Museums & Heritage Services

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What's On

Looking for an adventure in the City? From family-friendly activities, to engaging exhibits and tours, to outdoor walks and evening entertainment, you'll find fun things to do and explore at Toronto's Historic Sites!

Friday, December 2 is a P.A. Day and many parents will be looking for camps for their kids. Colborne Lodge, Gibson House and Scarborough Museum offer fun day camps for young people. See the museum listings below for details.

Looking ahead to the Festive Season for family fun events, craft and food workshops, evenings out, kids' day camps and places to shop? Go to the Holiday Season section below and click on the link to see all of our activities!


Events by Date - Calendar below

To search for events by date, click on our new calendar (below our regular listings). If you want to search by site, click on the Museum names below to see what's happening at that site. Click on the name of the event, and the description will open underneath it.

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.

Regular Admission: Adults $6.19, Seniors/Youth $3.54, Children $2.65 (plus tax) 

Christmas Centrepiece Workshop for Adults - December 18

Sunday Morning Centrepiece Workshops for Adults 10 am - 12 pm $32.50  
December 18th - Adult (Ages 16 & up)
Sunday Morning Centrepiece Workshops for Adults 10 am - 12 pm $32.50  
December 18th - Adult (Ages 16 & up)

Sunday, December 18, 10 a.m. to Noon 
Start your Christmas preparations by creating your very own Christmas centerpiece using nature’s bounty.  Our 2 hour workshops are a popular pre-Christmas get-together activity for groups of friends and families. Set in picturesque High Park, the Lodge offers a cosy historic ambience for this seasonal craft.  Participants also explore the Howard's beautiful home in all its Christmas decor and enjoy light seasonal refreshments in the drawing room.

Workshops for Adults
$32.50
Ages 16 and up

Tickets available online.

Time Traveler P.A. Day Camp - Ages 7 to 10 - December 2

Ages 7 to 10
Friday, December 2
9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Course Code: 2889733
Children will travel back in time and explore life almost two hundred years ago and experience a PA day like no other – cooking over the fire, telling tales in the parlour, indoor and outdoor games, and unique hands-on activities. New activities every P.A. day so make Colborne Lodge your home away from home for P.A. days this year.

$37.20 per child plus tax. Pre-register online at toronto.ca/torontofun or call 416-338-4386.

Christmas at Colborne Lodge (Themed tours) - Nov. 19 to Jan. 6

Saturday, November 19 to Friday January 6, 2016
Tuesdays to Sundays, Noon to 4 p.m.
December 24 and 31, Noon to 3 p.m.
Closed Mondays, Dec 25, 26 and Jan 1
Warm up by the hearth at Colborne Lodge and take in the sights and aromas of a Victorian Christmas.  Enjoy the natural greenery that decorates the house, 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 $4.42, Children $4.25 (plus tax)

Cookie Creations - Activities for Ages 8 to 12 - December 17

Saturday, December 17
9:30 to 11:30 a.m.
Course Code: 2889795

Children will have fun making homemade cookies and exploring Victorian Christmas traditions and games. Participants will each go home with their own tin of gingerbread (included in price). 
Pre-registration and payment required.
$22.50 plus tax
Pre-register online at toronto.ca/torontofun or call 416-338-4386.

 

Christmas at the Lodge - Activities for Ages 5 to 7 - December 18

Sunday, December 18
9:30 to 11:30 a.m.
Course Code: 2889970

Kids join in old fashion Christmas fun in the historic home with a morning full of activities, cookie decorating and crafts. Price includes light seasonal refreshments.
Pre-registration and payment required.
$17.50 plus tax
Pre-register online at toronto.ca/torontofun or call 416-338-4386.

 

Don't miss these great events at Fort York. Contact us at 416-392-6907 or fortyork@toronto.ca
Regular Admission: Adults $7.96, Seniors/Youth $4.87, Children $3.76 (plus tax)
Children 5 years and under are free. Special event ticket prices may apply for certain events.

Frost Fair - December 3

Saturday, December 3, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

It's time to celebrate Frost Fair at Fort York!

