The Weekender: Doors Open, craft beer festival and six other things to do this weekend

The Weekender: Doors Open, craft beer festival and six other things to do this weekend

Get inside some of the city's most famous buildings during Doors Open (Image: Paul Dex) 

1. DOORS OPEN (FREE!)
This citywide, one-weekend-a-year event showcases almost 150 of Toronto’s most historically and culturally significant buildingslike the LEED-certified Archives of Ontario building, the Arts and Letters Club of Toronto and the Casa Loma stables—allowing architecture junkies to check out buildings that aren’t usually open to the public, or ones that normally charge an entrance fee. May 29 and 30. Various locations, toronto.ca/doorsopen.

2. EDDIE IZZARD
Eddie Izzard, the rambling British funnyman known for his penchant for women’s clothing, is in town with his Stripped Tour—not to be confused with the 2003 Christina Aguilera tour of the same name, though the man does love his lipstick. May 30 and 31. $40.95–$61.95. Massey Hall, 178 Victoria St., 416-872-4255, masseyhall.com.

3. INSIDE OUT FILM AND VIDEO FESTIVAL
Twenty years ago, a small group of like-minded creative types attended an equally small film and video festival dedicated to screening content by and for the LGBT community. Two decades later, Inside Out is the biggest queer film fest in Canada, and to celebrate its total dominance of the competition (and its anniversary), festival attendees will be rewarded with 20 per cent more programming. We can get behind that, especially since that programming includes such films as the James Franco–fronted Allan Ginsberg biopic Howl and Prima Donna, a British doc about Rufus Wainwright. To May 30. $10–$12. Various locations, 416-967-1528, insideout.ca.

4. JUNK TO JUICE: DIY POWER WORKSHOP
We know going green is a lifestyle change, not just a trend, but we admit to sometimes slacking on the “changing how we live our lives” front. Maybe this workshop will help. A precursor to next month’s Sustainable Technologies Festival, it will teach participants how to build their own generators, to power such small electronics as cellphones and iPods, out of trash. It’s hosted by New York artist and sometimes Discovery Channel star Chris Hackett. May 29 and 30. $100. OCAD Library, 113 McCaul St., 647-628-7335, subtletechnologies.com.

5. THE MOST RACES SHOW ON EARTH
With the lofty goal of breaking down racial barriers through comedy, this annual laughfest is sure to include many Russell Peters–style jokes (though, unfortunately, not Peters himself). Hosted by Jane Martin (Jamaican-Canadian), the lineup includes such comics as Trixx (Ghanaian-Canadian), Ron Josol (Filipino-Canadian), Dave Merheje (Lebanese-Canadian), John Ki (Korean-Canadian), Ali Hassan (Pakistani-Canadian) and Nathan MacIntosh (just Canadian). May 28. $20. The Second City, 51 Mercer St., 416-343-0011, mostracesshowonearth.com.

6. CATS
Andrew Lloyd Webber’s classic musical is in town for only a brief engagement, and it ends this weekend. Based on T.S. Eliot’s Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats, Webber’s musical was first staged in London’s West End in 1981 and went on to become a Broadway hit and a big winner at the 1983 Tony Awards. And, of course, the play’s most famous song, “Memory,” became the go-to ballad sung by up-and-coming Broadway starlets and reality TV contestants everywhere. To May 30. $30–$84. Canon Theatre, 244 Victoria St., 416-872-1212, mirvish.com.

7. SPRING FESTIVAL OF CRAFT BREWERIES (FREE!)
We’ve added another item to our ever-increasing list of wonderful things we forgot about when it was snowing: sipping an ice-cold brew on a patio. C’est What’s one-day festival of craft breweries is helping us remember just how much we like this kind of thing. The festival features over 40 brews for sampling ($1–$2) from such breweries as Great Lakes, Mill Street and Black Oak. May 28. C’est What, 67 Front St. E., 416-867-9499, cestwhat.com.

8. IDOMENEO
One of Mozart’s earliest and most-praised operas, Idomeneo is the story of the King of Crete. While on his way home from the Trojan War, he crosses paths with the sea god Neptune and has to talk fast to avoid the god’s wrath. Neptune spares his life, and in exchange, Idomeneo promises to kill the first person he sees upon reaching land. And of all the people in ancient Greece, whom does Idomeneo see first? His son, Idamante. Hijinks ensue, naturally. To May 29. $30–$292. Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, 145 Queen St. W., 416-363-8231, coc.ca.