This week’s image: Forsythia bushes in Wellesley Park. The park is ringed by these bushes, planted years ago by the Festival organizers.
FEATURED LOCAL ARTIST
30” x 40” x 1”, oil on canvass. “I love Cabbagetown’s Spring and I enjoy our annual Forsythia Festival. I’ve always drawn or painted the forsythia’s early Spring appearance.”
Forsythia Festival events
The 2021 edition of the Forsythia Festival is its 50th anniversary. Festival organizers have planned events to fill the gap created by COVID lockdowns. Find a stone that your kids can decorate - paint it yellow and add your own unique design or special message. Then put your “Secrete Stone” in Wellesley Park for others to find. “Think Spring” and decorate your house with yellow. Anything goes - be bold! Prizes will be given for the most eye-catching home.
Green Thumbs Growing Kids put together a gift basket for Mother’s Day. It’s a fundraiser for the group. Special thanks go out to the businesses who’ve donated their products for the basket. It contains an organic tomato plant seedling from Sosnicki Organic Farm, a herb plant seedling from Fernlea Greenhouse, homemade soap made locally by the Traditional Soap Company, solid hand cream and container from LUSH and the book, Balcony Gardening, by Lara Lucretia Mrosovsky. Green Thumbs Growing Kids has also contributed a calendula seedling and calendula salve, a nasturtium seedling, a worm casting tea bag to fertilize your plants and a seed package. $50 ($70 value). Order from GTGK online. Pickup your gift basket on Saturday May 8 between 10 am and 2 pm at Daniels Spectrum (585 Dundas E, Lobby Entrance).
Claudia Salzmann is retiring. She’s lived and worked at 78 Amelia for 28 years and during that time, she’s become a great friend in her neighbourhood. She’s been carefully getting ready for this change - five years ago she turned her practice over to Christine Brown who will continue with it. She and Lee will soon move to Berwick, Nova Scotia, a small town on the edge of the Annapolis Valley. With all the complexities of travelling during the COVID lockdowns, they aren’t planning on leaving us until late June. (Photo: Claudia with Chelsea and Lulu.)
Street Health is one of the agencies located at Sherbourne and Dundas. They’re renovating this site and they’ve rented office space at 208 Carlton to use temporarily while this work is happening. The nursing services will move here for registered clients only. They’ll be here for six months. Thanks to Rick Matthews for checking out this move and reporting it.
This annual gardening contest is now open. The Cabbagetown Preservation Association collects nominees for this award every Spring and then checks them out throughout the summer. In the autumn, a winner is announced and given a glass medallion from Kitras and a watercolour painting of the garden and the home. Look over the procedures and the judging criteria online here and nominate a garden that you like before May 30. Unfortunately, the 2021 plant swap sponsored by the Cabbagetown Preservation Association has been cancelled due to COVID lockdown restrictions.
Sue Ellis lives at The Sumach (146 Sumach) where she and her friends have been developing pollinator gardens. They grow the plants from seeds which they share with others. As her photo shows, they’ve created a beautiful setting. (Photo: Susan Ellis)
The Cabbagetown South Residents are still selling rain barrels and they’re working with Plantables to bring you a hassle-free way to start your garden. To get more info about the rain barrels and to order one for yourself, shop online, $55. Go to Plantables’ website and look over your choices, $4/plant. They’ll bring them along until the seedlings are ready to go into the ground and they’ll deliver them to you. When you order, enter the code cabbagetownsouth and 10% of the proceeds will go to the Association. Proceeds will go to local service groups and to the youth anti-graffiti brigade.
Andrew Stelmack painted a large mural outside his home in The Century Lofts (365 Dundas E). His message is aimed at all of us - he says, “I wanted to find a way to bring light, hope and forward thoughts to my community. Not only to those living in the neighbourhood homes and condos but for those sadly living in the street. Something to give them all a smile in their day as they walked, drove, biked or TTC’d by.” Click here to see his YouTube video about his mural. (Photo: Andrew Stelmack)
Sydney is a member of the Canadian Olympic women’s rowing team headed to Tokyo this summer. Her team qualified at the World Championships in September 2019. She and her teammates have been training full time in Victoria BC since then. It’s been a long stretch since their last pre-Olympic race. The safety of the athletes, coaches and training staff has been a priority and they’ve been in tight bubbles throughout. They meet at scheduled launch times, use good safety habits and wear masks everywhere except on the boats.
