Friday, 24 September 2010

Reno’s above Ginger
The small offices on the second and third floor above Ginger (Carlton & Parliament) have been demolished and there’s plenty of evidence that the upper floors are being renovated. The owner is creating two larger office areas with a single tenant on each floor. The second floor will be home to the administrative offices of a dance group. The third floor has offices, teaching spaces, storage and a worship area for the local Salvation Army congregation.

Ten people can have dinner for only $31.10
The Yonge Street Mission (306 Gerrard) has a Thanksgiving fundraising drive underway. In just a few weeks, they’ll serve thousands of Thanksgiving turkey dinners to homeless and hurting people. It takes a lot of time and planning to put this project together. So they’re asking now for your support. To learn more, click on

Big Mamma’s Boy
Caroline, Michael and Stephanie have been very busy in the past couple of weeks. During TIFF, Alliance Entertainment held fan meet-and-greet parties at Big Mamma’s Boy (554 Parliament). Sean Kanan, D-Teflon and Daniel Goddard were among the celeb’s who stopped by.
Next Wednesday, Caroline and Michael will be appearing on Daytime Toronto, the Rogers’ daytime talk show. It starts at 10 am and there are reruns through the day at 3 pm and midnight.

Sunday’s Waterfront Marathon
Over 20,000 people from more than 40 countries will run in Sunday’s marathon. Marilyn Marshall is calling all of us to the special Cabbagetown cheering section at Front and Parliament Streets from 8:30 am to 1:30 pm. There’ll be entertainment and food and a chance to cheer along our four champions in the race – Heather Hopkins, Angela Jonsonn, Dr Philip Marsden and George Smitherman. All of this is part of the Neighbourhood Challenge, a fundraising event to support our local Cabbagetown Youth Centre.

Green Thumbs Growing Kids
GTGK works with kids and their families to grow and prepare fresh nutritious foods. They focus on gardens located at neighbourhood schools. You can become a member and help directly in this fascinating project. