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Weekend Roundup: October 31 to November 2


Evil Dead: The Musical opens on Halloween.

Evil Dead: The Musical opens on Halloween.

Friday, October 31

If Halloween is your favourite holiday, there’s no better time to catch clever and hilarious Evil Dead: The Musical, which opens Friday for a short run at the Randolph Theatre until November 9. While exploring an abandoned cabin in the woods, five college kids are turned into demons by an evil force. It’s up to housewares employee Ash (and his chain saw) to save the day. Tickets are $39.95 – $69.95. Visit evildeadthemusical.com for more information and to purchase tickets.

For a less raucous Halloween experience, book at Ghost Walk tour around Exhibition Place. You’ll explore the archives, horticultural building and other areas of the grounds as you learn about some of the ghostly experiences, such as a vanishing police officer and horse and whistling in hallways. The tour starts at 7 p.m. Tickets are $20 per person, and must be booked in advance; call 416-263-3658 to register.

If you’re looking to avoid Halloween haunts, indie folk singer-songwriter Noah Gunderson will be serenading the crowd at The Horseshoe Tavern, with Owen Beverly opening. Doors open at 9 p.m. Tickets are $17.50; visit horseshoetavern.com to purchase.

Ron Bolt's Fire Beneath #3 Hawaii (2014), oil on board.

Ron Bolt’s Fire Beneath #3 Hawaii (2014), oil on board.

Saturday, November 1

Be among the first to see Ontario painter Ron Bolt’s gorgeous, detailed landscapes at the opening of “Earth, Fire, Water: Paintings of the American Southwest and Hawaii” at Loch Gallery. Visit lochgallery.com for more information.

If you’re interested in learning about other cultures, you won’t want to miss the Toronto South African Film Festival, which explores South Africa’s culture, history and politics. The festival boasts five screenings on Saturday afternoon and another four on Sunday, all at the Art Gallery of Ontario’s Jackman Hall. Tickets are $18 per screening, or $120 – $182 for a festival pass. Visit tsaff.ca for more information and to purchase tickets.

Showcasing the nine restored surviving silent films made by Alfred Hitchcock, the Toronto Silent Film Festival kicks off on Saturday with a screening of Blackmail at 7 p.m. at Royal Cinema. Hitchcock’s final silent film stars Anny Ondra as Alice White, a young woman whose relationship with an artist turns very dark. Tickets are $15, or $40 – $100 for a pass. Visit torontosilentfilmfestival.com for more details and to purchase.

Courtesy of The Toronto International Luxury Chocolate Show.

Courtesy of The Toronto International Luxury Chocolate Show.

Sunday, November 2

Indulge in decadent treats at the 4th annual Toronto International Luxury Chocolate Show on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. at Roy Thomson Hall. Learn how to make chocolate, meet top chocolatiers, pastry chefs and confectioners, cheer on contestants (or even sign yourself up as one) in chocolate-eating contests, watch truffle-making demos, watch as chocolate sculptures are made on-site, sample wine and chocolate pairings and more. Tickets are $15 – $25; visit torontochocolateshow.com to purchase and for more information.

Celebrate Latin American culture at Dia de Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) at the Evergreen Brick Works. Celebrated in Mexico and other parts of the world, the festival honours the loved ones who have passed. Kids will love the calavera (skull) face painting, as well as live music, dance, a churro competition and more. Visit evergreenbrickworks.com for more information.

All good things must come to an end, even the International Festival of Authors. Get your fill of all things literary on the closing day of the festival, including readings by Charlotte Gray, David Bergen, Claire Holden Rothman and more. Tickets are $18 for each event. Visit ifoa.org for more information.

Ottawa Weekend Calendar for Oct. 31 to Nov. 2

Take the Earth Beneath Us, a metal band out of Vancouver, is just one of many to perform at Mavericks' Halloween party on Friday.

Take the Earth Beneath Us, a metal band out of Vancouver, is just one of many to perform at Mavericks’ Halloween party on Friday.

Friday, Oct. 31

Why not celebrate Halloween with one of the world’s most renowned mystery writers? After the curtain drops on Friday’s performance of The Mousetrap, the Ottawa Little Theatre is holding an Agatha Christie Halloween Party, complete with trivia, costume contests, and bar treats. Admission requires a ticket or ticket stub for any date during the run of The Mousetrap ($25).

Mavericks is holding a Halloween party at its location in the heart of downtown, with performances by Chicago hardcore group Villains, Vancouver’s Take the Earth Beneath Us, and a host of local metal bands. If that’s not enough to entice you, there are also prizes, costume contests, karaoke, and baked Halloween treats. Tickets are $15 in advance; $20 at the door.

