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Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Heat up your February with an action-packed long weekend in Toronto

TORONTO (January 25, 2016) – February marks an exciting time in the city with a weekend full of romantic escapes, family-fun and All-Star action. From delectable menus to action-packed sporting events, this is one Toronto weekend you won’t want to miss. Lavish in sweeping views of the city at one of the Toronto’s rooftop restaurants with your loved one, enjoy a day at the zoo with the family, or compete with friends at NBA Centre Court.  Plan an action-filled long weekend in Toronto with experiences far from ordinary with the following happenings:
 
Attractions
First Comes Love at the Toronto Zoo on February 13 and 14. This Valentine’s Program includes a romantically-inspired dinner, special animal encounter, an interactive group presentation and a tour of the reproductive labs led by the Reproductive Specialist Team.
 
Take part in the Love & Desire’s Valentine’s Day Workshop at The ROM on February 14. Spend your Valentine’s Day exploring cultural expressions of desire, sexuality and romantic love through the ROM’s collections. Invoke the memory of famous lovers such as Cleopatra, Hadrian, Shajahan and Yang Gui Fe in this unique adult-only workshop that includes a rare opportunity to handle artefacts.
 
Join Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada on February 14 for an exclusive Deep Sea Soiree in the heart of the sea! Whether you’re hooked or still fishing, this event is sure to leave you head over eels. A $50 ticket (for 19 years or older) includes general admission, light hors d’oeuvres, drink ticket, and complimentary photo.   A DJ will be playing tunes all night long while you groove and take in the breathtaking views. Cash bars will also be available throughout the Aquarium. Get your tickets before they ‘shell’ out!

 
Explore the CN Tower this Family Day Weekend - an adventure at every level!  Explore the world’s #1 elevator ride, LookOut Glass Floor and SkyTerrace observation areas and more.   Celebrate National Flag of Canada Day on February 15 with flags, stickers and other giveaways.  Don’t miss the CN Tower special lighting on this night – see if you can spot the image of the Canadian flag, built into the lighting program along the main structure. At a height of 553.33m (1,815 ft., 5 inches), the CN Tower is Canada’s National Tower, an engineering Wonder and Toronto’s must-see. 
 
The Art Gallery of Ontario celebrates Family Day by transforming into the Kids' Gallery of Ontario (KGO). Visit the KGO on February 15 from 10:30 am – 4 pm to experience the fun. Inspired by Pop Art, the real and “unreal” of everyday objects, and the playful work of sculptor Claes Oldenburg, it's a happening day. Make artistic burgers, "pizza" and "cookies," Superhero Self-Portraits, do yoga together, make some wacky moves in their all-day "donut" dance, bust some bubble wrap, take a family tour, make wonderful, wacky, humorous pop art creations, and more.
 
Celebrate Family Day at the Hockey Hall of Fame where a thrilling experience awaits the entire family – simulation games, larger-than-life statues, theatres, the greatest collection of hockey artifacts anywhere in the world, and best of all, hands-on access to hockey’s Holy Grail, the Stanley Cup! Up to a maximum of four youth (13yrs and under) will be admitted free with the purchase of one regular price adult admission on Family Day, February 15.
Piece together the past to change the future at the Ontario Science Centre’s new exhibition Mammoths and Mastodons: Titans of the Ice Age. Through exciting hands-on displays, including fossils and life-sized replicas, learn how researchers use cutting-edge science and technology to excavate and analyze tusks, teeth, skin, hair and stomach contents to learn more about mammoths and mastodons, the mighty creatures who roamed the northern hemisphere during the last Ice Age. Put yourself in a scientist’s shoes to uncover and connect the scientific factors that contributed to the evolution and extinction of these amazing creatures. Explore this Family Day weekend with special programming including DNA and genetics activities, planetarium shows, electricity demonstrations and papermaking workshops.
 
Join Mysteriously Yours February 13 for Dinner, Mystery & Dancing.  Spy School: (MISSION: RIDICULOUS!), James Bond and the greatest Secret Agents return ($95 per person).  Enjoy a special Valentine's Day presentation of Speakeasy - a Roaring 1920's Murder Mystery on February 14 ($81 per person).

Love is in the air! Let the Helicopter Company Inc. help you impress that special someone and show them how important they are to you with their Valentine’s Day specials. Valentine’s Special: Heli Tour #1 will take you and your special someone up in a helicopter on the popular 15 km. tour of Toronto. Valentine’s Special: Heli Tour #2 is a 35 km. tour of Toronto.  For February 12-15, your tour will be a private one with just the two of you and the pilot.

