Toronto police report
Toronto Police Service has reported additional details from their investigation into the murder of Nighisti Semret.  The news report along with contact information is here. 
In a press conference on Monday May 6, Detective Sergeant Gary Giroux reported several new details about the attacker.  Police have obtained male DNA from Ms Semret's bag, her fingernails and the umbrella used by a person who came to her aid. The attacker was wounded during the attack on the hand or arm.  Robbery may have been a motive. Police are asking us to think again about events at the time of the attack.  The attacker is a white male, 5’10” to 6’2” tall, 150 to 200 pounds in weight, medium build and he has a wound on his arm or hand which may or may not have been medically treated.
The police have announced a $50,000 reward for information leading to the attacker’s identification, arrest and conviction.

Corktown Common
We’re surrounded by energetic new developments that are completely changing the face of eastern Toronto.  We can add the waterfront to that list.   Check out a recent article in The Grid about the new 18-acre waterfront park being built in the West Donlands.
The Grid and Waterfront Toronto are running a contest to settle a new name for the space.  When you get to the article, cast your vote.  Needless to say, people in Corktown hope that all of us will support their choice – “Corktown Common”.  The voting deadline is midnight, Thursday May 16.

The 2013 fundraising gala for the Regent Park School of Music happens next Monday, May 13, 6:30 to 9 pm in the Ada Slaight Hall at the Daniels Spectrum (585 Dundas E). JAZZ-FM’s Jaymz Bee is the host and the program includes the Heavyweights Brass Band, Side 3, RPSM students and special guests Matt Dusk and Robi Botos.  The silent auction includes a Yamaha Clavinova Digital Piano. Wine, beer and hors d’oeuvres.  Tickets are $125 (with a tax receipt) – order them here.

Book Fair
Every year, Yonge Street Mission holds a book fair and provides books to hundreds of people who wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford them. This year’s event happens from May 29 to June 1. Before then, they need to collect our donations. Drop off your unwanted books at YSM, 270 Gerrard East until May 13. Of special need – new and gently used Bibles, books for kids and youth, dictionaries, and cook books.

ROM Walk
The Royal Ontario Museum is conducting its annual walkabout through Cabbagetown on Wednesday May 22 from 6 to 8 pm. Meet at the northeast corner of Parliament and Spruce beside No Frills – the leader will have a blue umbrella.  The walk happens rain or shine, about 90 minutes long. For more information, click here.

Community yard sale
Start collecting your stuff. The Cabbagetown South annual Community Yard Sale happens on May 25. The organizers are putting considerable effort into it – including announcements on Craigslist and Kijijji. They expect a good crowd looking for the perfect treasures that only a yard sale can produce. If you want to participate, please register so they’ll know how many vendors will be attending.

At the Fleck Dance Theatre at Harbourfront. Three premiere performances by the Canadian Contemporary Dance Theatre (509 Parliament). Two days only, May 24 and 25, at 8 pm. Reserve your tickets now at (416) 973-4000 or click here for more info.

Riverdale Farm volunteers
If you love to garden, Riverdale Farm needs your help.  Volunteers are needed from 4 to 6 pm every Wednesday (May 15 to mid-October) and from 10 am to noon on one Saturday each month (May 18, June 29, July 27, August 31, September 21 and October 19.)  You’ll be preparing beds, planting annuals, weeding, deadheading, watering and edging.  Meet at the Drive Shed.  Tools provided.

Artscape Salon – Picnic in the Park
The second annual fundraising gala for Artscape takes place in the Daniels Spectrum (585 Dundas E) on Wednesday May 22 from 6 to 10 pm. It’s a salon styled picnic where guests and artists will mingle and talk personally over dinner. Silent and live auctions will offer works by the guest artists. Cocktail reception at 6 pm and dinner at 7 pm. Artscape is dedicated to making space for creativity and to changing communities with creativity. It’s a partner with TCHC, the Daniels Corporation and community organizations at the Daniels Spectrum. Tickets are $95. For more info and ticket purchases, click here.

