M A R C H 2018
Leaside Life leasidelifenews.com
Our own Carol Burtin Fripp wins the Agnes Macphail Award page 3
New life on Bayview: Jonah Creed and his wife Ashlynn at CREEDS, page 6.
INSIDE THIS ISSUE:
LEASIDE’S COMEDIENNE EXTRAORDINAIRE • PG. 23
CHURCH SALE VOLUNTEERS DWINDLE • PG. 27
LEASIDERS LIVING IN THEIR CHILDHOOD HOMES • PG. 30
PLUS: AVENUE BISTRO’S ADAM GRANT • PG. 4 • LEASIDER ROBIN NASMITH • PG. 5 CATCHING THE TRAVEL BUG AT LHS • PG. 10 • LEASIDE DARTISTRY • PG. 25 AND MUCH MORE!!
Winter Feeding Helps Our Local Birds Survive
Leaside Life • March 2018
900 Don Mills Road (at Barber Greene Blvd )
CAROL BURTIN FRIPP WINS THE 2018 AGNES MACPHAIL AWARD It is 1965, and in the U.S., even non-American men were being drafted to fight in Vietnam. For this reason, British citizen Robert Fripp and his American bride, Carol Burtin Fripp, made the decision to come to Canada “for a short time – just until the war is over, and Nixon is gone.” As you all know, if you are a regular Leaside Life reader, or attend Leaside Property Owners’ Association meetings, the Fripps are still in Canada, and still in East York. This March, Carol will become the 25th recipient of the East York Agnes Macphail Award for her significant volunteer leadership in various social justice issues. On the evening of the award presentation, initial entertainment will be provided by the VOCA Chorus, followed by a speech by
Maeve Pestonji, a grade 8 student at St. Anselm Catholic School. Her topic “Me Too” – The words That Changed Everything won the Agnes Macphail Public Speaking Contest. The keynote speaker is Rob Oliphant, MP for Don Valley West, speaking on “Rebel in the House: Life Lessons from Agnes Macphail.” From there, the evening turns to highlight this year’s recipient. The title Carol has given for her speech is “Speaking Truth to Power.” You are invited to celebrate with Carol on Sat., March 24, at 7 p.m. in the True Davidson Council Chambers of the East York Civic Centre, 850 Coxwell Ave. There is free parking in the staff parking lot off Mortimer Ave. We’ll feature more coverage of the ceremony in the April issue. ■
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Leaside Life • March 2018
LEASIDE PEOPLE • MEET YOUR NEIGHBOURS
Avenue Bistro’s Adam Grant likes to tweak For Adam Grant, it’s all about the little things – the tweaks and small changes. So, when the new owner of the former L’Avenue Bistro on Bayview Ave., Cindy Stiller, asked him to stay on after the ownership switch, he was happy to do so. His reasoning was that what he saw in the bistro was basically good, and just in need of those small tweaks. Cindy and her husband had been regulars at L’Avenue, which reminded them of a favourite haunt in Paris. So, in ownership, she wants it to retain that same ambiance and neighbourhood look. And she wanted to retain Adam. Hired as a consultant by the previous owner, Adam has stayed on as manager of the “new” bistro and helped put those changes in place. L’Avenue is now Avenue. As of the beginning of December, there were new floors, a “proper” bar and an improved heating system, but the restaurant will still look familiar to anyone walking in who hasn’t been there for a while. The same excellent staff run the kitchen. Jesse and
his team there do “amazing work,” says Adam. There is “nice presentation and good timing.” And the tweaks continue. Adam and his team noticed that when Avenue was closed between lunch and dinner, people passing by kept pulling at the
Lorna Krawchuk Publisher Leaside Life
Adam at work.
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door to get in, so the bistro started serving tapas-style dishes between 2:30 and 5:30, and are doing well with the new addition. Jesse and his team have perfected a baguette – so now in the mornings, starting at 7, the bistro offers light home-made French dishes, along with croissants and baguettes, as well as coffee, of course. Adam has always been comfortable working in food establishments. He started as a bus boy at 15 and then worked his way into the kitchen. He has no formal foodservice or restaurant training, but has been a keen observer along the way and “learned from good operators.” Now, he prefers to be “on the floor,” and he likes small eateries because he feels they have a “larger sense of community, and people will actually talk to others.” Avenue fits this bill perfectly. He’s looking forward to seeing how his tweaks will make the bistro even better. “It is great to be proud of the food you are putting down on the table.” However, there are always things that don’t go as planned, and solving those issues keeps it fun. Another plus is that he is working in a neighbourhood he knows. His mother, the owner of Grandma Mary’s Fudge (profiled previously in Leaside Life), lives just up the street on the other side of Bayview. ■
Leaside Life • March 2018
Robin Nasmith’s Skican-do spirit
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Leaside Life • March 2018
Robin Nasmith may seem an unlikely person to found a ski-based business. He grew up in an Alcan mining town in Northern Quebec, the son of an engineer, and like his father, also became an engineer. Armed with a science degree from Mount Allison and later the Nova Scotia Institute of Technology, he started his working life as a civil engineer. He found himself in 1960s Montreal, where there were many young professionals with an Englishspeaking background but not a lot of money. When one of them wanted to visit his girlfriend in the Bahamas, he was aghast at the price of a flight. Robin and his friend, Moose, aka “Mr. Hospitality,” thought a group of them could all go if they chartered a plane. They ended up with 105 flying in a chartered Nordair plane. At that time you had to be part of an affinity group to set up a charter. At a bar one night, Robin and his friends named themselves the “Ridgewood Get-to-know-Montreal-better Club,” Ridgewood being the name of the
street where some of them lived. The only ski trips to Europe in those group continued to offer charter days. flights every so often, while continuThus was born Skican Ltd., in ing with their regular jobs. 1969, with a nod to Robin’s famRobin was an engineer with the ily’s connection to Alcan for the firm working on the Canadian pavil“can” part of the name. Their first ion at Expo 67 when he met Sheila. year, they ran just six charters but Originally from Toronto, Sheila managed to keep their heads above moved with her family to Montreal water. They gradually increased their as a teenager when her father was draw so that instead of chartering transferred there. She from a small airline like later trained as a nurse Quebecair, they were at the Montreal General, eventually working with followed by a year of Wardair and Air Canada. public health training at So where does Leaside McGill. fit in? We can thank When Robin’s firm the “look” of Northlea asked him to relocate School for attracting the to their Toronto headNasmiths to the area. quarters in 1968, he Leaside felt similar to was all too willing to what Sheila had grown make the move, and he up with in Forest Hill. and Sheila were married When a 3-bedroom Robin Nasmith that summer. Robin plus sunroom house on told Sheila that he really Bessborough came on wanted to see if he could make a the market, they were sold. go of a charter business, focusing Skican is still doing well. Daughter on skiers. After all, a number of his Karen, another engineer with a friends in the Montreal crowd were Master’s degree in urban planning, originally from Western Canada, and is now president, and the company they lamented the fact there were is thriving. ■
By LORNA KRAWCHUK
LEASIDE PEOPLE • MEET YOUR NEIGHBOURHOOD RETAILERS
CREEDS Coffee Bar: meet the new caffeine kid on the block By HAILEY EISEN For a freelance writer, the prospect of a new coffee shop opening in your neighbourhood is nothing short of thrilling. Working from home in any capacity can be quite isolating, which is why cafés often serve as mobile offices, collaborative work spaces, and boardrooms for the city’s freelance workforce. Design a well-lit space with plenty of seating, easy access to outlets, good coffee, and fresh, local fare, and you’re sure to attract an eager crowd. Armed with this knowledge, Jonah Creed opened the second location of his CREEDS Coffee Bar on January 21, taking what he’s learned (and is still learning) from his vibrant Annex café and bringing it to Leaside. At 1595 Bayview, the former site of Second Cup, CREEDS is shiny, bright, and welcoming. “The idea was to have big tables
Creeds on Bayview.
