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PWYC

Frugal Faves: The Bata Shoe Museum and Swarovski Crystal Wish Tree

There’s so much to see and do in this city, but after a while, admission fees, restaurant bills and shopping sprees start to add up. Where Toronto’s weekly tips on discounted tickets, exclusive sales, free events and more help you get the most out of your trip without burning a hole in your pocket.

View these Spanish chopines and more at the Bata Shoe Museum.

View these Spanish chopines and more at the Bata Shoe Museum.

Shoes on a Shoestring
A hot deal is afoot at the Bata Shoe Museum. Footwear fetishists can admire can admire a range of historically significant slippers, clogs, moccasins and more for pay-what-you-can admission on Thursday evenings year-round. And as a bonus, entrance to the museum is free on November weekends when you donate a new pair of socks as part of the annual Warm the Sole charity sock drive. From ancient silk sandals to Renaissance chopines to today’s sexy stilettos, the museum displays hundreds of shoes spanning the centuries.

PWYC admission is in effect Thursdays from 5 to 8 p.m. Free weekend admission with socks donation runs now through November 29. Visit here or call 416-979-7799 for more information.

The Swarovski Crystal Wish Tree lights up the Eaton Centre.

The Swarovski Crystal Wish Tree lights up the Toronto Eaton Centre.

Sparkle and Song
Kick off the festive season this Thursday, November 19, as the one-of-a-kind Swarovski Crystal Wish Tree is unveiled at the Toronto Eaton Centre. Thirty-five feet tall and adorned with 20,000 crystals, this rotating tree creates a constant shimmering effect that is sure to dazzle. Prior to the big reveal is a free, special-guest performance by acclaimed vocal quartet the Canadian Tenors, singing seasonal hits from their recently released holiday album. Now in its fifth year, this shopping-centre holiday tradition helps benefit the Children’s Wish Foundation of Canada through the sale of commemorative ornaments.

The Swarovski tree reveal is scheduled between 6 and 7 p.m., on the second level of the Toronto Eaton Centre, near Indigo.

Frugal Faves: The Textile Museum and a Sculpture Scavenger Hunt

There’s so much to see and do in this city, but after a while, admission fees, restaurant bills and shopping sprees start to add up. Where Toronto helps you get the most out of your trip without burning a hole in your pocket. Check back each week for our thrifty tips on discounted tickets, exclusive sales, free events and more.

See colourful quilts and much more with Wednesday-evening PWYC admission at the Textile Museum.

View colourful quilts and more with Wednesday-evening PWYC admission to the Textile Museum of Canada.

PWYC Admission to the Textile Museum
The Textile Museum of Canada showcases more than 1,200 cloth-based artifacts and works of art from around the world, from traditional East Asian garments and Danish tablecloths to feminist embroidery and evocative tapestries. General museum admission ($12) won’t break the bank, but frugal types will want to visit on Wednesday evenings, when you pay-what-you-can to get in. Check out Kaleidoscope: Antique Quilts from the collection of Carole and Howard Tanenbaum, examine South American fabric fragments in In Touch: Connecting Cloth, Culture + Art, and try different kinds of looms in the fibrespace hands-on gallery, all on the cheap.

Pay-What-You-Can admission at the Textile Museum is in effect every Wednesday between 5 and 8 p.m.

Track down Toronto's many bronze businessmen (photo by Jenelle DaSilva-Rupchand).

Track down Toronto's many bronze businessmen (photo by Jenelle DaSilva-Rupchand).

See “Businessman” Sculptures for Free
If you’re an art fan but your PWYC budget is closer to $0? Then go on a cost-free sculpture scavenger hunt to find the Businessman. Renowned sculptor William Hodd McElcheran created a number of bronze sculptures of a portly man in an overcoat, tie and fedora. A selection of these famed pieces from the 1980s were placed around Toronto, some fittingly located in the Financial District. Find the Businessman at Brookfield Place standing tall with hat and portfolio in hand, in mid-stride in the Commerce Court East building, bareback on a horse between Brennan Hall and Emsley Hall on the University of Toronto campus, and at other spots. A variety of works by McElcheran are also available for purchase at Yorkville’s Kinsman Robinson Galleries.