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Latest News and Notices 2007

posted December 09, 2007

Deck the Walls, holiday gift & affordable art sale

November 29 - December 21 at the Creative Spirit Art Centre - 999 Dovercourt Road.
Tues - Sat 10am-5pm

The public art centre/studio for people with disabilities is having an art sale for the season. Open Tues - Sat 10. a.m. - 5.p.m. Items include hand made fabric birds $12. for tree decorations or just to hang in your window, hand made cards, small works of art. We would love to have you visit our new home. We want to meet our neighbours and have you see our art. (Closed Dec.21 - Jan 1) We love our new neighbourhood.Please visit.

posted December 09, 2007

CODE BLUE for Child Care

Presented by West End Parents' Day Care -- Political Action Committee
Thursday, December 13th
6:00 - 7:00PM
West End Parents' Day Care
375 Dovercourt Rd.
(pizza & childcare provided)
  • Learn more about the Canada-wide campaign to build a real national child care system.
  • Find out about the threat of Big Box child care.
  • Take action, be heard!

With Special Guests: '''Andrea Calver - Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care; Jane Mercer - Toronto Coalition for Better Child Care; Kat Schulz - Office of MP Olivia Chow; Janet Tiebo - CUPE 2484 Local Coordinator'''

Contact: Rick at 416-534-6761 or for more information.

Please tell Rick if you would like child care.

Older News and Notices 2007

posted November 19, 2007

Architecture for Humanity Lecture Series


In collaboration with the Gardiner Museum, Architecture for Humanity Toronto is pleased to present a compelling series of lectures exploring the development of sustainable communities.

In this lecture, Dr. David Moses will discuss some of the biggest challenges when considering sustainable alternatives to standard building practice. Please also join us in an open-participation discussion immediately following the lecture.

NOVEMBER 26, 2007 6:30 PM start
Gardiner Museum, Terrace Room
111 Queen's Park, Toronto, Ontario
Please arrive early, seating is limited

posted November 19, 2007

Affordable Housing: Finding Real Solutions

Click the image to view larger version

posted November 19, 2007

Mondo Bazaar

posted November 18, 2007

West Toronto Collegiate Gr8 Info Night


Thursday, November 22, 2007
7:00 – 8:30 pm
West Toronto Collegiate
330 Lansdowne Avenue
(416) 393-1500

Please join us at our Grade 8 Parent Information Night to learn more about West Toronto Collegiate, our community and our programs.

posted August 04, 2007

DATE SET for TOY/Book/DVD/Halloween Costume SWAP

Circle October 27th and 28th on your calendar. It's the date of the birth of the TOY/BOOK/ DVD/Halloween Costume SWAP. Similar to the Dufferin Grove Clothing SWAP, tickets will be exchanged for each item dropped off to a maximum of 10 tickets (you are welcome to donate as many items as you wish). The drop-off is between 1:30 and 4:30 on Saturday, October 27th. You are then welcome back the next day (from 1:30-4:30 and the SWAP is Sunday, October 28th) to exchange each ticket for an item of your choice. A new wrinkle - if you drop off more than 10 items, the tickets will be given to children/parents less fortunate (5 max. per family). This will hopefully make many families happy who can't afford an Xmas gift for their child(ren). The SWAP will be held at Parkdale Library (corner of Queen Street and Cowan Avenue). Further details at: Hope to see you there. Bruce Whitaker.

posted July 17, 2007

Baby and Kid's Swap Meet

The Bob Abate Parent's Committee is proud to announce its first ever Baby and Kid's Swap Meet!

Do you have kid's clothes and toys piling up? Is it time to buy your child a larger size….again? Let us help! Come on out to the Bob Abate Parent's Committee Baby and Kid's Swap Meet where you can buy or sell everything for babies till teens.

Saturday September 22
10am – 2pm
Bob Abate Community Centre
485 Montrose Ave.

Tables are only $20 ($10 of which will go towards rebuilding the Bob Abate Playground). Tables are limited so reserve your spot with Tony at Bob Abate Community Centre 416-392-0744. 485 Montrose Ave, before the 24th of August.

posted August 03, 2007


Wednesdays 5 - 7pm

Every Wednesday from 5:30 - 7:00pm is games night at Susan Tibaldi Parkette (on Brock, north of Bloor). Everyone in the neighbourhood is invited to come out and meet their neighbours over some food, lots of kids' games and maybe even a friendly game of badminton! There are always hotdogs (veggie and beef) cooking over the hibachi but more food is welcome too. (Games night is in collaboration with Dufferin Grove staff.)

posted August 28, 2007

Bloorcourt Village Heritage Festival

Click on the image to see the full poster

posted August 22, 2007

19th Annual Dufferin Grove Street Fair

Havelock Street & Dufferin Grove Park
Sat. Sept. 8

10:00 am • Fantastic LAWNSALE
Clean out the basement and/or browse for bargains!

12:00 pm • Hot Dog Lunch

4:30 pm • Games for kids: Prizes!

6:30 pm • POTLUCK & $2 Pizza AT THE BAKE OVEN
Join your neighbours! Bring plates, cutlery 234, extra pizza toppings ...