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and comfortable chairs and create a space where people want to spend time,” Jonah explains. “This is somewhere people can stay all day and work without feeling as though they have to go anywhere else.” There’s even a large, round table at the back for meetings, and monitors (currently displaying his parents’ private digital art collection), which can be hooked up for presentations. As a father of two, Jonah also knows how important it is to have a place where you can enjoy a good coffee while keeping your kids happy. CREEDS makes its own hot chocolate and apple cider, and has already become a popular spot for families after school and on weekends. “We want to be a gathering space — somewhere everyone feels welcome,” Jonah says from his perch at the back of the shop, where he can often be found working and engaging with customers, as he gets to know the community better. Keeping that strong sense of community in mind, Jonah has sourced nearly everything on the CREEDS menu from local vendors. All espresso drinks, brewed coffee, and cold brew come from Toronto’s Pilot Coffee Roasters. You’ll also find a wide selection of teas (and tea lattes), Kombucha on tap, scones from the St. Clair West favourite, Baker and Scone, nut-free cookies from Sullivan & Bleeker Baking Co., and fresh sandwiches, soups, and salads. Jonah is slowly converting cappuccino drinkers to the CREEDS’ signature coffee beverage, the cortado, a Spanish coffee made from espresso mixed with an equal amount of warm milk to reduce the acidity. His 8-year-old daughter recommends the eggy scone, while his son, who’s 6, always goes for the Sullivan & Bleeker s’mores cookie. Beyond coffee shop hours, the space is available to rent for special events — a business Jonah is growing and perfecting in his Annex location. There are also plans in the works for special CREEDS’ hosted events like trivia night and live musical performances coming to Leaside soon. CREEDS, Page 15
Leaside Life • March 2018
LUMLEY AVE. 150
By JEANNE HOPKINS Many streets in Leaside were built and named for the executives behind Toronto’s Belt Line Railway and the Canadian National Railway to mark the impact of their contributions to the growth of rapid transit in the growing metropolis. Lumley Avenue in Bennington Heights took its name from one of these notables. Sir Henry Lumley Drayton (1869-1950), born in Kingston, Ont., was a lawyer and politician until 1902 when he became involved with the development of railways. Sir Henry was a friend and associate of John T. Moore, who laid out the Moore Park subdivision in 1891 along the Belt Line Railway. He was also a friend of Sir William Mackenzie, who was responsible for much of the industrial development in South Leaside. From 1911 until 1913, Sir Henry served on Toronto's Hydro-Electric Commission and then served as a Hydro commissioner under the War Measures Act. For his work in giving Canada an efficient railway system, he was knighted in 1915. In 1927, he was a candidate for the leadership of the Conservative Party, but finished in last place. Sir Henry retired from politics in 1928 to become chairman of the Liquor Control Board of Ontario. Sir Henry was also active in the Church of England in Canada, serving in the Diocese of Toronto until he retired to live quietly in Victoria, B.C. and Muskoka. Sir Henry Lumley Drayton died in Muskoka on August 28, 1950, and after a service in the chapel of St. James-the-Less Cemetery (now a national historic site inside the main gates of St. James Cemetery) in Toronto, he was buried there. Jeanne Hopkins spent most of her life in the historic Henry Farm community of North York. She realized her passion for local history in the Canadiana department of the North York Public Library, where she worked for 27 years. She is the author of many articles and five books of local history. ■
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Leaside Life • March 2018
OF LEASIDE THE STREETS
Leaside Life • March 2018
It’s a bird, it’s a plane, no it’s a hovercraft? The grainy photo reminds me that this all unfolded more than 43 years ago in Leaside. When I was 15 and living at the corner of Parkhurst and Donegall, I was apparently not content with the traditional extracurricular pastimes like bike-riding, swimming, hockey, baseball and cutting the lawn, though I enjoyed all of them. This might not be a surprise if you’ve read some of my other columns, particularly the daredevil bike-jumping, streaking, and amateur private investigator pieces. It seems I was easily bored. In my teens I became interested in how things worked. To my twin brother’s puzzlement, I dropped $25 of hardearned babysitting money on a plastic see-through working model of a V-8 engine that took me weeks to assemble. Yes, several families were, in fact, prepared to leave their children in my care for hours at a time. Back then I was also fascinated by things that flew — still am. Remind me to report on the Falcon series of full-sized hang gliders a classmate,
Terry Fallis Columnist
Geoff Elmer, and I — at the tender age of 12 —designed, built (badly), and tested (unsuccessfully) in Talbot Park down the street from our home. The hang gliders were about as air-worthy as an anvil. But even those aerodynamic failures did not quench our interest in flight. So that same classmate — you know, the one who insisted I be our designated homemade hang glider test pilot — and I decided to fly a little closer to the ground. We proceeded to design, build (badly), and test (successfully this time) a full-sized, single-seater, twin-engine hovercraft. It was 12 ft. long and 6 ft. wide with a 10-horsepower vertical shaft engine driving the lift fan at the front, and a 340 cc snowmobile engine powering the
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thrust fan at the back. That’s probably already more than you wanted to know about recreational air cushion vehicles. Anyway, we built it out of wood in a neighbour’s garage in return for free snow-shoveling. It took us all year and all our modest savings to finish the hovercraft. We painted it bright orange and stenciled the name on the front. We dubbed it the GTH1, a very cool name, we thought. It stood for Geoff and Terry Hovercraft 1. On paper, it would fly on its cushion of air over land, water, and ice. We never tested it on water. Given our dubious construction skills, the GTH1 was about as watertight as a colander. But I’ll never forget the day we started up the lift engine for the first time in the garage. I sat in the hovercraft and actually felt it magically rise from the concrete floor. Geoff could push the 400-lb. vehicle around the garage using one hand. However, the balance from front to back was off a bit. The only way it would freely float on its 8-inch air cushion was with several bricks loaded into the hull to keep the craft level. Yes, we made the whole thing heavier so it would fly properly. There was probably a better solution to our balance problem, but the bricks were fast and easy. We officially tested the GTH1 in the early spring of 1975 in the parking lot of the Ontario Science Centre (photo). We used a vertical vane in the thrust fan’s slipstream for directional control. It certainly wasn’t as precise as the rack and pinion steering on my mother’s Volkswagen, but it got the job done. It was so satisfying to literally fly across the parking lot with at least some measure of navigational control. On one flight across the lot the GTH1 suddenly dropped to the ground and skidded to a stop. We had no idea what had happened until we discovered I’d driven over a sewer grate. All the air forced underneath the craft by the lift fan had disappeared straight down the sewer shaft taking our cushion pressure with it. The GTH1 stayed at the Science Centre for a few years thereafter. Much to my parents’ relief, I headed off to university to study engineering before my friend Geoff and I could act on our growing interest in rockets. Sadly, Geoff Elmer passed away a few years ago, but I believe building that hovercraft in Leaside all those years ago was a seminal experience in both our lives. ■
Catching the travel bug at LHS Two veteran Leaside High School teachers, who between them have been on a total of 28 March Break trips, have joined forces for this year’s trip to Italy and France from March 8 to 19. Ms. Helen Panayiotou, curriculum leader of science, and Dr. Enrico Vicentini, assistant curriculum leader of French and World Languages, are working with the tour company Explorica to introduce 47 students in Grades 10 to 12 to such famous locales as Rome, Pompeii, Sorrento, Capri, Olympia, Athens and Mykonos. Ms. Panayiotou, who was born in Cyprus, has been on 17 March Break trips throughout her career, everywhere from European countries to farther-flung destinations like India, China, Japan, Australia, Vietnam, Peru, South Africa and Egypt. Dr. Vicentini, born in Arzignano, Italy, has been on 11 trips to such European countries as Italy, Greece, France, Spain, Austria and England. With these track records, both bring a great deal of expertise and enthusiasm to their travels. When it comes to choosing a trip, they look
Janis Fertuck Columnist
for a good price, a wealth of cultural experiences and places the students have expressed an interest in. It was a natural step for them to collaborate this year on a trip that reflects their own backgrounds and is a perennial favourite with students. Most students are understandably enthusiastic, describing the trips as
Dr. Vicentini and Ms. Panayiotou.
