April 12

This week’s image:  parents and kids who supported the Sackville Street daycare centre gathered on its front porch on Tuesday April 10.



Cabbagetown daycare centre
The plan for a new daycare centre at 461 Sackville at Amelia was refused by the City of Toronto’s Committee of Adjustment on April 11. Robert Ulricki, the building’s owner, was represented at the meeting by Lea Wiljer, his architect, and the opponents were led by Amelia Street resident Blaine Pearson.  
The Committee’s chair made it clear that its mandate is the property itself and the impact of proposed changes on the neighbourhood. The Committee would not consider whether a childcare centre is actually needed.
Councillor Lucy Troisi also spoke and opposed the project. She focused on traffic flow and potential blockages by parents bringing kids to the centre and interpreted these scenarios as serious safety hazards.
From the beginning, Committee members aggressively questioned the owner’s proposal. Throughout the hearing, the Committee agreed that the opponents were raising important issues.  They seemed to view the preliminary planners’ reports as criticisms of the project whereas the owner viewed the same material as important guidelines for future action. In the end, the Committee followed Councillor Troisi’s reasoning and accepted the view that the daycare would create traffic and parking problems and possible safety issues.

St James Town expansion
Greatwise Developments is exploring opportunities for a mixed-use development in St James Town.  The site will stretch from Wellesley to Howard, east from Rose to Parliament. They’ve hired Brook Pooni Associates to work with local interests, collect feedback and explain the developer’s plans.  The project is still in preparation.
Urban Toronto has a good description at its website.  
The second public consultation will happen on Wednesday April 18 from 6:30 pm - the first meeting happened March 8.  The architects will make a presentation at 7 pm.  Wellesley Community Centre (495 Sherbourne), Room A.
Greatwise Developments can be found online here.   
Greatwise Development’s parent company is G&S Group of Companies whose rental portfolio includes 240, 260 and 280 Wellesley, 650 Parliament and 77 Howard. G&S can be found online here.   

Don Valley Parkway closure
Photo:  Metro News
The closure planned for this weekend has been cancelled because of the threat of severe weather.  It’s now scheduled for a closure from 11 am on Friday April 20 to 5 am, Monday April 23. The City of Toronto closes the road annually for a cleaning.

Lookin’ good
With Tania on their side, the Leafs are winners.


Community Environment Day
Bring your stuff and drop it off for recycling and reuse - appliances, cameras, electronics and old phones, propane tanks, skates, household hazardous wastes, unused medicines, fluorescent bulbs and batteries.  Our Ward’s event happens on Tuesday April 17 from 4 to 8 pm, Lower Sherbourne Park located on Frederick Street south of the Esplanade.  

Clean Toronto Together
Photo: The Aberdeen Avenue 2017 clean-up team.
Saturday April 21 and Sunday April 22.  It’s the City’s annual Spring cleaning campaign.  Local groups are invited to join and when a group registers, the City provides free litter and recycling bags and arranges for pick-ups. Contact the City online.  
Aberdeen Ave Residents have registered for Saturday from 10 am to noon.  Cabbagetown Residents Association will meet on Saturday at 10 am at Sumach and Winchester to work in Riverdale Park West.  
Corktown Residents & Business Association will meet at Corktown Common on Sunday from 10 am to 1 pm.  
The Allan Gardens cleanup is on Sunday from noon to 3 pm.  

Celebrate the Bengali and Tamil new year
Friday April 13 from 2 to 4 pm at the CRC (40 Oak St).  There’ll be cultural foods, henna, music and dancing, kids’ activities and more.  The celebrations are combined with the Regent Park Seed Library - there’ll be free seeds available for gardeners.  

Regent Park Focus 
The Youth Media Arts Centre is holding two different workshops through April and May.

Free Spoken Word and Rap workshops - presented by Regent Park Focus.  Workshops on rap and spoken word held every Tuesday and Thursday from 4 to 7 pm until May 31 at 38 Regent Street Lower Level.  

Web Game design - young people from 14 to 29 can learn how to make web video games.  Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays, 4:30 to 7 pm, from April 9.  38 Regent Street, Lower Level. Free.  Register online here  http://www.regentparkfocus.com

Submissions for the Regent Park Film Festival
The festival has opened its submissions process for its 2018 Festival until May 6.  The 16th annual festival will take place from November 13 to 17.  Film makers are invited to send along their works.  The Submission Form together wth an explanation of the Festival’s procedures is online here.   

