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For many, St. Patrick's Day tradition means heading to the nearest pub for a pint or two (or three or four...). But there are more family-friendly ways to celebrate the holiday in Toronto this year, with Irish music, dance, and food.
Canada's largest St. Patrick's Day parade is an inclusive community event that allows everyone to be Irish for a day! Wear green and, if you've got red hair, flaunt it by joining the pre-parade Ginger Jig.
Location: Route begins at Bloor and St. George and continues along Bloor, Yonge, and Queen Sts., Toronto
Date: Mar. 19
Head to 1840s-era museum Montgomery's Inn with older kids from 7 pm to 11 pm for a traditional Irish céilidh (social gathering), with live traditional music, and enjoy Irish stew and fresh-baked bread plus a cash bar.
Location: Montgomery's Inn, 4709 Dundas St. W., Etobicoke
Date: Mar. 18
Price: $5 (plus $5 for stew)
Irish craic (fun and entertainment) is on tap year-round at The Céilí Cottage, a restaurant and pub that hosts an Irish céilí every week. So it's arguably Toronto's most authentic place to spend St. Patrick's Day. They'll be celebrating the holiday for ten days, culminating in Family Day on Sunday, March 19, with brunch all day and live music from 3 to 6 pm.
Location: 1301 Queen St. E., Toronto
Date: Mar. 9–19; Family Day Mar. 19
All ages are welcome for the evening céilí at University of Toronto's Hart House, which begins at 7 pm. This modern take on an Irish tradition will feature two live music performances and guided Irish folk dancing, plus an Irish-inspired menu that finishes with a bowl of Guiness ice cream.
Location: Hart House Great Hall, 1 Hart House Circle, Toronto
Date: Mar. 17
Local library branches celebrate the holiday with kid-friendly programs that include St. Patrick's Day crafts, stories, and music.
Location: Find your local branch
Date: Mar. 15–17
The National Dance Company of Ireland presents a magical showcase of Irish musicians, dancers, and integrated multimedia presentation that coincides with St. Patrick's Day.
Location: Sony Centre for the Performing Arts, 1 Front St. E., Toronto
Date: Mar. 17
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