Tomorrow evening, Yorkville — no stranger to luxury cars — will be transformed into a pedestrian-only zone, where an impressive selection of the greatest marvels in the auto world will be displayed for one and all to gawk at.
From Ferraris and Lamborghinis, to Aston Martins, Bugatti Veyrons and Bentleys, a staggering 120 vintage, customized and luxury cars will be displayed along Yorkville Avenue, and Cumberland and Bellair Streets all night long.
This “pit stop” in Toronto is just one facet of a weeklong international event, named the Gumball 3000 Rally — in essence, an around-the-world party for the rich and famous, now in its 12th year.
It all began in 1999, when Gumball’s founder, a young Englishman named Maximillion Cooper, a onetime racing driver, decided to bring together 50 affluent friends from the music, film, fashion and sports industries for a one-of-a-kind party: driving their own dazzling cars on a weeklong, 3000-mile route across Europe, while enjoying parties at each pit stop in locales like Amsterdam and Copenhagen.
“It was a way to get friends together to have a fun seven-day “road-trip” adventure,” he says.
Since then, the event has grown to include 250 participants. This year’s rally kicked off in London, England last Saturday and ends in Times Square in New York on Friday.
“When the drivers reached Stockholm, they were all be flown, along with their cars to Bangor, Maine, to continue on the route to Boston, Quebec City, Toronto and finally New York,” explains Cooper. “The Gumball is a gathering of artists, musicians and Hollywood stars, travelling the world for a week, with music concerts, car displays and skateboard ramp demonstrations throughout the adventure,” says Cooper. “It brings together people of all nationalities for fun.”
Today, the event attracts celebrity participants from actor Adrien Brody to Snoop Dogg, as well as Russian billionaires, sheiks and Middle Eastern princes.
Though you may not know the princes by face, some of the familiar faces you might catch a glimpse of tomorrow include David Hasselhoff, Michael Madsen, singer Eve, supermodel Jodie Kidd and skateboarding legend Tony Hawk.
This free, public event begins at 7 p.m. and runs until midnight. For more info, go to bloor-yorkville.com.