2018 Peggy Kurtin award
Nominations are now open until Monday April 30 for the Cabbagetown Preservation Association’s annual Peggy Kurtin Award.  The CPA has established three categories that it recognizes - great restoration (the main award) plus special additions and improved facades.  If you wish to nominate a project, check out the CPA’s website for submission procedures.  

Spring is in the air at Allan Gardens
The show is open now and it runs to Sunday April 29.  Lillies and hydrangeas are highlighted along with tulips, daffodils and hyacinths.  Allan Gardens Conservatory (Sherbourne and Carlton)


Lost cat
Toshi is 8 years old.  He went missing last Friday April 6.  He lives in the Hillcrest Park and Wellesley Park area.  If you see him, contact Karen at karen5jull@gmail.com .


Spring Poetry Month at the Children’s Book Bank
At 1 pm on Saturdays throughout April, the Children’s Book Bank (350 Berkeley) is hosting kids’ poetry  parties.  Frieda Wishinsky will visit and lead a workshop on April 14.  On April 21, there’ll be a multi-language poetry workshop and on April 28, it’s the Spring Poetry Fling with a special guest.  Kids can write their own poems - the Book Bank will publish an anthology of their work at the end of the month.

Buds & Blossoms
The spring semester has started this week at Buds & Blossoms (517 Parliament) and registration is still open.  A twelve-class semester is only $229. There’s a wide selection of classes to choose from including drama, cooking, hip-hop and more. As you can see, arts and crafts are kids’ favourite activities.

Welcome Happy Kids Martial Arts
A new martial arts studio has opened at 492 Parliament, downstairs below the Starbucks.  To get there, use the Aberdeen Avenue entrance. The school will teach Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, self-defense and Shotokan Karate.  Shah Franco is the program director - he’s a decorated athlete who’s been teaching martial arts since 1980.  There’ll be an orientation class with lots of information on Saturday April 14 at 10 am - kids over 5 are welcome.  There’s a Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/pg/happykidsmartialarts/photos/?ref=page_internal and a website http://happykidsmartialarts.com

Summer dance programs at the School of Toronto Dance Theatre
The School is offering two Summer Intensive Programs in July  - a modern/contemporary program for aspiring professional dancers aged 16+ from July 2 to 13 and a week-long teen intensive for passionate dancers ages 13-16 .
These programs provide technical training to help develop any motivated dancer. Working with faculty, dancers will participate in challenging, energetic classes in an unforgettable training experience. Both programs offer the opportunity to perform on the main stage at the Winchester Street Theatre (80 Winchester).  Monday July 23 to Friday July 27.


MOMENTUM gala evening
The Opening Night Fundraiser in support of the School of Toronto Dance Theatre. There’s a pre-show reception and then the full program of MOMENTUM 2018 followed by an awards ceremony recognizing the dancers’ accomplishments. Raffle, prizes and a post-show dessert and champagne celebration. May 3 from 6:15 pm, $100 and $150 - tickets are available online at CanadaHelps.  School of Toronto Dance Theatre (80 Winchester)

Be a volunteer
I’ve received requests over the past few weeks for several volunteer opportunities.  Check them out here and join the ones that appeal to you.

Forsythia Festival - volunteers and sponsors
Volunteers are needed to do everything from face painting to assisting at the food and beverage area or tying doughnuts to tree branches (which is way more fun than you might think.) Shifts are 1 to 2 hours each. Sunday May 6, 10 m to 3 pm. If you would like to volunteer, contact the organizers at info@cabbagetowner.com 
Donations are needed and welcomed.  The Festival is a free community event and it happens on Sunday May 6 from 10 am to 3 pm. To learn more and to make your gift, click here.  

Volunteer at the Garden tour
Hidden Gardens & Private Spaces is a big event in the Spring.  People are needed to staff the gardens during the day - Sunday June 3, 10 am to 4 pm.  If you’re interested, email rlatch21@gmail.com 

Cabbagetown Residents Association - volunteer Board members
In preparation for its June annual meeting, the CRA Board has set up a nominating committee.  If you’re interested in serving on this Board, email the Association and the committee will arrange a meeting with you.  