Stroll through Canada's largest collection of War of 1812 buildings, where you can shop for unique gifts made by local artisans; including jewelry, heritage inspired reproductions, and holiday greenery. There is much to do for the whole family; including children's drill workshops, dress-up, games and crafts. Visit the Mackenzie House Museum proof press to print your very own Frost Fair souvenir. Enjoy military demonstrations and visit with the Volunteer Historic Cooks in our Officers' Mess Kitchen to sample late 18th and early 19th century recipes. Or, stop by our Heritage Café to buy lunch!

Regular admission applies.

The Cook's Apprentice - Historical Cooking Workshop for Kids ages 8 to 12 - Dec. 10

For Ages 8 to 12 years
Saturday, December 10
1:00 to 3:30 p.m.

Young people learn to bake traditional cakes, biscuits and confections in the Officers' historic kitchen. Recipes include iced Queen Cakes, Gingerbread, Peppermint Drops and a delicious breakfast griddle cake for the holidays. Recipe package and tastes to take home. Pre-registration and payment required.

$30 plus tax per child

To register please call 416-392-7484. 

 

Gingerbread Make and Bake! Fun for Kids during your Tour - Dec. 27 to 31

Extra fun for Kids at Fort York (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 1800's gingerbread recipe. Samples can be taken home - if they last that long! Workshop is limited to 15 participants. Sign up in the Museum Store when you arrive.

Included in regular admission.

Queen Charlotte’s Birthday Ball - January 21

Saturday, January 21, 1 to 10 p.m.
Queen Charlotte's Birthday Ball is a re-creation of a significant event in Toronto's history, specifically a Ball offered by the Officers' of the Garrison at York (Fort York) held in Toronto on January 20, 1817.

Our event is a ball which re-creates an early 19th century social gathering and includes instruction in period dance, a guest lecturer, an extensively researched and authentically prepared Georgian supper representing the culinary history of early 19th century Toronto and concludes with an evening of English Country Dancing. This year's dance callers are Tom and Toni Tumbusch.

No experience necessary. Costumes welcome. Pre-registration required - please call 416-392-7484. Tickets are $100 plus HST.

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
Regular Admission: Adults $6.19, Seniors/Youth $3.54, Children $2.65 (plus tax)

 

Scottish Holiday Traditions (Themed tours) - Nov. 18 to Dec. 31

November 18 to December 31
Enjoy the simple and elegant traditions of the Scottish holiday season at Gibson House Museum. Learn how the Gibson family celebrated the season in the nineteenth century and sample some tasty treats by the open hearth. See the Victorian-era home decorated in natural greenery and take a guided tour with our knowledgeable staff.

Holiday Admission Price applies: Adults $7.08, Seniors/Youth $4.42, Children $3.76 (plus tax)

Curious Crafters - PA Day Camp - Ages 7 to 11 - December 2

Ages 7 to 11
Friday, December 2
9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
- Extended care available
Course Code: 2889767

Get creative with us at the museum as we make a fun craft together that campers can take home. Campers will have fun baking and tasting historic treats in the Gibson family kitchen. 
Pre-register online at toronto.ca/torontofun or call 416-338-4386.

$37.50 per child

Extended care:
8 to 9 a.m. - Add $2.90
Course Code 2893907

4:30 to 5:30 p.m. - Add $2.90
Course Code 2893909

Gingerbread Cookie Decorating (Part of your Tour!) - December 10

Saturday, December 10, 1 to 4:30 p.m.
Start your adventure by decorating freshly-baked gingerbread cookies with holiday sweets. It's just $1 per cookie!

Afterward, take a tour of the museum with our costumed interpreters and learn how the Gibson family would have baked gingerbread over the open hearth. Finish your visit by enjoying your gingerbread cookie! Holiday admission applies. 

A Gibson House Hogmanay Dinner - December 28 & 29

To the New Year: A Gibson House Hogmanay Dinner
Wednesday, December 28 and Thursday, December 29
6:00 p.m.

Gather at the historic Gibson House for a special evening inspired by the Scottish traditions of Hogmanay. Share a delicious dinner with friends and make new ones around your table. 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 2016 season and bring luck and best wishes to Gibson House Museum for 2017. Pre-registration and pre-payment required.

$60 plus tax per person.