Leaside Life • March 2018
“life-changing,” and an opportunity to see different parts of the world, gain a global perspective and become part of a close-knit group. Ms. Panayiotou says that when they are touring without their parents, “the students seem to pay more attention and connect more with their surroundings, embracing the experiential nature of the learning.” Dr. Vicentini adds, “The students enjoy talking to the locals and seeing sights such as the Colosseum or the Sistine Chapel, moments when they say ‘the trip pays for itself’.” These trips are so successful they attract many repeat participants or younger siblings of former travellers. For Ms. Panayiotou “every trip has its special moments whether they are at Kruger National Park in South Africa, Hiroshima or Auschwitz.” Her own favourite moments include riding a camel in front of the Pyramids in Egypt and seeing the “magical” Taj Mahal. Dr. Vicentini’s counts among his favourite spots the Blue Grotto in Capri and the resonating chamber in the Baptistery in Pisa. While these trips are definitely a lot of work for the educators, they feel energized by the students' excitement and delight at being exposed to new experiences. We wish all of them a bon voyage! ■
at St. Cuthbert’s Leaside
Palm Sunday March 25th, 8am and 10am The Sunday of the Passion with the Liturgy of the Palms. Said Eucharist at 8am. Sung Eucharist at 10am. Children’s programs at both services. Evening Prayer services Mon-Wed, March 26-28, 7:30pm Maundy Thursday March 29th Simple Supper at 6pm. Institution of the Lord’s Supper, Footwashing and Veneration of the Cross at 7:30pm. Good Friday Friday, March 30th, 10am Choral Celebration of the Lord’s Passion. The Great Easter Vigil of the Resurrection Saturday, March 31st, 8pm Easter Sunday April 1, 8am and 10am Said Eucharist at 8am. Choral Eucharist at 10am. Children’s programs at both services. PLUS: Fauré’s Requiem. Sunday, March 25, 7:30pm With the St. Cuthbert’s Choir and guests the McMaster University Choir. Conducted by Glenda Crawford.
St. Cuthbert’s Leaside
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Leaside Life • March 2018
Bayview’s Pagnello’s Antiques: standing the test of time
The Pagnellos, Frank and Michael, in their shop. By JANIS FERTUCK It’s no wonder Pagnello’s Antiques placed first in the “Best Use of Merchandise” category in our recent Holiday Window Decorating Contest since the Pagnello brothers, Michael and Frank, have been accumulating an amazing array of antiques including vintage toys and decorative items for more than five decades. The brothers cut their teeth in the antique business at their father’s store on Queen St. before opening their own shop on Bayview in 1966, attracted by the charming neighbourhood, good mix of shops and restaurants, the Bayview Playhouse and the reasonable rents. At first, theirs was the only antique store and it took a while for the customers to accept them because of their youth. But after amassing a large inventory from antiques markets and house contents sales, they were on their way. The 1970s and ’80s were the real boom period for antiques. Pine furniture, brass, stained glass and Art Nouveau were the “must haves” of the ’70s, while in the ’80s, Art Deco was in demand. This is when Pagnello’s Antiques attracted clients from across Toronto and even celebrities appearing at the Playhouse. Soon more antique and pine stores opened on Bayview to make the street a popular style destination. In the last few years, restoration has become a large part of the business as the brothers enjoy repairing and rejuvenating clocks, furniture, lamps, paintings, anything that might be discarded otherwise. They have gained the knowledge
and experience to save these pieces, and there are few places left that can provide that service. As Frank says, they have “a lifetime of parts for antiques.” Not only is it better for the environment to save the pieces, but they enjoy “preserving items of sentimental value and seeing the customers’ pleased reactions.” The brothers still do a brisk business in a wide variety of goods: Asian vases and tea sets, silver serving pieces, toys, paintings, bronze statues, vintage jewellery, military memorabilia such as medals and badges, and light fixtures. Some exceptional pieces from the 19th century are a pair of Sèvres vases and a statue of Marcus Aurelius. Many customers love spending time in the shop, examining the treasures as if it were a museum. About 30 per cent of their business comes from consignments, and often clients will ask the brothers to “find a good home” for their beloved pieces hoping that they will live on. Another development that Michael has observed is the role of Millennials in rejuvenating the antiques business through their support for green initiatives. “It’s more than reusing and recycling, as they have a high regard for historical items and a renewed appreciation for quality and craftsmanship.” While Pagnello’s is once again the only antiques store on Bayview, Michael and Frank look forward to whatever the future holds, and plan to stay there as long as they can. Drop in to see their unique inventory and embrace the latest “everything old is new again” recycling movement. ■
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Identity theft! Is Leaside losing its architectural character? counted in the census. The north part of the site was pretty much built right after the end of WWII. Now, On April 23, 1913, Bill No. 55 of counting only detached and semi-dethe provincial legislature officially tached houses, there are over 4,000 incorporated the town of Leaside. houses in the neighbourhood, As a product of colonial expanwhich are the emphasis of sionism from Great Britain, this article. the Garden City movement The housing design conmade its way into Canada sisted of mainly four types REAL ESTATE and with the intervention of of dwellings: single-storenowned American landrey bungalow, two-stoscape architect Frederick rey side hall, centre hall, Todd, Leaside’s intricate and semi-detached. From the urban pattern came to life. The architectural standpoint the most site comprised 1,025 acres, flanked prominent style was the Georgian on the north by the Don River and Revival that had a profound influon the south by the Pacific Railway. ence on England’s emerging colonies The urban fabric was somewhat wanting to emulate their fashion, elaborate, not following the grid while demonstrating patriotism and pattern, but adding curvaceous main loyalty to the British crown. Other thoroughfares in different directions houses followed the Tudor Revival, creating a sort of web. and a few were designed in the Arts Two grand sinuous boulevards and Crafts and Cape Cod styles. This crossed the site, McRae Dr. being the way, Leaside’s architecture with its widest with 120 feet running to the understated elegance, offered resieast, followed by Bessborough Dr. dents a sense of stability and peace, with 110 feet heading north. so much needed after having been Only 68 houses were built by 1929, involved in both world wars. 324 by 1934, and by 1938 when The redevelopment of some a whopping 1,832 houses were
Leaside Life • March 2018
By ALEX PINO, BROKER