If metal isn’t quite your cup of tea, Zaphod Beeblebrox is holding its own Halloween bash. NEEWOLLAH (Halloween spelled backwards), hosted by comedian Mike MacDonald, features performances by glam band Sister Hyde, electronica duo Blackshirt Highwaymen, and more. Costumes are encouraged. Tickets are $35 in advance.

Saturday, Nov. 1

The Ottawa Vintage Clothing Show hits the Shaw Centre on Saturday, where vendors from the region and abroad display their retro and rare wares — including one-of-a-kind clothing, accessories, handbags, and jewellery. Admission is $10.

Halloween may be over, but that doesn’t mean the party has to stop — especially when it’s in support of a good cause. Proceeds from the Great Pumpkin Charity Ball, held at St. Brigid’s Centre for the Arts,are split between the Canadian Cancer Society and the Canadian Association for Disabled Skiing. The party itself features two dance floors, a live performance by local mentalist Jaymes White, psychics, raffle prizes, two bars, and best costume prizes. Tickets are $40.

Doug Paisley, a folk and country singer-songwriter, performs at the National Arts Centre on Saturday evening.

Doug Paisley, a folk and country singer-songwriter, performs at the National Arts Centre on Saturday evening.

The Opera Lyra adaptation of Mozart’s The Magic Flute tells the tale of Tamino and Papageno, two friends who must stop the evil Queen of the Night from enslaving the peaceful Sun Planet. The final performance plays out at the Arts Court on Saturday afternoon. Tickets start at $15.

Doug Paisley’s pensive lyrics and layered folk sound have captured the hearts of Canadians. He performs songs from his new album, Strong Feelings, at the National Arts Centre on Saturday night. Country music veteran Jenny Whiteley joins him. Tickets start at $27.

Sunday, Nov. 2

In Instant Light, artists Charlene Lau Ahier and Stephen Frew bring illumination to the forefront. They tackle themes of impermanence and explore how light influences thoughts about the self. On at Orange Art Gallery until Nov. 16. Free admission.

Typically a fixture at the Chateau Lafayette, Ottawa legend Lucky Ron brings his stomping country show to the Black Sheep Inn on Sunday night. Tickets are $7 in advance; $10 at the door.

Find Designer Deals at Southern Ontario Outlets

The Outlet Collection at Niagara.

The Outlet Collection at Niagara.

Shopping for name brands at these destinations won’t break the bank.

Toronto Premium Outlets, located in Halton Hills, is a sprawling outdoor mall that boasts Canada’s first Hudson’s Bay Outlet, as well as Ports 1961, Restoration Hardware, Tory Burch, Kate Spade, Hugo Boss and Ted Baker London.

Touting itself as the country’s “largest open-air outlet shopping centre,” the Outlet Collection at Niagara opened earlier this spring. Discounted goods from Pandora, White House Black Market, The North Face, Browns, Old Navy and Rudsak are among the wine-region retail hub’s enticements.

Vaughan Mills is a “luxury outlet” mall north of Toronto. Inside, you’ll find the likes of hr2 Holt Renfrew, the Disney Store, Browns, and factory stores for Gap, Banana Republic, J.Crew and Nike. —Linda Luong

Pancho Villa in Ottawa

Pancho Villa is a cozy restaurant that offers hearty Tex Mex and unique cocktails.

Pancho Villa is a cozy restaurant that offers hearty Tex Mex and unique cocktails.

Small, cozy, and nestled under an apartment building on Elgin Street, Pancho Villa has traditional Mexican fare on offer. Burritos, tacos, quesadillas, and enchiladas stuffed with beef and chicken dominate the menu, but vegetarians and vegans will also find something here to enjoy. Round off your meal with a southern-themed cocktail — try the Pina Colada or the Acapulco Sunset — and a delicious serving of deep fried ice cream. —Amy Allen
•Pancho Villa, 361 Elgin St., 613-234-8872
Map and reviews

Little Sister Serves up Traditional Indonesian Fare

Little Sister. Photo by Craig Moy.

Photo by Craig Moy.

At midtown bistro Quince, chef and restaurateur Michael van den Winkel is known for doling out vibrant, easygoing Mediterranean fare—plus the occasional rijsttafel, an elaborate colonial-era Dutch-Indonesian “rice table” featuring 20 or more dishes. At Little Sister, van den Winkel commits fully to the Southeast Asian portion of his culinary inheritance, presenting a well-considered menu of street-style small plates and traditional Indonesian indulgences—from flavourful chicken, pork and swordfish skewers to Javanese dark spiced braised beef. Snacking and sharing are encouraged at this casual, colourful restaurant, with tropically inspired cocktails plus wines selected by Master Sommelier John Szabo serving ably as social lubricant. —Craig Moy

• Little Sister, 2031 Yonge St., 416-488-2031; littlesistertoronto.com
Map and reviews

Say It With Style: Paper Papier in Ottawa

Paper Papier in the ByWard Market offers a wide selection of paper products, along with a new floral division.