Tickets can be purchased online or call us at 416-395-7432.

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.

Community Quilt Group Get-togethers

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.

Pay What You Wish Thursday Night Socials

Thursdays, 5 to 8 p.m.
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
Last 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.

Zion Schoolhouse is available for school groups and group bookings. We invite the general public to visit us during special events such as Family Day and Doors Open Toronto.

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens - December 10 - 2 Shows

Presented by John D. Huston
December 10, Matinee at 2:30 and Evening at 7:30 p.m.

Written in 1843, a Christmas Carol may be the best loved fictional work in the English language.  Few people know that Dickens wrote and performed a thrilling and hilarious solo theatrical version of this famous story for many years, playing all the characters and providing the narration.  Now you can experience the laughter, tears and joy of the original with John D. Huston as Charles Dickens in this rare and enchanting holiday must see! 

$20 per person plus tax.     

Purchase tickets here. Call 416-395-7432 for details.

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

Regular Admission: Adults $6.19, Seniors/Youth $3.54, Children: $2.65 (plus tax)
Children (4 and under): Free

Read All About It: The First World War as Front Page News - Exhibit NOW OPEN

Continues until January 29, 2017
This exhibit examines the challenges faced by Toronto newspapers during the First World War. Never had there been a greater demand by the public for up to the minute information; never had there been greater restrictions from the government on what the newspapers were allowed to print. Newspapers that broke the Chief Censor's rules could face financial penalty or even be shut down. Included with Regular Admission.

A Victorian Christmas (Themed tours) - Nov. 29 to Jan. 8

Tuesday, November 29 until Sunday, January 8
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

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 dressed in greenery for the holidays.

Holiday admission applies: Adults: $7.08; Seniors /Youth: $4.42 Children: $3.76  (plus tax)

PLUS! 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. They can select a card that has been printed on our 1845 printing press and write a personal message. Drop the wish card into our magic, North Pole post box for us to mail for you. Included with admission.

Boarding House Dinner - NOW SOLD OUT!

Thursday, November 10, 7 to 9 p.m. Sorry, this event is SOLD OUT
During the First World War, 82 Bond Street was a boarding house. Join us for dinner, storytelling and music that focus on this pivotal time in Canada's history. $30 person plus tax.

Mackenzie Escapes! - December 4

Sunday, December 4, at 2:15 and 4:15 p.m.
Bruce Beaton Portrays William Lyon Mackenzie and tells the true story of his escape following the Rebellion of 1837.  Loyal friends, close calls, icy water and hiding with pigs: it's an amazing tale!  Included with admission to the museum.  Adults: $7.08; Seniors/Youth: $4.42 Children: $3.76 (plus tax).

Christmas Baking Workshop - December 10 - NOW SOLD OUT!

Saturday, December 10, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.  Sorry we are SOLD OUT!
Try your hand at Victorian Christmas baking in our historic kitchen range. Learn about the tastes and culinary technology of the 1850s. Tickets must be purchased in advance. $20 plus tax.

Victorian Christmas Ghost Stories - December 18

Sunday, December 18 at 2:15 and 4:15 p.m.
Victorians loved their ghost stories-even at Christmas time. Join us and sample a few scary Christmas tales along with some cider warmed on our cook stove. Included with admission to the museum. Adults: $7.08; Seniors/Youth: $4.42 Children: $3.76 (plus tax).

Hogmanay - December 29

Thursday, December 29, 7 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. Tickets must be purchased in advance. $22.50 plus tax.

The Market Gallery is located on the 2nd floor of the St. Lawrence Market. Call 416-392-7604 or email marketgallery@toronto.ca. Hours: Tuesday to Friday, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.  Closed Sundays, Mondays and holidays.

Unearthing Toronto's Oldest Marketplace - Opens November 19

Unearthing Toronto's Oldest Marketplace: The Archaeology of the North St. Lawrence Market
The North St. Lawrence Market is about to undergo a major rebuild. As part of that process, the citizens of Toronto will have a rare opportunity to look into the City's past as the building site undergoes a major archaeological dig. The exhibit will use archaeological finds from the site along with historical maps, art works, photographs, and artifacts to tell the story of North America's longest-running continually operating food market, established 1803. As the dig continues through the fall and winter of 2016/2017 new information will be added to the exhibit showing how historical understanding can change as new research is conducted.

