The Non-Baller's Guide to NBA All-Star Fun

Feb 9, 2016
The NBA is hosting its annual all-star game in Canada for the first time, and we already know tickets aren't cheap -- Forbes estimates it's the most expensive such event since 2011. If you're not rich, lucky or named Drake, don't despair -- there are plenty of other ways to make the most of the Feb. 12-14 weekend.


Travelzoo is offering two lucky members tickets to the weekend's hottest party, hosted by Snoop Dogg and Shaquille O'Neal on Friday, Feb. 12. Each person receives free food and drinks, plus access to the VIP area (total value $1500). Head over to our Facebook page to find out how to win. (UPDATE, FEB 12, 9:25 A.M.: A contest winner has now been chosen! You can still buy tickets to see Snoop Dogg on Feb. 13, see below.)


If you don't win our contest, you can still see Snoop Dogg perform at Uniun Nightclub on Saturday, Feb. 13 (last time we checked, tickets were available for $30).

For a more family-friendly atmosphere, check out NBA Centre Court, where future Michael Jordans can receive hands-on tips from pro ballers ($15 per kid, $30 per adult).


Photo from Flicker by Robert Taylor

Taxis are threatening to protest against Uber X, so your best bet may be to avoid both services. Subways and streetcars are the cheapest way to get around the city, and TTC Ambassadors will be at major stations to help visitors. We recommend purchasing a day pass, which offers unlimited rides well past LeBron James' bedtime ($12 per day for up to two adults and four youths; available Friday Feb. 12 through Family Day Monday).

Coming from the airport? The newly-constructed Union Pearson Express will take you to and from downtown for free all of Family Day weekend, which happens to fall Feb 13-15.


Photo by Steven Elphick for Travelzoo

Travelzoo has deals for several restaurants near the Air Canada Centre; our favourites are 40% off a steak and lobster feast at Bardi's Steak House ($75 per person; closed Sunday) and half-off Parisian dining at Le Papillon on Front ($59 for two people).

Dinner at Thai restaurant Bangkok Garden, which is an easy subway ride away, is also half off ($49 for two people).


Photo from Flicker by Paul Barcellos Jr.

If you're only in town for a short while and want to cram in as much as possible, it may be worth purchasing a CityPASS. For $72, you'll get access to $131 worth of activities, including the CN Tower -- which is right next to True North, the NBA All-Star entertainment hub. The tower will be lit in red, white, blue and orange to commemorate the festivities.

Note: Information is still emerging about the events surrounding All-Star Weekend, so we'll keep updating this page as we hear more. Got some tips of your own? Let us know in the comments below.

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