November 19

This week’s image:  Whiskey Jack, Photo: Norm Betts



Duncan Fremlin & Whiskey Jack
Whiskey Jack will be singing gospel songs at 4 pm on Sunday November 22 at the chapel in St Simon Church (525 Bloor E).  They know and enjoy the church’s space and use it for rehearsals.  Duncan says that they play a gospel tune in every concert and over the past summer, they devoted a couple of their concerts entirely to gospel music.  Kids are, of course, welcome. No sermons and no ticket fees – but the band will pass the collection plate. 

Breakfast and a movie
The Regent Park Film Festival and the CRC Regent Park Community Food Centre are teaming up to provide a free breakfast before the screening of Shana: The Wolf’s Music.  Saturday November 21.  Breakfast is served at 9 am and the movie starts at 9:30 am – both at the Daniels Spectrum (585 Dundas E).  Reserve your spot here.  

Regent Park Film Festival
To Saturday November 21, Daniels Spectrum (585 Dundas E).  The Festival presents films, workshops, panels and activities.  A school program runs on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.  The Festival Lounge features films by Toronto Reel Asian International Film festival, the National Film Board, Inside Out LGBT Film festival and ImaginNative Film.  Major films are scattered throughout each day`s program.  For full details, go online here.  

Neighbourhood of nations - arts and crafts bazaar
St James Town Arts and the CRC in Regent Park are hosting an arts and crafts sale on Sunday November 22 from 4 to 8 pm in the CRC (40 Oak Street).  There’ll be arts and crafts, kids’ activities, music and food.  It’s our chance to support local artists and craft makers. 

Maureen`s walking group
Maureen Roe is organizing weekly hour-long walkabouts through Cabbagetown.  It`s a chance to stretch your legs while you look at the neighbourhood and meet and talk to friends. The walks start off at the gates of Riverdale Park (Sumach and Winchester) at 9 am on Monday mornings.  Free

CPA Fall meeting
The Cabbagetown Preservation Association’s Fall meeting happens on Wednesday November 25, 7 pm at the Kiwanis Boys & Girls Club (101 Spruce).  Scott Weir from ERA Architects will talk about “Tear down or restore? What do you do about a wreck like 24 Sussex Dr?” There’ll also be presentations to the winner of Streetscapes in Bloom, the winner of the 2015 Peggy Kurtin award, to the CPA’s volunteer of the year and to youth groups who will benefit from the proceeds of the 2015 Tour of Homes. 

Cabbagetown South Christmas party
The annual Christmas party in Cabbagetown South happens at Retsina (209 Gerrard E) on Wednesday December 2 from 6:30 to 9 pm.  It’s always a great time – meet friends and neighbours, gossip like crazy and even catch a glimpse of the rich and famous!  Retsina always sets up a generous buffet.  Prizes and raffles from our local stores.  Cash bar.  Advance tickets are $15 to November 25.  Regular tickets are $20.  Read about the event and get your tickets here.  

Give the gift that gives back
The sewing and cooking collectives in Regent Park are holding a Christmas sale.  It’s a relaxed, after-work drop-in where you can relax, mix, network and make new friends.  There’ll be nibblies to sample and products to buy and local artists will perform.  Thursday, December 3, 5:30 to 7:30 pm, TD Learning Centre (540 Dundas E at Sackville). 

Enoch Turner Schoolhouse
Photo:  Ontario Heritage Trust
The annual Founder’s Dinner celebrates a vintage Christmas at the Schoolhouse (106 Trinity) from 6:15 pm, Thursday December 3.  It’s a fundraiser with a traditional Christmas dinner, carolling and entertainment.  R H Thomson is the emcee.  A Charles Baillie will be honoured as a Heritage Champion.  The evening will finish with dancing to a live band.  Tickets are $110 and they’re available at Eventbrite, here.    

Riverdale Farm uproar
Stories are circulating about an immature Red-Tailed Hawk that’s been chasing the chickens at the Farm.  This is a very ambitious bird.  The chickens must weigh as much as he does.  Nevertheless, feathers were ruffled, chickens ran around in panic and eventually the staff chased them into their shelters. The Farm hasn’t seen a predator as tough as this since the early days of the Rob Ford administration.