Okay - it’s all about the proposal for a daycare centre.  Clench your teeth and brace yourself.  These articles paint a bleak picture of a prissy, self-righteous community.  These five items chart the media reaction as the story becomes more complicated. There were lots of other stories in other media outlets - pick your favourite, it probably has one.

On April 7, Fatima Syed wrote a story in the Toronto Star giving general info about the project - click here.   

Tabatha Southey pitched in with a somewhat more opinionated column in Macleans on April 6. Her story is here.   

On April 9, the Editorial Board at the Toronto Star reassured us that a daycare centre wouldn’t destroy our community.  Read it here.  

The Toronto Star’s Jennifer Pagliaro summed up the events and the decision from the Committee of Adjustment in her April 11 story - click here.  

And then Marcus Gee at the Globe & Mail offered his views on the debate. He’s quite sarcastic about the opposition to the project. It’s a bracing read, click here.  

Check out the current theatre and dance listings in the April Calendar below.

Whiskey Jack’s last visit
The Cadillac Lounge (1296 Queen W) is closing.  It’s been a home for Duncan Fremlin and his friends for many years.  He credits the people there for the inspiration for his Stompin’ Tom tour.  Whiskey Jack will make its last appearance there on Sunday April 15 from 3 to 6 pm - no cover, kids welcome. 

A main-stage performance of ensemble works. Dancer from all three years of the Professional Training Program at the School of Toronto Dance Theatre are showcased. First year students present new dances by two of the School’s resident choreographers, Darryl Tracy and Julia Sasso, Second year students perform a remount of Danny Grossman’s riveting 1981 anti-war masterwork Endangered Species, as well as a new commission from Toronto-based independent creator Ryan Lee. Third year students dance in Christopher House’s Schubert Dances, in a new work by Peggy Baker and in a new creation by Harold Rhéaume.
Tickets are $15 and $20, available online at Eventbrite.   
Box office and performances - 80 Winchester.  Friday May 4 to Saturday May 5 and Thursday May 10 to Saturday May 12


Tax is Out on Outdoor Rugs
Only until April 26th - Kendall and Kevin are taking out the tax on purchases of outdoor rugs at Kendall & Co (514 Parliament). Any size, in-stock and special orders. For rooftop decks and backyard patios, in the city or at the cottage, these weather-proof and colourful rugs are also great for high-traffic indoor areas and entryways. Shop the new styles from 10 am to 6 pm weekdays, 11 am to 5 pm on Saturdays. NOW OPEN SUNDAYS, noon to 4 pm. http://kendallandco.ca/fyi/retail/outdoor-rugs

Leslieville Flea
The Flea is a curated flea market offering vintage and handmade crafts and foods.   It’s back again in the Distillery at the Fermenting Cellar (28 Distillery Lane) from 10 am to 5 pm on Sunday April 15. You’ll find bargains, rare finds and one-of-a-kind pieces.  

M.W.M. Fish Co adds a delivery service
Get your oysters freshly shucked and delivered right to your door.  Mark at M.W.M. (419 Parliament) will help you with your next dinner party and business affair.  It’s a classic and very classy touch for your evening.  Call (416) 926-3743.


Food news
Cyril from MerryBerry is back.  He’s now offering home deliveries for the soups that made him so popular at his cafe.  He’ll make two different soups in 24 oz/700 ml containers each week and deliveries will happen on Tuesdays and Saturdays (in Cabbagetown only for now).  
Containers will cost $9 each.  For the next month, he’s got a special offer - if you buy the two weekly soups at the same time, the containers will be $8 each. Taxes and delivery charges are included.  He’s accepting payments by etransfers and cash. 
The April and early May menus are amazing.  
Tuesday April 17: corn and jalapeno chowder. Saturday April 21: beet, ginger and coconut milk.
Tuesday April 24: miso, bacon, squash. Saturday April 28:  Indian lentil and tomato.
Tuesday May 1: curried zucchini.  Saturday May 5: white bean and chorizo.
Tuesday May 8: African sweet potato and peanut. Saturday May 12 smoked tea and tomato.
Stay informed about the menus and his special announcements on the MerryBerry Facebook page.  Contact him at his email address, cyril@merryberry.ca

Psychics at Cranberries
They’re back on Sunday April 15 from 11 am to 3 pm at Cranberries (601 Parliament).  Buy a $42 coupon and get two intense readings plus a $5 coupon toward the cost of your brunch. 

