October 5

This week’s image: Parks Department consultation tent in Riverdale Park on Saturday September 30, part of the signage pilot project.



Signage pilot project
The Parks Department is designing new signage for parks and trails across the city.  A pilot project to test public reactions and to test the durability of the sign’s materials has been launched in Riverdale Park and along the Don Valley trail.  It’ll continue until the Spring, 2018.
Four signs have been placed on the upper level of Riverdale Park West - at Carlton and Sumach, at the end of Carlton, at Winchester and Sumach and in the middle of the park. 
There are several goals for the pilot.  The Parks Department wants to create consistent signage for the whole city. It wants to blend together as many smaller signs as possible into one sign.  The public is asked to comment on the design, typeface and maps. Finally, the signs will be exposed to winter weather to see whether they can stand up to harsh climate conditions.
Check out the project online and answer the City’s survey before October 23.  Click here.  

Reactions to the signage project
Two local groups have reacted to the signage pilot project.
The Cabbagetown Heritage Conservation District Advisory Committee acknowledges the project as “exciting” and  “an initiative to add important wayfinding to our parks”.   The Committee does, however, have serious concerns that the City’s Heritage Preservation Services were not included in the preliminary design work nor did the Parks Department seek a heritage permit before proceeding.  They also lament the lack of local consultations even though work on the signs has been going on for a year and a half. 
Randy Brown, chair of the Friends of Riverdale Park, has come out strongly against the signs.  Even though this is a pilot project, he doesn’t want them in the park. In an email to the Mayor, local heritage activists and the Toronto Star, he describes the project as “an offensive event” and the consultations as “an act of remarkable cynicism.”
There also has been an act of minor vandalism.  Someone glued a note complaining about the signs on the fronts of all four of them.  This had the unintended benefit of providing the Parks Department with its first test of the durability of the signs - the notes were easily removed.

A new councillor for Ward 28
City Council voted on Wednesday to declare Ward 28 vacant following the death of Councillor Pam McConnell.  Council also decided that the vacant seat should be filled by an appointment rather than a by-election.
The appointment will be made at a special session of City Council to be held at 9:30 am on Thursday November 2 in the Council Chambers. Interested individuals are asked to complete a Consent of Nominee and Acknowledge of Qualifications form - available from the City Clerk’s office. The deadline for submitting the form to the City Clerk is 4:30 pm on Monday October 23.
During the November 2 meeting, each applicant will speak to City Council for five minutes.  Councillors will each ask one question to each applicant. City Council will then vote for the new Councillor and a bylaw will be passed to confirm the appointment.
The motions and rules are available online.  

Update - new boundaries for Ward 28
The City of Toronto has approved new boundaries for the City’s Wards. It’s an effort to make them more equally sized.  Our Ward 28 will be deeply affected by these changes.  Two new Wards will be created from the old one - divided roughly by a line along Shuter Street.  The current Ward 28 will be renamed to Ward 23 in the north and Ward 21 in the south.
Two Councillors have appealed Council’s decision to the Ontario Municipal Board and a hearing is scheduled for the near future.  If the OMB supports Council’s decision before December 31, the City Clerk will have enough time to implement the new boundaries for the 2018 election. 

Grace on a bike
Photo: Grace at Cape Spear, Newfoundland
Grace is now in Newfoundland and her tour is just about over.  She’s been from St John’s to Corner Brook.  Then she’s going to Channel-Port-aux-Basques and she’ll take the ferry back to Nova Scotia. Her finishing celebrations will be in Halifax on October 17.  
Her friends and supporters are still making donations.  107 people have contributed over $10,000.  She’s handling her fundraising through Canada Helps.  

Angela Jervais-Read
Angela is leading two workshops at Spirit Loft in October and December.  Later in 2018, she’ll be in India in January and February at the Sampoorna Yoga Centre in Goa, leading the advanced vinyasa yoga teacher training program. Find out more about her courses at her website.  

Volunteers urgently needed by Dixon Hall
Meal delivery volunteers - drivers and runners will take frozen meals to their clients along a scheduled route.  The shifts run from 8:45 to 11 am for a minimum of one day per week over three months.  
Please call (416) 863-0499 ext 3225 or email volunteer@dixonhall.org

Give thanks, with love
Together with the Metro Toronto Convention Centre’s pastry team, the Sherbourne Health Centre is holding its second annual fundraiser to support its LGBTQ youth program. This year, they’re selling pecan, pumpkin and apple pies at $20 each with all of the income going directly to the Centre’s Monday night drop-in dinners.  Please note - a nut-free pie is also available.
Online orders have now closed.
If you didn’t order online, drop in to the pick-up locations on October 6 and buy one on the spot - the Sherbourne Health Centre (333 Sherbourne) from 11 am to 6 pm or the Metro Toronto Convention Centre (255 Front St) from 11 am to 2 pm. 