The Harbourfront Centre celebrates the hand-sized blizzard of the SnowGlobe with a number of special attractions for children and families on Family Day. Kids are invited into a giant living snowglobe to bring it to life with puppets and snow. Artists of all ages have the chance to make snowglobes of their own with Canadian artist Lisa Pijuan-Nomura. Outside kids can enjoy time on the Natrel Rink while being entertained by actor, director and writer Audrey Dwyer, and actor and artist Michaela Washburn.
 
One of the city’s most scenic rinks, Harbourfront Natrel Rink brings the party outdoors with a series of weekly events that brings the best of Toronto’s nightlife to the chilly winter nights.  Kick off your long weekend at the DJ Skate night on February 12.

Skate away for free at Nathan Phillips Square Rink one of the city's most popular outdoor skating rinks! Enjoy the beautiful lights during an evening skate and relax with a cup of hot chocolate.  Skate rentals and sharpening will be available at extra cost.
 
There's so much to do in this Canadian city with international flair, but with CityPASS, you'll see the best attractions the area has to offer, hand-picked and packaged into an easy-to-use ticket booklet that'll save you time and money. CityPASS is valid for 9 days, so there's no need to rush; you'll have plenty of time to experience Toronto at your own pace. Pass includes the following attractions: CN Tower, Royal Ontario Museum, Casa Loma, Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada, and Toronto Zoo OR Ontario Science Centre.

Family Day Skate at Celebration Square is proudly presented by RBC. Celebrate Family Day at Mississauga Celebration Square on February 15 from 12 pm - 4 pm.  Grab your skates and head to the City’s largest outdoor skating rink.  It’s an afternoon full of festivities, with roaming buskers, face painting, and more.

Spend Family Day with the Museums of Mississauga at Benares Historic House from 12pm to 4pm on February 15. Learn about First Nations’ relationship with snow through language and games. Join the 1st Annual Snowman Making Contest (snow dependent).

Spend a fun filled Family Day at PAMA (Peel Art Gallery, Museum, and Archives)10 am to 4:30 pm for FREE and enjoy activities and workshops inspired by the exhibits We are Here: The Story of Aboriginal People in Peel, the Heart of Turtle Island and The Art and Warmth of Quilts.

There will be plenty to do this Family Day, February 15, at Gage Park, in Brampton’s downtown core, at the Outdoor Rink Celebration. Free skating on the skating trail, children’s games, food vendors, ice sculptures, fire pits for roasting marshmallows, a DJ, crafts and more will be ongoing between 10am - 3 pm.

Head to Chinguacousy Park between 11 am and 5pm on February 15 with a lineup of Family Day events that includes family bingo, crafts, tours of the greenhouse, curling and tennis “try its”, outdoor games such as an Olympic beanbag toss and an ice cube hunt, and much more!
 
 
Tours
Toronto’s Tour Guys is offering something unique and fun to do this action-packed weekend. Have a thirst for history? Try the "Beer Makes History Better Tour.” This walking tour explores the history of beer and booze in Toronto, with stops at a few pubs to discuss the finer points of craft beer. Tour is available at 2pm on February 11 and 13. Not into beer? Check out "When Pigs Fry" at 2pm on February 12 and 14.  This food tour of Toronto takes guests from the supermarket to the butcher shop, to restaurants that specialize in bacon and pork dishes that delight in order to enhance your appreciation of pigs.

Join Segway of Ontario for a tour of Toronto's romantic Distillery District this Valentine's weekend.  The Valentine’s Date Tour will explore 'Booze, Death and Cholera' history and have you appreciating your significant other even more as you stay alive and in love during and after the tour.  Following the tour, enjoy a specially crafted box of goodies from Soma Chocolate. This special tour is offered February 6 – 15 ($99 + HST per couple) and includes segway training, guided tour and chocolate.
 
Wow your sweetheart with the sweet experience of a lifetime on the Valentine’s Day Sweets & Chocolates tour February 13, 14 and 15 at 11am and 1:30 pm. Savour the sights and sounds of the colourful neighbourhood of Kensington Market as Tasty Tours explores hidden gems in the city and shares a variety of delectable treats from cupcakes to churros.
 
Spice up your romance this Valentine's Day with a Chocolate Tasting and Making Workshop. Tasty Tours and award-winning chocolatier Odile Chatelain (whose truffles have tickled the royal taste buds of Prince Charles and Camilla) will host a delicious and decadent evening in Odile's intimate kitchen where you'll learn the art of tasting chocolate and craft your own uniquely flavoured chipotle chocolate truffles.  Or, spend the night with your special someone in the kitchen preparing your dinner together.  This dining event includes guidance from chefs to ensure that your meal turns out just right. After the food is prepared, Bier Professor Roger Mittag will offer selections for proper beer pairings for each course. 
 