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areas by more affluent residents has changed their former atmosphere where larger lots allowed buyers to build bigger houses in different architectural styles that have diversified their presence. Killdeer Cres., Hanna Rd. and a portion of Broadway Ave. have been transformed with superior homes of transitional style. Rykert Cres. contains the prime major estates, fitting their ravine setting. Bessborough Dr. is a magnificent tree-lined street that still preserves a lot of the original magnetism of the community but has also been modified with improved residences. McRae Dr. has pretty much retained the charisma of the earlier town, as owners do not want to overdevelop because of the lack of appetite for expensive houses located on a main street. The renovated houses on Glenvale Blvd. show a pattern of similitudes that go well with their initial structures. Thursfield Cres. and Beaufield Ave. feature a large number of semi-detached houses that showcase the lifestyle of the original residents, since semi-detached structures pose challenges for renovating purposes. The contemporary style is almost non-existent with only a handful of houses built this way. In essence, Leaside now boasts a mix of architectural styles that have changed the architectural character of the neighbourhood but not its peaceful spirit. There are still some interesting parts that could be historically preserved as loyal guardians to show future generations the former glory of our beautiful town. Alex Pino, Arch FRI Broker, is Senior VP, Sales for Sotheby’s International Realty Canada. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org. ■
From Page 6 Beyond coffee and community, what sets CREEDS apart is that it also happens to be a dry-cleaning depot. While it may seem like an unlikely combination (coffee up front, dry cleaning collection in the rear), it’s proved to work remarkably well. While the café business is fairly new for the Creeds family (the Annex coffee shop opened in 2015) their long history of entrepreneurship dates back almost a century. In fact, Jonah’s grandfather, the famed Eddie Creed, was highly regarded for his luxury department store Creeds & Co., the hub of exclusive high fashion in Yorkville until 1991. Also in the fur business, the family transitioned from fur sales and storage to dry cleaning in the mid-1990s. Their couture dry-cleaning business provides pickup and delivery service across the GTA. Jonah artfully combines his family’s business acumen with his commitment to customer service and passion for a good cup of coffee to create a refreshing new addition to the Leaside community. ■
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Leaside Life • March 2018
Leaside Life • March 2018
Two Leaside teams crowned GTHL Regular Season Champions
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Leaside Flames 2002 A Team: It has been an extraordinary season for the Leaside Flames 2002 A GTHL team. They were recently announced the GTHL Regular Season Champions after compiling a 34 win – 1 loss – 1 tie record. Amazingly, they finished 15 points ahead of the second-place team, an unheard-of achievement in the GTHL. In addition, they have won 3 tournament championships this season and the team is ranked number 1 in Ontario for their age group and division. According to Head Coach Dave Rumer, winning is not the most important thing. “Winning hockey games as a team has been enjoyable for everyone, but it pales in comparison to the life lessons this group has learned together. What has been most impressive is how the boys have all developed over the past few years into young men with character, respect, pride and a continued love of the great game of hockey.” Looking at the smiles in the picture, it is quite apparent that this Leaside team certainly does enjoy winning together. Go Flames Go!!!
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Leaside Flames 2004 AA Team: We’re proud to be a Leaside-based team representing what we believe to be the best community in Toronto. I’ve been on the bench with this team since the players were 5 years old and I’m really proud of what we have accomplished with the highlight being this year’s GTHL Regular Season AA Championship (formerly the Kraft Cup). Five of our players have been with the team for nine consecutive seasons and most have been longterm team members; this makes a big difference. We love to win, but have equally emphasized the development of selflessness, discipline, respect, and hard work. Our coaches Darryl, Al, Will, our Manager Tran and I, have benefited from parents and players who want to be part of our community and create something special together after many years of effort.—Coach John Watson ■
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Leaside Life • March 2018
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Get ready for the Wrath of Cathy! It took 60 years for Leaside resident Cathy Boyd to find her true calling. Born in Maine, this mother of four and grandmother of six relocated to Leaside with her second husband in 2010. Following a period of unsuccessful job searches, Cathy decided to follow her passion for writing by taking courses at Toronto’s famed Second City. It did not take long for writing to turn into comedy. In January 2016 at age 61, Cathy took to the stage for the first time. Since then, she has been honing her craft doing shows in Montreal, Maine and lots of clubs right here in Toronto. On March 2nd, Cathy is producing and will be headlining a free, multicomic show right here in Leaside at Originals at 1660 Bayview Ave. Comedy is often seen as a younger person’s game, but Cathy reminds us that at 63, she has a lot of experience to draw on. She also likes to remind her husband that she and Christie Brinkley are the same age. For more information, check out her Facebook page, The Wrath of Cathy. ■
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Leaside Life • March 2018
Cheryl Vanderburg gives us the straight poop What do the following items have in common: big mounds of dog poop, baggies filled with dog poop, an empty cigarette package and lighter, empty plastic water bottles, a crushed Bud Light tallboy can, numerous hockey pucks, broken hockey sticks, a purple glove, a flyer from a local painting company, a grocery bag, one red doggy booty, a soggy package of tissues, and several Tim’s and McD’s takeaway coffee cups? They all began to appear from under the snowy covering in Trace Manes Park on the first day of the Spring thaw. Just taking a walk to mail a letter at Rumsey and Millwood, I was unprepared for a spontaneous cleanup, but I also couldn’t ignore it, so improvisation was paramount. First, I took the discarded coffee cups, scooped up over a dozen poop piles and deposited them into the grocery bag. Disgusting for sure, but at least the piles hadn’t totally thawed. I filled the entire bag! Off it went into the trash bin. I guess the dog owners who do this don’t read my column or the
Cheryl Vanderburg Leaside Litterati
Leaside Community Facebook site where there is a regular outcry of some kind regarding irresponsible dog owners and their dog’s poop. The latest began on January 14 when someone posted a picture of a gentleman out walking his dog, the dog pooping (kind of embarrassing for the dog), and the dog owner walking away “not picking up his dog’s s***.” People were trying to identify “the putz” by the logo on his hat and his dog. A number of people chimed in with a variety of x-rated comments and their personal observations and experiences. “Unfortunately, there are a great number of offenders among us,” said one gentleman. “In wintertime they
Kathleen Wynne MPP Don Valley West
Let us have a safe March Break and welcome long-awaited Spring!