River Street (from Spruce to Bayview), Bayview (south from Rosedale Valley Road to Front) and Lake Shore East (east bound lanes only from Leslie to Woodbine) are closing this weekend to allow safe wide routes for biking. This weekend starts on Saturday at 6 am and goes to Sunday at 9 pm. (Photo: Robin Pueyo)
This week, Chew Chew (186 Carlton) is providing lunch. This is the final event in this smart program. About 100 people each week have received a free lunch in Allan Gardens. Both the lunch guests and the restaurants benefit. Originally, it was intended to run four weeks in February - private donations have extended it to April 29. It’s organized by the Cabbagetown BIA (237 Carlton) along with St Luke’s United Church and Dixon Hall.
Eric Farache is one of four artists whose works have been shown at 419 Parliament. Aiden Ferreira is there now as well. Kira Duff and Moira Ness have been there previously. This is one of the spots along Parliament and Carlton where the BIA has commissioned artworks to liven up storefronts. Check out all the featured artists - click here.
By Thursday April 22, 23,227 people had signed the petition to stop the Foundry demolition and $32,720 had been donated. The donations cover the cost of court actions so far but they’re far from enough to pay for any future actions. The links for the petition and online donations are here.
By Sally Gibson. David Boyle, Canada’s first professional archeologist, lived at 316 Berkeley Street from 1888 until 1905. Scottish-born Boyle emigrated to Upper Canada in 1856. He apprenticed as a blacksmith but decided teaching was more in his line. So for about 25 years he devoted himself to teaching in Elora, Ontario and developing a strong interest in archaeology. In 1883, he moved to Toronto to pursue his archaeological endeavours. He become the volunteer curator of the Canadian Institute Museum, then the paid curator of the Ontario Provincial Museum. Among the sites he explored was an indigenous cemetery at Withrow and Broadview. In addition to collecting and describing artifacts, Boyle published an annual archaeology report and maintained connections with the international archaeological community. “By the turn of the century,” according to the Dictionary of Canadian Biography, our Cabbagetowner “had achieved recognition as Canada’s pre-eminent archaeologist.” He also wrote nonsense verse for kids - a man of many parts. (Photo: David Boyle Wellington Co Museum & Archives) For more Cabbagetown history, photos and videos visit the CRPM Facebook page.
2021 Forsythia Festival bags and tees
The Festival’s limited edition “Experience Bags” are a great hit - over 200 have been sold already. They’ll be delivered by Saturday. Inside each bag there’s a DYI dangling doughnut kit, DYI kite kit, DYI window craft, yellow chalk, anniversary window sticker, yellow ribbon to hang on your door, four forsythia themed cake pops from Velvet Lane Cakes (194 Carlton) and two traditional parade twizzlers. You can also buy a limited edition yellow Festival Tee shirt. To manage all of this, the Festival team have set up their own Shopify store - to see each item and to place your order, click here.
Ms Paul and the Toronto Centre Greens are hosting a Zoom community meeting. Thursday April 29 at 7 pm. She hopes to hear from us about the issues facing us and how we would like to solve them. Click here to register - you’ll get a confirmation email after registering.
Once again, local residents are cleaning the neighbourhood on Saturday May 1 or Sunday May 2. In this lockdown year, they’re sweeping gutters in front of their homes and lanes behind them. For those who need them, bags and gloves are available at 182 Seaton between 9 and 10 am. This year, the bags are going out on the rgular garbage day, Wednesday May 5.