Foodies on Foot created "I Got Love in My Tummy," an aphrodisiac-themed day tour just in time for Valentine’s Day. Join Founder Steve Hellman on February 14 (11am-3pm) and his team as they offer five "best of" locations in various neighborhoods, with samples of treats deemed to have the alchemistic qualities. You'll move around on the TTC (subway or streetcar) and get an insider's look into the shops and streets you visit. 
 
Urban Expeditions is offering exclusive private city tours for NBA All-Star game ticket holders. The experience will frame a four hour Cultural Tour ($125 per person). Special modifications will be made to frame exposure to sports facilities related to the history and development of basketball in Toronto. Each city tour will include transportation, refreshments and a guide. Urban Expeditions will facilitate day and evening city tours that will engage a group of up to five people.
 
The Toronto Beer & Chocolate Tour is a new Beer Lovers' Tour Company experience. Beer and chocolate are a bitter sweet love affair, and they are delighted to offer you a taste.  Home to two craft breweries and the famous SOMA chocolate maker, the historic Distillery District is the perfect setting for exploration. Join in February 14 and discover the jewels in the Toronto crown that makes this city such a wonderful place to enjoy.  Be the first to experience this tour with your loved one this Valentine’s Day.
 
Restaurants
Love is always in the air at 360 The Restaurant at the CN Tower and Horizons Toronto Restaurant, Toronto’s most romantic restaurants where award-winning cuisine and ambiance set hearts spinning.  While Valentine’s weekend continues to be a popular, sold out occasion at the CN Tower, many romantics visit year round and also return to celebrate weddings and anniversaries.  The CN Tower, including EdgeWalk and 360 The Restaurant, are the setting for dozens of marriage proposals yearly.
 
Drake One Fifty will host a world-class dining experience with Matt Bonner of the San Antonio Spurs (and former Toronto Raptor) on February 11 to kick off NBA All-Star Weekend! Tickets will include an unforgettable meal prepared by Chef Ted Corrado, celebrity guests, and a silent auction. Additionally, for the special occasion, Bonner plans to enlist noted wine connoisseur and San Antonio Spurs’ Head Coach Gregg Popovich to select the wine pairings for the meal.
 
Celebrate Valentine’s Day at momofuku toronto on February 12, 13 and 14. Head to shōtō for a Valentine’s Day multi-course tasting menu prepared by Chef Peter Jensen and the shōtō team for $175 per person. Dinner will include a glass of sparkling wine and optional beverage pairings are available. Indulge in a three ($75/person) or four ($95/person) course Valentine’s Day prix fixe dinner menu at daishō.

Hotels
Couple’s can enjoy the new Pillow Fight Package for Valentine's Day at the trendy Drake Hotel from $289/night CND. Package includes a sleepover in a boutique Crash Pad; custom Drake Hotel pillowcase + pillow fight invitation sent to the guest’s sweetheart in advance of their stay; special welcome gift from Come As You Are + sweet treats upon arrival; and complimentary late check out.

In the city's entertainment district, the InterContinental Toronto Centre’s Romance Package (starting at $192 a night) offers a deluxe room with chocolate truffles and strawberries, credit toward a treatment at the on-site spa, breakfast for two and a late checkout.

Relax and enjoy a romantic evening with your loved one while staying in the heart of downtown Toronto with the Delta Toronto’s Romance Package including complimentary late check out (up to 2 p.m.) and champagne and strawberries delivered to room (one per stay).  Or, have some family fun and save when you stay at the Delta Toronto. Experience Toronto's newest attraction, steps away from the hotel with the Ripley’s Aquarium Package, which includes two adult anytime tickets to Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada with your stay.  More of a sports fan? Try out the Hockey Hall of Fame Package, which includes four tickets to the Hockey Hall of Fame and complimentary late checkout (1pm).

Events & Festivals
Toronto is home to the NBA All-Star 2016 (first time held outside of the U.S.)! All-Star competitions will get underway on February 12 in Toronto with the NBA All-Star Celebrity Game at Ricoh Coliseum and the BBVA Compass Rising Stars Challenge at Air Canada Centre, home of the Toronto Raptors.  On February 13, Air Canada Centre will host State Farm All-Star Saturday Night, including the Taco Bell Skills Challenge; the Foot Locker Three-Point Contest; and the Verizon Slam Dunk contest. February 14 will welcome the 65th NBA All-Star Game to Air Canada Centre. There will also be family-friendly All-Star activities at NBA Centre Court at Enercare Centre from February 12 – 14 and an NBA All-Star Practice and NBA D-League All-Star Game presented by Kumho Tire at Ricoh Coliseum on February 13.  Tickets are on sale at NBATickets.com. 
 