let their dogs c*** in the snow and will casually kick some snow over it hoping someone else will deal with it in springtime.” I could certainly relate to that! Another chimed in that “the other day I stepped in a HUGE one in the middle of the sidewalk on our evening walk. So gross. What if that was a kid?? I almost slipped and fell!” One woman called the common grass area near her building “a canine fecal cemetery.” And as someone summed it up: “I hope this person is tipped off by this post and the embarrassment results in him not doing it anymore.” Just as an aside, I’d love to hear from the offender(s) to hear your side of the story. Why don’t you “poop and scoop”? Once the dog poop was tackled, I picked up the other assorted items ending with the Bud Light tallboy, which I tossed it into the recycle bin. Someone walking by shouted out “nice!” I replied, “Someone has to pick it up,” to which they replied, “Not really.” That got me thinking. How many people even notice litter or take the time and effort to pick up someone else’s yuck? We live across from Trace Manes Park and I can’t tell you how many people walk by a tossed water bottle, juice box or coffee cup like it doesn’t exist. One article idea floated by the owner of Leaside Life was to do a social experiment. He would discard a pop can in the children’s park, sit on the bench for an hour or so, and see if anyone would pick it up. We never did do it, but I can pretty much predict the result. Am I right? What would you do? ■
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Leaside Life • March 2018
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Jon Burnside Councillor, Toronto Ward 26 Don Valley West
Jon Burnside’s winter roundup In early February, I held my annual Leaside Town Hall at the William Lea Room. For those who couldn’t attend, here are a few of the highlights: North Leaside Traffic Committee: Based on the success of the survey last summer, the North Leaside Traffic Committee has requested that North Leaside residents be formally polled regarding the temporary creation (one year or less) of cul-de-sacs at each of the entry points to the community from Bayview Ave. My office is currently gathering data in preparation for a late spring poll. To be successful, 50 per cent plus one of all eligible residents must respond, and of those, 60 per cent must answer in the affirmative. Although the proposal has the support of the Transportation department, North York Community Council would still have to ratify the plan. Trace Manes Playground: Thanks to the tremendous efforts of Jillian Walsh and her team, the $1.3 million revitalization of Trace Manes Playground will begin this fall. This will include modern playground equipment, a splash pad and properly shaded areas. 939 Eglinton Ave. East: Diamond Corp has submitted its site plan for 939 Eglinton (at Brentcliffe) and anticipate beginning demolition in September. Construction is expected to take two years. Costco: Costco has moved back its opening date to early May. Community centre: Unfortunately, the City’s 20-year Facility Master Plan did not identify Leaside for a community centre so I will continue to move forward with building a facility through the use of “Section 37” funds. As reported earlier, I asked RioCan to find ways to incorporate a facility on their site at 815 Eglinton Ave. E. (Canadian Tire). They are currently in the process of revising their original plans and I am hoping the community space will be enlarged. Ward boundaries: The OMB BURNSIDE, Page 28
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Leaside laneway naming: feast or famine?
Leaside Life • March 2018
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By LORNA KRAWCHUK It is quite strange that while there are five un-named laneways in Leaside, only one is creating a lot of interest. Almost too much, in fact. The lane in question is the one running between Sutherland and Laird between Eglinton and Donlea. In the January issue of Leaside Life, Mohring Lane was proposed, in honour of Rosemary Mohring, a long-time resident of Laird Drive near the lane. Then, letters started to appear suggesting that Lui, the barber, should be honoured. At Jon Burnside’s Leaside Town Hall meeting, others, including my husband, signed the naming sheets I had available, in favour of Lui’s Lane. As if that weren’t enough,
another suggestion for the same lane was in honour of the Leblanc family, who own a building backing into the lane on Eglinton. And still no specific names to suggest for the Bayview/Heather lane. So, where do we go from here? ■
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Dartistry invades Leaside
The Tungsten Ticklers! Leaside team with its own shirts, as Dave laughingly jokes, “so we look more intimidating!” Rick French, a player with the original Leaside team, The Throwers, says that for him, the league has been a great way to reconnect with old
old fun. Dartistry at its best! Note: if you’d like to join the league, spots are available. Contact Param, email@example.com. To learn more about the darts rules, visit www.darting.com/DartsRules/. ■
Leaside Life • March 2018
friends and a way to make a lot of new ones. The fact that they play on Tuesdays is also, he adds, “a great way to break up the week.” So while someone once referred to Tuesdays as “Monday’s ugly child,” they truly are a great night in Leaside. The atmosphere at the pub is one of high energy, camaraderie, and good
Until very recently, my knowledge of darts did not extend far beyond hearing (and being able to imitate) the English commentator who would yell, “ONE HUN-dred and AIIII-ty!!!” But the dart world extends far beyond the U.K. and is extremely active right here in Leaside. Before investigating dart culture, it was important for me to ask the first obvious question. What does one even call a person who plays darts? (And this was a question which even stumped the competitors). A darts player? A darts competitor? Or, as I would love to call them, dartists? For this article, I will grudgingly refer to them as darts players. Every Tuesday night at the Leaside Pub, more than 40 players gather from pubs across the city to participate in matches. Leaside itself has five teams which are part of a 38-team league, the Queen Street Dart League (QSDL). Teams alternate week to week between their own pub and those of their rival pubs. (Who wouldn’t like a sport that operates out of pubs?) Male and female players range in age from their 20s to 80s, with one 78-year old woman competing. The Leaside division of the QSDL originated in 2007 when a group of friends who happened to frequent the pub and enjoyed a good game of darts formed a team called the Villa Throwers. While a few of the original players have died, the core of the group has continued as The Throwers. They, along with The Rogues and Rovers, The Tungsten Ticklers, The Focus Group, and The Bored Members, make up the Leaside contingent. The Bored Members are captained by the Leaside Pub’s partowner and general manager, Param Ratna, who generously provides food for the group each week. Teams consist of eight to 12 players, and at least six must attend a match in order for the team not to forfeit. The main season runs from September to May with a smaller number of teams participating in the summer months. As league fees are covered by the pubs themselves, and players’ costs are limited to their equipment and nightly pub bill, the sport is highly affordable. It’s also accessible to players of all abilities as teams are split into divisions from practically newbies to intermediate throwers. As Dave Davenport, captain of the Tungsten Ticklers points out, “Some teams are very serious and some are recent players.” Dave’s is the only
Leaside Life • March 2018
Houseplants: do we really need them? This long and cold winter has kept me indoors more than I’m used to and caused my annual spring fever to kick in earlier. A bunch of fresh tulips usually calms me down, but not this year. Being stuck indoors has made me aware of how few houseplants I now have. A single orchid in my living room and one big Clivia in the dining room. How did my once large collection of indoor plants dwindle down to only this? I spoke with Michael Renaud of Horticultural Design on Bayview Ave. He has been providing Leasiders with the best selection of quality houseplants for more than 25 years. He says, “After the holiday décor is removed, I find clients crave greenery to fill those spaces.” He suggests adding some natural fragrance with hyacinths, primulas and lilies or tropical woody plants such as jasmine, gardenia or citrus. “All will surround you with their natural perfume.” Yes, natural fragrance; everyone needs that and it looks like I’m not the only one craving green. If you
The Leaside Gardener: Debora Kuchme Columnist
are too, there’s a good chance that you’re not surrounding yourself with enough plants either. But why? Countless studies have proven that plants have a profound effect on
our physical and mental well-being and this becomes obvious the minute you walk through the door of Horticultural Design. The visual splendour of seeing a vast display of beautiful plants and inhaling the comforting scent of soil connects you to something much bigger…the connection to nature. With that in mind, how could houseplants ever become a victim of design trends? Yet for so many years, houseplants were treated like accessories. Sometimes in and sometimes out. This one’s hot and that one’s not. Michael has been in business long enough to have seen many trends come and go. But now, he says, “There’s a new appreciation of plants from the younger generation using houseplants to both beautify and detoxify their interior spaces and finding new ways to grow their own food.” A North American survey suggests that the millennials are drawn more and more to house plants -partly as a result of living in apartments, partly because of their interest in sustainability. In the past few years millennials have taken houseplants to a new level, surpassing GARDENER, Page 33
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Leaside’s growing volunteer problem: a dwindling number of stalwarts
He added, “Friends and community members who are invited to help and experience the fellowship and process often remain as volunteers because they value the experience and what the work means. But we still need more new volunteers. We are certain that other churches have the same challenges.”
