Toronto Weekender: April 5 through 8, 2012

You’ve made it through push and we’re on to a long weekend again! Give yourself some much needed congrats and gear up for a lofty ol’ time with familial celebrations and a little around town gallivanting…

Start your extended break off on a stellar foot tonight at the RAC Boutique’s Bazaar, a four-day shopping collaboration with some of TO’s favourite retailers. (It runs through Sunday.) To kick things off, DJ Brendan Canning (from Broken Social Scene) will lay down some tunes while cocktails and beer flow as you peruse the inventory from vendors like Robber, 69 Vintage, Woodlawn, GotStyle, RAC (of course), and many more. It all goes down at Loft 580.

For dinner, hit up Gusto 101 for some frenetic energy, the delicious smell of pizzas blistering in wood fired ovens, and one of the best kale salads you’ll ever have. But call in advance, because Gusto 101 is officially taking reservations now (hurrah!) and you’ll definitely want to avoid waiting for a spot. 

On your Friday day off – unless you’re like us and perpetually addicted to working on holidays – mosey around and grab lunch at recently opened The Big Fish in the old Bon’s Submarine spot on Queen just west of Spadina. The fish is sustainable, the chips greasy good, and the stop well worth the trip.

Czehoski‘s ringing out Good Friday with a special happy hour menu and guest DJs all night long, so if you’re looking for a low key but high energy night check out this Queen West favourite spot. Afterwards, if you’re looking for a more exciting vibe, hit up Beaconsfield beside the Drake Hotel. The Friday night crowds are usually peppered with energetic yuppies, a great spot to see and be seen.

It’s also Tartan Day on Friday, so if you’re in a merry mood check out the Big Dance celebration at the Royal York. Celebrate Scottish heritage with some Scottish dancing and Scottish music in a beautiful historic setting. Tickets are $20 and the proceeds help support Sick Kids.

Spend Saturday morning stocking up at LCBO, grocery store, whatever you’ll need because Sunday you’ll see a quiet across the city. Then hike it up to brunch at the Monk’s Table north of Summerhill and enjoy a traditional English breakfast, their excellent beer-battered haddock, or the American toast with homemade marshmallow – which we have to say is way better than anything you can grab at the store.

Saturday evening sees Improv In Toronto and Newmindspace taking over Yonge and Dundas Square for the Toronto Pillow Fight 2012: Bunny Edition – no, not as in Playboy. You can literally bring a pillow and pummel (gently and fluffily of course) complete strangers. To be sure, it will be a sight to be seen… 

Paris DJ Chris Laroque is over at CUBE on Saturday night. Some of the city’s gorgeous going-outers hit up CUBE weekly already, even though it’s been open for just over a month, and since the weekend is a long one you can bet the partying will go a little harder than normal.

On Sunday, stay in with the fam, meet up with your friends, and spend the day catching up. A lot will be closed, a bit will be open, but why not forgo the search for action and excitement and make your own with those closest to you? Whether or not you’re celebrating a holiday, that’s always a notable thing to do…

Photo courtesy Gusto 101