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Having a Picnic at Dufferin Grove Park

posted May 12, 2006

The park has many picnic tables throughout the park, and anyone having an ordinary picnic can use these without a reservation or a permit, first come, first served. Picnic tables can be moved from one picnic spot to another but it’s nice for picnickers to move them back if they’re normally used for a program (e.g. pizza days or Friday Night Suppers).

Be gentle moving the tables -- they get very little maintenance and they're getting pretty rickety.

Larger local picnic groups under 25 people: if you’re inviting your aunts and uncles and cousins too, you still don’t need a permit, but please call the park staff when you’re making plans, at 416 392-0913, so they can help you figure out the best location (one that doesn’t put you on top of another group). The park staff can also lend you a dolly for moving a few more picnic tables and an extra trash can to your picnic spot. Just put them back after. If you need to borrow the farmers' market tables, call 416 392-0913 to see if that can be arranged. There is a flat fee of $10 for the use of the market tables, unless you need a lot of them (then it's more).

Permits for groups over 25 people (and up to 200) are centrally booked through the city for $71.22 (from p.42 of the most recent city fee schedule). These have their designated base location: the south grove under the big old silver maples, where the permit sign is. These groups can also borrow the staff dolly to carry over extra picnic tables from elsewhere in the park if they need them.

If you have any trouble with washrooms or trash receptacles or water fountains, please tell the park staff or e-mail picnics or leave a message at 416 392-0913, and they'll try to make sure the problems are fixed.


The Parks by-law requires a permit for barbecues.

§ 608-10. Campfires and barbecues:While in a park, no person shall...Use any portable barbeques unless authorized by permit or where posted to allow the use.

People often prefer to be more spontaneous (permits take up to six weeks). But barbecues are often smoky, which bothers other park users. So if you want to bring a BBQ, set it up FAR AWAY from the main activity areas (i.e. far away from the playground, sports fields, or the main walkways). And if your barbecue smokes up the park, the staff will ask you to put it out.

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