Riverdale Farmer’s Market
The summer harvests are now in full swing and the Market has lots of fresh produce every Tuesday afternoon.  This week, there were blueberries from Sudbury, lavender from Niagara, veggies from Port Hope, Long Point, Picton and Rice Lake.  Suppliers from Toronto provided organic, vegan and gluten-free desserts. The guy selling ricotta, feta, yogurt, fresh eggs and olive oil was happy to explain why his life had become so much better after he left the restaurant biz!  My top prize for a name went to “Relish Yo’ Mama” – a project of the Composte Council of Canada, proud sponsors of Soupilicious.  Riverdale Park, Sumach and Winchester, every Tuesday afternoon from 3 to 7 pm until October 31.

Last minute announcement
Cabbagetown South Residents are hosting “Champagne & Strawberries” tonight, June 28 from 7:30 to 9 pm at 203 Seaton Street.  It’s a triple-header - your chance to enjoy your neighbours, to munch on fresh, in-season strawberries and to launch the Canada Day weekend in style.  $10.  To learn more details and to register, click here.

Football at The Ben Wicks
Robert invites you to drop by The Ben Wicks (424 Parliament) to enjoy the Euro championship.  The game starts at 2:45 pm on Sunday.  At the Wicks, you can sit outside and watch the game on their new patio screen or wander inside for regular viewings.  Lots of good football-friendly snacks and cool adult beverages available as well.

Summerlicious is back
It’s time for the summer’s city-wide food festival.  Reservations are now open. The event itself takes place from July 6 to 22.  Over 180 restaurants are participating and four are nearby – in Cabbagetown, Stonegrill $35 dinner (51A Winchester, 416-967-6565, click here for the menu) and in the Distillery, Archeo $35 dinner (Bldg 45, 416-815-9898, menu here), Boiler House $35 dinner (Bldg 46, menu here) and Pure Spirits Oyster House & Grill $20 lunch and $35 dinner (Bldg 62A, 416-361-5859, menu here).

Spencer West climbs Mount Kilimanjaro
Spencer lost his legs below his pelvis when he was a child because of a genetic disorder.  Today, he works at Free the Children (233 Carlton) and he’s a familiar sight in Cabbagetown.  His climb up Africa’s Mount Kilimanjaro is itself a remarkable feat.  He’s combined that accomplishment with a fundraising effort to raise money for fresh water supplies in Kenya – so far, he’s earned $500,000 and he still hopes to get $250,000 more.  The National Post did a story this week about his adventures, his achievements and the ideals that motivate him – click here to read about him.

Regent Park School of Music
Kids from the School performed before 40,000 people last Saturday at the Rogers Centre during Roger Waters’ The Wall – a repeat of their appearance with him in 2010.  Waters himself told them “You were great!”  You can read a review from the Toronto Sun here.  The School will be moving into the new Arts & Culture Centre on Dundas Street in August.  The Toronto Star has written a nice summary of their programs and plans for the future (click here).

Sunday nights at Cranberries
Cranberries (601 Parliament) is one of Cabbagetown’s most comfortable restaurants. They attract a loyal clientele who enjoy both the specials and the welcoming atmosphere.  You can also book their private room for smaller family and group functions – it comes with its own lounge area and the staff provide personal service for the occasion.  Sunday evenings are now a roast beef night – gazpacho or mixed salad to start, roast beef, Yorkshire pudding. seasonal veggies and mashed potatoes for your main course and homemade bread pudding with Irish Whiskey sauce for dessert, all for $17.99.

Step classes at the CYC
Brenda Brown McNee is holding her first-ever early morning sessions at the CYC (2 Lancaster) this summer. It’s an experiment to see whether people want to exercise at an early hour.  Classes will take place from 7 to 8 am from Tuesday July 3 to Thursday August 16. She takes you through aerobics and then some stretching and strength exercises.  These are very sociable neighbourhood events – highly recommended.  $2 per session.  Call the CYC to get info about registering: (416) 960-1032

Students demonstrate on Parliament Street
It’s nice to have Bob Rae and Glen Murray located at 514 Parliament.  Our elected rep’s are readily available there and their office staff do a fine job welcoming us and hearing about our views.  They also attract the wider world into our little Cabbagetown corner.  Last week, a group of students showed up to oppose high tuition fees and to write slogans on the wall and the sidewalk.  And they expressed their solidarity with Quebec students who have so strongly organized on this issue.