Dim sum in Hong Kong
Helen Coltrinari enjoyed a dim sum breakfast during her recent trip to Hong Kong.  Naturally, she wore her spiffy Cabbagetown Tee.  Thanks Helen – great picture. 
If you and your family are travelling to exotic places, anywhere from Etobicoke to Ethiopia, take your Tee shirt, snap a shot and you’ll be featured.  Send your story and images to


Soulpepper’s cabaret series
Judith Lander & Ghislain Aucoin, Homesongs.  Soulpepper (Distillery, 50 Tank House Lane). Saturday November 21,  8:30 pm.  Tickets are $20 available here.

Last chance
Three performances at our local theatres are wrapping up this weekend.
·      Fireworks Festival at Alumnae Theatre (70 Berkeley) finishes with Radical on Sunday November 22.  Click here for more info and tickets.  
·      Spoon River at Soulpepper (50 Tank House Lane, Distillery).  Final performance on Sunday November 22.  Online info and tickets here.  
·      Weesageechak Begins to Dance at the Aki Studio Theatre, Daniels Spectrum (585 Dundas E).  The festival ends on Saturday November 21.  Tickets and info are here.  

Presented by the School of Toronto Dance Theatre.  It’s an ambitious program of main-stage performances showcasing dancers from all three levels of the School’s professional training program.  Works by Marc Boivin, Danny Grossman, Louis Laberge-Cote, Julia Sasso and Apolonia Velasquez.  November 26 to 28 and December 3 to 5, 8 pm, $20 and $15.    Winchester Street Theatre (80 Winchester).  Tickets are available online.  

Tap Ex: Metallurgy
Tapestry Opera’s annual Tap:Ex series explores modes through which opera might assume a 21st-century rebirth. In this third year of the series, Tapestry collaborates with members of F*cked Up, the Polaris Prize-winning punk provocateurs, and two of Canada’s most masterful and versatile opera singers: mezzo-soprano Krisztina Szabó and tenor David Pomeroy. November 19 and November 20 (8 pm) and November 21 (7 pm and 10 pm), 9 Trinity Street, Distillery, Studio 316.  Tickets are $35 and $25, available online.  


This week at the Christmas market

The Distillery’s huge Christmas event kicks off on Friday November 20.  
  • Friday's program includes a tree lighting and opening ceremony at 6 pm, the Next Generation Leahy at 6:15 pm and Christmas jazz by the Ewan Farncombe trio at 7:30 pm and 8:30 pm. 
  • The Next Generation Leahy will perform again on Saturday at 1, 4 and 6:30 pm.  Frost & Ivy are on stage at 7:20 and 8:15 pm. 
  • The Mill Street Daily Carolling starts at 6 pm on Saturday.  For 15 minutes every day, carollers and the audience will sing Christmas favourites. 
  • Throughout the week, other headliners include the Hart House Chorus (Sunday at 12:30 pm), country singer Rebekah Stevens (Sunday at 5:30 pm), U of T’s trombone choir Jinglebones (Sunday at 6:30 and 7:30 pm), Alana and Leigh Cline on guitar and fiddle (Tuesday at 6:30 and 7:15 pm),  soprano Antonella Cavallaro (Wednesday at 6:30 and 7:15 pm), a capella performance by the SING! Singers (Thursday at 6:30 and 7:15 pm), TWISTED SISTER with Dee Snider and Taylor Dayne (Friday at 6:15 pm) and Friday night jazz with the (Un)Forgettable Trio (starting at 6:30 pm). 

Our Lady of Lourdes choir
We can enjoy our local kids from Our Lady of Lourdes School (Sherbourne and Wellesley) performing at the Christmas Market.  They’ll be onstage from 12:30 pm on Saturday. 


A new type of family home
Photo:  Cole Burston, Toronto Star
The Toronto Star has an intriguing article about four people – two couples – in the Bedard family.  The parents, their son and their daughter-in-law bought a house together in Cabbagetown South.  The result is interesting.  The parents had the money to cover the down payment and each couple took out a mortgage to carry the balance.  As a result, the kids are building equity towards their future household plans.  Read their story here.

Parliament Street Data Centre
The new building next to the Distillery on Parliament Street is the subject of a Torontoist blog article. Several characteristics of its location and function dictated the final design.  Click here to read the story.  

