Our 11th Annual List of fun free things to do Canada Day and all summer long!


Happy Canada Day week…For the past several years I have been posting an annual list of fun free things to do on Canada Day in the GTA, but also throughout the summer. This year take advantage of the arts, the trails, the music, the movies…all free…Plus it is Canada’s 150th, there will be bigger better local events for Canada Day…guaranteed!


This year we have 28 free, very cool and different things you can do this summer…


As an entrepreneur, you want to have fun and save money…or if you work, well you want to do the same as well!


We live in an abundant world and country. It makes me proud to be Canadian. I love Canada Day…it is my favourite day of the year. It’s nice out, NHL free agency starts, the Blue Jays play during the day and there are so many things to do, summer is ahead of us. It is a day for fun, fireworks, friends and family. I hope you take advantage of our listings below and make it a fabulous summer ahead!

Don’t forget to tap into the hotlinks for each listing…each link will take you to the website you’re wanting more information on!


Best wishes!


David Cohen


  1. Harbourfront is a great place to go to on Canada and throughout the summer, they have free concerts, events, festivals, cultural events and more… log onto… http://www.harbourfrontcentre.com/ to learn more…


2. Mel Lastman Square has Canada Day Events on July 1st and once again the Sunday Night Music/Dancing Series is on in the heart of North York-the Sunday Serenade Series from July 7th-August 18th, with free Sunday Night concerts and dancing…log onto… http://www1.toronto.ca/wps/portal/contentonly?vgnextoid=ce1b7cc3b5e91410VgnVCM10000071d60f89RCRD  for more information about Canada Day and this site for the Sunday Serenade Series…


3. The City of Toronto has Summerlicious happening too! For more information just log onto… http://bit.ly/1oRuqiI … Summer is finally here! Time to get out during everyone’s favourite culinary celebration and taste some of the diverse cuisine Toronto has to offer. Summerlicious features more than 210 top restaurants offering three-course prix fixe lunch and dinner menus at exceptional price points.


4.  Downsview Park has Canada Day Events and Fireworks too this year on July 1st…log onto… http://www.downsviewpark.ca/ for more info on Downsview Park…and this link for the Canada Day fun! http://en.downsviewpark.ca/event/Canada-Day-Festival-2017



5. Cultura Festival is back in July in North York at Mel Lastman Square…with music, food , buskers, and movies in the Square…Log onto… http://culturafestival.ca/ for more information. Each Friday night in July, you can be amazed, dazzled and have fun at Mel Lastman Square in North York.



“My upbringing in Canada made me the person I am. I will always be proud to be a Canadian.”


Jim Carrey



6. Harbourfront has “Dancing on the Pier” from now until September (all summer) with big bands and more…get your dancing shoes on for this one…just log onto… http://www.harbourfrontcentre.com/activities/dancingonthepier/  for the line-up of bands and dates…

7. Maybe you want to see a movie outdoors…Harbourfront has that too…for the line- up of flicks…log onto… http://www.harbourfrontcentre.com/activities/freeflicks/           for more info


8. The Brickworks, on the Bayview Extension near Pottery Road…has a ton of stuff going on…both on Canada Day and beyond, oh ya and bring your bike! http://www.evergreen.ca/get-involved/evergreen-brick-works/  for more info and events


9. There is nothing like getting back to nature and in all my years working in Durham Region, there are walking and bike trails a plenty…and believe it nourishes the soul and spurs on creativity to use in your business when you get those endorphins going…log onto… http://bit.ly/28ZoWSP to learn more…




“There are no limits to the majestic future which lies before the mighty expanse of Canada, with it’s virile, aspiring, cultured and generous-hearted people.”-Winston Churchill


10. Love Jazz? The Waterloo JazzFest swings into full gear on July 21st-23rd- with both free and paid concerts…heat up your summer at the Sunlife Financial UpTown Waterloo Jazz Fest…log onto… http://www.uptownwaterloojazz.ca/ For more info…


11. Want more Jazz…well then In late summer on August 16th-20th, it’s the TD Canada Trust Markham JazzFest, this is a top notch event and there is even a nice nature trail to go on by Togood Pond…log onto… http://www.markhamjazzfestival.com/ For more info on this event…

12. If you want to bike it up this summer, check out the Ontario Road Bikingsite…at Trails Dot com… http://www.whitby.ca/en/residents/trails.asp


13. Jazz on the Lake, It’s the Niagara on the Lake JazzFest…on July 28th-30th, sip wine, walk the town, get romantic or just see some good jazz…log onto… http://niagarajazzfestival.com/ for more info


14. Uxbridge is known as the trail capital of Ontario…if you want a walk outdoors or just want to bike…log onto the link to the many fabulous trails in Uxbridge…log onto http://town.uxbridge.on.ca/trail_maps for more info


15. If you live in Durham Region, and want some fun things to do…here is the link to the event listings…there are some fun events happening all over Durham Region and so much more happening all through the summer! Log onto… http://calendar.durhamtourism.ca/

16. It’s the NewMarket Music Fest too…on August 25th-27th…this is a lot of fun, doable (not overly crowded), fun and well organized…log onto http://newmarketjazzfestival.com/