Save these dates
A celebration of sheep at Riverdale Farm – Saturday May 25, 10 am to 3 pm
Riverdale Farmers Market – every Tuesday from May 28 to October 15, 3 to 7 pm
Doors Open – Saturday & Sunday, May 25 & 26
The Cabbagetown garden tour – Sunday June 2
More info to come next week.


The Vintage Show
Once again, Leslie is joining Gadabout and Angela McCool to present the Absolutely Vintage Clothing Show.  It features vintage clothing, jewellery, textiles, accessories and more.  It’s a one-day show on Saturday from 10 am to 5 pm at The Maple Cottage, 62 Laing Street (south of Queen, one block east of Leslie). For more info, click on the show’s website here. 

Kendall & Co
KENDALL & Co's (227 Carlton) flora vase collection has arrived just in time for Mother's Day. Beautiful flowers, butterflies and birds are imprinted on the glass creating a contemporary finish to accent any bouquet. Even without flowers, the vase will stand attractively by the window where the light will enhance its colourful impressions.  More Mother's Day gifts at the shop. 10 am to 6 pm weekdays, 11 am to 5 pm Saturday.

The Beer Store
Our Beer Store at Parliament is one of four locations across Toronto undergoing an experimental facelift.  The new colour schemes and logos outside (and the nice clean graffiti-free façade) are just one part of the change.  Inside, there’s a separate space between the bottle return counter and the shopping area and a freezer with cold beers and digital touch displays for product selection. Plus the folks behind the counter are all graduates of “The Beer College” where they’ve learned the amazing nuances of beer knowledge.  Regular customers already know the pleasures of beer drinking and now we’re being upgraded into a whole new world full of pleasurable beer buying.

The Bargain! Shop
The Mymark store (formerly The Bargain! Shop) at 429 Parliament has closed as part of the restructuring process that its parent company is experiencing.  It’s a big space and an important one for the Cabbagetown business community.  There’s no news yet about a future tenant.  News stories on the CBC and in the Star have noted that locations like ours in downtown Toronto are in the area where another discount chain, Dollarama, wants to expand.

Sundara Yoga Studio
Angela at Sundara (492 Parliament, side door) is now carrying a beautiful skincare line called Honey Girl Organics. Made from raw Hawaiian honey, beeswax, propolis, pollen and royal jelly, these creams, toners and balms contain some of nature’s finest anti-aging agents. These ingredients work together to heal and renew your skin. You can read Angela’s comments about them and see the product list and prices here.


Whiskey Jack wants your Mom
Duncan Fremlin and Whiskey Jack are back at the Cadillac Lounge (1296 Queen W) on Sunday, May 12 between 4 and 7 pm.  That happens to be Mother’s Day.  So - he says - buy her some flowers and bring her along.  He’s sure that she’ll like their special Mom tunes, special Mom food and special Mom beer.  No cover charge and grand kids welcome.

Café Olya – everyone who makes a bulk coffee order over the weekend (to Sunday, May 12) will receive a 20% discount.  540 Parliament.

St Jamestown Steak & Chops – once again, Mark will be giving away long stemmed carnations to women who visit the shop.  It’s a venerable tradition, now in at least its 25th year.  519 Parliament.

Jamestown Milk (592 Parliament), Parliament Street Smokes (609 Parliament), Fairway Market (520 Parliament) and Cabbagetown Mini Mart (464 Parliament) – all have a great selection of cut flowers and garden plants.

Labour of Love
(242 Carlton) – your shop for Mother’s Day.  This week only, get a free gift with every purchase over $100.

Brunch, lunch and dinner on Mother’s Day

Cranberries (601 Parliament) – the brunch menu (from 9 am to 3 pm) has lots to offer, especially pulled pork bennies or French toast stuffed with mixed berries and mascarpone cheese.

Dominion on Queen (500 Queen E) – brunch at 11 am to 3 pm. The Cosmotones start playing at 11:30 am, no cover. For Mother’s Day, there’s a special menu and kids under 10 eat free!  The patio will be open. Weather permitting.

