Krysta’s Picks: Strike & Summer To Do’s

 cr. Krysta Veneruz

cr. Krysta Veneruz

I’m sure we’ve all been exhausting our lists of places to check out looking for things to do over the last (several) weeks of strike time, so much so that our lists may need some replenishing for the spring and summer months ahead. So, whether you’re in Toronto for summer school or an internship or if you live here all year round, here are some ideas to help you pass the time. After all, summer is the best time to get outside and explore all that Toronto has to offer!

The Evergreen Brickworks Park
550 Bayview Avenue

Brickworks is a gorgeous green hideaway in the city, geared towards educating and collaborating with city dwellers on sustainable practices. On Saturdays, it’s bustling with the year-round farmers market showcasing local, sustainable food and consumable vendors. Check out Café Belong, a restaurant at the Brickworks that changes often and features seasonal and sustainable ingredients. Here, you can brunch, lunch or enjoy dinner! If you’re more into adventuring, the Brickworks also offers Bike Works, a cycling education hub whether you’re an experienced cyclist or are new to being on wheels. They offer bike mechanic workshops, biking lessons and group mountain bike rides. To access Brickworks, it’s only one bus away from Davisville station, a quick shuttle bus from Broadview station, or try out one of the beautiful Don Valley trails! Whether you walk, run or bike, Brickworks is the perfect way to spend a day!

The Bata Shoe Museum
327 Bloor Street West

You’ve probably passed this place a million times, but the Bata Shoe Museum features some iconic pieces in fashion design and history. Free with your student card on Thursday evenings from 5-8pm, or $8 any other time (with that trusty student card), it’s definitely a place to check out this summer!

MEC Road / Trail Race Series

MEC is a co-op company, currently operating one store in Toronto (with another location on Queen Street West under construction). MEC promotes a healthy, active lifestyle through the outdoors, whether it’s cycling, running, hiking or rock-climbing, chances are MEC has the gear for it. Aside from the store, MEC has a solid community all over Canada through which they offer their running race series. Sign ups for individual races are only $15, and they include distances ranging from 5k to marathon length. Plus, in the spirit of pure fun and healthy activity, MEC hosts races all over Toronto and North York, but if you’re not in the city for the summer, they also host them in all other major Canadian cities!

Harbourfront Canoe & Kayak Centre
283 Queen's Quay West

Open for the summer starting Victoria Day weekend, the Canoe & Kayak Centre rents out canoes and kayaks (shocker!) so you can spend an afternoon paddling across the Toronto Harbour. Watch the planes go by overhead and the TTC (never) go by from the lakefront! You can join a group tour, or, if you have previous paddling experience, you can rent a solo or tandem boat. Bear in mind, they do assess you for skills ahead of time. Need some more skills before you head out? They also offer beginners paddling courses at Birchmount Community Centre! All bookings and inquiries must be made online.

Bandit Brewery
2125 Dundas Street West

Inspired by the German Beer Gardens, this Roncesvalles hotspot is sure to serve you some summer cold ones. With an enormous patio open in the summer, there is plenty of space to socialize and relax with friends! Their food menu pairs perfectly with their beer selection and is specially crafted with the inspiration of travelling and drinking. They have options for the gluten-free folk, the vegetarians and the carnivores (hurrah!). In a hurry? Grab a few from their bottle shop open daily until 11pm. I highly recommend their current tap “Wizard of Gose”. It’s sour and is brewed with coriander, sea salt and pureed apricot.