war. The exhibit is paired with local stories of North York during the war, including the Gibson family connection to the war and wartime.

These are the events taking place at Mackenzie House. Contact us at 416-392-6915 or machouse@toronto.ca

 

A Victorian Christmas & Letter to Santa - Starts Nov. 25

Tuesday, November 25, until Sunday, January 4
Tuesday to Friday, 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.; Saturday & Sunday: 12 p.m. to 5 p.m
.
This festive season take a step back in time to Victorian Toronto and experience the magic of a traditional Christmas in an 1859 row-house.  Escape from the hustle and bustle while you enjoy a sample of mulled cider and a biscuit in the warmth of the historic kitchen. Discover the story of how families celebrated Christmas in 19th century Toronto as you tour the Mackenzie home which is dressed in greenery for the holidays.

During the Victorian Christmas program, until December 24, children are invited to write a letter to Santa Claus during their visit. Children love writing to Santa Claus to tell him about their Christmas wish lists. Select a card that has been printed on our 1845 printing press, and write a personal message. Drop the wish card into our magic post box and it will go to Santa! Included with admission. Adults: $7.08; Seniors /Youth/Children: $4.42 (plus tax)

 

Kids’ Crafts - Dec. 27 to Jan. 4

Saturday, December 27 to Sunday, January 4
Tuesday to Friday, 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.; Saturday & Sunday: 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Closed Dec. 25 & 26 and January 1

Bring the family to visit the last home of Toronto’s first mayor, William Lyon Mackenzie, then enjoy some kid time printing in the recreated printshop and doing an historically-based seasonal activity. Adults: $7.08; Seniors /Youth/Children: $4.42 (plus tax)

Hogmanay! - Dec. 29

Monday, December 29, 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Enjoy an evening of Scottish music and foods at this traditional celebration of the New Year. The decorated house will be illuminated by gas and candlelight. Musicians Gin Lane will perform. Pre-registration and pre-payment are required.

Tickets: $22.50  plus tax. Please call 416-392-6915 for further details.

 

The Market Gallery is located on the 2nd floor of the St. Lawrence Market. Call 416-392-7604 or email marketgallery@toronto.ca

Toronto Does Her 'Bit': The Home Front in the Great War

Toronto Does Her 'Bit': The Home Front in the Great War
July 26, 2014 to January 17, 2015

Using archival photographs, artworks and artifacts, this exhibition explores the texture of life on the Toronto home front during 1914-18. What was required from citizens to support the war effort? What were the consequences, both positive and negative, of that support?

Toronto quickly became a focal point for recruiting, training and sending men and women off to the war and then raising funds to support both the military overseas and the families left behind. The city’s productive energies were unleashed – from knitting circles making socks to massive new factories supplying munitions and ships – enabling women to assume new roles in Toronto society. These and many other issues are explored in this exciting new exhibition at the Market Gallery.

Montgomery's Inn has been welcoming visitors for over 180 years. Join in events that celebrate theatre, music, food and the history of  Etobicoke. Contact us at 416-394-8113 or montinn@toronto.ca

Christmas Market - Dec. 17

Wednesday, December 17 - 2 to 6 p.m.
The winter indoor farmers' market has returned and on Dec. 17 we welcome many additional vendors who will sell crafts, special foods and gifts of all kinds. Shop for friends and family (or even yourself!) at this special Christmas fair. All of your favourite, regular vendors will also be on hand with their exceptional local products for you to purchase.

Jane Austen Christmas Supper - Dec. 19

Friday, December 19, 7 to 10 p.m.
Dress code: historical clothing is encouraged, but optional.

Here's your chance for an actual taste of Jane Austen's world. Sit at an elegant table by the fire and eat the foods she and her contemporaries knew, at historic Montgomery's Inn. A blend of the familiar and the intriguingly different, these dishes show us a lesser-known aspect of her time. We hope that you will join us for the rare opportunity to experience a full historical meal within the walls of one of Toronto's best-loved heritage sites.

Tickets must be purchased by Friday, December 12. Space is limited. $45. Details at www.JaneAustenDancing.ca  or call 416-578-1031.

Kith & Kin's Holiday Wassail Concert - Dec. 20 Afternoon

Saturday, December 20, 2 to 4 p.m.
Toronto Island trio Kith & Kin bring their Holiday Wassail concert to Montgomery's Inn for the first time! The concert features medieval carols, rousing sing-alongs, and seasonal music from Appalachia, the British Isles and the shape-note tradition. Known for their haunting 3-part harmonies, Ivy Mairi, her sister Martha and their mother Kathleen perform tunes from their CDs Yet Will I Be Merry and Cool of the Day, blending their voices with a choir of amazing local singers. Tickets are $10 plus tax.

Scarborough Museum hosts lots of family-friendly and fun events. Contact us at 416-338-8807 or shm@toronto.ca

 

Festive Weekends in December - 12 to 4 p.m.

'Tis the holiday season! Sample hot chocolate, and baked holiday goodies. We ho-ho –HOPE everyone enjoys their time here at Scarborough Museum this month! Admission is Pay What You Can. 