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

Regular Admission: Adults $6.19, Seniors/Youth $3.54, Children $2.65 (plus tax) 

Carols in the Tavern - December 3

Saturday, December 3 at 7:30 p.m.
Get some Christmas Spirit in the Tavern while you sing some nineteenth-century carols and sip an historic drink. Your ticket includes savoury treats and mulled cider. Cash bar for historic drinks. Pre-registration and pre-payment required.
$20 plus tax

Call 416-394-8113 to register.

Gingerbread House Workshops for Families - Dec. 3 and 4

Saturday & Sunday, December 3 and 4
11 a.m., 1 p.m. or 3 p.m.

Decorate your family's dream house together! We have all the supplies you need to create a classic gingerbread house. This popular workshop fills up quickly, so book yours soon!
Pre-registration and pre-payment required.
$30 per house plus tax.

Call 416-394-8113 to register

Holiday Farmers' Market & Gift Sale - December 7

Wednesday, December 7, 2 to 7 p.m.
Artists & artisans join our regular farmers' market vendors for a special holiday event. Shop for foodie gifts & seasonal treats in a lovely, historic setting that is open an hour longer than our regular market. You'll find fresh bread from the Inn's bake oven, preserves, local winter vegetables, sweets, prepared foods, ethically raised meats, cheese, eggs, dried fruit, nuts, honey & wine while enjoying festive seasonal music. Cosy up to a roaring fire while sipping a hot mulled apple cider and kids will enjoy purchasing a gingerbread man from our winter witch! Fundraising fruitcakes, $10 each. Admission is free.

Jane Austen Christmas Supper by Firelight - December 16

Friday, December 16 - Two Sittings
4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. and
7:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

Enjoy the pleasures of the Georgian table during the festive season, supping by candlelight and the comfort of an open fire. There is no more delightful way to savour the traditions of Christmas! Every recipe is reconstructed from historical sources. You'll find a blend of the familiar and the intriguingly different. Join us for the rare opportunity to experience a full historical meal within the walls of one of Toronto's best-loved heritage sites. Historical clothing is encouraged, but optional. Pre-registration is required, space is limited. Register at www.JaneAustenDancing.ca or phone (416) 578-1031 for details.

Tea Time at the Inn - Sundays, 1 to 4 p.m.

Sundays: Starting June 7, 1 to 4 p.m.
Special weekly tea in our community room. Choice of sweet or savoury plate, with a seasonal feature. $7 plus tax. No reservation required, just drop in.

Farmers Market - Wednesdays from 2 to 6 p.m.

Every Wednesday from, 2 to 6 pm.
Buy direct form local farmers and food artisans. Organic fruit and vegetables, cheese, bread and prepared foods as well as ethically raised meat, honey and more! Free entrance to the grounds and to shop the market.

For details visit the Inn's Farmers' Market webpage

Fret Not Ukulele Night - First Thursday of every month

Thursday, 7 to 9 p.m.
Our monthly ukulele gathering – the first Thursday of every month, with Doctor of Music instructor Chris Wilson. Come, sing, laugh, and make music. Bring your uke, but if you're just testing the waters and don't yet own one, let us know and we'll loan you one for the night. $15 per person.

Thirsty Thursday Tavern Night - Last Thursday of the month

The Last Thursday of each month from 7 to 10 p.m.
Enjoy a glass of beer, wine, or a Thomas Montgomery specialty in our restored 1847 bar room! Order Irish stew, fresh baked bread and tap your toes to live traditional music. Admission is pay-what-you-wish. Cash bar, $5 for a bowl of stew, while supplies last.

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

Hours
Wednesdays, 12 p.m. to 8 p.m., Tuesday, Thursday &  Friday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Saturday & Sunday 12 to 4 p.m.

Admission Pay what you can

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

Saturdays and Sundays in December– 12 to 4 p.m.  

'Tis the season for fun at the museum! Celebrate the festive season with treats and crafts for children of all ages. Admission is Pay What You Can. 