F’Amelia (12 Amelia) – special for Mother’s Day, open from noon to 3 pm for lunch. Dinner begins at 5 pm. Pizzas available all day to 10 pm.  The chef recommends the Lake Huron pan fried pickerel with endive bagaroule. Enjoy your lunch on one of Cabbagetown’s prettiest patios. Reservations at (416) 323-0666.

Flying Beaver (488 Parliament) – at brunch (11 am to 3 pm), every mom will enjoy free champagne and orange juice and in the evening there’s a three-course dinner for $24.95.  Reservations recommended at (647) 347-6567.

House on Parliament (454 Parliament) – brunch starts at 11:30 am and dinner (the roast beef special) at 5 pm.

Merryberry Café & Bistro (Parliament) – brunch starts at 10:30 am until 3:30 pm and there’s a new dish with fried eggs on grilled asparagus and cremini mushrooms.  Merryberry is one of mom’s favourite Cabbagetown cafes.  The patio in the back is now open.

Paintbox Bistro (555 Dundas E) – special Mother’s Day brunch menu includes frittata, pastries made in-house, granola and fruit salad, Caesar’s salad and a very special Mother’s Day muffin.  For reservations, call (647) 748-0555.

Peartree (507 Parliament) - A favourite for Mother’s Day brunch and for dinner - three course meal for $20.  For reservations, call (416) 962-8190.

Stout Irish Pub (221 Carlton) – brunch opens from 11 to 2:30 pm on Sunday.  Every mom will enjoy a Belgian chocolate covered strawberry and champagne (with a brunch or dinner order).


Welcome Fare Game
Gord, Arafat and Shaikh have opened Fare Game (195 Carlton) and they’re serving both lunch and dinner.  They’re working in JAMcafe’s former home and fortunately, they plan to keep the same warm, dark wood interior.  They’re also taking full advantage of the two outdoor patio spaces.  The menu themes will include lots of wild game choices – boar, ostrich, bison, rabbit – along with lots of choices for pasta, chicken, salmon and beef.  They’ll be open daily for lunch at noon and dinner from 5 pm.  Try a glass of Sillery, a white pinot noir from Frecciarossa – three of us sitting on the patio on Wednesday afternoon unanimously recommended it.

Cobourg sings
John Jay is back in town (although with his French accent and his new skinny physique, he may be hard to recognize at first).  He’s decided to continue the Cobourg Sings! phenomenon.  It’ll be happening at Winchester Kitchen & Bar (51A Winchester) on Friday May 17 from 8 pm.  Once again, proceeds from the event will support UForChange. 

Brazilian music at Cafune
Every Thursday from 6:30 to 8:30 pm, Brazilian music is coming to Cafune (194A Carlton).  Henrique Matulis will play his guitar and bring a special guest.  For the opening night on May 9, he’ll be with Eduardo Varela, playing instrumental bossa nova.  While you’re at Cafune, check out the artwork by Tai Selbach (his website is here) and try the three-course prix-fixe dinner (menu here), $19.95 or $24.95 with a glass of wine.  For reservations, call (647) 748-7884.

Merryberry’s new menu
Cyril has chosen Laura Calder’s cookbook “Dinner Chez Moi: The Fine Art of Feeding Friends” for his menus in May and June.  She inspired him to open Merryberry and to stray from classical French cuisines into playful and whimsical ideas while still using their traditional elegance and flavours.  So his next menu features corn chowder, an avocado duet, quinoa salad, beet and orange salad, black bean halibut, lamb curry and lemon mousse.  It all starts on Mother’s Day.  559 Parliament.

More congrats for Kingyo
Kingyo (51B Winchester) has launched into a wave of good reviews from food critics across the city.  Joanne Kates has added her approval.  She’s placed Kingyo at #68 on her 2013 Top 100 list  – “Does Toronto need yet another izakaya import from Vancouver?  If it’s Kingyo, yes!”  Check out Kingyo’s website for menus, hours and photos. 