Neighbourhood congrats
Tabatha Southey has a new book.  Collected Tarts & Other Indelicacies is available at regular bookstores and Amazon, Indigo and other online outlets.  The publisher’s catalogue describes it as a “juicy” volume.

John Jay has been slaving away getting a new restaurant organized and opened.  His pals will want to visit him at Bunny’s (912 Queen E at Logan).  

Marilyn Wilpute has a new puppy.  Her name is Aster.  You can congratulate her personally at her monthly nail clinic from 9 am to 4 pm on Saturday at Pet Valu (240 Carlton).  $10.


Thanksgiving dessert from Staij
Staij (552 Parliament) is baking up pecan, pumpkin and apple pies for your Thanksgiving feast.  You can pre-order them up to October 5 for pickup on Saturday October 7 or Sunday October 8.  There’ll be limited quantities for walk-in customers as well.  Call (416) 792-2505 or email info@staijandco.com 

Turkey news
Mark at St James Town Steak & Chops (516 Parliament) is getting his turkeys on Wednesday.  Place your orders now for a pick-up later in the week.
Mark’s supplier has a shortage of the larger birds over 18 pounds.  If you want one of these, be sure to check with him quickly.  He has a good supply of smaller birds below 16 pounds. 

Save the date for Cranberries (601 Parliament).  Siva will prepare butternut squash soup and organic salads for starters, oven roast turkey with cranberry sauce, stuffing, mashed potatoes and seasonal veggies for the main course and apple pie with ice cream and pumpkin pie with whipped cream for dessert.  It’s a good idea to make a reservation early for this popular evening.  Sunday October 8 and Monday October 9, 5 and 7:30 pm each day, $30.  Call (416) 925-6330.

House on Parliament
The HOP (454 Parliament) will celebrate Thanksgiving from 5 pm on Sunday and Monday. There’ll be a traditional dinner - turkey, cranberry sauce, gravy, stuffing, mashed potatoes and fresh veggies.  $21.  The regular roast beef dinner will continue on Sunday night as well.

The Local GEST
Enjoy a traditional turkey dinner for $21.95 and toss in some pumpkin pie with whipping cream for $5.95.  Your dinner includes Ontario corn-fed roasted turkey, seasonal veggies, roasted, mash or garlic potatoes and cranberry sauce and stuffing. Sunday October 8 and Monday October 9 from 4 pm.  424 Parliament.

Peartree (507 Parliament) is preparing a three course, prix fixe dinner.  For starters, there’ll be butternut squash soup followed by turkey with apple and onion sage dressing, cranberry sauce and gravy, mashed potatoes and fresh veggies.  Pumpkin pie for dessert.  $25.99.  Saturday from 5 to 11 pm and Sunday and Monday from noon to 11 pm.  For reservations, call (416) 962-8190.

Fun stuff that’s a bit different
After you’ve had enough roast turkey, a few places have other interesting ideas.
The Irv (195 Carlton) invites you to brunch on Monday morning - 10 am to 2 pm.  If it’s a nice day, enjoy The Irv’s great side patio.
Dominion Pub & Kitchen (500 Queen E) is serving turkey burgers.  They’re part of its menu for Craft Oberfest, the beer event that’s currently running there.
Stout Irish Pub (221 Carlton) will give you a hot turkey sandwich and other turkey features over the weekend, starting on Friday night.


Chrysanthemum show at Allan Gardens
Visit the Conservatory at Allan Gardens (Jarvis and Carlton) from Sunday October 8 to Sunday November 5.  Daily from 10 am to 5 pm, free admission.  

Chair yoga
Dixon Hall (58 Sumach), together with the Toronto District School Board, is offering a five-week yoga course with Kassandra Prus.  Chair yoga is designed for people with limited mobility.  It involves breathing, stretching and twisting while seated in a chair. It starts on October 10 from 12:15 to 1:15 pm.  To register through TDSB, use course code # 86952 and to register with Dixon Hall, call Carmen at (416) 863-0499, ext 2017. 