Taste for Life
Peartree (507 Parliament) has joined a list of very distinguished restaurants to support Fife House on Wednesday April 25.  A portion of its receipts from the evening will be donated to help people living with HIV/AIDS.  Diners can also buy raffle tickets with a chance to win a $1000 trip on VIA Rail, a two-night stay at the Courtyard Marriott or a $500 catering certificate from the Food Dudes.  Reservations are definitely suggested - (416) 962-8190.

The Mill Street Beerhall
After each Raptors’ and Leafs’ game, the Beerhall (21 Tank House Lane) is selecting one table and burning its bill. Nice.  

Living City at Mill Street Brew Pub
The Living City Foundation is a branch of the Toronto Region Conservation Authority.  Since 1961, it’s raised over $40 million for conservation  work in the GTA region.  Mill Street Brew Pub (21 Tank House Lane) now has a new menu with features that highlight the Living City - a potion of the proceeds from the sale of each item will be donated to the Foundation.

Start gardening at Paintbox
Plant your own terrarium at Paintbox (555 Dundas E) hosted by Plant Nite Toronto.  A Master Gardener will guide you, step-by-step, from an empty vessel to a final unique terrarium masterpiece in about 1.5 hours. Wednesday April 18, 7 pm, $60.  Tickets and more info - click here.  

Alice’s Place has a new wall
Alice has added a wall of music fame to her pub (554 Parliament).  Drop by for a nice cold one and for an evening of karaoke.

Send love
Under the Table (568 Parliament) needs you.  Negotiations are now underway with the landlord for a new lease.  Kim and Betty want to know whether you think they should stay.  Go to Facebook and send your love.  

Addresses, online info and current events.

70 Berkeley Street
(416) 364-4170, ext 1

Queen Marie
April 13 to 28

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

love and information
Graduation showcase, York University MFA Directing Program
April 10 to 29
Picnic in the Cemetery
North American premiere
April 26 to May 6

The Citadel: Ross Centre for Dance
304 Parliament Street
(416) 364-8011

Alone Together
To April 14

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

Adedo Collective with the Watah Theatre
To April 21

50 Tank House Lane, Distillery District
(416) 866-8666

A Moveable Feast, Paris in the ‘20s
Soulpepper Concert Series
On stage to April 14

50 Tank House Lane, Distillery District
(416) 866-8666

Fear & Misery in the Third Reich
George Brown Theatre School
To April 21
The Provoked Wife
George Brown Theatre School
To April 21



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.


Alice’s Place
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 
New Town
Oki Doki Karaoke


9:30 pm, Our Girl Flav


Alice’s Place
4 pm, Karaoke
Local GEST 
4:30 pm, Sunday afternoon jazz with Joe Spina and Mark Teixera
New Town
Oki Doki Karaoke


Stout Irish Pub
7:30 pm, Headscratchers Trivia


Stout Irish Pub
7:30 pm, Headscratchers Trivia


Alice’s Place
9 pm, Karaoke
Local GEST
7:30 pm, Smart Ass Trivia with Porter


Local GEST
9 pm, open mic with Evan
New Town
Oki Doki Karaoke


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


New Town
Oki Doki Karaoke


Alice’s Place
4 pm, Karaoke
Local GEST 
4:30 pm, Sunday afternoon jazz with Sherie Marshall


554 Parliament St, (647) 931-9088, 
17 Gristmill Lane, Distillery,  (647) 352-2766
354 King St E, (46) 901-1188
601 Parliament St, (416) 925-6330, 
500 Queen St E, (416) 366-5555, 
18 Tank House Lane, Distillery, (416) 203-2121, 
454 Parliament St, (416) 925-4074, 
573 King St E, (416) 306-1986, 
95 Carlton Street, (647) 350-4787, 
478 Parliament St, (416) 928-1358
424 Parliament St, (416) 961-9425, 
21 Tank House Ln, Distillery, (416) 681-0338, 
21 Tank House Ln, Distillery, 
514 King E, (647) 350-6346,
413 Parliament Street
555 Dundas St E, (647) 748-0555
326 Parliament, (647) 989-9127, 
Young Centre, 50 Tank House Lane, Distillery, (416) 866-8666,
221 Carlton St, (647) 344-7676,
568 Parliament St, (647) 351-1533