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TORONTO: Top 17 in 2017

By Krystal Carter

Tourism Toronto has released their list of the  Top 17 in 2017 attractions and events coming to Toronto. These include Canada's 150 celebrations, the Maple Leaf's Centennial as well as new festivals and hotels opening this year, plus more. (Shown: Toronto Caribbean Carnival).


1. Canada's 150 Anniversary Celebration - TO Canada with Love is the City of Toronto's year-long program of celebrations, commemorations and exhibitions honouring Canada's 150th birthday. The program is Toronto's cultural love letter to the country, offering a rich tapestry of more than 30 city-produced events taking place across the city throughout 2017.

2. The Toronto Maple Leafs celebrates their Centennial Season! 2016-17 marks the Toronto Maple Leafs' centennial season presented by Molson Canadian. The team will celebrate the historic occasion with a year full of events to honour the Leafs legends, commemorates key moments in club history and engages fans of all ages.

3. Tempt your taste buds with new flavours. New restaurants from praised Toronto chefs, opening in 2017, will not disappoint. A few of the most acclaimed restaurants are: Chef Brandon Olsen's La Banane, Nuit and Jeff Regular's Kiin, Chef Craig Harding's La Palma, Chef Mitchell Bates' Grey Gardens, from the Parts & Labour group The Anne Boleyn, the world-renowned The Halal Guys and so many more.

4. The Broadview Hotel will be located In Leslieville, at the corner of Queen and Broadview in a historic 125-year-old building, which has been restored and will open as a 58-room boutique hotel in 2017. From a restaurant and lobby café/bar to a rooftop terrace and private event facilities this space will bring together the contemporary culture of the community and the old world grace of the building's past.

5. Slated for summer 2017, Bisha Hotel and Residences is the newest private-label boutique brand. Rising 44-storeys and designed by award-winning Rudy Wallman of Wallman Architects, the Bisha flagship property will be situated in the heart of the Entertainment District on Blue Jays Way, close to the Financial District, Air Canada Centre and Rogers Centre, and steps to the city's chicest restaurants, live theatre, sporting events and music venues. The modernist landscape that melds architecture with urbanism is by award-winning landscape firm gh3. Interiors and amenities are designed by internationally-renowned Studio Munge.

6. The Toronto Wolfpack, Rugby team "the first major-league transatlantic pro sports team," is set to play in the third tier of the English rugby league starting March 2017. The Toronto club will be the 16th entry in the Kingstone Press League 1, which currently has 12 teams from England, two from Wales and one from France. The new franchise will play a 22-game regular season, with home games at Lamport Stadium. The Wolfpack will play in three-week intervals, flying to Toronto to host visiting teams and then returning to train in England and play away games against the likes of the South Wales Scorpions, University of Gloucestershire All Golds, Barrow Raiders and Toulouse Olympique XIII.

7. Toronto will host the Invictus Games from September 23 to 30, 2017. The Invictus Games will include more than 550 competitors from 17 nations for 8 days of fierce competition in 12 sports. Established by Prince Harry in 2014, the Invictus Games are the only international adaptive sporting event for ill, wounded and injured active duty and veteran service members.

8. The Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) will re-open Fall 2017 in its new home located in the Junction at 158 Sterling Road. The MOCA's mandate is to exhibit, research, collect, and promote innovative art by Canadian and international artists whose works engage and address challenging issues and themes relevant to our times. The museum will occupy the first two and a half floors of the iconic Tower Automotive Building, which is being restored as part of an eight-acre community built by Castlepoint Numa.

9. The Toronto 2017 North American Indigenous Games (NAIG) are expected to be the largest sporting and cultural gathering of Indigenous Peoples in North America. From July 16-23, 2017, the Toronto 2017 NAIG will host more than 5,000 participants, 2,000 volunteers and countless spectators for 14 sport categories being held within world-class venues located across the Greater Toronto Area, including the Region of Hamilton and Six Nations of the Grand River.

10. The first phase of the Ontario Place redevelopment is set to be complete July 2017. The site, when completed, will include walking and cycling trails connecting to the city's Martin Goodman trail, a 1, 700 tone granite rock wall providing the opportunity to a panoramic view of the Toronto skyline and an acknowledgement to the area's indigenous community heritage.

11. Toronto's Molson Amphitheatre is changing its name. Starting with the 2017 summer concert season, Molson Canadian Amphitheatre will be known as the Budweiser Stage. With the new name comes the promise of more concession locations, more cashless payment options, refurbishment of all concession stands and enhancing pre-shows by allowing guests to enter the venue sooner. This is the first time in the Toronto venue's history that its name has changed since opening in May of 1995.

12. The Bentway's first phase to be completed July 2017, providing a unique and innovative public space that will transform the vacant and forgotten area underneath Toronto's Gardiner Expressway into a new gathering place for our city's growing population. This dynamic new urban corridor will activate the community with a continuous multi-use trail providing access to year-round activities and events, including gardens, a skating rink, recreational amenities, public markets, public art, special exhibitions, festivals, theatre and musical performances and more. The first phase will include: preliminary connecting trails and landscaping; a platform in front of the Fort York Visitor Centre. A second stage to be completed in winter 2017 will include: the skating trail and building.

13. The Toronto Light Festival is a brand-new event, transforming the Distillery District into a huge open-air gallery, lighting up the long winter nights with works from Canadian and International light artists from January 27-March 12, 2017. During the cold, dark days of winter, City residents will be drawn out of their traditional indoor habitats to experience Toronto in a way they never have before. The Festival exhibits the creativity of local and international artists and is a winter experience designed to entertain and inspire.

14. Toronto Caribbean Festival turns 50. The Toronto Caribbean Carnival is an exciting three-week cultural explosion (July 11-August 7, 2017) of Caribbean music, cuisine, and revelry as well as visual and performing arts. It has become a major international event and the largest cultural festival of its kind in North America. As Carnival is an international cultural phenomenon, the great metropolis of Toronto and its environs will come alive as the city explodes with the pulsating rhythms and melodies of Calypso, Soca, Reggae, Chutney, Steel Pan and Brass Bands. toronto caribbean carnival.

15. The Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) will present the only Canadian appearance of a new exhibition that offers a rare glimpse into the creative process of famed filmmaker Guillermo del Toro. Organized by the AGO in partnership with the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) and the Minneapolis Institute of Art (Mia), Guillermo del Toro: At Home with Monsters makes its Canadian debut at the AGO on Sept. 30, 2017 and runs to Jan. 7, 2018.

16. Following two very successful engagements in Toronto in 2012 and 2015, Odysseo by Cavalia returns to the Great Toronto area this summer with its debut run in Mississauga. The $30 million theatrical extravaganza that expands the definition of performance into an epic and soulful experience will be presented under the White Big Top next to the Hershey Centre in Mississauga June 28, 2017-July 16, 2017.

17. Planning underway in 2017 - Toronto is planning to create Canada's first indigenous business and cultural district. The district will likely combine street-level businesses, start-up incubators and a cultural gathering place. This indigenous business district comes on the heels of Toronto introducing indigenous names on street signs, Toronto schools acknowledging indigenous lands and plans to start hoisting the Aboriginal flags at City Hall.