The Pan Am athletes’ village
The buildings that housed the Athletes’ Village over the past summer are now being converted into condominiums. It’s a completely new neighbourhood, soon to be called the Canary District.  2000 people will live here.  There’s over 40,000 square feet of retail space.  All of this will open up next year, beginning with the retail areas in January and then the residential units in April. On November 6, the Metro published a detailed story about this transition and the future for this community – click here to read it.  


Cabbagetown’s holiday kick-off
Save the date – Saturday November 28 from noon to 2 pm.  It’s the Cabbagetown BIA’s kick-off for the holiday season.  Santa will be there.  There’ll be wagon rides, Santa selfies, music and refreshments.  Treats for your dog.  Tree trimming.  And more.  Bring a donation or a non-perishable food item for the Daily Bread Food Bank and get a free Cabbagetown tote bag in return. At the corner of Carlton and Parliament.

 Shop the Neighbourhood
The BIA is participating in the Shop the Neighbourhood campaign on Saturday November 28.  One day only.  So far, twenty shops and restaurants are offering holiday specials ranging from store-wide discounts, product discounts, free soup and free beer samples.  Christmas is a good time to support the folks who contribute so much to make our neighbourhood interesting and lively.  Shop in their stores and enjoy a holiday reward.  Click here to see who’s part of this special event.  

Twelve days of Christmas
Kendall & Co (514 Parliament) has its own interpretation of the Twelve Days of Christmas, featuring special holiday gift ideas and Christmas ornaments.  Over two hundred ornaments available in limited quantities.  Get yours early.  From the drummers drumming and pipers piping to the partridge in the peartree, go to Kendall’s website to see it all.  Find what you want at Toronto’s best store for Christmas gifts and holiday décor.  Christmas hours – open daily.

Paintbox gift baskets
Paintbox Bistro (535 Dundas E) has a line of seasonal gift baskets.  Save 15% on all orders placed before December 1.  The restaurant works with local farmers to ensure the freshest produce.  The baskets can be ordered online and paid through credit cards and interac.  Pickups and delivery services are available.  For the detailed menu, check out the Paintbox website.  


Sumach Espresso
Photo:  Victor Vasquez, blogTO
A new coffee shop has opened on Sumach at Shuter (118 Sumach), just south of Regent Park.  Christina Cheung has written an introduction in blogTO.  It’s more good news - the revitalization in Regent Park and the gentrification of Corktown are generating these interesting new shops and cafes.  Click here to read her review.  

Wild game tonight
F’Amelia’s (12 Amelia) special wild game menu will be served tonight at 7 pm. It includes an option to enjoy a wine pairing with your meal.   To see the details, visit F'Amelia's website.  

Peartree’s celebration
Peartree’s anniversary month specials are still going on through November.  The celebration is marking its 22nd anniversary with a 40% off, three-course prix fix menu.  Dinner for two is $50 and if you add a glass of wine for each person, it’s $60 for two.  The menu choices are all listed online here  (507 Parliament) 

Congrats 420 Smokehouse. 
BlogTO has listed Virginia’s 420 Smokehouse (420 Parliament) on its Top-25 review of Toronto’s best barbeque restaurants, noting “its eclectic menu of low and slow cooking.”  Click on the link in the story to read a detailed review.   

Congrats Under the Table
Ever since they opened Under the Table (568 Parliament), Kim and Betty have been earning rave reviews online.  For a quick rundown on customers’ comments, check out the Yelp site. 

Mill Street and Soulpepper
The dinner and a show special is still available at the Mill Street Beer Hall (21 Tank House Ln, Distillery).  Enjoy a three-course dinner and get a 15% discount with your theatre ticket stub.  Start with soup or salada.  Select a Vienna schnitzel, steak and frites or pn-seared salmon for your entrée.  For dessert, there’s apple strudel.

Christmas decorations are arriving
The House on Parliament (454 Parliament) has installed its Christmas decorations in its flower box along the sidewalk.  Great to see!



