Young people playing drums and singing on the street

Photo by Keep Six Contemporary Arts

Five ways to celebrate community in September

From an outdoor art exhibit to an annual pow wow, these events will help you get back to the school of life

Happy first day of school! Now that the kids are dropped off, you can exhale and remember that September is such a fun time of year. It’s a time of renewal and fresh starts, even if you’re not in school.

September also reminds me that learning is a lifelong mission. With that in mind, I’ve compiled this list of fantastic events happening throughout September. Put them in your calendar, take the whole family and learn something new about the many different cultures that make up the GTA.

Home Away Home

When: September 6 to 10, 2018
Where: Cafe Pamenar, 307 Augusta Avenue
Cost: Free

Get out of the galleries and into the streets with this exhibit and festival, hosted by Keep Six Contemporary Arts. The multimedia event (which includes performances, photography, audio, video, sculptures, installations and paintings) pushes outside gallery walls and into local laneways, streets, parks, public and alternative exhibition spaces. Held in Toronto’s historic Kensington Market, once a magnet for many waves of Canadian newcomers, it’s a festival that celebrates diversity, immigrant stories and a whole lot more. (Photograph by Keep Six Contemporary Arts)

Worn with Pride

When: September 12 to October 31, 2018
Where: Scarborough Museum, 1007 Brimley Road
Cost: Pay what you can

Be inspired and brush up on your local history at the Worn with Pride exhibition, which showcases an eclectic collection of artifacts from the Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives. Look through the T-shirts, periodicals, posters and pins from across Canada, all of which have contributed to the community’s rich history. Better yet, head over on opening night for a one-night community Pop-Up Museum. Wear your own T-shirt or bring a flag that means something to you so you can share your stories with other guests. (Photograph by Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives)

Afrofusion Dance Class

When: September 5, 12 and 19, 2018, 6-7 p.m.
Where: Sony Centre for the Performing Arts, 1 Front Street East
Cost: Free

Want to know what a Frog Back is? Choreographer and dancer Esie Mensah will take you through this and other moves in this series of Afrofusion dance classes that mix traditional and contemporary African styles—think hip-hop, dancehall, soca, contemporary and house. Don’t worry if you’re not exactly Josephine Baker, because you don’t need experience for these energizing classes. However, registration is encouraged. (Only a limited number of spots are held for drop-ins.)

Toronto Palestine Film Festival

When: September 20 to 23, 2018
Where: TIFF Bell Lightbox, 350 King Street West
Cost: $11-$17 (depending on ticket)

A female Palestinian Lyft driver waits to hear critical news; the shocking events of Nakba unfold; a Palestinian man is thrown into a spiral of self doubt after signing an online petition—these are just a few of the stories told in this festival, which features some 20 films over four days. Learn more about Palestinian culture in the GTA by attending the annual Sahtain! Palestinian Brunch on September 23 (RSVP first), held at the Hale Coffee Company (300 Campbell Avenue), where you can take in a meal complete with traditional Palestinian dishes like knafe, a pastry dessert.

Chippewas of Georgina Island Traditional Pow Wow

When: September 22, 2018
Where: Sibbald Point Provincial Park, 26071 Park Road, Georgina
Cost: Free

Bring the family to experience a traditional pow wow, a celebratory gathering held by First Nations communities. The event, on the beautiful shores of Lake Simcoe, will include drumming, dancing and the always-mesmerizing hoop dance demonstrations. Bring some extra cash as well because many Indigenous-owned-and-operated food and craft vendors will have products for sale. (You won’t want to miss the freshly cooked bannock!)