The Canadian national Exhibition (also known as the CNE and The Ex) is an annual event in Toronto. Although ticket prices tend to rise a bit each year, it’s something that I’ve enjoyed since childhood, and has become a tradition in my family. Since The Ex always takes place just before school starts, it’s a great way to mark the end of the summer holidays. Everyone should make an effort to go, whether it’s just once (to say that you’ve had the experience), or every year.
When is the Ex happening this year?
August 19th to September 5th.
What is there to do at The Ex?
There’s tons of stuff to see and do at the CNE, including:
- A variety of shows featuring cowboy trick riding, figure skating, and cultural song and dance
- The World Market, which features booths that showcase cool stuff from all around the world
- The Home Living Market – you can buy a sauna!
- The Arts and Crafts Market – browse (and buy!) cool jewellery, dips and jams, wind chimes, and tons of unique trinkets
- Carnival rides
- Carnival food – the usual corn dogs, cotton candy, and Tiny Tom doughnuts are always available (but why not try a Krispy Kreme Cheeseburger instead?)
- A kids playcentre
- A horticultural contest and gardening market – look at some spectacular blooms and gardens, and check out the annual flower competition
- Last, but not least, the Labour Day air show!
Where can I get tickets to The Ex?
You can get tickets at the door but, if you want to avoid the lines and save a little money, some retailers such as Shoppers Drug Mart and Loblaws usually have discounted tickets. You can also buy discounted tickets online before opening day here.
How do I get to the The Ex via public transit?
Take the 509 Exhibition streetcar from Bathurst or Union Station and it will take you right to the entrance of the Ex. Or, you can take the GO train to Exhibition station.