Cold partners, international missions like El Hogar (Honduras), The Neighbourhood Organization (TNO), and many others.
Younger volunteers are stepping up Chris Vyse, the Rector’s Warden at St. Cuthbert’s Anglican Church, says that over the past decade or so more, younger people have volunteered to help out at the fairs. “In 2017 we began planning to have younger parishioners take on key planning and leadership roles,” he says. “But it is fair to say that the master planning still resides with a core group of Anglican church women. “We believe we will succeed at this transition since our two fairs are so much fun, show the community that we are open and welcoming, and enable us to fundraise and support important outreach activities,” he added. ■
Cathy Webster, coordinator of St. Anselm’s Catholic Women’s Network, agrees that the aging volunteer population is troublesome. “Although we have had some success in recruiting new, younger members to the group, it has been challenging,” she says. One of the key changes St. Anselm’s made a few years ago was to invite local artisans/external vendors to purchase a table at their events. Some of the stalwart volunteers who help out in our communities and make a real difference in the lives of so many.
Leaside Life • March 2018
One of Leaside’s most popular traditions – spring and fall church rummage sales – is changing and may become a thing of the past, according to some leaders of church volunteer groups. The difficulty is a diminishing band of senior women volunteers, the ladies who make it all work. “We can see the sales continuing for the next five years, but the volunteer challenge is the greatest barrier to sustainability,” says Bob Lister, co-leader of Leaside United Church’s Awesome Sale. If a sufficient number of new volunteers do not appear, then the sales will have to be downsized or ended.”
“This has taken some of the pressure off the group in that we don’t have to fill the hall with our own crafts. It also gives local artisans an opportunity to sell and provides a better shopping experience for our attendees. This change has been very successful and we have many repeat vendors at each sale. “The Women’s Network still sells baking, some hand-made crafts, we have a café and always some draws at each event. “We are currently the only fundraising group in the parish that raises funds specifically for parish needs, so we definitely want and need to continue our efforts,” she added. At Leaside United, preparation for the two annual sales is a year-round operation. The sales, held in May and October, are extremely important to the work and mission of the church. Customers come from all over the GTA. Unsold goods are donated to Habitat for Humanity and Cerebral Palsy, while books are circulated to two hospitals, two universities and the Children’s Book Bank. “In our unique case, we have picked up and sold furniture for most of the past two decades. However, due to the need for and cost of off-site storage, plus the difficulty in getting ‘weight-lifter’ volunteers for pick-ups, we have reached the decision to no longer have a furniture department. This will be a loss, but other sale departments will be vying for the found space.” The significant amount of money raised annually goes to both the local work of the church and to outreach projects. These sales fund the legacy of refugee sponsorship, support for Out-of-the-
By KEN MALLETT
Leaside Life • March 2018
From Page 22
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recently ruled against the challenge to ward boundary changes so the City is moving forward with increasing the number of councillors from 44 to 47. Ward 26 was slightly larger than the City average, so the only change to Ward 26 will be the unfortunate loss of Wynford Heights. Millwood-Southvale intersection: Because of other ongoing construction projects in the area, the City has agreed to delay plans to rebuild the intersection at Millwood and Southvale (in front of the arena) until 2019. Bayview streetscape: I have been working with the Leaside/Bayview BIA regarding their streetscape plan for the Bayview and Millwood gateway. As part of my commitment, I secured $100,000 for the Ward 26 portion (east side of Bayview) -almost half of the projected cost of $250,000. The BIA is still hoping to find the necessary funds for the west side (Ward 22). If there are any other updates you would like to know about, please email or give me a call. ■ firstname.lastname@example.org
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Leaside Life • March 2018
New a emerg nd en patien cy welco ts me!
There’s no place like home if you live in Leaside
Leaside Life • March 2018
By SUZANNE PARK Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz famously clicked her red heels together and repeated the mantra “there’s no place like home” to return to her beloved Kansas. Many Leasiders would agree – home in Leaside is where their hearts remain. Here are just three Leasiders whose roots run deep:
He said, “They rented out four and lived in the fifth at 168 McRae Dr. This arrangement worked great until WWII when rents decreased and they had to sell the rentals. I lived my early years in the McRae home attending Bessborough School, which also housed the fire department, council chambers, and was the setting for community bake sales and other events, making for inter-
Kevin McGroarty, daughter Hannah and wife Julie on Bessborough Dr. Kevin McGroarty After leaving home at 18, it took Kevin McGroarty a few decades to return to his childhood home on Bessborough Drive. The youngest of 11 children, Kevin said, “My parents purchased their home in the late 1940s, and in the 1960s when I was young Leaside was full of kids and so much fun. We were free to come and go and play with our friends.” In 2009 at the age of 90, Kevin’s mother decided to move out and offered to sell the house to any of her children. But, “by this time all of us had settled into our own homes,” said Kevin. “My wife Nancy and I had just fully renovated our (own) Leaside home. Yet we were keen to ensure the preservation of the unique architecture of Mom’s home, so we purchased and renovated it to suit our family. Preserving the integrity of the architecture had its challenges. We had to waterproof and spent two years searching for stone to match the house when building our three ft. wall fronting the property.” John Naulls In 1937, John Naulls’s parents purchased and mortgaged five houses in South Leaside. Each cost $5,000.
esting school days.” In 1957, John’s parents purchased the house behind theirs on Crandall Rd., and raised and sold pet budgie birds there. John lived at Crandall until he married in 1970. Then, “in 1979 my parents decided to sell. I felt honoured to purchase their home yet felt odd about chang-
ing anything. So in honour of my parents, the home remains pretty much like it was during my childhood – right down to where the furniture is placed and even the paint colours.” Barrig Hayward In 1965, Barrig Hayward’s father, an Armenian immigrant, bought a North Leaside home for $30,000. He worked sweeping floors for 25 cents an hour to make ends meet. In 1967 he was promoted to the sales floor and now felt ready to marry his sweetheart, a teacher. Barrig was born a few years later and was cared for by her widowed grandmother, who came to live with the family so both parents could work. Barrig has lived all but three years of her life on Glenvale Blvd. “I moved out as a new bride. My husband and I bought in Ajax, but just three years later, my Mom, now widowed, found the maintenance too much,” Barrig said. Immediately, she and her husband suggested, “Mom, we can sell our home, purchase yours and all live together.” Since Barrig was about to give birth to the first of their three boys, history was about to repeat itself with Barrig’s mother caring for her grandson just as Barrig’s grandmother had raised her. ■ Are you a Leasider living in the home where you grew up? If so, we want to hear from you! Write to us at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Barrig and Eric Hayward on Glenvale Boulevard.
