Volunteers for the Forsythia Festival
The Festival happens in Wellesley Park on Sunday May 5.  It actually starts in Riverdale Park and a parade takes the kids, dogs, parents, police cars and a band through the neighbourhood to Wellesley.  This year, there’s a jazz band, a beer garden and a plant sale along with the regular events.  Can you help?  Please contact the organizers at info@cabbagetowner.com .  It’s always a fun day and this year, it promises to be even better.
And don’t forget – if you know someone who should be considered as the Festival King, Queen and Parade Marshall, send in their name to shannongrimm@hotmail.com before April 19.

Marilyn at Pet Valu
Marilyn returns to Pet Valu (240 Carlton) on Saturday to give your pets their Pawdicures, 10 am to 4 pm, $10. The third annual Pet Appreciation Month has also started up. Buy a paw and help a pet. Your donation will be directed to Catbusters or to the Pet Food Bank.

Spring tune-ups at Cycle Solutions
Kale reports that the big Spring rush is now underway.  As a result, Cycle Solutions (444 Parliament) has set up an appointment system.  Call (416) 972-6968 to get your date. If you bought your bike there, you’ll get priority treatment for your tune-up for the first two years.  Full tune-ups are $50 plus parts.  This is also the best time of year to check out new equipment – the latest designs in helmets, lights and other accessories are all in stock.  If you’re curious about the latest trends, check out the new wheel sizes in mountain bikes.  And see the new electronic shifting systems for road bikes with batteries and wires instead of cables. 

Radiant lotus qigong for women
At Sundara Yoga, Karusia Wroblewski is leading this special event.  Qigong is the Chinese version of yoga.  Karusia`s course runs from April 20 to May 4, from 3 to 5 pm.  There`ll be a free information session on Saturday April 6 from 3 to 4 pm.  There`s also a description on Sundara`s website. 
Sundara has a new schedule available now for Spring on the website.

Take a hike – opening reception
"Take a Hike" at MJG Gallery (555 Parliament). Enjoy Laura Culic’s mixed-media encaustic works and Carol Westcott’s acrylic paintings of Ontario landscapes. The show runs for a month.  The opening night reception is Friday, April 5th, from 6 to 9 pm.
Gallery hours are Tuesdays to Sundays 11 am to 6 pm. (416) 923-4031 or markaloo@yahoo.com

Add Spring to Your Step
KENDALL & Co (227 Carlton) now has a bigger selection of indoor-outdoor rugs. Thirteen colourful patterns and five sizes (from 2’ x 3’ to 8’ x 10’, round and runner), starting from $75. Made of mold and mildew resistant durable synthetics, they’re weather safe for decks, patios at the cottage or in the city and they’re perfect for high traffic areas such as kitchens, entry ways, foyers, mudrooms, bathrooms, powder rooms, laundry rooms. View them all online here While you are there, shop the clearance sale with 40% OFF home accessories.  (416) 363-9914.  Monday to Friday 10 am to 6 pm and Saturday 11 am to 5 pm.


Stan Venecek
Stan died on March 31.  He was a familiar and welcome figure in Cabbagetown. His restaurant, Margarita’s Mexican Fiesta, was a landmark on Carlton Street for nineteen years until it closed late last year.  He leaves his two daughters, Natalie and Lauren, and four grandchildren. A service will take place at Rosar-Morrison Funeral Home (467 Sherbourne at Wellesley) on Saturday at 10 am.

Art and music at Cafune
Tai Selbach’s art is coming to the walls at Cafune for the next two months.  You can see her work at her website.   To celebrate, Vicente has asked Henrique Matulis (jazz guitar) and Henrique Cazes (cavaquinho) to provide an evening of Brazilian music.  Saturday from 6:30 to 8:30 pm.  Cafune is a small room and it’ll fill quickly so reservations are recommended (647) 748-7884.
Cafune has a very good Facebook page – recommended for anyone thinking about an evening's dinner and wondering what’s on the menu.