Burlesque at Jet Fuel
Chris Hutcheson’s photos will be shown at Jet Fuel (519 Parliament) from July 2 to 31. The show is called “The Garden of Earthly Delights”. It includes images of burlesque legend Satan’s Angel as well as Tiffany Carter who was Miss Nude Universe in 1975 and local and international “Neo-Burlesque” performers from Toronto and Montreal.  Chris describes it as a departure from his work with landscape photography.  Once he started the project, he found that he wanted it to continue, “it’s just a different kind of landscape.” Check out more on the exhibition at http://blog.chrishutcheson.com  and of course, drop in to Jet Fuel.

Riverdale picnic report
The Riverdale Farm picnic (held last Thursday in the Paddock area) was a roaring success.  Early estimates indicate that over 600 tickets were sold and a considerable number of  people who couldn’t be there bought tickets anyway to contribute to the new Farm fundraiser. Those who attended enjoyed themselves immensely.  There were kids everywhere playing games, checking out the animals and wolfing down picnic dinners.  Grown-ups gossiped.  It rained but nobody cared.   Congrat’s to everyone involved.

Tonight’s the night…
Cabbagetown celebrates Riverdale Farm.  Thursday, 5:30 to 10 pm, the Paddock area at Riverdale Farm (Sumach & Winchester).
Bring your own picnic dinner or buy one there – a cash bar is also available.  Games for the kids.  Entertainment. An ice cream cart.  Plus live chickens, pigs and cows!  Bring your friends and neighbours.
Tickets cost $20 ($50 for a family) and all of that money goes to the Farm.  You’ll get a tax receipt for your donation.
It’s a great idea – for background info about the Farm’s future, read Steve’s story here:  http://cabbagetowner.com/

St James Town Improvements
A new marketplace, new banners and extensive new landscaping have been built in St James Town beside the Food Basics store.  Local residents have been guiding this effort and they’re now taking part in the market as vendors.  The results are very positive – residents are earning some extra income, the area has been cleaned up and the space is turning into a local gathering place.  The people at Community Matters have attracted financial support and did the planning for this work – check them out here:  http://communitymatterstoronto.org/  

Herstories Café – Patricia Beatty
Everyone’s welcome - an evening of food, dance, music and history with Patricia Beatty, the co-founder of Toronto Dance Theatre.  George Rust D’Eye will talk about the Theatre, dance performances by Danielle Baskerville with music by Arlo Part and the theme speech by Patricia.  Monday, June 25, registration opens at 5:45 pm.  Free admission. Thanks to Merryberry Café (559 Parliament), Absolute Bakery (589 Parliament) and Jet Fuel (519 Parliament) for their food and contributions. http://cabbagetowner.com   TDT, 80 Winchester (at Metcalfe)

Luminato is here
Dan Bergeron has several installations throughout Cabbagetown as part of this year’s Luminato.  He’s been called a guerilla artist, a guy who blurs the lines between art and advertising and someone who speaks for those who are excluded and ignored.  All of that is blended into his installations here.  There’s a  quick summary of his art here:  http://www.thegridto.com/culture/arts/the-art-of-condos/ . 

Winchester Square Park
Over the past eighteen months, the neighbours on Aberdeen and Ontario have been working with Central Neighbourhood House to build community gardens in the park.  A dozen raised boxes are in place waiting to be planted.  These gardens will produce veggies for local residents and beautify the park area. CNH staff consulted closely with the community and there have been several public sessions. At times, this process has been rocky and argumentative.  It now appears that the completion is in sight.  On Tuesday, several dozen residents came to the park to support the proposal and to indicate to City of Toronto staff that the project has widespread approval. 
There’s a detailed story about all of this at http://torontoist.com/2012/06/will-a-community-garden-bring-lowlifes-to-winchester-square-park/

Welcome Simon and Bo
The Cobourg (533 Parliament) has been a landmark on Parliament (and a favourite for the editorial staff at your blog) since its opening seven years ago.  In the Spring, Simon Lay and Bo Seo became the new owners.  A quick visit shows that they’re keeping the same classy and comfortable atmosphere.  Although the art on the walls has changed, the new works still have a dramatic flair.  Stay tuned as Simon and Bo roll out a new menu and bring on their entertainment.