Contact info
Alice’s Place, 554 Parliament St, (647) 931-9088,
Cranberries, 601 Parliament St, (416) 925-6330
El Catrin, 18 Tank House Lane, Distillery, (416) 203-2121,
House on Parliament, 454 Parliament St, (416) 925-4074,
The Irv, 195 Carlton Street, (647) 350-4787,
The Local GEST, 424 Parliament St, (416) 961-9425,
Merryberry, 559 Parliament,
Mill Street Beer Hall, 21 Tank House Ln, Distillery, (416) 681-0338,
Murgatroid, 568 Parliament, (416) 323-9381,
Odin, 514 King W, (647) 350-6346,
Paintbox Bistro, 555 Dundas St E, (647) 748-0555,
Soulpepper, Young Centre, 50 Tank House Lane, Distillery, (416) 866-8666,
Stirling Room, 16 Trinity, Distillery District,
Stout Irish Pub, 221 Carlton St, (647) 344-7676,
Under the Table, 568 Parliament St, (647) 351-1533,

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


The Irv
7pm, Geoff Willingham
The Local GEST
8 pm, Open mic with Porter
Mill St Brew Pub
7 pm, Tap That Cask- live acoustic music


The Distillery’s Christmas Market
6 pm, opening ceremony, Next Generation Leahy and the Ewan Farncombe jazz trio
Mill Street Beer Hall
8 pm, Vinyl nights with DJ Humble Mike of the Record Collective
Mill Street Brew Pub
6:30 pm, Beer School with Dan North
Stirling Room
Theatrical Friday reserve on the guest list.  $20
Under The Table
9 pm, Karaoke


The Distillery’s Christmas Market
12:30 pm, Our Lady of Lourdes choir. 1, 4 and 6:30 pm, Next Generation Leahy. 7:20 pm, Frost & Ivy, $5 general admission
Mill Street Beer Hall
8 pm, Vinyl nights with DJ Humble Mike of the Record Collective
Soulpepper Cabaret Series
8:30 pm, Judith Lander & Ghislain Aucoin, Homesongs.  $20
Stirling Room
Stirling Saturdays, reserve on the guest list


The Distillery’s Christmas Market
12:30 pm, Hart House Chorus. 5:30 pm, country singer Rebekah Stevens. 6:30 pm, UofT’s trombone choir, Jinglebones. $5 general admission
Alice’s Place
9 pm, Karaoke with Vee
The Local GEST
4:30 pm, Sunday afternoon jazz with Laura Marks & Ross MacIntyre


Stout Irish Pub
7:30 pm, Headscratchers trivia


The Distillery’s Christmas Market
6:30 pm, guitar and fiddle with Alana and Leigh Cline
Stout Irish Pub
7:30 pm, Headscratchers trivia


The Distillery’s Christmas Market
6:30 pm, soprano Antonella Cavallaro
Alice’s Place
9 pm, Karaoke
The Local GEST
7:30 pm, Smart Ass Trivia with Porter
Paintbox Bistro
7:30 pm, Corktown Ukelele Jam


The Distillery’s Christmas Market
6:30 pm, a cappella by the SING! Singers
The Irv
7pm, Geoff Willingham
The Local GEST
8 pm, Open Mic with Porter
Mill St Brew Pub
7 pm, Tap That Cask - live acoustic music
Under the Table
9 pm, Karaoke


The Distillery’s Christmas Market
6:15 pm, Twisted Sister with Dee Snider and Taylor Dayne. 6:30 pm Friday night jazz with the (Un)Forgettable Trio
Mill Street Beer Hall
8 pm, Vinyl Nights with DJ Humble Mike of the Record Collective
Mill Street Brew Pub
6:30 pm, Beer School with Dan North
Stirling Room
Theatrical Friday with resident DJ Rod Bravo, reserve on the guest list.  $20


The Distillery’s Christmas Market
6:30 pm, jazz singer-songwriter Barbra Lica, $5 general admission
Soulpepper Cabaret Series
8:30 pm, Gabi Epstein with Kevin Wong, Brendan Wall and Jenni Burke, “Girl to Funny Girl, a year-end gabaret.” $20
Stirling Room
Stirling Saturday.  Reserve on the guest list.  $20


The Distillery’s Christmas Market
6:30 pm, Euba tuba quartet, $5 general admission
Alice’s Place
4 pm, Karaoke with Vee
Local GEST
4:30 pm, Sunday afternoon jazz with the Chris Gale Trio