Congrat’s to Jet Fuel

John Englar’s Jet Fuel (519 Parliament) has just celebrated its 21st anniversary. His coffee shop has become a fixture in the neighbourhood. To his dedicated customers, Jet Fuel is an institution, a daily necessity, a clubhouse. Articles about Cabbagetown by foreign travel writers, local bloggers and agitated customers always refer to Jet Fuel. Some love his attitude and his coffee and others grind their teeth. Everyone has an opinion, including John. However it’s measured, John’s 21-year run is a remarkable achievement and it’s a pleasure to wish him 21 more.

Thai to Go

Dale and Joe have sold their restaurant.  They plan to relocate to Hong Kong in mid-April where Dale will handle a new assignment for CIBC.  Thai to Go and Thai by Prasai (452 Gerrard) have been a remarkable success.  Much of it, of course, resulted from Joe’s confident skills in his kitchen.  It also was a smart business and a welcome supporter of our community. Congratulations to both of them for their success and best wishes for their future plans.
The new owners are Kao (the chef) and Brennan.  More about them in the near future.

Congrat’s as well to Café Olya
blogTO has done a nice review of our latest coffee shop.  Cafe Olya will fit in well in the cozy neighborhood, making a perfect stop for a sweet treat on a Sunday afternoon or a quick coffee run on a rushed Thursday morning.”  540 Parliament.


Whiskey Jack
Duncan Fremlin and Whiskey Jack are appearing at the Eton House (710 Danforth) on Saturday from 4 to 7 pm.  Lots of Stompin’ Tom tunes (click here and listen to one of their tribute songs) and a special appearance by Randy Morrison, Canadian Fiddle Champ for the last three years.  No cover, kids welcome.

Support the Regent Park School of Music and enjoy a cabaret evening at “Cabaret Concert with Cadence”, a fundraiser being held at First Unitarian Church (175 St Clair Ave W) on Saturday April 6.  Cadence is a Toronto-based a cappala jazz quartet who’ve received worldwide rave reviews.  Light refreshments, cash bar.  Tickets are $40, available online (Visa only). 

Toronto Welsh Male Voice Choir
On Friday April 12, the Choir sings at Metropolitan United Church (56 Queen St E) at a benefit to support the Toronto Kiwanis Boys & Girls Club (101 Spruce at Sackville).  You can hear excerpts from its songs on the choir’s website.  The Club’s renovated facility now provides ongoing support to over 1100 local kids.  Tickets are only $25.  If you can’t go, please consider buying a ticket and then donating it to someone who otherwise couldn’t afford it. 

Toronto Pop-up Orchestra
This new chamber music orchestra is launching itself with an afternoon concert at 598 Yonge, Third Floor, on Sunday April 14 at 2 pm.  Cabbagetown musician Nonna Aroutiounian is a member. The concert is a fundraiser (tickets are $10) and will feature pieces by Spanish and Latin American composers, including an original work by Patrick Arteaga.  You can buy tickets at the door or contact nonna.arout@gmail.com

Reaching Out Through Music
Reaching Out Through Music provides musical and social opportunities for kids in St James Town and it needs your support to do this.  On Saturday April 20, you can hear New Choir, Meredith Shaw and Scott Pietrangelo perform with the Children`s Choir.  There’ll also be a special appearance by the De La Salle Oakland Crusaders Brass Ensemble.  It’s a fundraiser.  Tickets are $20 (patrons $100 with an $80 tax receipt).  The silent auction starts at 6 pm and the benefit concert at 7:30 pm at St Simon the Apostle Church, 525 Bloor (between Sherbourne and Parliament). Buy your ticket at the door or contact (416) 923-8714, ext 205, or jamierotm@hotmail.com


The Brussels/Toronto Project
Toronto Dance Theatre presents the third installment in this series of collaborations bringing fresh international ideas to Toronto.  This year’s program includes new works from two of Brussels’ leading lights, Thomas Hauert and Etienne Guilloteau.  April 18 to 20 and 24 to 27 at 8 pm, plus a matinee on April 21 at 2 pm.  Prices vary, including a premium ticket performance on April 24 with drinks, a reception and a chance to meet the artists. Winchester Street Theatre (80 Winchester)  For more information, click here. 
Monday, April 8, 7 pm, 80 Winchester.  Meet the artists and choreographers, learn about the show’s creation and see excerpts.  Free event.  For info, call (416) 967-1365.