PHOTOS: SUZANNE PARK
Ground breaking below. T:10”
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Leaside Life • March 2018
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Re: Litterati I enjoy reading Cheryl’s columns. Like her, I too take issue with what I see on the ground, namely at Leonard Linton Park on Vanderhoof. The park services skateboarders, basketball players and children on the playscape. There are numerous garbage and recycling bins but some people are simply lazy! I have picked up water bottles, coffee cups, food wrappers, beer bottles and cans, clothing and even cigars. One summer morning, the playground area was a disaster. I cleaned up broken glass and other parents cleaned up pizza boxes, yogurt cups and chip bags. I take no issue with teenagers or adults having a good time but please clean up afterwards. Paula ■
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From Page 22 even the last big houseplant craze of the 1970s. This group is more food-conscious and more environmentally-conscious than any other demographic, and last year purchased more houseplants and locally grown food to prove it. Most began their plant connection with succulents and cacti as an easy and foolproof living entity to nurture but quickly moved on to experiment with more demanding plants. Today, they post their vast collections on Instagram inspiring each other with their latest finds. They’re creating new ideas and finding new ways to fill their need of green with their unlimited imaginations. Well, they managed to inspire me too and it’s time for me to bring some more plants into my world because what this long winter and the millennials have taught me is that we really do need houseplants. Here’s to indoor gardening! Got pictures of your indoor beauties? Send them to us and we'll post on social media. ■
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Leaside Life • March 2018
EVENTS ST. ANSELM’S PARISH
Leaside Life • March 2018
1 MacNaughton Rd (at Millwood) VENDORS WANTED: Spring Fling Event, Sunday, May 6, 9:30am to 1pm. Artisans and Crafters who would like to sell their handcrafts at the event may contact the Parish office at 416 485-1792 or email: email@example.com to complete a vendor application prior to March 30th. Table rental fee of $50.00 will be used for church fundraising.
LEASIDE PRESBYTERIAN 670 Eglinton Ave. E., 416-422-0510 March Break Kid’s Club March 13-15. Time: 9am–4pm. Cost: $30 per child or $50 for families per day, or $75 per child for 3 days / $100 per family for 3 days. Assistance is available for all families in need, with strict confidentiality kept! Volunteers of all ages are welcome! Community Service Hours are available for youth in Junior and Senior High School! Activities include: baking, crafts, and music. Snacks, drinks and a hot lunch provided! To register or to volunteer, please speak to Rev. Angela at 416422-0510 Ext 25. Church’s Book Sale Saturday, March 24th, 9am-12pm in Silverthorn Hall. Call the church at 416-422-0510 for more information.
ST. CUTHBERT’S CHURCH 1399 Bayview Avenue, 416-485-0329 www.stcuthbertsleaside.com Creation Care 2018 Sat., March 3, 11am-2pm. We invite you to this free event with an emphasis on finding out how we can show our care for creation. More than 20 exhibitors, special speakers on environmental issues, including MP Rob Oliphant and Councillor Jon Burnside. An opportunity to measure your carbon footprint, children’s programme, lunch for purchase. Opening Eucharist service – Thurs., March 1 at 7:30pm. Closing Choral Eucharist – Sun., March 4 at 10:00 am.
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Holy Week Schedule: Palm Sunday: March 25th, The Sunday of the Passion with the Liturgy of the Palms. Said Eucharist at 8am. Sung Eucharist at 10am. Children’s programs at both services. Evening Prayer services: Mon-Wed, March 26-28, 7:30pm Maundy Thursday: March 29th. Simple Supper at 6pm. Institution of the Lord’s Supper, Footwashing and Veneration of the Cross at 7:30pm. Good Friday: March 30th, 10am. Choral Celebration of the Lord’s Passion. The Great Easter Vigil of the Resurrection, Sat., March 31st, 8pm. Easter Sunday: April 1, Said Eucharist at 8am. Choral Eucharist at 10am. Children’s programs at both services. Fauré’s Requiem. Sunday, March 25, 7:30pm with the St. Cuthbert’s Choir and guests the McMaster University Choir. Conducted by Glenda Crawford.
LEASIDE UNITED CHURCH 1822 Millwood Rd. 416-425-1253 www.leasideunited.org Join us for our Lenten and Easter services: Palm Sunday: Sun, March 25, 10:30 am. Good Friday: March 30, 10:30am. The Chancel Choir presents Théodore Dubois’ Seven Last Words of Christ. Easter Sunday: Sun, April 1, 10:30 am. All welcome.
LEASIDE LIBRARY 165 McRae Drive, 416-396-3835. ADULT & TEEN PROGRAMMING: Adult Colouring Party. Join us in the Leaside Room for the latest trend in relaxation! Colouring sheets, crayons, markers and relaxing music supplied. Tuesdays 7pm-8:15pm, March 6, 13, 20, 27. Drop in. Everyone welcome. Games Night! Enjoy an evening of Cribbage. Other board games and puzzles also available upon request. Tuesdays, 7pm-8:15pm. March 6, 13, 20, 27. Drop in. Everyone welcome. Leaside Needleworx Group (Knitting and Crocheting) Bring your own projects or start something new. Fridays, 10am-11:45am. March 2, 9, 16, 23. Drop in. Everyone welcome.
Leaside Writers Group Are you looking for a creative place to meet with other like-minded individuals? Join us. Saturdays, 10-11:45am. March 3, 17. Drop in. Everyone welcome. Art Exhibit “Artworks” Paintings by Mhmod Alifahmi Al-Khafadji. Ongoing throughout March. CHILDREN’S MARCH BREAK PROGRAMMING Andrew “Too Tall” Queen presents “A Pocketful of Tune Tales” (For children of all ages). The Campfire Crew sing their hearts out while drawing on audience participation to bring old favourite tales to life. Monday, March 12 2pm–3pm. Free tickets 30 minutes before show. Space is limited. Sorry, no daycares or day camps. Family Movie Matinée (For children of all ages) Join us for a screening of “The Great Mouse Detective”. Wed., March 14, 2–3:15 pm. Drop in. Sorry, no daycares/day camps. Family Movie Matinée Join us for a screening of “The Tigger Movie”. Friday, March 16, 2pm–3:15pm. Drop in. Sorry, no daycares or day camps.
LEASIDE GARDEN SOCIETY March Meeting March 8th at 7:30pm at the Leaside Library, 165 McRae Drive. Malcolm Geast will speak about garden photography.