Super Fun PA Day Camp - Ages 5 to 12 - December 2

Ages 5 to 12
Friday, December 2, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Scarborough Museum is the boredom buster for P.A. days and special school holidays!  Bake over the open hearth, make crafts, play games and explore Thomson Memorial Park.
Lunch is included. Pre-register for these camps online at www.toronto.ca/torontofun or call 416-338-4FUN (4386). 

$37.20 per child
Course Code: 2875128

Extended care:

8 to 9 a.m. - Add $3.00
Course Code: 2781915

4 to 5 p.m. - Add $3.00
Course Code:  2781914

Desserts by Lamplight - December 10

Saturday, December 10, 6:30 to 9 p.m.
A magical evening of lamp-lit rooms, decadent desserts and carolers. Space is limited for this fundraising event - early bookings recommended. Pre-registration only. Call 416-338-8807 or click here to purchase tickets. Ticket price $25 includes tax.

Holiday Camp - Ages 5 to 12 - December 28 to 30

9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Make 19th-century toys, cook over the open hearth, play games and enjoy lots of outdoor fun! Pre-register for camp online at www.toronto.ca/torontofun or call 416-338-4FUN (4386).

$114   Course Code: 2875008

Extended Care is available for an extra fee:

Extended Care:

8 to 9 a.m. - $9 (includes all three days)  Course Code: 2781918

4 to 5 p.m. - $9 (includes all three days)  Course Code: 2781919

Holiday Camp - Ages 5 to 12 - January 3 to 6

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 to12. Pre-register for these camps online at www.toronto.ca/torontofun or call 416-338-4FUN (4386).

$152  Course Code:  2875009

Extended Care:

8 to 9 a.m. - $12  (includes all 4 days) Course Code: 2875265

4 to 5 p.m. - $12  (includes all 4 days) Course Code: 2875268

More than Sport

Sport has played an important role in Scarborough's history from its early football and curling tournaments to the almost endless sport activities available across the community today.

There is a longstanding tradition of encouraging sports at all levels. This exhibit shares the thoughts of athletes who live, train or compete in the Scarborough community.

Walking Together - Exhibit on now

Continues until October 2
This exhibition was inspired by the poignant stories of loss and courage shared by survivors of the Mohawk Institute, a residential school from 1831 to 1969. Featuring mixed-media artwork by First Nations students from Pauline Johnson Collegiate Vocational School, Brantford, Ontario, the project is the culmination of an inter-generational community arts program coordinated by the Woodland Cultural Centre.

Contact us at 416-392-6910 or spadina@toronto.ca

A Roaring Twenties Christmas Begins November 22

A Roaring Twenties Christmas
November 22 to January 8, 2017
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. Holiday admission applies.

Adults $8.85,Seniors/Youth (13-18 yrs.) $7.08, Children (6-12 yrs.) $5.75 (plus tax), Children (5 and under) Free.

 

Flashman: A Live 1930s Radio Play - December 4, 11 & 18

Sundays: December 4, 11 & 18
Shows at 1 & 3 p.m.
Museum tours
: Noon, 2 & 4 p.m.

See a re-created 1930s radio show – commercials included! Enjoy this fast-paced comedy, complete with live music, sound effects and a cast playing multiple roles. During your visit, tour this beautifully restored estate. Kids can try hands-on activities, including cookie decorating in the historic kitchen, and making a secret message decoder – a gimmick used by advertisers in the early days of radio to send encrypted messages to listeners.

For the optimum experience, time your visit to take in a show and a tour.

Adults $12, Seniors/Youth $10 and Children $8 (plus tax). 

Buy your tickets here.

 

 

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

Christmas in the Valley - Themed Tours & Activities - See dates below

December weekends & Dec 24 to Jan 8, 12 to 4 p.m.
Please note hours: December 24 & 31, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Closed December 25, 26 and January 1
Experience two different eras of Christmas at Todmorden Mills as we explore the holiday traditions of the 1890s and the 1940s. Tour our two historic houses, decorated for the holidays, sample historic recipes, and create a take-home craft.
Adults: $7.08; Youth/Seniors: $4.42; Children: $3.76 (plus tax).

Celebrate the holiday season with us!

Calendar of Events