Dancing the summer away at CCDT
The Canadian Contemporary Dance Theatre (509 Parliament) has three programs running this summer.  You’ll find links to each one in the left-hand sidebar.  For kids ages 4 to 8, there’s Summer Arts offered from July 22 to 26.  Sun Dance is aimed at students who are 8 to 20 years old and it runs from July 1 to 19.  From August 26 to 31, Ignite is a six day choreographic residency where you can explore the complete choreographic process with contemporary choreographic artists from TOES for dance and New York guest artists MADboots.  Check out the programs, registration details and costs at the CCDT website.

School at Toronto Dance Theatre
The summer school program is designed for individuals who are pursuing or considering a professional career in contemporary dance.  It includes a challenging program, renowned teachers, technique classes and a healthy, fun learning environment. July 1 to 26.  The website has details about curriculum, faculty, fees and schedules.  Click here.

Regent Park towers
John Bentley Mays has been commenting about the towers that were designed by Peter Dickinson in the original Regent Park.  He considers them noteworthy examples of Dickinson’s work and he worries about their pending demolition.  Several readers have written to him with ideas and observations about their restoration and future use.  You can see the article here. 

Nelson Mandela Park School
The restoration of this building – listed by the City of Toronto as a heritage site – has gone well over budget and has been delayed by unforeseen construction issues.  Finally, students have returned to these classrooms.  Justin Skinner has written about the new building and the controversy.

Regent Park School of Music
Over the past few weeks, there have been several stories about fundraising projects on behalf of the Regent Park School of Music.  This week’s announcements, for example, include Cadence, a concert happening on Saturday.  John Lorinc in the Globe & Mail has written about the school’s programs and its impact and he explains why this fundraising is urgent.  A student may only pay $2 for a class in a course costing up to $1500 over the year. 



Contact info
Alice’s Place, 554 Parliament St, (647) 931-9088
Ben Wicks, 424 Parliament St, (416) 961-9425, www.benwickspub.com
Cafune, 194A Carlton Street,  (647)748-7884, Facebook and http://cafune.ca/
Dominion on Queen, 500 Queen St E, (416) 368-6893, www.dominiononqueen.com  
Flying Beaver, 488 Parliament St, (647) 347-6567, www.pubaret.com
Paint Box Bistro, 555 Dundas St E, (647) 748-0555, www.paintboxbistro.ca
Stout Irish Pub, 221 Carlton St, (647) 344-7676, www.stoutirishpub.ca  
Winchester Kitchen & Bar, 51A Winchester St, (416) 323-0051, www.winchesterkitchen.com  

If there's a cover charge or tickets are sold, we’ve listed the prices. Otherwise, the event is free.

Dominion on Queen
7 pm, The Wee Folks Club, $10
Flying Beaver
7 pm, Match Fever & the Dating Games with Maggie Cassella, $10/advance, $15/door
Winchester Kitchen & Bar
9:30 pm, Jeff Barnes & Noah Zacharin

Dominion on Queen
9 pm, Havana To Toronto Live Afro-Cuban, $10
Flying Beaver
7 pm, Paula Wolfson “Strings attached” with Kirk Elliott, $15/advance, $20/door.
9 pm, Amy Lewis & Jen Calder “All strung up” acoustical music with James Mulvale, Trish MacAulay & Jordan Alexander,  $5/ advance and door
Winchester Kitchen & Bar
10 pm, Solar Messiah 13