7:00 pm • CAKEWALK A chance for creative bakers to show their stuff!

See the Street Fair 2007 picture gallery

Second Annual Non-Violence Festival

posted August 17, 2007

Humanize Bloordale and CELOS present
Potluck In The Park
Saturday, August 25th, 2007. 3-7pm
MacGregor Park, (Lansdowne, south of Bloor)

Come out and meet your neighbours and share some food at MacGregor Park next Saturday from 3 to 7pm.

listen to music from the Dufferin Marimba Groove and meet some of the groups working for positive social change in the neighbourhood.

posted July 27, 2007

Street hockey/Malassadas fundraiser, March against drugs/crime

The Toronto Lansdowne Area Residents' Association has a busy day planned for Sunday, July 29/07. We're holding a fundraiser that combines two traditions (one Canadian and one Portuguese traditions) that we think go great together – a street hockey tournament and Malassadas, the popular confection related to the doughnut. We're also holding a march in the Bloor/Lansdowne area to protest government inaction in dealing with drugs, crime and prostitution.

The hockey game, scheduled to start at 2 p.m. on Lansdowne, north of MacGregor Park (north of College), is sure to be the first time anything like this has happened in the history of the street. After all, this is an arterial road that gets 17,000 vehicles a day. With the road closed for reconstruction, many residents thought this would be a rare opportunity for an activity that can't usually occur here. Residents in other areas are invited to come and play or to cheer. Open to kids of all ages, all players will be accommodated. Bring your sticks, but sticks will also be available if you don't have one.

Among the snacks and refreshments available during the game will be Malassadas, a popular Portuguese confection similar to a doughnut, and first made by inhabitants of São Miguel Island, part of the Azores (which is where many of the residents along this stretch of Lansdowne are from or trace their roots to). Since this is the island where the mythical Calypso was supposed to have lived, some people consider the Malassada to be the missing link between Homer the Greek Poet and Homer Simpson. Malassadas cooking demonstrations will be taking place while the hockey game is in process. People can also order their Malassadas in advance by calling Connie ( Conceição) Barbosa at 416-535-7894 .

Then at 4 p.m., we're holding a march to protest government inaction in dealing with the problems of drugs, crime and prostitution that have plagued the Bloor/Lansdowne intersection for years. The march, whose theme is "No More Excuses", is being co-organized with Jack Fava, who on June 16 had organized a march that resulted in some local politicians committing to an "emergency" meeting on this issue. With school scheduled to start in just a few weeks time, a date has yet to be set for this "emergency" meeting. As residents, we believe the time is long overdue for the different levels of government to work together in developing a coordinated, proactive approach to turning the situation around. In addition to a more heightened police presence in the community, residents also believe that stronger support services are needed to enable individuals with problems to move away from addiction, prostitution and crime as lifestyle choices.

posted July 17, 2007

July 19th: Creating a West-End Toronto Alternative Public Primary School

Community Meeting:

Thursday July 19th 2007
Brock Jr. Public School
93 Margueretta Street

Creating a West-End Toronto Alternative Public Primary School

Following the success of our first community forum on May 28 2007, we are holding a second public meeting to move forward in the process of establishing an exciting new public school within the Toronto District School Board.

Join with other parents, teachers and community members from west-end Toronto's rich diversity of cultures and backgrounds to hear guest speakers and participate in a sharing of ideas toward building a dynamic new alternative primary school that is focused on:

  • Diversity & Equity
  • Social Justice / Anti-Racism
  • Environmentalism
  • Peace Education
  • Community Activism
  • Educational Excellence

Childcare will be available for the meeting. (In order for us to know how many children to expect, please RSVP to before July 16 to sign up.

Light vegetarian refreshments will be provided.

From the July 2007 Newsletter

Theatre, Campfire, and Food at Macgregor Park

July 7 meal at 1:30, performance 2:00, and July 8 meal at 6:30, performance 7:00

Thanks to an Ontario Trillium Foundation grant, Dufferin Grove Park campfire cook Anna Bekerman will be cooking over a campfire at MacGregor Park (Lansdowne a block north of College, west side) on July 7 and 8, making the meal that accompanies Stranger Theatre’s performance of “The World Turned Upside Down." On Saturday, July 7, the meal is at 1:30, performance 2:00. On Sunday July 8, the meal is at 6:30, performance 7:00. Free. The group also has other dates at other parks: for more information call 416-538-6084, or go to

From the June 2007 Newsletter


Trinity Bellwoods Park Day

Sunday June 3: 10 a.m. to 2 pm.

Trinity Bellwoods Park has the same problem as Dufferin Grove and many other parks – ailing park benches and picnic tables. A coat of paint won’t fix existing wood rot but it will postpone further deterioration, and look nicer. Jane Wells from the CARE kids’ program has offered to coordinate painting the benches with the kids on June 3rd. From coordinator Anna Hill:

“We are asking [Parks supervisor] Peter Leiss for paint to paint the benches. We're hoping for some fun colors like yellow, red, aqua etc. We're also planning to paint our wading pool.”

