Toronto’s Taste of the Danforth in jeopardy if funding shortfall not met

Click to play video: 'Taste of Danforth returns'
Taste of Danforth returns
RELATED: After a four-year hiatus the Taste of Danforth has returned to much fanfare. Ahmar Khan reports. – Aug 12, 2023

One of Toronto’s biggest summer festivals, Taste of the Danforth, is in jeopardy for 2024 if it can’t meet a major budget shortfall.

The local Business Improvement Area, GreekTown on the Danforth BIA, had its annual general meeting on Tuesday and found there to be hundreds of thousands of dollars in shortfall.

The BIA told Global News in a statement there was a $257,000 loss in 2023 and “further discussion will take place to better understand if we can host Taste of the Danforth in 2024.”

During the meeting, the BIA said it approved an operating budget with a two per cent increase to its levy.

“The BIA would need to fundraise and secure new title sponsorship in order to continue in 2024 as the levy no longer covers the festival, and many of our small business members cannot shoulder a significant levy increase,” the local BIA said.

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The budget for the area in 2024 includes a re-design of Alexander the Great Parkette “as well as a new strategic planning process that will outline the priorities, actions, and ambitions of our members,” the BIA said.

Taste of the Danforth was cancelled in 2020 and 2021 due to COVID-19, and then again in 2022 due to the changes from CafeTO that saw much of the street with patios. Organizers said they did not have enough time to reimagine the festival given changes to the streetscape along Danforth Avenue.

The festival did return in August of 2023.

The event typically runs in the summer and stretches about 1.6 kilometres along the Danforth. It includes some 100 participating businesses and live entertainment.

Click to play video: 'Taste of Danforth returns'
Taste of Danforth returns

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