The Canadian International AutoShow is back with some of the most exciting cars of the year. The annual event showcases more than 1,000 new cars, trucks, SUVs, luxury vehicles, motorcycles and more. Scout out future purchases, check out the latest technologies and browse more than 100 exhibitor booths for new and trendy car products and services. In addition to vehicles that will be rolling on to the lots of dealerships around the country, the auto show will also be displaying some concept cars and high end models you can’t find in the city.   The show will take place at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre February 12-21.
 
The twangy sounds of a blues guitar may be associated with a balmy summer night, but there’s no need to wait until the season changes to heat things up. From February 12-14, the Winterfolk Music Festival  provides a stage for three days’ worth of urban, blues, jazz, folk and roots music. This music festival is presented by The Association of Artists for A Better World, a non-profit organization committed to promoting the voices of artists.  Winterfolk Festival is held at multiple Toronto music venues, all situated on the Danforth between Broadview and Chester Avenues. 
 
The Spring Fishing and Boat Show is Ontario’s Family Day tradition. Get advice from guest experts on reeling in the behemoths and supplies for relaxing on the water. Find a wide selection of new and bargain fishing equipment like tackle, rods, reels, GPS units and other accessories plus specialty items like trolling motors and underwater cameras.  Manufacturers and staff answer any and all product-related questions while various speakers and seminars teach correct fishing techniques through stories of memorable catches. Catch the show February 12-15 at The International Centre.

Superior Events Group transforms over 30,000 square feet at Downsview Park into a large INDOOR FUN Zone just for Family Day weekend, February 13-15.  Family Fun Fest features an indoor amusement park with over 30 rides, activities and attractions including kiddie rides, jumping castles, giant slides, interactive games, fun foods, arcade and carnival games. Strolling entertainers also make appearances daily.  

Entertainment
Over the long weekend, join Soulpepper Theatre Company in the beautiful Distillery District and take in some shows.  Don’t miss the award-winning courtroom drama, Twelve Angry Men, on February 13 at 7:30 p.m. Also on stage as part of Soulpepper’s intimate, affordable Studio Series are two non-traditional romances: The Anger in Ernest and Ernestine on February 13 at 8 p.m. and Cowboy Versus Samurai on February 13 at 2 p.m. and February 15 at 8 p.m.
 
The Second City ensemble returns with favourite sketches from the hit show CLICK BAIT & SWITCH on February 14 at 7pm. Saucy, satirical and deeply silly, CLICK BAIT & SWITCH invites you to a weird and wonderful world you’ll want to visit again and again. Hooking Up With The Second City makes mirth out of missed connections, girls’ night out adventures and all the crazy things we do for love. This gaspingly funny revue, showing February 14 at 10 pm, is a modern mix of romance, rancor and everything in between. 

The Canadian Opera Company - Four Season’s Centre is hosting two fantastic shows this long weekend: February 14 at 2pm The Ring Cycle is the pinnacle of Wagner’s work and in this installment Siegfried’s heroic journey reveals the minds of gods and mortals in a story of greed, fear and self-discovery.  February 13 at 7:30pm, for a more lighthearted opera experience, there’s The Marriage of Figaro. Intrigue and mistaken identities ensnare everyone in a web of erotic passions in this magnificent, witty farce.

The Panasonic Theatre hosts “A Night with Janis Joplin” February 9 to 21. Like a comet that burns too brightly to last, Janis Joplin exploded onto the music scene in 1967 and, almost overnight, became the queen of rock & roll. Now you can experience an evening with her music and influences in the new Broadway musical, A Night With Janis Joplin.

Celebrate the All Star weekend at the Kevin Hart After Party at Roy Thomson Hall on February 12 at 9 pm.  A special event in celebration of the NBA All-Star Weekend, blockbuster comedian/actor Kevin Hart hosts the post-game revelry that follows the All-Star Celebrity Game. The Roy Thomson Hall lobby will be transformed into an after party, featuring the sounds of a world-class DJ alongside Hart and his celebrity friends.

Visit www.SeeTorontoNow.com or call 1-800-499-2514 for complete event listings, hotels, attraction packages, and more.
  
About Tourism Toronto
Tourism Toronto, Toronto’s Convention and Visitors Association, is an industry association of more than 1,100 members established to sell and market the greater Toronto region as a remarkable destination for tourists, convention delegates and business travellers around the globe. Tourism Toronto operates in partnership with the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport and the Greater Toronto Hotel Association. For more information please visit www.seetorontonow.com.


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