Dovercourt Park Tree Festival

Saturday June 16 . 12.00 - 5.00 pm

From organizers Gabrielle Langlois and Andrea Dawber:

There will be local tree tours, wading pool preview (if it’s hot), face painting, environment activities for children. Also: there will be certified arborists for consultations, a heritage tree talk by the Ontario Urban Forest Council, and an exhibit of public space redesigns. LEAF will have perennials & shrubs for sale. Live music, Afro-Caribbean dancers, campfire, BBQ, and Dufferin Grove food cart , CTW robots and games for kids. Art contributions from St. Anthony's and Dovercourt schools. Co-produced by: GreenHere, Ontario Urban Forest Council, Toronto Parks and Recreation. Participants Ontario Urban Forest Council, Trees Davenport, City of Toronto Urban Forestry, LEAF, FoodShare, BIA Dovercourt Village,Toronto Environmental Alliance.

Dufferin Mall Youth Services Trouble Update and Request for Support

posted June 14, 2007

We received this letter from Dufferin Mall Youth Services, in the Dufferin Mall right next to the park:

Dear DMYS friends and partners,

It is with sadness that I relate the current state of Dufferin Mall Youth Services (DMYS). DMYS has been in operation for 13 years. During that time we have helped thousands of young people find work, receive counselling, locate housing, offered support, provided a safe space to be themselves, and have been there when often no one else was.

After all this time DMYS is at risk of closing.

posted May 18, 2007

Eploring Yoga And Disability With Christine Rustecki

Sunday, June 3 - Sunday, June 24 12 - 1:30 pm
Brahmananda Yoga Centre

“Yoga as a path is accessible to every human being... we begin from where we are.” — T.K.V. DESIKACHAR

An introductory 4-week yoga workshop that is wheel-chair accessible. Through integrating sound, movement and breath, we will be working primarily in seated postures. Floor postures can be accommodated. Discover ways of being with the body to promote strength and balance as well as reduce stress. This is an all-levels yoga course. All abilities are welcome.

$48 per 4 week session. Sliding scale available.
Please contact Christine at (416) 531-0174 or to pre-register.
345 Sorauren Avenue, ground floor
(One block south of Dundas St. West, at Sorauren Park)

posted March 07, 2007

Food Share's Good Food For Life

Supporting Dietary Change in Young Survivors of Breast Cancer

Good Food for Life is a program for young survivors of breast cancer diagnosed prior to menopause and finished treatment within the last three years. The program supports lifelong dietary changes because eating a healthy diet, high in fruits and vegetables, is universally accepted as being beneficial to overall health and wellness.

What you’ll learn: • Vegetables: Discover the Rainbow • Bumping up Your Fruit • Grains - The Good Carbs • Beans and Legumes • Fibre for Fitness & Disease Reduction • Getting the Right mix of Protein: Meats, Fish & Vegetables • Choosing Calcium Rich Foods • Convenience and Packaged Foods: Choosing Wisely • Fear of Frying - Friendly Fats • Fun Foods: is there room for them in a good diet? • Eating well, personal reflection and mindful eating

For more information see the the Flyer or


The Stop: Photo by David Zapparol

The Stop Community Food Centre: celebration of spring and open house

Saturday May 5 12 noon to 3 p.m.

From Kathryn Scharf:

“Hi Dufferin Grove neighbours, The Stop, where I work, is having a celebration….it’s at 1884 Davenport (Davenport & Landsdowne). There'll be food, music, food demos (Yasi's and New Moon Kitchen) and gardening and bake oven workshops. There'll be kids activities directed at the creation of a spring pageant!”



'Brockton Triangle' Neighbourhood Yard Sale

Saturday May 12th 10a.m. to 2p.m. (rain date, Sunday May 13th)

From Gretel Meyer Odell:

“Residents of the streets south of Dundas and north of the railroad tracks, between Lansdowne and Brock have been busy getting to know each other and generating exceptional community spirit over the past year. This little neighbourhood has been affectionately dubbed, "The Brockton Triangle" by neighbours who have been gathering at potlucks, chalk mural parties, activity planning meetings and other fun events. Mark Saturday, May 12th, 10am to 2pm, on your calendar for the Brockton Triangle's first Annual Neighbourhood-Wide YARD SALE! Residents all over the Triangle will be selling treats, treasures, art, crafts and more. Please come visit this exceptionally friendly and spirited neighbourhood and take a stroll on the following streets...Delaney Cres., Wyndham St., Norfolk St., Shirley St., Mechanic Ave., Hickson St., Northern Place, and Brock & St. Clarens Ave. between Dundas and the railroad tracks. There is a rain date of Sunday, May 13th. For more information go to or email:

FoodShare Open House

THURSDAY MAY 31, 2007, 7-9pm 90 Croatia Street, Room 102.

FoodShare has moved into the former Brockton/Ursula Franklin High School building. From director Debbie Field: “Join us for a tour as we share our plans for planting vegetable gardens and building a beautiful a greenhouse on Brock.” For more information contact Debbie Field,, 416 363-6441 ext. 228, See map for location.

FoodShare is known for its community-based approach to promoting healthy local food, helping schools start breakfast, lunch and snack student nutrition programs and school community gardens. The inventor of the Good Food Box and Good Food Markets, which help people buy healthy, local and organic food, FoodShare organizes community gardening, composting and urban agriculture projects across the City.

