Obstacle by Kien Pham; Photo by Kids in T.O.

We love The Beach – even in winter.

That is, especially in winter when international and local artists and designers add colour and conversation to the Toronto shores of Lake Ontario with the annual design competition Winter Stations. The outdoor public art exhibition gives Torontonians extra incentive to get the heck outside when this city is its coldest. And we think this year’s edition is the best.

While art may not be at the top of my kids go-to list, they love it – lots of space to run free, play, hide, climb (not sure if this was the artists’ intent). Parents, you may even have a chance to talk about the revolution inspiration of these artworks.

From a logistical point of view, these pop up art installations are perfectly placed with all seven installations along the same beach making it easier to experience them all in one go with little legs in TOw. There is also a playable community piano and fire pit.

It’s free and is only on until April 1, 2018. You should go. And if you don’t, well, here is what you’re missing:

Trip tip: Here is a list of more kid-friendly stops along the beach. It’s also near the Beach Skateboard Park.

Make Some Noise by Alexandra Grieß and Jorel Heid; Photo by Kids in T.O.

Pussy hat by Martin Miller and Mo Zheng; Photo by Kids in T.O.

Nest by Ryerson University; Photo by Kids in T.O.

Wind Stations by Paul van den Berg and Joyce de Grauw; Photo by Kids in T.O. (PS: Apparently, at the end of the exhibition, the designers will dismantle it and give the pinwheels to kids.)

Revolution by OCADU team; Photo by Kids in T.O.

Rising Up by University of Guelph’s School of Environmental Design and Rural Development; Photo by Kids in T.O.