For the basics, see
- Website & Privacy Policies
- How To Get Involved
- The Role of the Park

Search options:

up to a month to index new postings
web search

Search Campfires:
local & up to date but simpler
See Search Page

Department Site Map


News 2014

From the November 2014 Newsletter:

Winter campfires

In 2013, there were 476 campfires at Dufferin Grove Park. There may turn out to have been even more in 2014. People like to have campfires to celebrate – birthday parties, graduations, the visit of an old friend from far away. At other times, they gather around a campfire to memorialize the passing of a grandparent, or sometimes, a son or daughter or a friend. Most of the time, campfires are simply a way to get friends and family together to enjoy one another’s company. Meantime, the sight of the campfire gives pleasure to passersby, and the “eyes on the park” by campfire participants helps the park be safer. For more information: or email park program staff at

From the July 2014 Newsletter:

Campfires: In summer, there are two small-group campfire locations – centre path and south path. The centre path fire circle is in the middle of the park, and the south path fire circle is beside the cob courtyard. The park’s recreation staff book the cooking fire times (many, but not all, days are already fully booked). The staff also give fire safety training and are available to help start/end your fire. 416-392-0913 or email

Park staff will give you water, pails, and a shovel. The park also loans out grills, a cast-iron stand (if you want to cook more than marshmallows or hot dogs on a stick), pots and pans for campfires. Please donate $20 to cover staff open/close costs. The rules: bring your own wood, and be quiet and respectful of park neighbours. Campfires Dufferin Grove are not permits, they’re a program to increase park safety. That means campfire users act as park ambassadors for curious strangers, and keep an eye out for trouble as well as having their campfire fun.

Public pizza days: You can make your own pizza in the park bake oven on Sundays from 12-2pm and on Wednesdays from 12-2pm'''. For $2.50, park staff supply a ball of dough, tomato sauce, and grated cheese. You can pick additional ingredients in the park gardens or bring them from home. The staff will bake it up for you in the bake oven. Camp groups and birthday parties can also book special pizza times an hour before or an hour after the drop-in times.  To book: email Michelle at

From the June 2014 Newsletter:

Campfires in the park

Last year there were 472 campfires in Dufferin Grove Park. The City of Toronto lists 23 other campfire areas across the city as well. Some of them are only for Scouts. Two of them – at Campbell and MacGregor Parks in Ward 18 – have no well-defined campfire area and are mainly used for recreation programs. But some are in beautiful ravine locations or on Toronto Island. It used to cost over $100 to get a permit for one of these spots. Now if there are 25 people or less, the permit-and-insurance cost is only $51.27. The city’s campfire permits allow 50 people, sometimes more, at a campfire (but over 25 people raises the price to $133.58).

Dufferin Grove campfires operate in a slightly different way. In summer, there are two campfire sites: the “main” area, in the centre of the park and surrounded by logs, with a maximum of 25 people participating, and the “cob” area beside the playground, with a maximum number of 8 people plus up to 6 more children attending. These campfires are a program, not a permit. The participants are called volunteers, because they add three important elements to the park: (1) safety (no empty park in the evenings), (2) beauty (campfires add a warm glow to public space) and (3) sociability (many people say they enjoy seeing the sociable round of the campfires as they pass by). There’s no set fee for Dufferin Grove campfires but a suggested donation of $20 to help pay for staff support. The campfire participants are covered by the City’s volunteer insurance (also used for community gardeners, and people who flood winter ice rinks). In the 20 years that the Dufferin Grove campfire program has been going, there has never been an accident of note – happily, most human beings of all ages understand that fire is hot and it’s good to be careful.

To become a “campfire volunteer” at Dufferin Grove, it’s first necessary to attend a one-time orientation session that includes the rules but also a bit of the history of how this program developed. The website has a campfire section that also has a calendar of available campfire times. But there’s the rub – by the end of May, almost all summer weekend slots and many weekdays had already been booked. There are some spaces left, but the staff have also begun sending out the link to the other city campfire sites. Recently the city increased the number of sites. In this neighbourhood, Dovercourt Park, Christie Pits and Carlton Park all have designated campfire circles surrounded by logs or armour stone. Those neighbourhood parks gain the same benefits from campfires that work well at Dufferin Grove. So – campfire lovers, spread the wealth! To find out more, contact staff at

From the January 2014 Newsletter:

The count is in for last year’s campfires: in 2013 there were 472 campfires at Dufferin Grove. There are three small-group campfire locations, but only two are in use in any given season – centre path and rinkside in winter. The park’s recreation staff book the campfire times. There is an orientation and fire safety session for first-time campfire users twice a week, on Tuesdays at 6 and Saturdays at 12.30, and staff are available to help start/end your fire. To find out more, go to and click on “campfires,” or email staff at

hosted by | powered by pmwiki-2.2.83. Content last modified on November 05, 2014, at 05:46 PM EST