NEIGHBOURHOOD EVENTS in the park, May 2007:

Third annual “No one is illegal” Community Fair

Saturday May 5, 2.30 to 6 p.m.

Location: the Garrison Creek hollow just south of the marsh fountain by Dufferin Street.

Organized by the “No one is Illegal” club of Toronto.


Live music, food, art and kids’ activities. This event is part of an international movement (originating in Europe and now world-wide) in support of status for migrant workers. Despite the difficult theme, most recently affecting Portuguese workers in Toronto, the music stage is always lively and humorous, and the mood is one of celebration and outdoor fun. For more information:

Norwegian Constitution Day parade and picnic

Saturday May 12th: 12 noon to 3 p.m.

Location: centre of the park, near the playground.

Hosted by park neighbours Arne Nes and Robin Crombie.

Big flag

Arne says that about 200 Norwegians living in Toronto celebrate Norway’s biggest holiday, Norwegian Constitution Day, every May. Last year was the first day this event was held in Dufferin Grove Park, and this year the Norwegians are back again. The schedule: NOON: Welcome. 12:30 PM: Parade, 30-45 minutes parade on the neighbourhood streets including a small stretch on Bloor St. 1:30 PM: 17. Mai tale/speech. 1:45 PM: National Anthem. 2:00 PM: Sarah Longwins performs. 2:30 PM: Games for the Kids. 3:00 PM: Raffle.

From Arne Nes: “There will be Waffles, Ice cream, Hot-Dogs, 17. mai sløyfer T-Shirts etc. Non-Norwegians are welcome!”

posted May 3, 2007

Bruce Whitaker’s Second annual “The Grove’s Clothes” clothing swap at the park

Saturday May 12 (drop-off)and Sunday May 13 (exchange day).


Bruce writes:

“Clean your closet of those clothes that are perfectly fine but never get worn, and do your part for the environment through swap rather than purchase. Find some really groovy clothes and meet your neighbors. The swap rules are just like last year. 10 items (washed and on hangers) will get you 10 tickets in return. You can bring more but you will get a maximum of 10 tickets. You can bring less and will get tickets equal to the number of items.”

Park staff Eroca Nicols headed the sorting crew last year, and will do it again this year, filling the rink house with a beautiful display.


From Bruce Whittaker to the dufferingrovefriends email list, May 21, 2007:

A HUGE THANK YOU to everyone who helped with this year's SWAP (EROCA, SILVIE, Nicole, Sean from Oakland, Carol, Sarah, the Park staff, ...). We had an increase in clothing of around 25% this year over last and we definitely had more quality - which will hopefully be welcomed by those within the shelters - approximately 18 large garbage bags of clothes were donated to Sistering, St Christophers and St Stevens.

AGAIN, thank you to all of those who helped and swapped!!


posted May 20, 2007

Neighbours Discuss Local Schools

A recent thread of emails has appeared on the dufferingrovefriends listserve regarding local schools and the merits of standardized tests as valid indicators of school quality. They are published here:

Hi all, I wonder how many people can comment on Dewson in general, and its immersion program in particular. Also curious to hear anyone's experience with Pierre Elliot, or with Hawthorne II. My 6 year old is registered at two schools right now and we are looking for some anecdotal experience. thanks!


I would highly recommend Dewson, especially for French immersion. The school population is a wonderfully diverse reflection of our neighbourhood and has an excellent combination of cultural, artistic and athletic programming (school choirs, steel bands, track and field, artist in the school). We also have great social events like movie nights, Dewson Festival (June 7) and the recent South Asian Festival.

Our principal, Beth Mills is a long time member of the Dufferin Grove community. Beth works tirelessly for the benefit of the children and the school. As well, there's a very active and engaged group of parents and dedicated teachers.

We should support our neighbourhood schools wherever possible. We're lucky to have a French immersion school in our neighbourhood, as many parents have to bus or drive their kids across town to reach one. I recommend anyone interested in Dewson to attend an open house, or contact Beth Mills or VP Gail Croll.

Andrew Munger 63 Hepbourne St.

I would like to ditto Andrew’s remarks about Dewson. My son was at Dewson (French immersion) from JK to grade six. He is now at Harbord in grade 10 so I can’t comment on current events at Dewson. All I can tell you is that I literally wept when he graduated from Dewson. My son grew up colour-blind. I never knew what race or ethnic background his friends were till I met them. When he had a birthday party he was usually the only white kid present. He learned about such a variety of different cultures and traditions that I found that I learned a lot too.

In my view this experience can’t hold a candle to standardized testing. Life isn’t just about academics. Just my opinion, not intended to offend anyone else’s values.

Rona Achilles.

The grade 3 EQAO results for Dewson over the last five years have consistently been below the provincial standard.

There are also several excellent Catholic schools in the neighbourhood.

Outskirts (Anonymous Poster)

I'm not sure what experience, other than through bureaucratic measurement (the EQAO) this anonymous poster has with Dewson, or with any of our neighbourhood schools.