Paper Papier in the ByWard Market offers a wide selection of paper products, along with a new floral division.

At those times when a Hallmark card just won’t cut it, Paper Papier might have what you’re looking for. The independently owned shop is bursting with quirky wrapping paper and greeting cards, notepads, games, decorative ribbon, scrapbooks, and writing tools (including quills). It offers customized stationery for just about any occasion, and in early 2014, it launched Fleurissant, a new floral division inspired by the metro stations of Art Nouveau Paris. —Amy Allen
•Paper Papier, 18 Clarence St., 613-241-1212. paperpapier.com

DaiLo Serves Up Eclectic Chinese Dishes

DaiLo's "Big Mac" bao. Photo by Jim Norton Photography.

DaiLo’s “Big Mac” bao. Photo by Jim Norton Photography.

The prize for this year’s most anticipated Toronto restaurant surely goes to DaiLo. Chef Nick Liu has been teasing his Asian brasserie concept for two years, but circumstances conspired to ensure that he lacked permanent digs until just a couple of months ago. It’s been worth the wait: the Chinoiserie-chic dining room is a stylish yet high-energy space in which to enjoy Liu’s eclectic dishes, which alternate between upmarket renditions of traditional Chinese fare (for example, sweet-and-sour pork hock with jellyfish slaw) and unabashed mash-ups like his “Big Mac” bao. Keeping with prevailing trends, DaiLo also accommodates smaller appetites: upstairs bar LoPan offers casual snacks and cocktails (try the five spice–spiked dark and stormy).
—Craig Moy

• DaiLo, 503 College St., 647-341-8882; dailoto.com
• Map and reviews

Gilding the Lily Brings Star Stylist’s Finds to Toronto

Gilding the Lily.

Gilding the Lily.

Stylist to the stars Annie Jagger is known for her edgy-meets-feminine aesthetic; it’s well reflected at her new Distillery District shop, Gilding the Lily. Though based in Los Angeles—the better to work with such celebrities as Bradley Cooper, John Hamm and Kristen Stewart—Jagger chose Toronto for her first retail endeavor because she felt there was a void in the local market: true to its “embellished” name, the boutique showcases eclectic items that have an added touch of luxury. Among the well-curated goods are diamond and gemstone cocktail rings from Arik Kasten, body chains from Jacquie Aiche and ear skimmers from Smith and Mara. The rest of the stock, displayed against a barn board-and-wallpaper backdrop, includes funky shades from Anna Karin-Karlsson, hats in a variety of styles from Gladys Tamez, candles from Himalayan Trading Post and handmade soaps from Big Sur Country Soaps. Open Tuesday to Sunday. —Linda Luong

• Gilding the Lily, 47 Tank House Ln., 416-360-5459; gildingthelily.la
Map and reviews

Leave a Love Lock in Toronto’s Historic Distillery District

Sweethearts can leave a love lock at the Love Installation in the Distillery District.

Sweethearts can leave a love lock at the Love Installation in the Distillery District.

In Paris, couples can secure their eternal devotion with a love lock on the Pont des Arts bridge. In Dublin it’s the Ha’penny Bridge, in Florence it’s the Ponte Vecchio and in Korea it’s the N Seoul Tower. Where can mad-for-you couples leave their mark in Toronto? A special Love Installation at the Distillery District is catching the hearts of lovebirds, encouraging those newly in love, recently engaged, just married or celebrating decades of couplehood to affix their affection. Conceived by one of the pedestrian-friendly district’s developers, Mathew Rosenblatt, the 30-foot-long by eight-foot-high fixture is made of steel and reclaimed lumber. A sign encourages visitors to initial their lock, attach it, kiss (each other, of course) and then throw away the key. Social media-friendly patrons can also share their token with the hashtag #DistilleryLove. (And since it’s a freestanding piece, the weight of all those locks won’t pose any structural concerns, unlike with the bridge in Paris.) —Linda Luong

Rumour Has It: Fleetwood Mac in Ottawa

The classic lineup, including keyboardist Christine McVie, brings its On With the Show Tour to the capital.

The classic lineup, including keyboardist Christine McVie, brings its On With the Show Tour to the capital.

OCT. 26 An often tempestuous band, Fleetwood Mac has had no shortage of disputes amongst its members over the years. But it looks as if they’ve kissed, made up, and finally put the past behind them. After a 16-year hiatus, former keyboardist Christine McVie has reunited the group for its On With the Show tour. She is joined by bandmates Stevie Nicks, Lindsey Buckingham, Mick Fleetwood, and John McVie. —Amy Allen
•Canadian Tire Centre, 1000 Palladium Dr., 613-599-0100. canadiantirecentre.com

Weekend Roundup: October 24 to 26


Art Toronto draws galleries, curators and collectors from around the globe.