Bangla Surf Girls
Now streaming at the Hot Docs Festival from Thursday April 29 to Sunday May 9. “Three rebellious working-class teenage girls in Bangladesh escape daily hardships and stifling family lives by riding waves on their surfboards, chasing a fleeting and thrilling sense of freedom.” Thanks to Lucy Troisi for telling us about the film, co-presented by the Regent Park Film Festival. Tickets are $13 ($11.50 for Hot Doc members). Click here for more info and for tickets.
The Enoch Turner Schoolhouse is hosting its third Speaker’s Corner on Wednesday May 5 at 7 pm. Mr Crombie’s guests will be Ron Williamson, Leslie Woo, Duke Redbird and John Lorinc and their topic is Gathering Place: The Changing Idea of Community. It’s a Zoom event - register here.
IN THE MEDIA
Street surveillance cameras
Toronto Police and Councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam have announced that surveillance cameras will soon be operating at Sherbourne and Dundas. The cameras have been planned for a long time to counter criminal behaviour. Local homeless advocates disagree. Mira Miller has reported in blogTO about their reactions.
Congrats to these businesses
Our local businesses have contributed generously to the Festival Experience Bags. You’ll find a coupon for 20% off on your next purchase at Steak and Chops (516 Parliament), a $10 gift certificate for F’Amelia (12 Amelia), a $5 gift card for Stout Irish Pub (221 Carlton), 10% off for summer camp at Buds & Blossoms (517 Parliament) and a free coffee from Epicure (473 Parliament). Plus, there are special prizes for the Festival - a gift basket from Spruce (455 Parliament), a gift basket from Epicure (473 Parliament), a gift set from Wonderkind and two $50 gift cards plus t-shirts from Salt & Tobacco (521 Parliament). Cycle Solutions (444 Parliament) and Menagerie Pet Shop (549 Parliament) are each preparing special “Gifts with Purchase” while supplies last.
MOTHER’S DAY SPECIALS
Cranberries (601 Parliament) is offering another great dinner for Mother’s Day. Takeout only. Start off with either butternut squash soup or organic greens salad. Enjoy a roast beef dinner with mashed potato, seasonal veggies and red wine gravy. Two-courses for $15.
On Mother’s Day, the feature menu offers a beautiful meal - linguini, pistachio pesto and Nova Scotia shrimp. Click here for the website. 229 Carlton.
Roselle (362 King E) has an amazing afternoon tea for two. Ordering starts at 8 pm on Monday April 26 with pickups on Sunday May 9 from 11 am to 3 pm. Check out the full menu online here. $60
Staij (552 Parliament) has lovely offerings for Mother’s Day - an afternoon tea scone set, raspberry almond croissants, vanilla shortbreads, homemade granola, raspberry rose white chocolate and hand-tied preserved flower bouquets. Check out the ordering details here.
Choose one of Velvet Lane’s goodie boxes to create a unique gift for Mom. Each one has baked donuts, sugar cookies, vanilla cake bars, macarons, and chocolate bars. Plus a personally addressed card for her. 194A Carlton.
Forsthyia Festival feast
Shawna says, “In normal times, we would be gathered together in Wellesley Park eating hamburgers from Steak and Chops and sharing a beverage at the beer garden sponsored by Stout. This year, we’re asking the neighbourhood to ORDER IN! … pick up burgers from Steak and Chops, order a big batch of wings and beer from Stout! Pasta and wine from F’Amelia! Pizza and beer from Salt and Tobacco? Drink kit from The House on Parliament? Daniel et Daniel prepared meal? Something spicy from Haldi or The Butter Chicken Factory? Sushi or Ramen from Kibo Sushi, Tokyo Ramen or Kingyo? Dessert from Absolute Bakery, Velvet Lane Cakes, Staij+Co!”
Cyril is still taking a break while the COVID crisis washes over us. He’ll let us know when he’s ready to start up again. Contact him by email.
A comprehensive listing of our local food services is now available in our new Cabbagetown Directory. The list includes bakeries, coffee shops, delis, restaurants and pubs. Each entry gives the name, address, phone number and a link to a Facebook page or website. Click here to find your favourite.