The EQAO (popularly known as "standardized testing") was introduced by the right wing Mike Harris government as a "one size fits" method of measuring student achievement. It's designed for the benefit of administrators and policy makers, rather than students or teachers. There is a direct correlation between high EQAO scores and socio- economic factors, ie: afluent, white kids whose first language is English score higher.

If EQAO is one's sole measure of a school's quality then perhaps Rosedale or Forest Hill would be a more appropriate setting.

And yes, there are several Catholic schools in our district, which is great. If you happen to be Catholic.

Andrew Munger 63 Hepbourne St.

posted March 24, 2007, updated April 19th

Why have a rule against scavenging?

On March 19th Jutta Mason sent this email to Deborah Barnard, Supervisor of Waste Enforcement for Toronto East York in response to an item in the Waste Watch newsletter.

The email was also sent the the Dufferin Grove Friends listserve. Reproduced below are that email and the responses that followed:

Deborah Barnard
Supervisor, Waste Enforcement
Toronto/East York
433 Eastern Avenue, Bldg. B, 2nd Floor
Toronto, ON M4M 1B7
Office - (416) 392-7680
Fax - (416) 392-0762
>>> Jutta Mason 03/19/2007 10:48 PM >>>
Dear Waste Watch newsletter editor,
I enjoy reading your newsletter and it often has very interesting bits of information in it. But I don't get the item in your latest edition, that says it's against the law for people to pick bottles out of other people's recycling bins.

Why on earth would that be? There are people in my neighbourhood who make an income like that, and good for them, if they can pick re-usable stuff out of my throw-aways.

Does the City government actually spend money sending by-law officers around to catch such scavengers? Please tell me it isn't so.

Jutta Mason

posted May 20, 2007

Downtown West Solar Energy Project

Solar Energy on your Home’s Rooftop

The all-volunteer Downtown West Solar Energy Project has spent the last eight months organizing a bulk purchase of solar water-heating and solar electricity-generating systems for homes. At four public meetings this Spring, speakers will describe the costs and benefits of installing solar energy systems, answer questions and indicate the deadline for homeowners to sign up to take advantage of the bulk purchase agreement that will be negotiated with one or more solar companies. We’ll also present the financing options that we have negotiated for participating households.

To learn more please attend the following neighbourhood meetings:

Thursday May 10th, 7:00-10:00 pm: Walmer Road Baptist Church
188 Lowther Avenue, at Walmer

Seaton Village
Sunday May 13th, 1:00-4:00 pm: St. Alban’s Boys and Girls Club
843 Palmerston Avenue, south of Dupont

Dundas West
Thursday May 17th, 6:30-9:00 pm: St. Christopher’s House
248 Ossington Avenue, at Dundas

Harbord Village/Kensington
Wednesday May 23rd, 7:00-10:00 pm, St. Stephens in the Fields Church
103 Bellevue Avenue, at College

For more information, visit, call David Booz at (416)806-2669 or e-mail Tim Grant at

posted April 15, 2007

Blockbuster directors to build T.O. studio

Ridley and Tony Scott to play prime role in reviving city's slumping industry, creating hundreds of jobs

Apr 14, 2007 02:30 Am
Europe's largest film studio, Pinewood Studios Group of London, is expected to open a major new studio complex in west-end Toronto, giving Hollywood North a badly needed lift, the Star has learned.

The project's developer is Toronto's Castlepoint Studio Partners Ltd., which is believed to be in partnership with Pinewood, whose owners include noted British director Sir Ridley Scott, say sources.

The deal, which closed earlier this week, will see the development of 100,000 square feet of new studio space near Bloor St. W. and Lansdowne Ave., according to sources close to the deal.

Read More (pdf) >>

posted April 03, 2007

Neighbourhood Planning Summit

PEOPLE PLAN TORONTO, a group of representatives from neighbourhood organizations across the City of Toronto, invites you to get involved in a one-day Neighbourhood Planning Summit onSaturday, May 26 to identify problems with the planning process in the City, consider alternative models, and create an action plan for change.

The purpose of the day is two-fold: first, to learn from each other and experts about the planning process, its flaws, and potential solutions; and second, to come up with an action plan for change that will engage and involve communities across the city.

The recent Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) approval of 3 large developments on Queen Street West has been just the latest example of planning gone awry. Neighbourhoods across Toronto are exasperated with the City’s dysfunctional planning process and the role of the unelected OMB.

We need to fight for change, and to make that fight effective, we need to form a broad-based coalition of community groups whose voice cannot be ignored by our political representatives.

Get Involved!
  • Come to the forum on Saturday, May 26, 2007 at the Faculty of Architecture, Landscape and Design at the University of Toronto, 230 College St. West.

Register online at

  • Tell us your story. We need your ideas. To help plan for useful discussions, tell us about a development in your area that your community thinks went wrong (or right), and why. Your stories will help us identify key issues and solutions to be discussed at the forum. To make it easier, we've developed a short questionnaire that you can access when you register (see the registration link, above). An example of a story about a a neighbourhood development is posted on our website at Details of the Summit will be posted on our website ( as they are confirmed.
Help Make Change!

Toronto citizens should have a say in how their communities are planned. Let’s raise our voice, put on the pressure, and work together for a better planning process.

