A Taste-y time on the Danforth

Crowds enjoy annual street festival despite rainy weather

August rainfall didn’t dampen spirits at the Taste of the Danforth, one of Toronto’s most beloved — and scrumptious — street festivals.
Crowds eager for gyros or corn on the cob filled Danforth Avenue, which was closed to vehicle traffic between Broadview to Jones avenues, during the Aug. 11 weekend.

Non-edible highlights included kids’ rides, live entertainment and a beer garden.

The Taste, put on by the Greektown on the Danforth BIA, was celebrating its 19th year.

Cosburn and Donlands resident Shelagh Reas has come to 17 of them. She attended this year with her husband and mother-in-law.

“I love it, it’s part of the neighbourhood that we live in, and you can get every kind of food that you’ve ever wanted to eat,” she said, enjoying chicken souvlaki and taking cover from the rain in a phone booth.

Beyond the good eats, Reas says she loves the multicultural vibrancy on the street.

“I don’t consider it any longer like a Greek festival. It’s just a Toronto festival.”

About 200 merchants on the Danforth participate in the Taste.

Three’s Company co-owner Carolyn Hogg said the Taste is a great way to catch up with other community members, even family members who make their way to the food.

“I’ve been bumping into people I haven’t seen in years and years,” she said, adding she chatted with people who drove down from Barrie and Oshawa just to attend the Taste.

The Taste draws usually well over a million festival goers, making it to one of the city’s biggest summer attractions. While the fest wasn’t hit with torrential downpours as in years past, it rained off and on all weekend.

But the outdoor festival does well rain or shine and this year was no exception, said Nancy Antypas, marketing director for Pilaros, the event sponsor.

“The number’s always getting higher,” she said. “Obviously when there’s a little bit of rain it plays a little bit with the numbers, but not a huge role.”

About this article:

By: Karolyn Coorsh
Posted: Aug 24 2012 3:26 pm
Filed in: NEWS
Edition: Toronto