17. Check out Edwards Gardens (Botanical Gardens Toronto) for Music in the park at Edwards Gardens is a nice Thursday treat! Tap into the Edwards Gardens on Leslie and Lawrence…and catch music in the Gardens…log onto…  http://torontobotanicalgarden.ca/enjoy/special-events/gos-summer-music-series for more   info…

18. All this music and biking makes me hungry and if you like food and music all in the cool downtown vibe of Metro Hall at King and John St.  all summer long on Thursday nights…log on here for more info!  http://www1.toronto.ca/wps/portal/contentonly?vgnextoid=56f5962c8c3f0410VgnVCM10000071d60f89RCRD&vgnextchannel=ac4d962c8c3f0410VgnVCM10000071d60f89RCRD


19. Want to go to free movies? Dundas Square has a bunch on Tuesday Nights in the Summer…here is the link to see what is in store! http://www.ydsquare.ca/city-cinema.html Hooray for Hollywood and Dundas Square for a slew of other summer fun events…

20…Plus…in Markham in Old Unionville…they have concerts on Sundays…follow this link to see what’s what… http://www.unionvilleinfo.com/event/33-main-street-summer-music

Then on Thursday’s they have The Thursday Night Bandstand Series…featuring some amazing cover bands! Log onto… http://www.unionvilleinfo.com/event/28-thursday-nights-at-the-bandstand  for more information on these concert events!



  1. For those in the West…Mississauga has a ton of fun in the Celebration Square, movies, music and events…here is the link! https://culture.mississauga.ca/celebration-square


  1. In Durham Region, now we’re going East…check out https://www.durhamtourism.ca/ for a list of events all over Durham, Bowmanville, Clarington, Oshawa, Lake Scugog/Port Perry, Whitby, Ajax and Pickering! Each community has an event! So check out each community’s websites for more local fun, free things…


  1. Downtown Yonge St. has a ton of fun, called Play the Parks! Here is the link to all of the events happening this summer! http://www.downtownyonge.com/playtheparks/


  1. Aww…time for a walk! How about a ROM Walk? Walking tours of Toronto. ROMWalks encompass the diverse aspects of Toronto’s vibrant neighbourhoods including history, architecture, arts of all varieties, education and more. Most tours are free. Here is more info… http://www.rom.on.ca/en/whats-on/romwalks

  1. It is the big bad Beaches Jazz Festival all month long! How cool is that! Music, outdoors, fun, food, friends! Here is the link to this wildly amazing event! http://beachesjazz.com/


26…What about a little theatre? Shakespeare anyone? Canada’s longest-running outdoor theatre event, Shakespeare in High Park, celebrates its 35th year.

Canadian Stage presents bold new takes on two Shakespeare classics: Twelfth Night, where guests get transported from the enchanted musical shores of Illyria, and King Lear, one of the most monumental works of English drama – reimagined from a female perspective.

June 29 – September 3, 2017

Tuesday to Sunday: 8 p.m. (Gates open at 6 p.m.)

The event is free for children 14 and under. Adults may make a pay-what-you-can donation with cash, debit or credit cards at the gate. The suggested minimum donation is $20 per person or $25 advance reserved seating.

Log on here for more info!  http://www.toronto.com/events/shakespeare-in-high-park/


  1. Now if you live in the East end, you too can take in some Shakespeare…Shakespeare in the Ruff is a professional outdoor theatre company that breathes life and magic into Shakespeare’s works for Toronto’s diverse and contemporary audience. Our work lies at the intersection of Outdoor Theatre, Education, and Community Building.

A Midsummer Night’s Dream

August 15 – September 3
Tuesday to Sunday at 8pm

Withrow Park, between Chester & Pape

Find us between the trees, in the middle of the park, just south of the fire pit

PWYC – Pay What You Can

(suggested $15)

Bring your lawn chairs, blanket & a picnic  log onto…this site for more info!



Now…last but not least…


  1. If you live in the City’s west end…and want to tap into movies outdoors…Then Sorauren Park is the place to be and to then check this link out… https://soraurenpark.wordpress.com/outdoor-movies/ Roll ‘em!





There are so many more things to do for free, where you can connect with your family, friends, business colleagues or co-workers…be sure to check out your city or regional websites and of course Ontario Tourism and your local government sites for events and what to do.


May you have a joyous and wonderful summer in balance, success and health!


Cheers!  David 🙂



David is an author, business coach and facilitator and was the former host/producer and creator of the Small Business Big Ideas Show heard weekly for over 9 years. David has taught thousands over the years in both the non-profit and for profit sectors and has coached hundreds of start-ups to make those important first steps. He specializes in helping small business owners mine their strengths, get clear on their value, their markets and then begin to develop a sales and marketing game plan that gets results.

He also can be booked to do his keynote presentations; “The 8 Keys to Success, How I got to Kiss the Stanley Cup and his new keynote called “A breakthrough-through the glass”- how to overcome the fear that life and business might throw your way. He leads workshops in sales, marketing, market research, business plans, target marketing and customer service programs. David is currently with the City of Toronto, heading up an entrepreneur training program for inner city youth and adults. He has taught thousands and coached numerous clients in the area of Small Business Start-ups and business growth strategies.