Pass This On!

Pleaseds circulate this information to anyone you think would be interested in helping change the way planning is done in this city. If we’re going to be effective, we need as many voices from as many different neighbourhoods as possible.

posted March 31, 2007

Searching for Homeless Mother Donna Erickson & Uncle Jim Breton

From Neighbour Lisa Marie Erickson:

I last saw my mother and uncle approximately 3 years they were homeless at the time, living in front of the Wallace Emerson Community Centre 1260 Dufferin St.

I am told that after many years they may have received shelter or housing. I have not been able to get any forwarding information of contact. I am very concerned about my mother’s health. I need to know that they are alive and well!

Please, if you know anything about Donna Erickson or Jim Brereton or if you have seen them at all, please let them I am looking for them. I can be reached ANYTIME!

Donna Jean Erickson
Date of Birth: August 13, 1961
Hair: Dark Brown, Curly
Eyes: Dark Brown
Height: 5'5
Background: Bi-Racial (light Skin)
Distinctive Marks etc: Has mole above upper left lip/May have serious health issues, bad legs, feet are turned inwards makes it difficult for her to walk needs a cane to get around.
CONTACT:Lisa Marie Erickson 1209 Queen Street, East Unit # 44 Toronto, ON M4M 3H4 Home: 416-466-0166 Cell: 416-371-3981

posted May 09, 2007

Law in the Community

posted May 01, 2007

Jane's Campfire Walk

Saturday May 5th
Noon to 2 p.m. - meet at the East exit of Lansdowne TTC Station (Emerson Ave.).

Last year Mayor Miller declared May 4 to be Jane Jacobs Day in Toronto (that was her birthday). The next day (May 5) is the first occasion of what Jane’s friends hope will be an annual day of neighbourhood walks to mark her love of cities and of the many ordinary people who make them lively.

In this neighbourhood, the walk is called “Jane’s campfire walk.” It starts at noon at Susan Tibaldi Park (just north of Bloor, on the subway lands behind Duffy’s Tavern, visible from the Emerson Ave exit of the Lansdowne TTC station). Park campfire staff Anna Bekerman and Amy Withers will be cooking fritters made with wild greens and farmers’ market eggs over the campfire there, and artist/activist Dyan Marie will talk about how the area is changing. The walk will go to the site of the new railpath park to pick some more wild greens and get a sneak peak at the sculptures that John Dickson has prepared for the site. The walk then moves on to the heritage buildingsand theTower Automotive building in the Sterling Ave. light industrial area that will soon house a very large new movie studio.

Along Sterling Avenue the zoning is "light industrial," which ranges from the large Moloney Electric Company to warehouses for fish and for marble slabs, to small units making kitchen cabinets, to a place called Sanctuary, a well-equipped cabinet-making shop for homeless people who want to have meaningful work.

Historic Hydro-electric Builing

The second campfire will be waiting at MacGregor Park, with more tasty food. Artist-in-residence Kristen Fahrig will talk about (and show) what she’s doing there with kids. Then the walk will follow Dundas (with its wonderful mix of old and new, oddly-angled buildings) over to Gladstone.

St Anne's Church

Brockton triangle resident Emily Visser has some fascinating stories to tell about that stretch of the oldest street in this neighbourhood. Walking north on Gladstone, Kim Malcomson will be at St.Anne’s Church to tell a little about it. From there the walk ends at Dufferin Grove Park, at the third campfire near the cob courtyard, with Anna and Amy cooking the final course, and toasting forks for people who want to cook their own hot dogs or toast marshmallows.

Graffiti under the Dundas Bridge

This walk has multiple options for shortcuts, or dawdling and catching up (for parents with little kids). For people with good walking shoes, there will also be a chance for a detour with railpath enthusiast Bruce Ward and park staff Corey Chivers along the proposed rail path park site to get a close look at the grand graffiti show on the multiple piers underneath the Dundas streetcar bridge.

If walking the entire thing isn't for you and you would like to join up with the walk somewhere along the way, you can see the main stops on the map below.

There are lots of other “Jane’s walks” in the city that day too: see
See the route map below for the locations of some of the points of interest.

For the Jane's walk website, including other walk locations, see

Other Links:

posted May 02, 2007

Fair Trade Weeks

Saturday, May 5th from 3pm-7pm. "Fairtraders and Friends" are having a party and YOU are invited!

In honour of the 10th anniversary of certified Fairtrade in Canada, "Fairtraders and Friends" are celebrating the difference fair-trade, and organizations whose work embodies the spirit of fair-trade, are making. "Fairtraders and Friends" are folks who work for justice in food, housing, and human rights.

Join us for food, music, lots of info, and of course, special festivities! Bring the family and friends. See you there! Poster

Saturday, May 5th from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Annual Fair Trade Fair, at St Barnabas Church, 361 Danforth Avenue (near Chester Subway).
Saturday May 12th from 11-7 p.m.: Global Aware Fair Trade Marketplace, at GlobalAware Kensington, 19 Kensington Avenue (at Dundas St. W).

