For Immediate Release
November 7, 2011
Seasonal Road Trip Anyone
Break away to Toronto’s boutique towns for laid-back holiday good times.
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TORONTO (November 7, 2011) – It is not just the big city that draws all the holiday action this festive season. The boutique cities surrounding Greater Toronto also share in the joy with events featuring flying ghosts, parading Santas and the occasional uproarious send-up. Here, these communities offer small-town charm along with internationally acclaimed performances. They proffer homemade farm-fresh goodies and acclaimed vintage cellar selections. Whether you live in Toronto or are en route to the big city from elsewhere, make an Ontario boutiquetown stay the order of the day.
Brampton: Wintertime Blooms
Known as Canada’s Flower City, Brampton is one of Canada’s largest and fastest growing cities. The diverse community is reflected in an eclectic mix of restaurants, performing arts complex and boutiques. One of its big draws is Brampton’s Rose Theatre, a state-of-the-art performing arts centre. This holiday season, the Rose offers two Christmas classics: The Nutcracker (December 7-8) presented by the State Ballet Theatre of Russia and A Christmas Carol – The Musical (December 15-18), which receives the full Broadway treatment complete with falling snow, flying ghosts and memorable songs. North of the city, the family-run Downey's Farm Market offers a relaxed Lunch with Santa (weekends from November 27 to December 18). Each child receives a small gift from Santa, plus that important chance to whisper into his ear what they really, really want. And as the month winds up, the city hosts the best party in town – the New Year’s Eve Celebration (December 31). The event spills out across the downtown from Gage Park to Rose Theatre and features live entertainment and fireworks.
Streetsville: Santa Stops Here
This former mill town is well known as Mississauga’s “Village in the City.” Situated on the picturesque banks of the Credit River, the town combines a well-preserved streetscape with inviting retail shops. It is also the ideal locale for old-fashioned holiday festivities. The annual Tree Lighting Ceremony (November 25) in the Main Street Square includes horse-drawn wagon rides, hot chocolate and a visit with Santa. Streetsville also hosts the everpopular Mississauga Santa Claus Parade (November 27) with floats, live music, elves, clowns and of course, the return of the man in the red suit.
Mississauga: Merry and Meaningful
Mississauga has distinguished itself from neighbouring Toronto with its Fortune 500 companies, vibrant city centre and largest shopping mall in the province, Square One Shopping Centre. But arts, community and culture are not to be overlooked. This year, the celebratory season begins with the Community Wide Chanukah Menorah Kindling Ceremony (December 4) at The Civic Centre. The free program features a grand menorah lighting, entertainment, crafts for the kids and traditional Chanukah foods including doughnuts and latkes. In line with the spirit of the event, visitors are asked to bring a non-perishable item to aid in the construction of a CANorah – a Menorah built out of cans.
The city’s Living Arts Centre hosts a rich line-up of performances. Highlights include the world-renowned Czech Boys Choir - Joy to the World (November 25) featuring classical Czech music and Christmas favourites from around the globe. The Centre is also presenting The Nutcracker (December 3-4), performed by the celebrated State Ballet Theatre of Russia. Elegant costumes and enchanting sets compliment the beautiful dances of this seasonal classic. And then there’s Paul Anka -- Christmas My Way (December 8). Hum along to familiar Christmas tunes, as well as pop songwriter’s hits including“My Way,” "Put Your Head On My Shoulder" and "(You're) Having My Baby." And if you prefer to laugh your way through the season, The Second City Dysfunctional Holiday Revue (December 9) is a seasonal satire that makes light of holiday missteps and pokes fun by rewriting traditional carols or imagining a disgruntled elf capable of ruining the North Pole Christmas party. Jolly holidays indeed!
Niagara-on-the-Lake: A Nose for Nostalgia
This pretty town, situated a two-hour-drive from Toronto on the shore of Lake Ontario, is well known for its frontporch beauty, theatre, dining and historic sites. The area is also celebrated for its vineyards. This season, the Wineries of Niagara-on-the-Lake celebrate with the Stocking Days of Christmas. Each of the 26 participating wineries will offer a range of festive events, tasting experiences and open houses. The event also fulfills its namesake in offering the chance to stock up on sure-to-please gifts: vintage releases, wine accessories and locally crafted culinary treats.
About Tourism Toronto
Tourism Toronto, Toronto's Convention and Visitors Association, is an industry association of more than 1,200 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 and Culture as Regional Tourism Organization 5, representing the cities of Toronto, Mississauga and Brampton. For more information please visit www.seetorontonow.com. Follow us on Twitter @SeeTorontoNow and Facebook.com/visittoronto.
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