January has been one hell of a dreary month! If you’re feeling slightly more depressed than usual and like the sun may never shine, you’re not alone. While we can’t control the weather, we can definitely control our mood – or at least try to. Lucky for you, these events are fun and free! Take a look at 10 free events in Toronto and the GTA this February 2017 to get you outta that winter funk:
Visit the Evergreen Brick Works Winter Village (February 1-28)
It’s your last chance to visit the magical Winter Village at Evergreen Brick Works before they close for the season. Skate your heart out at the picturesque ice rink or get your nature on by hiking through the 40-acre Weston Family Quarry Garden. Afterward, warm up by the cozy camp fires and if you have a couple of bucks to spare, visit the Street Food Market vendors for yummy international bites from family-run eateries.
The Love (Actually) Exhibit (February 2-26)
Just in time for Valentine’s Day is the Love (Actually) Exhibit by Scarlett O’Neill, a Toronto-based photographer that has shot almost 500 weddings. The exhibit features a number of different wedding photographers and is open to the public on the 2nd floor of the Gladstone Hotel. Featuring all things love, the exhibit is meant to give perspective on how much wedding photography has evolved over the years and put a spin on traditional wedding shows. If you’re getting married soon, this event might be particularly inspiring – all of the dresses, floral arrangements, and vendors featured in the photos will be listed in the exhibit.
Coldest Day of the Year Ride 2017 (February 4)
Join Cycle Toronto for their annual Coldest Day of the Year Ride! Brave the winter weather and head out to Art Eggleton Park at Harbord & Grace to ride-along with fellow cyclists. The family-friendly ride will depart at 11:30 am, tour some of the best bike paths in Toronto and finish nearby Yonge and Gerrard. You might want to grab a pair of ski goggles though, just sayin’.
Gladstone Love Night Market (February 8)
Tis’ the season of hearts, pink, chocolate, and flowers—you know what that means? Valentine’s (and/or Palentine’s) Day shopping! Join the Gladstone hotel on Wednesday, February 8th and browse a ton of handmade gifts for lovers, singles (treat yo self), and everyone in between. For a full list of vendors, head here.
Bellwoods Flea -Valentine’s Day Edition (February 11)
If you’re a fan of both flea markets and Valentine’s Day, then the Bellwoods Flea – Valentine’s Day Edition at 876 Dundas West is the creme de le creme. With 20+ vendors, finding a unique VDay gift will be a piece of cake – think local and handmade art, baked goods, beauty care, clothing, accessories and more. Plus, there will be a full bar, snacks, and arcade machines.
Romantic Recipes Workshop (February 11)
The best way to woo your boo is to woo their stomach. Do just that by learning three romantic recipes with Chef Deborah Verginella at Miele Gallery Caplan’ s. The free class will have you prepared for Valentine’s Day with tasty recipes starring sweet potatoes, arugula, tuna, and pasta. What it won’t prepare you for is all the doting you’ll receive from your lover post meal. Sign up/ RSVP for the class here.
Wedding Open House (February 22)
Getting married soon? The Old Mill is calling all love birds! They’re hosting an open house on Wednesday, February 22nd. Along with viewing the venue, couples will have chance to meet preferred vendors, enjoy h’ors d’oeuvres/ refreshments, view hotel suites and enter to win an overnight getaway and couples massage. Make sure to RSVP!
Bloor-Yorkville Ice Fest (February 25-26)
Ice, ice, baby! Alright stop. And put your warmest gear on because a magical ice fest is headed to the Bloor-Yorkville ‘hood. Taking over Cumberland and Bellair Street, this year’s theme will celebrate Canada’s 150th Anniversary. Take a stroll and awe at 20,000 pounds of crystal clear ice sculptures which will include Canadian Mounties, an iconic Maple Leaf, and Parliament Buildings with a Centennial Flame. Oh, Canada!
Allen Gardens (Any day)
It’s been a gloomy month in Toronto. We’ve seen so little sun, that the Toronto Star is claiming it’s a legitimate cause for depression. You could pop those vitamin D’s or plan a visit to the Allen Gardens, aka tropical paradise and the perfect winter pick me up! The botanical gem is open from 10 am to 5 pm every day and will have you feeling like your 1,000 miles away from our cold reality.
Power Tour (Saturdays)
The 2017 Winter Exhibit Season at the Power Plant is here and so are free Power Tours every Saturday. Instead of meandering through on your own, go on a 30 minute guided tour and actually learn a thing or two about the exhibits. Current artists include Maria Hupfield, Kapwani Kiwanga, Jonathas de Andrade and Latifa Echakhch.