The first two weeks in May have been designated International Fair Trade Weeks around the world. This is the time to remind consumers that their purchasing choices make a difference to people living in developing countries. The International system of Fair Trade ensures that producers receive a fair price for the agricultural products they grow and the handicrafts they produce.

“Kid’s need Fair Trade” is this year’s theme. Why do kids need fair trade?
A huge number of children in the world are suffering from unrestricted and exploitative trade practices. In 2004, 246 million children between 5 and 17 were child workers; 73 million of those children were less than 10 years old. In fact, the situation of most children in most of the least developed countries is miserable. They are deprived of the basic needs of life, like food, clothing, shelter, health care and education. The root cause of all this is poverty.

Fair Trade addresses poverty by offering the parents of these children an opportunity to earn a decent living. This means that they can afford to provide food and shelter for their children and can offer them education and adequate medical attention. This is the way to a brighter future.

Fair Trade is Growing in Canada: Transfair Canada certifies fair trade products, promotes and monitors the growth of fair trade sales in Canada. Their statistics show that Fair Trade sales in Canada have been increasing on an average of 55% per year since 1999!

Join us in celebrating the growth of this movement!

For more information please contact The Toronto Fair Trade Network c/o Ten Thousand Villages at (416) 703-2263 or

posted March 30, 2007


Update posted April 04, 2007

From The Mayor's Office:

Efforts have been ongoing with Facilities and Real Estate at Toronto City Hall to extend the viewing period of the street furniture models.

Confirmation has been received that street furniture models will be on display at City Hall (west side of rotunda) for a total of five days.

8:30am to 8:00pm (April 4, 2007)
8:30am to 4:30pm (April 5, 2007)
8:30am to 4:30pm (April 10, 2007)
8:30am to 4:30pm (April 11, 2007)
8:30am to 4:30pm (April 12, 2007)

Thank you for expressing interest. More information is available at

Update posted April 04, 2007

From The Toronto Public Spacing Committee

Street furniture models on display Wednesday for one day only

In yet another show of contempt for residents of this City, Transportation Services and Clean and Beautiful City staff have opted to put the models of the City's proposed "street furniture" on display to the public for one day only; they are visible in the City Hall rotunda from 8:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. today, Wednesday, April 4. "This is a contract into which the City would be locked for twenty years," said Jonathan Goldsbie, a campaigner with the Toronto Public Space Committee. "It is unconscionable that City staff could express such disdain towards the people in whose interests they are ostensibly working."

Staff say that they may add additional viewing days in the near future, if there is sufficient demand. How will demand be determined? Through attendance at the exhibition that is not being promoted to the public and through feedback received at an email address that is not being promoted to the public.

Members of the Toronto Public Space Committee will be on hand in the City Hall rotunda today to talk about the "street furniture," to provide the public with information on how to submit their comments, and to explain why this is just the latest fait accompli in a process marked by staff's and the Mayor's indifference towards the wishes and desires of the people of Toronto.

From The Toronto Public Spacing Committee

Hey there,

Yesterday the City of Toronto unveiled the designs submitted for its "Coordinated Street Furniture Program," its plan to grant an advertising company a twenty-year monopoly on providing and maintaining bus shelters, garbage bins, benches, and other items for Toronto's sidewalks.

The "renderings" have been posted as epic PDFs at:

Our friend Joe Clark has also extracted the images from the PDFs and posted them to his Flickr account for convenient browsing:

But the City doesn't care what you think. The original Request for Proposals states:

Public feedback to renderings will not be used in the evaluation of proposals. The sole intent is to provide the public with the opportunity to view street furniture elements that the City is considering so as to provide context for the eventual recommendations of the Selection committee.

They're frightened that the public will again react as negatively to the ad-driven, privatization scheme as they previously did in the public consultations and official surveys the City conducted a year ago (also available for perusal courtesy of Joe Clark: ).

The Toronto Public Space Committee believes, however, that the public should have input into this process which will define our public realm through 2027, and so we offer to you the email addresses - all publicly available through web searches - of the six members of the Design Jury (Debbie Adams, Michel Trocmé, George Kapelos, Helen Kerr, Dr. David Moos, and Patrick Bollenberghe):,,,,,

We invite you to provide them with your questions and comments regarding the designs. Please forward to us any responses you may receive.




Background information:

posted April 1, 2007

The discussion of street furniture inspired some links from Park Friend Erella Ganon:

Second link was someone that altered (culture jamming) a billboard of the donald.


posted April 08, 2007

Open House for Alpha II Alternative School

Wednesday, April 11, 7:30 p.m.
Open House Location: Ogden Jr PS, 33 Phoebe St.

Alpha Alternative School (a Toronto JK-6 public alternative school since 1971) is working with the TDSB with the plan to open a 7-12 school beginning with grades 7 and 8 in September 2007. Alpha II”, is going to Board of Trustees meeting April 18 to be approved.

Alpha II is committed to a free schooling philosophy respecting each student’s innate ability to learn without coercion at his or her own rhythm. Each student is encouraged to develop a personal sense of responsibility for his or her own learning. Alpha II provides a student-centred, democratic, community-driven, anti-racist, arts-infused and social justice learning environment. Independent learning and peer teaching and learning are encouraged. With this philosophy Alpha II staff will ensure that the TDSB curriculum is fully covered.