6:30 to8:30 pm, Brazilian music with Henrique Matulis (jazz guitar) & Henrique Cazes (cavaquinho)
Dominion on Queen
4 to 7:30 pm, Ronnie Hayward, pwyc
8:30 pm, East end comedy revue with Host Dave Martin & Mike Wilmot, Darren Frost, Jen Grant, Hunter Grant, Julien Dionne, Steph Tolve & Cal Post with pianist Suga Jam.
Flying Beaver
7 pm, “This much I know”, opinionated nonsense with Marilla Wex,  $10/advance, $15/door
9 pm, Donna Greenberg sophisticated, sassy & spicy songs with Jordan Klapman & Kobi Hass, $15/advance, $20/door

Alice’s Place
4 pm, Karaoke
Dominion on Queen
11 am to 3 pm, Rockabilly Brunch with the Cosmotones
7 pm, Landen Veira Quartet jazz and blues, $10
Flying Beaver
7 pm, Danish Anwar hosts Martha Chaves “Full Spectrum Comedy” with guests Paul Bellini & Robert Keller. Funds go to Native Women’s Resource Centre, $15/door
Stout Irish Pub
5:30 pm,  Toronto Boardgaming Society,  Strategy Boardgaming Night
Winchester Kitchen & Bar
10 pm, Beau’s Open Mic with Porter

Dominion on Queen
7 pm, Good Neighbours Open Mic night, pwyc
Winchester Kitchen & Bar
9 pm Win-Prov
10 pm,  Industry Night

Dominion on Queen
8:30 pm, Hot Club of Corktown Django Jam, pwyc
Stout Irish Pub
7:30 pm, Nerd Night pub quiz
Winchester Kitchen & Bar
10 pm, epic film night

Alice’s Place
9 pm, Karaoke
Dominion on Queen
8 pm, Corktown Ukelele Jam
Flying Beaver
7:30 pm, Neil Diamond tribute show starring Joey Purpura, $15/advance, $20/door
Winchester Kitchen & Bar
7:30 pm, Smart Ass Trivia

Dominion on Queen
9 pm, Susie’s Alibi rockabilly swing, $10
Flying Beaver
7:30 pm, Ali Hassan & Eman  “Muslim and funny”, $15/advance, $20/door
Winchester Kitchen & Bar
9:30 pm, 506 Funk Fest with Emmerson Street Rythym Band and REDBRICK

Flying Beaver
7 pm, Ted Morris comedy “Dawn of the Ted”, $15/advance, $20/door.
9 pm, the New Testament according to disco “Oh God” with Matti McLean,  $15/advance, $20/door
Winchester Kitchen & Bar
9 pm, 506 Funk Fest with The Out-of-Townrs, Kilowatt and DJ Soulstice

Dominion on Queen
4 to 7:30 pm, Ronnie Hayward, pwyc
7:30 pm, Shakespeare Bash’d  fundraiser
9 pm, Sonic Blues series “Blues & troubles”
Flying Beaver
7 pm, Mark Cassius and Diane Leah “50 is the new Black” $20/advance, $25/door
9 pm, Maggie Cassella “Because I said so, warm-up show”  $15/advance, $20/door
Paintbox Bistro
Cuban jazz and music with Jane Bunnett and Hilario Duran, dinner and performance $45, performance only $15
Winchester Kitchen & Bar
9 pm, 506 Funk Fest with Thunderfunk, Funkbucket and Kilowatt

Alice’s Place
4 pm, Karaoke
Dominion on Queen
11 am to 3 pm, Rockabilly Brunch with the Cosmotones
Flying Beaver
7 pm, Peter Donato Cantautore, $10/advance, $15 door
Winchester Kitchen & Bar
7 pm, Unhappy hap rap party
9:30 pm, 506 Funk Fest closing party with Open Funk Jam