Baseball Umpire Level 1 Certification March 24th at Trace Manes. Visit www.leasidebaseball.com/umpiring for more information and registration.
CANADIAN FEDERATION OF UNIVERSITY WOMEN LEASIDE-EAST YORK Monthly meeting: 7:30pm, Thurs., March 15 at Northlea United, 128 Brentcliffe Ave. Speaker: Susan Fohr, Textile Museum of Canada, on The History of the Textile Museum of Canada from its formation in the 1970s until the present day. Visitors and new members are welcome. Visit www.cfuwleasideeastyork.ca or email firstname.lastname@example.org. ■ Send us your free listing for April by March 10th – email@example.com
NEWS FLASH: A lot is happening on the north side of Overlea Boulevard in Thorncliffe. The Islamic Society of Toronto, Masjid Darus Salam, at 4 Thorncliffe Park Drive, has just purchased the property at 20 Overlea Blvd. The plan for the 3.2 acre site is to have a 70,000 sq. ft building and 157 parking spaces. This site is to the west of the Costco site, now being developed, and slated to open in May. ■
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Leaside Life • March 2018
A passing, and continually contentious issues I begin this month’s column on a sad note. Tom Rae has died. My LPOA colleague since 1989, Tom was a professional traffic engineer and planner who, before coming to Canada from Scotland, worked throughout the world. He had an international reputation, and generously volunteered his expertise to benefit Leaside. Those of you who have attended our traffic meetings over the years will remember Tom. Always a source of valuable ideas and advice, he is missed terribly by all of us who worked with him. The Leaside Property Owners’ Association’s condolences go to Tom’s family, and we thank them for having shared him with us. Before Tom fell ill, we had hoped to hold a public traffic meeting in late winter, to present the LPOA’s proposed traffic calming designs for our community. I am in conversation with our traffic consultant, Gene Chartier, to plan a revised timetable for the meeting, and will report more in my next column. Jon Burnside’s Town Hall Councillor Jon Burnside held a Town Hall on February 5th, bring-
Carol Burtin Fripp Co-president, LPOA
ing together City planning, budget and traffic staff plus representatives of the police and Metrolinx. The City was still deeply involved in the budget process, so this was an opportunity for Leasiders to express their opinions on the City budget, but I found it interesting that the attendees seemed much keener to have their say on the planning process and traffic problems than on the financial process. Does the City even try to anticipate the impacts of constant development? Who pays for the infrastructure upgrades required by the mini-cities being planned all around us? Why are City bylaws so routinely ignored? How is it that, of 400 applications to the Committee of Adjustment, half of them resulted in permission to demolish? Why is there no – or little – coordination
of construction projects, to avoid gridlock on our roads? Why has the Laird in Focus study given insufficient importance to traffic impacts on Leaside? Give priority to the Downtown Relief Line. Enforce traffic speed limits. In short, the all too eternal Leaside matters you read about monthly in Leaside Life. We are not the only area of Toronto with these problems by any means. One does get the sense that there is a growing general dissatisfaction with the way the City “works” and a growing appetite for changes to make the City more accountable to citizens, and more quickly to public concerns. Our next LPOA board meeting is on WEDNESDAY, MARCH 7th, at 7:30 p.m. at the Trace Manes building. These meetings are always open to the public, and take place on the first Wednesday of each month. We invite you to attend, whether for help or advice on local matters, or just to hear more about what is happening in our community. Contact us anytime via our website, lpoa.ca. ■
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1755-1757 Bayview: defending the Talbot quad
the existing double duplex dwelling. The email expressed its strong opposition to the City’s intention to make a motion to reinstate its Party status in the case. We immediately wrote to the TLAB expressing support for the motion! Subsequently the TLAB ruled that the City could come back in. So how come? A critical piece was that we became aware that one of the quads – 17831785 – at the north end – was owned by Metrolinx, and according to tenants was being “studied for heritage." It turns out that the province has a policy that any property owned by the province which is older than 40 years has to be assessed for heritage. After checking with Metrolinx, we learned that the property was indeed evaluated as a “provincial heritage property.” After further digging we obtained the report and made the case to the City that its proven heritage status had obvious implications for 1755-1757 Bayview. Sometime later, the City made a motion to reinstate its Party status in the case. City Council approved the designation of 1755-1757 Bayview Ave. under the Ontario Heritage Act at its January 31 meeting.
Going on a Getaway?
Saving old Leaside Where do we stand now? The hearing, which was set for February 8, 2018, has been deferred to May 28, 2018. And apparently the applicant is changing the application in an attempt to adjust to the heritage designation. The LPOA, along with the other Parties, is open to discussions with the applicant. We are cognizant of the planning policy matters at issue: not just neighbourhood protection and heritage, but also the application's being contrary to the Growth Plan direction, the loss of rental housing, and possibly to the City’s future plans for the area. Finally, when will the City designate the other nine quads, including the Metrolinx property? ■
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Leaside Life • March 2018
As briefly noted in last month’s Leaside Life, the City is back at the Toronto Local Appeal Body (TLAB) defending the Talbot quad threatened with demolition, reversing their withdrawal from the case in October 2017. In December as LPOA representative, I received an email from the lawyer for the quad’s owner, who had appealed the Committee of Adjustment’s decision to defer consideration of their application to construct a new three-storey semi-detached dwelling, to replace
Leaside Life • March 2018
Where’s the public art? If you’re wondering if your transit experience will be enhanced by public art displays at Leaside‘s new Light Rail Transit (LRT) stations (Leaside at Bayview, and at Laird) the answer seems to be no! But assuming your journey involves having to change to Line 1 (Yonge/
Saving old Leaside
University) at Eglinton Station, you will experience the “Integrated Art Program (IAP)," which means that the pieces have been incorporated into the station from the beginning - they are “built in and replace some of the material finishes that would be there anyway.” Eglinton station will house Light from Within by Canadian artist Rodney Latourelle. Light from Within is a large panel made of dichroic and mirror glass tiles, "inspired by the prismatic and reflective qualities found in minerals, crystals and gemstones." The work emphasizes the subterranean nature of rapid transit, creating a reflective backdrop and bringing light deep into the station. So while six stations on the 19-kilometre Crosstown LRT are set to contain public art, there will be another 19 stations or stops that don’t. Riders entering and leaving the Leaside and Laird stations may have to make do with the light reflecting on the contemporary glass curtain walls. ■ “Light from Within” by Rodney Latourelle, image courtesy of Metrolinx.
Leaside Art Deco Lost (Leaside Railway Station) Last month’s article “Art Deco architecture across Canada… and in Leaside, too” missed the former Leaside Railway Station, which has seen better days, but has an interesting history. A brick structure, built in Streamlined Moderne style in 1946, it replaced a wooden structure built in 1894, which was destroyed by fire in the 1940s. Passenger service ended in 1982, and between 1975 and 1983 the building was operated by the CPR as the Village Station Restaurant, and for a time after that was used as a CPR business centre and railway police office. Today it sits forlorn, having suffered repeated vandalism, south of the tracks, along from the car wash on Village Station Road. ■
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Leaside Life • March 2018
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