Urban Planner: August 10, 2011
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Urban Planner: August 10, 2011

Urban Planner is Torontoist‘s guide to what’s on in Toronto, published every weekday morning, and in a weekend edition Friday afternoons. If you have an event you’d like considered, email all of its details—as well as images, if you’ve got any—to [email protected].

Great Bloomers play SummerWorks tonight. Photo by David Waldman.

In today’s Urban Planner: grab some free vegan food samples and check out the first ever Canadian Empathy Awards; peddle over to the opening of the Bicycle Film Festival, which kicks-off with an art show and panel discussion; the Courvoisier Collective opens an exhibition featuring artwork about renewal; and our picks for SummerWorks are up to help you find the best of the fest.

AWARENESS: Thinking about going vegan? Whether you’re contemplating the decision or already living in vegan-land, you can grab some free vegan treats or head to the first annual Canadian Empathy Awards today—which honour major contributions to animal protection—as part of 10,000 Tastes, 10 Billion Reasons. Empathy Unlimited and the Toronto Vegetarian Association are hosting the vegan food giveaway and live entertainment at Yonge-Dundas Square with samples from a variety of vendors, including 5000 veggie dogs. The awards evening will take place at Hart House and features animal advocate Gene Bauer. Yonge-Dundas Square (1 Dundas Street East), 12:00 p.m.–6:00 p.m., FREE; Great Hall at Hart House (7 Hart House Circle), 7:30 p.m.–9:30 p.m., $26.
FILM FEST: This film festival puts a different spin on things—literally—with films, art, music, and parties all in celebration of the bicycle. The 5th annual Bicycle Film Festival begins four days of programming today with an art show and panel discussion featuring Dave Meslin, Tammy Thorne, Shamez Amlani, and James Schwartz at the Gladstone Hotel. All films screen at the Royal Cinema and you can check out the bands in the festival’s lineup at the Horseshoe Tavern. Gladstone Hotel (1214 Queen Street West), 6:00 p.m.–8:30 p.m., FREE; film passes range from $10–$30.
ART: The Courvoisier Collective—a program that fosters community, access to space, and exposure for local artists—is unveiling a gallery exhibition and urban showcase tonight. The exhibition will feature winning “Gallery Award” submissions with the theme of renewal. The exhibition will be open to the public starting tomorrow and runs until September 4th. Gallery 1313 (1313 Queen Streest West), 7:00 p.m.–9:30 p.m., FREE.
SummerWorks: The annual SummerWorks Theatre Festival continues to bring edgy independent theatre and music acts to audiences eager to get a sneak peek at next year’s biggest hits. For music lovers, our guide to the music series will offer a few suggestions, and if theatre is your bag then here’s what we like so far. Tonight you may also want to check out The Trolley Car from Vancouver’s Solo Collective theatre company, and Strange Mary Strange from Theatre on the Verge, directed by Evan Tsitsias and Esther Jun, back in the director’s chair after acting in the Fringe runaway hit Kim’s Convenience. Musically, catch the one-night-only performance of Toronto supergroup Houseleague, featuring members of Evening Hymns, Forest City Lovers, Matters, and The Magic, followed by Great Bloomers.