Holiday Camps for Kids 5 to 12 years - Various Dates

Holiday Camps
9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Make 19th century toys, cook over the open hearth, play games and enjoy lots of outdoor fun!  Ages 5-12   Pre-register for these camps online at www.toronto.ca/torontofun or call 416-338-4FUN (4386). 

December 22 & 23 - 2 Day Camp $66 
Course Code: 2650469
Extended Care
AM - 8 to 9 a.m. Course Code: 2345837 - $5.50
PM - 4 to 5 p.m. Course Code: 2345853 - $5.50

December 29 to 31 - 3 Day Camp $106
Course Code: 2650470
Extended care
AM - 8 to 9 a.m. Course Code: 2345722 - $8.25
PM - 4 to 5 p.m. Course Code: 2345723- $8.25

January 2  -  1 Day Camp  $33.50
Course Code: 2650474
Extended care
AM - 8 to 9 a.m. Course Code: 2655185 - $2.75
PM - 4 to 5 p.m. Course Code: 2655187 - $2.75

 

 

 

 

Immerse yourself in the 1920s at Spadina Museum. Contact us at 416-392-6910 or spadina@toronto.ca

Weekday Tours at Spadina

Tuesday to Friday, 12 to 4 p.m.
During the week, Spadina Museum takes visitors on a tour of the house through the eyes of the prominent Austin family, whose struggles and triumphs were closely tied to those of Toronto as they entered the 20th century. Call for schedule of tour times. Regular admission applies.
416-392-6910.

Spadina Landscape Tour

Discover Spadina's historic landscape! This audio-visual tour includes facts and images relating to the local and family history, geology and archaeology. The devices for the landscape tour can be rented for $5 plus tax alone or add an additional $2 to regular admission to rent the device and enjoy a tour of the house's interiors.

This tour will be available until late November, weather permitting.

A Roaring Twenties Christmas - Starts Nov. 25

November 25 to January 4
Tuesday to Friday: 12 to 4 p.m., Saturday & Sunday: 12 to 5 p.m.

Experience a 1920s Christmas on a guided tour of Spadina. Holly wreaths, garlands of evergreens and mistletoe festoon the house based on the memories of the Austin family grandchildren. In the kitchen visitors will enjoy holiday treats made from original recipes and sip mulled cider warmed on the art deco gas range. Holiday admission applies.

 

Flashman Returns! 1930s Radio Play fun! - Dec.14 & 21

The Golden Age of Radio at Spadina Museum
Sundays: December 14 & 21
Spadina Museum is open 12 to 5 p.m.
Dec. 7, Shows at 1 and 3:30 p.m.;

Dec. 14 & 21, Shows at 1 and 3 p.m.
Family fun is On the Air!
Join us at Spadina Museum for a recreation of a 1930s radio show —commercials included! Watch the behind-the-scenes fun of a live radio drama. During your visit, see the beautifully restored home decorated for a 1920s Christmas and enjoy holiday season refreshments. Kids can make a decoder ring - a gimmick used by advertisers in the 1930s to send "secret" messages to listeners. Admission: Adults $12, Seniors/Youth $10 and Children $8 (plus tax)

Featured in the Toronto Star: A drink with David Healey, Spadina House guide, radio play producer

Look what's happening over the next few months at Todmorden Mills. Contact us at 416-396-2819 or todmorden@toronto.ca

 

On display In the Papermill Gallery

  • Admission to the Papermill Gallery is free.

    Dec 3 to 14

    Serendipity – The Eclectic Art of Lynda Pogue

    Lynda returns to The Papermill Gallery in Todmorden Mills for the third time. Her popular shows are a stunning and affordable collection of eclectic art: everything from small watercolours to huge abstracts and enticing photography. Come and join the fun!


Outdoor Fall Tours - On now

Todmorden Outdoor Site Tours
Throughout the Fall
Wednesday to Friday: Noon to 4 p.m.
Saturday & Sunday: Noon to 4:30 p.m.
This fall, your visit to Todmorden Mills Heritage Site will take place out-of-doors. Tours explore the stories of Todmorden and the Don Valley from their uses by the First Nations to the development of Todmorden Mills as a heritage site in 1967.
Please note: Over the next few months, exciting changes are taking place inside our historic houses. News about the current renovations will be announced later this year. Due to the renovations, no indoor tours will be taking place.
Regular admission applies.

Adults: $5.31
Seniors (65 +): $2.65
Youth (13-18 yrs.): $2.65
Children (6-12 yrs.): $1.77
Children (5 yrs. and under): Free

Christmas in the Valley - Dates vary

December 14 and 20 to 23, 27 to 30, Jan. 2 to 4, Noon to 4 p.m.
December 24 & 31, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Experience two different eras of Christmas at Todmorden Mills as we explore the holiday traditions of the 1890s and the 1940s. Sample historic recipes, create a take-home craft, and join us for a winter-themed outdoor tour of the Wildflower Preserve.

Adults: $5.31; Youth/Seniors: $3; Children: $2 (plus tax).