Thanks F’Amelia
Brenda Brown McNee is widely known for her enthusiastic volunteer work in Cabbagetown and at the Cabbagetown Youth Centre.  This week, she circulated an email thanking John, Todd, Juliette and Acushla for their support of the CYC.  The restaurant is donating 1% of its cash and debit card sales to the CYC and is also sponsoring one of their soccer teams.  12 Amelia.

All of us want to thank the people who stepped up and gave their gifts to make this day such a success.  Please visit the website here to get contact information about the Festival donors.  These people are helping our community – we want to recognize them and support them in return.

St Jamestown Steak & Chops
Mark is one of the stalwart supporters of the Festival.  This year, he expanded his family’s involvement to the third generation – his son Alex flipped burgers and advised his dad throughout the day.  Mark added pulled pork sandwiches to the menu and his hotdogs, as usual, were biggies.  St Jamestown Steak & Chops 516 Parliament.

Stout & Steam Whistle
One of the big new features at this year’s Forsythia Festival was its beer garden.  Erin from Stout Irish Pub (221 Carlton) worked with Steam Whistle Brewery to make it a success.  She made sure that everything ran smoothly and Steam Whistle provided the beer.

Café Olya
Mike and Olyana provided outstanding coffee and pastries.  After a gruelling half-hour’s march in the parade, at least one guy thought that their tent was like an oasis in the desert. Their business is new to Parliament Street and they’re determined to dig deep roots in the Cabbagetown community.  Café Olya, 540 Parliament.

Pizza Pizza
The bouncy castle was back.  There were some geezers in the crowd suffering from hangovers who, no doubt, became a bit queasy at the sight of it.  Fortunately for them, the rules clearly stated that only people shorter than 4’6” tall were admitted.  And there were a lot of them.  The kids crammed into the castle all day long.  Pizza Pizza, 560 Parliament and Wellesley at Parliament.

Money, money, money
Several other restaurants made significant gifts to the Festival.  Thanks to the Ben Wicks (424 Parliament), Cafune (194A Carlton), F’Amelia (12 Amelia), House on Parliament (454 Parliament), Johnny G’s (478 Parliament), Kingyo (51B Winchester), Merryberry Café & Bistro (559 Parliament) and Qi Sushi (358 Gerrard E).

More money!
A long list of impressive businesses added their financial support. 
Fair Trade Jewellery Company (523 Parliament), Richard Silver from Sotheby’s International Realty and the Toronto Centre Federal Liberals (to honour Bob Rae) were all partners, donating over $500 each.
Canadian Contemporary Dance Theatre (509 Parliament), Daniel et Daniel (248 Carlton), David Harland & Frances McNamara at Harvey Kalles Real Estate, Hepburn Landscape Contractors, HomeLife Realty One (501 Parliament), Kendall & Co (227 Carlton), Menagerie Pet Shop (549 Parliament), and Toronto Centre Provincial Liberals – all were Supporter level donors at $100 to $500 each. 
The donors at the Contributor level, $50 to $100 each, were Cabbagetown Organics (499 Parliament), the Green Party, Lennie’s Whole Foods (489 Parliament), MJG Gallery (555 Parliament), Nettleship Hardware (576 Parliament) and the UK Tuck Shop (533 Parliament).

Prizes and services
Coca Cola Canada, Royal Home Hardware (485 Parliament) and Silverstein’s Bakery  made donations in kind.
Amazing raffle prizes were donated by Cycle Solutions (444 Parliament), Eclectisaurus (249 Gerrard E), Epicure Shop (473 Parliament), Face Furniture Optical (464 Parliament), Injeanius Jackets, Jordano Skin Care (252 Gerrard E), Labour of Love (242 Carlton), Mi Casa (238 Carlton), re:print (388 Parliament), Shiatsu & Thai Massage, Star Nails (442 Parliament), Stella & Dot, and Sundara Yoga Studio (492 Parliament).


