Little Taste of Toronto: Little Italy + MMVA

June 16, 2012

The Event(s)
The Taste of Italy is a recurring annual event in the boisterous and lively neighborhood of… where else?...Little Italy. I’m a big fan of cheese (really, who isn’t?) and it remains my number one reason for not being completely vegan, so, as you can probably guess, I’ll happily line up when someone says ‘Italian.’

Combine lots of authentic Italian food with the robust tones of Italian music and you have an idyllic Sunday evening. After a quick round of the event, a friend and I planned to hit the much talked-about MMVA to check out the vibe. Co-hosted by LMFAO with pop music’s favorite love-to-hate boy Justin Bieber also performing, the event at Queen West definitely attracted Teen Toronto.

Me at the Event(s)
Though it would seem pretty apparent to everyone, I was rudely shocked when the streetcar I was on suddenly said it wouldn’t go any further because of the Taste of Italy festival. Irony of ironies. I ended up walking through the entire festival not once, but two times… once to get to where my friend was waiting, and another time to check it out full force. May I say, it was well worth the detour.

The energy in the area was palpable, and I kind of pitied my husband watching soccer alone at home, when he could be watching it at one of the crowded, noisy, superfriendly patios lining the road. Not all the food items on display were conventional Italian, but we managed to sneak in a couple of very authentic Gelatos. I cheated and got creamy ones which were practically ice creams. I live for sinful pleasures.

Picture courtesy
As for the MMVA… my GOD, was that area crowded! It was interesting to note the crowd that gathers when you combine free entrance with Justin Bieber on a Sunday with good weather. I have never seen that side of Toronto (ok, fine, I know I’ve been in the city for less than a month. What can I say?  It’s easy to get used to!) and it was a whole load of fun!

What I loved: The energy everywhere! With Sundays like this, your Monday blues are guaranteed to disappear.

What I didn’t love: The shooting at Little Italy the next day. This is the second shooting in Toronto in the short time that I’ve been here, and though I know the city’s supposed to be super safe and the law enforcement agents are doing all they can… it’s just sad. On a related note, Christine, a woman I briefly met online through Meetup, is organizing a fund to support the 13 year old boy who was caught unawares in the shootout at Eaton Center on June 1st. Go here to learn more and spread the word.

Overall: I’m thinking of exploring one neighbourhood in Toronto thoroughly each month going forward. Good idea? Suggestions of what I should check out? Want to come with? Leave me a comment!

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