Art Toronto draws galleries, curators and collectors from around the globe.

Friday, October 24

Get a good look at local and global contemporary art trends at Art Toronto, an art fair that draws curators and collectors from across the city and around the world. You’ll find paintings, sculptures and installations from emerging and established artists, as well as the “Next” showcase featuring new galleries that offer works priced at $10,000 or less. October 24 to 27, Metro Toronto Convention Centre, 255 Front St. W. Visit arttoronto.ca for more information.

Irish songstress Sinead O’Connor brings her distinctive sound to Massey Hall as she promotes her 10th album, I’m Not Bossy, I’m the Boss. 8 p.m. Tickets are $49.50 to $79.50; visit masseyhall.com for more information and to purchase.

Bargain hunters and fashionistas will want to check out Catwalk 2 Closet, the largest designer sample and end-of-season sale held in Toronto. Score men’s and ladies’ outerwear, apparel, footwear and accessories from 100 brands with discounts ranging from 50 to 80 per cent off. Friday and Saturday 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Direct Energy Centre, Heritage Court, 100 Princes’ Blvd. Visit catwalk2closet.com for more information.

Toronto Zombie Walk and Halloween Parade. Photo by Mike Kocza.

Toronto Zombie Walk and Halloween Parade. Photo by Mike Kocza.

Saturday, October 25

Calling all boys and ghouls! Channel your inner undead spirit this Saturday at the annual Toronto Zombie Walk and Halloween Parade, which winds through the downtown core. Even if you’re not feeling the urge to don a scary costume, the people watching is always a riot. The parade starts at 3 p.m. at Nathan Phillips Square (100 Queen St. W.); visit torontozombiewalk.ca for more details.

The chance to see a medley of musicians and proceeds going to a good cause sounds good to us. Feist, Billy Talent, Barenaked Ladies, Sarah Harmer, Hayden, Jason Collett, Lou Canon and more will take the stage at Massey Hall for the first annual Dream Serenade Benefit Concert in support of programs for children with special needs. This year, the concert will support The Beverley Street School and a family relief fund for caregivers. All ages. Tickets are $50 to $200; visit masseyhall.com to purchase.

The 35th annual International Festival of Authors is in town October 23 to November 2, and Saturday boasts a lineup packed with readings. Acclaimed Norwegian author Karl Ove Knausgaard discusses his latest book with Canadian author Sheila Heti on Saturday evening. Earlier in the afternoon, a number of authors read from their latest works, including David Bezmozgis, Elyse Friedman, C.C. Humphreys, Shelly Oria, John Boyne, Matthew Thomas, Tim Winton, Ted Baris, Robert Glancy and more. Tickets for each event are $18; visit ifoa.org for further details and to purchase.

Dum Dum Girls.

The Dum Dum Girls play Lee’s Palace Sunday.

Sunday, October 26

The Dum Dum Girls bring their increasingly polished post-punk sound to Lee’s Palace, with Ex Cops and BB Guns opening. Doors 8 p.m. Tickets are $21.50; visit collectiveconcerts.com for more information and to purchase.

Craft beer fans who haven’t purchased tickets for Cask Days (now sold out) can still sample some of the offerings on Sunday at the Evergreen Brick Works. “Last Call for the Cask” will feature any leftover beers from noon to 6 p.m. or while supplies last. Admission is $5 plus $5 for a festival glass for sampling; visit caskdays.com for more information.

Score vintage fashions at the Wychwood Vintage Clothing Show, where 30-plus vendors from Ontario and Quebec will be selling a range of goods, from clothing, jewellery and accessories to old textiles, linens, fabrics and quilts. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. ArtScape Wychwood Barns, 601 Christie St. Admission is $8 at the door; children 12 and under are free.

Feed Your Hunger for Pan-Asian Fare

Patois, Toronto. Photo by Barb Simkova for Tara McMullen Photography.

Sharing plates at Patois. Photo by Barb Simkova for Tara McMullen Photography.

If this month’s Hot Dining eateries aren’t enough to sate your appetite for Far East fare, the city’s recent Asian infusion is even more substantial. Pai represents yet another buzz-worthy boîte from Nuit and Jeff Regular, Toronto’s reigning Thai food champions, where chef Nuit serves up her signature offerings (khao soi, Massaman curry) plus other Northern Thai–style dishes. The culinary journey continues at Lucky Red (318 Spadina Ave., 416-792-8628), a bao bar from the owners of Banh Mi Boys that boasts steamed- or baked-bun sandwiches filled with pork belly, panko-crusted tofu, fried chicken and other trendy ingredients. Or indulge in some unexpected island hopping at Patois, which sees pedigreed chef Craig Wong present plates that draw on both Chinese and Jamaican flavours.
—Craig Moy