Rumble: The Indians Who Rocked the World
The Regent Park Film Festival presents this documentary as part of its annual fundraising evening.  The film focuses on Indigenous musicians who have been some of the most influential of our time - Jimi Hendrix, Link Wray, Buffy Saint-Marie, Robbie Robertson and more.  The evening starts with a reception compliments of Cinq Food and Steam Whistle Brewery, a silent auction and a raffle.  Tickets are $40 and $50.  Thursday October 12, 6:30 pm, Daniels Spectrum (585 Dundas E). Click here for more info and tickets.   

The Mindfulness Challenge
This year’s theme is kindness - the intention and desire to bring happiness to someone.  The world needs more kindness and mindfulness can help. The event will include four hours of mindfulness activities and it’s designed for everyone from the beginner to a zen master. The main venue is the Daniels Spectrum (585 Dundas E) on Sunday October 15 from 11 am to 3 pm.  For more information, to register and to donate, go online here.  

A Taste for the Arts
Sponsored by the Cabbagetown Community Arts Centre (422 Parliament), this is a moveable feast offering food, wine and music in three beautiful Cabbagetown homes.  The CCAC provides music and art lessons for kids who cannot otherwise afford it.  Tickets are $125 - a tax receipt is provided.   Buy your tickets online here.  


A memorial to Pam McConnell
City Council started up a process to honour Pam and the late Ron Moeser.  Council has asked that a procedure be established to receive suggestions from the general public. David Rider has written about this in the Toronto Star.   

Portlands shootings
Photo:  Toronto Police Service
Two men were shot and killed outside the Rebel nightclub at 3 am on Sunday.  Witnesses saw a black SUV fleeing the scene up the Don Valley Parkway.  Police later apprehended it at York Mills.  Two men have been charged with the murders.  The CBC’s report describes the crime and includes a video of the arrest.  Click here

Prince Harry at We Day
Photo:  Nathan Denette, Canadian Press
We Day - the youth empowerment event held annually by Free the Children - enjoyed a surprise visit by Prince Harry.  He spoke about the need for optimism despite the fears and dark terrors that often arise in the world.  Other speakers included sprinter Andre de Grasse, singer Kelly Clarkson and actor Jacob Tremblay.  Read the CBC’s story about his appearance here.  

Seaton House
Reuel S Amdur, a social worker and former supervisor at Seaton House (339 George), describes the steps needed to replace the aging facility in a Toronto Star article.  Click here.   

WE Charity
The Corktown home for WE Charity, a part of the Free the Children organization, has opened at Queen and Parliament and it’s a stunning renovation. The new building will undoubtedly energize the surrounding Corktown community.  For a full description and lots of photos, click here and read the blogTO story.  

Congrats Odin
Another magazine has weighed in about the charms of Odin Cafe & Bar (514 King E).  Flare did a survey of outstanding coffee cafes from coast to coast and Odin is included.   


Resellers policy at our Market
The Cabbagetown Farmers’ Market does not accept vendors who are reselling other producers’ vegetables.  Farmers who apply to be vendors tell the Market staff what products they grow and want to sell.  Michelle and her colleagues at other GTA markets work together to verify farmers’ claims about their produce, including by visiting their farms.  A farmer may want to sell produce from a neighbouring farm and can do so if staff are told about it in advance.  It is definitely not permissible for a vendor to go to the Food Terminal, No Frills or some other outlet to get supplies to resell at the Market.
A recent CBC program highlighted the reselling practice.  For Michelle, this program was troubling because it overlooked the care taken by conscientious Market organizers and vendors.
The fruit and veggies on sale now are at their prime.  The Market was busy on Tuesday - perfect weather, good food and the pleasure of its friendly atmosphere.
The Market will continue for another two weeks. 

Corktown Farmers’ Market
3 to 7 pm on Thursdays until October 19 in the Underpass Park  (Lower River Street).  Vendors include Clearwater Farms, Durham Honey Farm, Field Sparrow Farm, Monforte Dairy and Sunray Orchards.  The park is home to some of Toronto’s best murals and street art.  


Thanksgiving abounds at Kendall & Co
A bounty of everything you need to dress your table and to serve your friends and family. And don’t forget about that hostess gift if you’re invited to share in the harvest. All available at Kendall & Co. 
We located at 514 Parliament - stop in to see us on your way between turkey and wine - both are right next door. Thanksgiving made easy thanks to our local shops. Store hours: 10 am to 6 pm, weekdays and 11 am to 5 pm,  Saturdays. http://kendallandco.ca/fyi/retail  

Fancy Frank is here
At long last, hot dog lovers have a new home at 484 Parliament.  It’s open and looking very good.