Open House information available from the Alpha Alternative School website. Just follow the link to Alpha II under "Secondary".

For more information, call Nadya Burton (416) 538-9949 or Jim Blokland (416) 763-2373

The site for Alpha II Alternative School is in the process of being selected.

posted April 03, 2007

Liquor License Hearing for West Side BBQ, 853A Bloor St. West

From the Christie Ossington Residents Association:

I am writing to inform you that the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) is holding a public hearing to consider the revocation of the existing liquor license for West Side BBQ Restaurant at 853A Bloor St West.

Toronto City Council, on July 25, 2006 called for the revocation of this liquor license. We have succeeded in securing a hearing. This will be an important opportunity for members of the community to show the AGCO that West Side BBQ's management and clientele have negatively impacted our lives and our neighbourhood through anti-social activities.

The hearing will be at:
Bob Abate Community Centre
485 Montrose Avenue
April 10 , 2007 at 5:30 P.M.

As we are coordinating this matter, if you have been personally impacted by West Side BBQ's activities, please contact:
Rebecca Wolfe at 416.397.4110 or

It is crucial that as many concerned residents and business owners as possible attend this hearing.

posted February 22, 2007

First Bloor Improvement Group (BIG) Meeting

Councillor Adam Giambrone and Dyan Marie co-chaired the first B.I.G. meeting on Feb. 21, at Bloor Collegiate. 63 people attended representing a wide cross-section of organizations. Members agreed to move forward all agenda items, mainly as proposed. A Board of Directors was established. The B.I.G. chair will be a rotating position, Sheila Pin is acting as interim Secretary and Ann Homan is interim Treasurer. Meetings will be held monthly, with community-wide public meetings set for every other month. Meetings will be held the last Wednesday of the month. Meeting location to be announced soon - please check for on-going B.I.G. news.

posted March 20, 2007

The Citizens' Advisory Committee of the Keele Community Correctional Facility of Toronto Invitation

Invites you to learn more about what they and the centre do "one conversation at a time on Saturday March 24, 12-3pm at the Annette Street Public Library (Annette and Medland).

Learn more about substance abuse programs, anger & emotions management, living without violence in the family, parenting skills, methadone clinic, cognitive skills, chaplaincy, weekly psychology department, leisure skills, urinalysis, AA, Circles of Support and Accountability, and 24/7 on-site security staff at the Keele Centre.

See the Flyer (pdf >>)

posted February 23, 2007

Crazee Kids Carnival - March 24th

In support of Zacharie Ludy*
Bob Abate Community Centre
Saturday March 24, 12-3pm

Kid's Fun:

  • Face Painting
  • Bouncy Castle
  • Silly Hat Factory
  • Quirky Clowns
  • Kids Crazee Dance Party


Awesome Silent Auction!

See you there!

Directions: Bob Abate Community Centre, 485 Montrose Avenue 1 set of lights west of Christie on Bloor 416-392-0744

  • Zacharie Ludy is a Bob Abate Student, 4 years old, diagnosed with ALL - Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia.

posted March 01, 2007

World Peace Sign

Click image to view poster (pdf)

Saturday March 17
3pm – Toronto City Hall

Our friends at Humanize Bloordale sent us this notice:

On March 17, 2007, in cities and towns on five continents, people will gather to form living Peace Signs, calling for global nuclear disarmament, the withdrawal of all invading armies, and an end to the madness of violence. It's a day to take courage, and take a stand.

More Info at 416.760.3475

posted February 21, 2007

Tooker Gomberg Memorial

Tales, Big Pharma and Full Moon Ride for TaketheTooker Bloor St. Bike Lane!

Sat. March 3, 7:30 p.m.
341 Bloor St. W. Toronto (at St. George)

On the 3rd anniversary of Tooker Gomberg's passing, please join us for...
- Ritual to honor Tooker's passing - Tale-telling to celebrate his life - Moon gazing -- Mar. 3 is a full moon and a full lunar eclipse - Special screening of the 2006 video documentary:

"Big Bucks, Big Pharma: Marketing Disease and Pushing Drugs"

Followed by a Critical Mass bike ride along Bloor/Danforth to celebrate

Free. For more info call Shannon, or ira: (416)534-9033 x 1
or email

posted February 12, 2007

Invitation to the first BIG Meeting

Everyone is invited, encouraged and needed to become part of an IMPORTANT, NEW, COMMUNITY-WIDE ORGANIZATION: BIG

BIG: Bloor Improvement Group , proposes to be an area-wide association that includes residence groups, BIAs, politicians, stores and businesses, service providers, artists, community centres, developers, trades and schools - and everyone that wants to help. The intention is to discuss ideas, actions and events that can help vitalize the area. Are we interested in working together to develop a BIG Bloor Street festival as a way to encourage the vitalization of Bloor Street? We need your help and suggestions. Invitation to attend the first start-up meeting to explore
where everyone’s good will and good ideas can lead us.

DATE: Wednesday, February 21, 2007
TIME: 7:00 PM
LOCATION: Bloor Collegiate, 1141 Bloor Street West

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