Category: Family Activities
December 29, 2013
May 18, 2013 – December 31, 2013
It’s pandamonium at the Toronto Zoo!
It was an exciting day for Torontonians on May 18th when the Zoo officially opened its giant panda exhibit, featuring VIPs (Very Important Pandas) Er Shun and Da Mao.
The two pandas are on loan from the Chinese government for a period of ten years, during which time it is hoped they will produce offspring. The pair will be splitting their stay in Canada between the Toronto Zoo and the Calgary Zoo, where they are set to relocate to in 2018.
Pandas have a tendency to draw crowds. In addition to being just plain adorable, their unusual eating and mating habits make them one of the most unique species in the animal kingdom.
Did You Know?
- Although pandas have the digestive system of a carnivore, up to 99% their diet consists of bamboo. Due to bamboo’s low nutritional value, a panda needs to consume between 10 and 15 kilograms (22 to 33 pounds) of it each day to get all of its nutrients.
- Pandas are notoriously reluctant to mate, which is one reason for their low population in the wild. Giant panda females are only receptive to mating for a period of 24 to 72 hours a year.
- It is almost impossible to tell if a giant panda is a male or a female until it is four years old. Because of the difficulty of determining the sex of pandas, it was believed that Er Shun was a male until genetic testing was done shortly before she was set to arrive in Toronto!
Top 5 Reasons to See the Pandas at the Toronto Zoo
No question about it, the giant panda exhibit is one of Toronto’s must-see attractions. Here are the top five reasons why you should pay Er Shun and Da Mao a visit:
- It’ll put a smile on your face. Pandas might just be the cutest animals around. Their docile nature, clumsy gait, and adorable black-and-white faces make them a delight to watch. It’s no wonder that one of the most popular videos on YouTube, with over 160 million views, is of a baby panda sneezing.
- You can expand your knowledge. Prior to meeting Er Shun and Da Mao, you can learn all about giant pandas at the 8,000 square-foot Panda Interpretive Centre. With model displays, multimedia games, and audio-visual presentations, it’s a fun and interactive way to learn about these natural treasures.
- Your kids will love it. Pandas are always a huge hit with children. You can also use this as an opportunity to educate them about wildlife and conservation.
- You can see other animals too. Once you’re done seeing the pandas, you can make your way over to the Zoo’s many other exhibits. The Toronto Zoo boasts over 5,000 animals representing more than 460 species, including white lions, gorillas, and polar bears.
- It’s a rare opportunity. Although panda conservation efforts have proven successful, they’re still an endangered species. The vast majority of pandas live in China, and only a handful of Zoos around the world have been given the opportunity to host them. The last time there were pandas at the Toronto Zoo was for three months in 1985!
Fun, friendly, and fascinating, the giant pandas are sure to brighten your day. Take a trip to the Toronto Zoo to see one of nature’s most extraordinary creatures up close and personal.
For more details: www.torontozoo.com
Location: Toronto Zoo — 361A Old Finch Avenue
December 31, 2013
Tuesday, December 31st, 2013.
Ring in 2014 with some NEW animal friends!
Front Entrance, Australasia Pavilions, Tundra Trek & The Giant Panda Experience
5:00 pm to 8:00 pm (doors open at 4:45pm) and Parking is FREE!
Don’t miss some great entertainment including The Decades and Majinx Magic Show and more. Plus you will encounter some special WILD animal visitors! The fun begins at 5:00 pm and runs until 8:00 pm when we have our very own Kids’ Countdown!
For more information: www.TorontoZoo.com
Location: Toronto Zoo — 361 A Old Finch Avenue
January 1, 2014
January 3, 2014
January 4, 2014
November 22, 2013 – January 4, 2014
Toronto is awash with excitement in light of news that Ross Petty Productions has announced that the 18th annual holiday pantomime at the Elgin Theatre will be THE LITTLE MERMAID, running November 22, 2013 – January 4, 2014. Petty is leaving behind the Brothers Grimm and entering Hans Christian Andersen territory through this classic story, but with a Petty pivot – his first-ever foray into the fishy fairy tale where anyFIN goes!
Currently starring as the title role in Evangeline at The Charlottetown Festival, musical theatre power house Chilina Kennedy will star as the Little Mermaid, bringing forth an impressive resume of stage work and critical acclaim that includes her role as Mary Magdalene in the Stratford to Broadway production of Jesus Christ Superstar. With an aquatic collection of friends by her side, the title character’s quest for true love and happiness is aided by Dan Chameroy’s sea-lacious Dame Plumbum, returning to the Elgin stage with his perennial persona as the Little Mermaid’s aunt. Starring opposite Kennedy as the handsome Prince, and the buoy of her dreams, is actor and Canadian Idol Season 1 finalist, Marc Devigne.
For more details or tickets: www.rosspetty.com
Venue: Elgin Theatre — 189 Yonge Street
January 4, 2014
November 1, 2013 – January 5, 2014
In an exotic, faraway land, one man’s life is about to change with the lucky rub of an ancient lamp—and you’re invited to join the magic carpet ride.
Welcome to ALADDIN, Disney’s new Broadway-bound musical, adapted from the hit film and featuring some of the best-loved music by Academy® and Tony Award®-winning composer Alan Menken and lyricists Howard Ashman, Tim Rice and Chad Beguelin, with a book by Beguelin.
Brought to you by the producer of Toronto’s record-breaking hits The Lion King and Beauty and the Beast, ALADDIN will be directed and choreographed by Tony®-winner Casey Nicholaw (The Book of Mormon) and will feature the award-winning and acclaimed design team of Bob Crowley (sets), Gregg Barnes (costumes) and Natasha Katz (lights), with illusions by Jim Steinmeyer.
With its timeless story, extravagant sets and costumes and a host of memorable characters and songs, ALADDIN will transport you to a place you only know in your dreams. Go ahead, make a wish. And discover a whole new world, in a whole new way… at ALADDIN.
Ed Mirvish Theatre (formerly The Canon) — 244 Victoria Street