The Farley campaign is back again at Cabbagetown Pet Clinic (239 Gerrard E).  It’s a fundraiser.  The fund offers support to people who can’t afford veterinary services for their pets.  There’s a jar of jelly beans at the Clinic - come in and guess how many are in it.  $3 guess.  The closest guess wins the jelly beans and a $25 Visa gift card.  

Addresses, online info and current events.

30th Anniversary Season
Berkeley Street Theatre
26 Berkeley Street
(416) 368-3110

Life After by Britta Johnson (book and music)
September 23 to October 22 

Aki Theatre, Daniels Spectrum
585 Dundas Street E
(416) 531-1402

Caminos Festival 2017 with Aluna Theatre
October 4 to 8

20th Anniversary Season
Young Centre for the Performing Arts
50 Tank House Lane, Distillery District
(416) 866-8666

Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett
September 8 to October 7
Picture This by Morris Panych & Brenda Robins
September 9 to October 7
Riverboat Coffee House: The Yorkville Scene
Soulpepper Concert Series 
October 6 to 14
Huff with Cliff Cardinal
A Native Earth Performing Arts Production
October 16 to 28
Guswenta Gathering
October 16 to 28
The Goat, or Who Is Sylvia by EdwardAlbee
November 1 to 18



  • For contact info about these clubs and restaurants, see the list at the bottom of this page.  
  • If there's a cover charge or tickets are sold, the prices are listed.


Local GEST
8 pm, Jeff Barnes and Noah Zacharin
Mill Street Brew Pub
6 pm, Live music
Mill Street Beerhall
5 pm, Fall in love with beer, $69.99
New Town
Oki Doki Karaoke


Alice’s Place
10 pm, Karaoke
9 pm, 3000AD
New Town
Oki Doki Karaoke 
African weekends with DJ Fox and a guest DJ


New Town
Oki Doki Karaoke
10 pm, Nairobi Nights, $10


Alice’s Place
4 pm, Karaoke with Vee
9 pm, Your girl Flav
Local Gest
4:30 pm, Sunday afternoon jazz with Joe Spina and Mark Teixeria
10 pm, Reggae Sundays, $10


Stout Irish Pub
7:30 pm, Headscratchers Trivia


Stout Irish Pub
7:30 pm, Headscratchers Trivia


Alice’s Place
9 pm, Karaoke
7 pm, Tracey Gallant duo
Local GEST
7:30 pm, Wednesday Night Trivia with Porter
Latin Wednesdays with DJ Fight - reggaeton, merengue, rumba salsa, Afromusic and more.  $10.


Local GEST
10 pm, Comedy night with Ethan O’Reilly
Mill Street Brew Pub
5 pm, Live music
New Town
Oki Doki Karaoke


Alice’s Place
10 pm, Karaoke 
10 pm, Ladies night and dancing, ladies free, others $10
New Town
Oki Doki Karaoke
African weekends with DJ Fox and a guest DJ


9:30 pm, DJ Dash
African weekends with DJ Fox and a guest DJ


Alice’s Place
4 pm, Karaoke with Vee
Local GEST
4:30 pm, Sunday afternoon jazz with Mark Sepic
New Town
Oki Doki Karaoke
10 pm, Reggae Sundays, $10


554 Parliament St, (647) 931-9088, https://www.facebook.com/alicesplacetoronto
17 Gristmill Lane, Distillery,  (647) 352-2766
354 King St E, (46) 901-1188
500 Queen St E, (416) 366-5555, https://www.facebook.com/DominionTO/
18 Tank House Lane, Distillery, (416) 203-2121, https://www.facebook.com/elcatrin.ca
366 Queen St E, (647) 347-3873, http://fusedining.com 
95 Carlton Street, (647) 350-4787, https://www.facebook.com/theirvpub/
478 Parliament St, (416) 928-1358
424 Parliament St, (416) 961-9425, http://www.thelocalgest.com/
21 Tank House Ln, Distillery, (416) 681-0338, http://millstreetbrewery.com/toronto-beer-hall/
21 Tank House Ln, Distillery, http://millstreetbrewery.com/toronto-brew-pub/
514 King E, (647) 350-6346, https://www.facebook.com/odinhus
413 Parliament Street
555 Dundas St E, (647) 748-0555
326 Parliament, (647) 989-9127,  https://www.facebook.com/cometoquincys/
Young Centre, 50 Tank House Lane, Distillery, (416) 866-8666,

568 Parliament St, (647) 351-1533, https://www.facebook.com/underthetabletoronto