Photo essay: CNE 2017

The Canadian National Exhibition (CNE, or The Ex, as we locals call it) has marked the unofficial end of the summer in Toronto since forever, and I haven't missed one since I moved to this city 15 years ago. It's crowded, it's loud, dirty, and everything is a cash grab, including the over-the-top food selections like fried butter (?!), but none of those are really why my wife and I go visit every August. It's our yearly chance to walk around the grounds like a pair of 8-year-olds, with a corn dog on one hand, cotton candy on the other, and ignore that you're an adult with responsibilities for one night, because definitely–most definitely–you totally have a chance to win that giant Pikachu.