The Weekender: Indy Toronto, Summerlicious and five other items on our to-do list
1. AZIZ ANSARI
Funny dude Aziz Ansari, who’s probably best known for roles in Funny People and I Love You, Man, plus his turn as Tom Haverford on Parks and Recreation, started his career in standup. Despite a jam-packed sched with minimal heckling, Ansari still gets in a little stand-up when he can—hence his Buried Alive tour, which lands in T.O. this weekend. July 6. $41–$49. Sony Centre for the Performing Arts, 1 Front St. E., 1-855-985-5000, ticketmaster.ca.
2. HONDA INDY TORONTO
The Indy is coming, which means the roar of engines will be carrying across town all weekend long. In addition to the big race (Sunday), there are motorcycle demos, kid-friendly activities and celeb spotting adventures to be had. July 6 to 8. $30–$185. Exhibition Place, 100 Princes’ Blvd., hondaindytoronto.com.
The numbers on this annual prix fixe foodie festival are even more exciting than in previous years: two weeks, 181 restaurants. If, like us, you’re struck with indecision at the prospect of that many choices, let us offer a solution: here are our 67 sure-thing picks, or narrow your choices down even further with our food editor’s top 10. July 6 to 22. toronto.ca/summerlicious.
4. CAPTURE THE FLAG (FREE!)
Once nothing more than schoolyard diversions, kiddie games like manhunt have gone urban in recent years. This long-running Toronto meet-up, which has happened almost every week since 2003, is a mash-up of tag and hide and seek with a healthy dose of cops and robbers. It involves fully grown adults armed only with strategy, trying to catch and evade each other, all the while protecting their own base flag. While we appreciate the dedication required to play in the middle of winter, we recommend it now because this game is really made for the summertime. July 7. Starts at 8:30 p.m. Meet at Danforth and Logan Ave. manhunttoronto.wordpress.com.
5. THE SUNSHINE BOYS
Would anyone other than Neil Simon name a comedy duo Lewis and Clark? Just as the explorers were eventually overshadowed by other pioneers, so too are vaudeville performers Al Lewis and Willie Clark, who get lured out of retirement by the medium that rendered them obsolete: television. Kenneth Welsh and Eric Peterson star. $51–$68. 55 Mill St., Bldg. 49, 416-866-8666, youngcentre.ca.
6. SALSA ON ST. CLAIR (FREE!)
You know who really knows how to throw a street party? Everyone on St. Clair Avenue West. This annual neighbourhood fest, now in its eighth year, is all about Latin flavours, whether that’s steamy salsa or literal Latin flavours, as in eats. Other don’t-miss events include the open-air dance class, Latin market and kids’ area. July 7 and 8. St. Clair Ave. W. between Christie and Winona Dr., 416-744-8200, tlntv.com/salsa.
7. THE FRINGE FESTIVAL
The Fringe Festival, one of the city’s most adventurous and diverse theatre fests, kicks off this week. Get ready for dancers, comedians, singers and actors of all sorts. It’s not a juried festival, sure, but the 155 lottery-selected shows may include some hidden gems—da Kink in My Hair, Kim’s Convenience and The Drowsy Chaperone all got their start at previous fests. Here are some of our must-sees: Rare, a play directed by playwright Judith Thompson, but written by and starring a cast of nine actors with Down’s Syndrome who inspired the production; Help Yourself, a show about a man whose job requires him to clear consciences; and Antigone, a modern, Toronto-centric update of the Greek classic that uses the G20 protests and Occupy movement as a backdrop. July 4 to 15. $10, pass $45–$82. Various locations, 416-966-1062, fringetoronto.com.