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Kung Fu monks & barbecue beef at this year’s Chinatown Festival

September 9th, 2011 · No Comments

By Sanam Malik

Performances, including lion dances, have featured prominently in past Chinatown Festivals. Courtesy Chinatown BIA

The Chinatown BIA is getting ready to host the annual Chinatown Festival this weekend, and organizers said that they wanted to make sure that the celebration has mass appeal. “We like to stage a festival that is organized by Chinatown BIA, but we want to share with everyone and get everything on one stage,” said Tonny Louie of the BIA.

With more than 100,000 expected in attendance and attractions that will include cuisine from around the world, cricket, and perhaps even some Kung Fu monks (visas permitting), the free event should have no problem meeting its goals.

The cuisines are one of the most important features of the festival. Louie stresses that there will be “not just Chinese food, but different kinds of food,” from Arabic-styled wraps and barbecue beef, to Taiwanese cultural food and Malaysian murtabak chicken.

Moon cakes, Chinese bubble tea and ice cream will also be available.

This year’s festival will also have both a beer garden and a children’s play area. Mariama Barrie, organizer of the games segment, says that “[we] are planning to have different performances from different community centres across the city, as well as carnival games.”

A bouncing castle and martial arts demonstration and workshop are in  the works for the kids.

Organizers say that a performance by a dozen Shaolin Monks of China is “70 per cent” confirmed. The world famous Shaolin Monastery of China occupies a special place for the Chinese culture and history. “We have had other forms of martial demonstrations in past festivals but not Shaolin style,” said Louie. We’ll keep our fingers crossed.

The Chinatown Festival takes place Sept. 10 and 11 on four blocks of Spadina between College and Dundas.. For more information, please visit


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