Cask Beer at Stout
Last Monday, Stout Irish Pub (221 Carlton) were host to Great Lakes Brewery and Cameron Brewing as a kick-off to Craft Beer Week events across the GTA. The two brewers featured seven different cask beers.  Erin Gamelin makes sure that Stout regularly has a cask beer opened for knowledgeable patrons. On Thursday, she has Hawaiian-style Pale Ale from Spearhead and on Friday, it’s King Brewery – both tastings from 7 to 9 pm.
The National Post did a good article about Craft Beer Week, including a story about cask beer at Stout:  http://life.nationalpost.com/2012/06/18/the-beer-frontier-ontario-craft-beer-week-a-primer-of-gta-events/

Real estate news
Let’s be honest here – nothing focuses a Cabbagetown conversation like a juicy bit of real estate news.  So when Catherine suggested that this Newsletter include listings, it was obvious immediately that she was right.  We can’t really accommodate the huge number of listings in our area but we can coordinate a weekly summary of Open Houses. We believe that this will be deeply satisfying for everybody – like a practice run for the Cabbagetown Tour of Homes. We hope that, by next week, we’ll start to receive those notices from our local realtors.
In return for her generous advice, we want to thank Catherine by telling you about her house.  It’s at 4 Laurier and Duncan Fremlin is her broker.  If you want to live on one of Cabbagetown’s prettiest streets (aren’t they all?), give Duncan a call at (416) 462-1888  (http://www.morethanahome.ca)

Congrat’s Chalo
A couple of weeks ago, Prince Charles came to Cabbagetown to visit both the Yonge Street Mission (306 Gerrard) and UForChange (517 Parliament).  Great choices – both of them have made substantial contributions to the lives of young people in need and in distress.  Chalo Barruetta is the Executive Director of UForChange and a dynamic, positive guy.  He handled the nuts-and-bolts of the Prince’s visit with his usual skill.  Congrat’s Chalo.

Entertainment update for The Flying Beaver (488 Parliament). 
For full descriptions of the shows and details about advance ticket sales, go to www.pubaret.com.   Dinner reservations are available before, during and after the shows. Dinner patrons get seating priority. Check out Lobsterpalooza, Wing Ding specials and Poutine Specials.  Sundays feature our Psychic Brunch from 11 am.
Fri – David-Benjamin Tomlinson – Memoirs from Cracktown – 7:30 pm, $15 adv/$20 door
Sat – Burlesque is back with Belle’s Boudoir – 8:30 pm, $15 adv/$20 door.  Followed by Belle’s Dance Party (no cover for show patrons, $5 otherwise.)
Sun – All Strung Up with Jen Calder and Amy Lewis – 7 pm, $10 (suggested). Sundays have Poutine Specials at $5.99.
Mon – You are not alone (a PACY event) – 6 to 9 pm, no cover
Tues & Wed – GLAM! Pride Edition – All star game show revue.  Doors open at 8:30 and show starts at 9 pm.  Tickets $10.  All proceeds benefit SOY.  Wednesdays feature Lobsterpalooza.
Thur – Julie Michels Pride edition – 7 pm, $15 adv/$20 door.  Rob Salerno – 9 pm, $15 adv/$20 door. Thursdays are Wing Ding night.

Entertainment update for Winchester Kitchen & Bar (51A Winchester)
The events calendar at the Winch’s website gives daily updates about their entertainment schedules:  www.winchesterkitchen.com
Fri – Alex St Kitts and the Astrodroids (funk-jazz) – 9 pm, $15
Sat – Luanda Jones Quartet (Brazilian jazz quartet) – 9 pm, $15
Sun – Rob Christian Quartet (soul jazz) – 8 to 11 pm, $10.  Open Mic with Porter at 11 pm
Mon – Genevieve Marentette (jazz duo) – 7 to 10 pm, $10
Tues – Dave Restivo Trio (piano jazz) – 7 to 10 pm, $10.  Cult Movie Tuesday “Rocky Horror Picture Show” at midnight.
Wed – Paul Morrison Jazz Trio (modern piano jazz) – 7 to 10 pm, $10
Thur – Brownman Akoustic Trio (jazz trumpet trio) – 8 to 11 pm, $10

So – you thought you’d seen the last of me!
Me too.  But after I left the BIA, I discovered that I really liked to produce this neighbourhood blog.  I also received almost one hundred emails saying that you enjoyed getting it – thanks for your encouragement. 
This time, my horizons will be a bit wider – I’m going to report on our friends in Cabbagetown plus the stuff that happens in St James Town, Regent Park, Corktown, and the Distillery.  My reports on neighbourhood groups and issues will be stronger.  And I’ll let you know what’s happening in our restaurants and pubs, our galleries and our stores. 
In all of this, I’m going to enjoy a renewed connection with you and with my friends across the neighbourhood.  I’ll welcome your feedback and your info about future events. 
Doug Fisher