It may or may not be true…
Rumours float gently aboard Cabbagetown breezes that a new bakery café is coming to Carlton Street.  And a new restaurant offering southern barbeque will open on Parliament near the Ben Wicks.  Good luck to my diet if these guys arrive.  More news will come whenever it’s available.



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

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


6:30 pm, Henrique Matulis (guitar) and Euardo Varela in an evening of instrumental bossa nova
Flying Beaver
7:30 pm, Ergo Sum with Pamela Gilmartin, Jeff Shewchuck & Donna Michelle St Bernard, pwyw
Winchester Kitchen & Bar
8 pm, Lovesick, Unspoken Theatre’s evening of dark romance.
10 pm, DVS Swing Dance Sessions


Dominion on Queen
9:30 pm, Swamperella, $10
Flying Beaver
7 pm, “When God told me I was gay” piano & voice with Peter Lebuis & David Nelson, $15/advance & $20/door
9 pm, Scott Thompson “Meet John Coon”, $20/advance & $25/door
Winchester Kitchen & Bar
8 pm, Naught – a fundraiser with excerpts from plays, raffles, prizes and more.


Dominion on Queen
4 to 7:30 pm, Ronnie Hayward, pwyc
9 pm, The Don River Blues Band, $7
Flying Beaver
7 pm, two award-winning songwriters Anna Gutmanis & Kevin Wong, $10/advance & $15/door
9 pm, Pink Turf welcome party – details TBA
Paintbox Bistro
8 pm, The Heillig Manoeuvre with Stacy McGregor, Alison Young, Charlie Cooley & Henry Heillig, dinner & performance $45, performance only $15
Winchester Kitchen & Bar
7 pm, Retro Radio Hour – Bygone Theatre fundraiser


Alice’s Place
4 pm, Karaoke
Dominion on Queen
11 am to 3 pm, Rockabilly Brunch with the Cosmotones
Flying Beaver
6:30 pm, Caroline Murphy presents “Rare Single Malt Tasting” with dinner, $65
Winchester Kitchen & Bar
8 pm, Radio Wild
9 pm, Beau’s Open Mic with Porter


Dominion on Queen
7 pm, Ukelele 101
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, $5
Flying Beaver
7:30 pm, “Working It”, pro comics try out stuff, no cover
Winchester Kitchen & Bar
7:30 pm, Smart Ass Trivia
10 pm, Karaoke at the Winch with Jason Rolland


6:30 pm, Henry Matulis and guest, Brazilian jazz.
Dominion on Queen
7 pm, Wee Folk Club, $10
Flying Beaver
7:30 pm, Lucas Silveira, CD Listening Party, $10/advance & $15/door
Winchester Kitchen & Bar
10 pm, Phill Hood, “The Human Jukebox”


Dominion on Queen
9 pm, Jazz Forge, pwyc
Flying Beaver
7 pm, “May Flowers Devour an Hour” comedy with Jeff E, Gareth Lloyd and Megan Myke, $10/advance & $15/door
9 pm, Comedy, cabaret and coffee talk with Ryan G Hynds,  $10/advance & $15/door
Winchester Kitchen & Bar
8 pm, The Cobourg Sings!

Dominion on Queen
4 to 7:30 pm, Ronnie Hayward, pwyc
9 pm, Sonic Blues Series with Paul Reddick, $10
Flying Beaver
9 pm, Carole Pope featuring Tim Welch & Sean Kelly, $20/advance, $25/door
Winchester Kitchen & Bar
10 pm, Blues & Troubles

Alice’s Place
4 pm, Karaoke
Dominion on Queen
11 am to 3 pm, Rockabilly Brunch with the Cosmotones
Flying Beaver
9 pm, Carole Pope featuring Tim Welch & Sean Kelly, $20/advance, $25/door
Stout Irish Pub
5:30 pm, Strategy Boardgaming Night by the Toronto Area Boardgaming Society
Winchester Kitchen & Bar
9 pm, Beau’s presents Open Mic with Porter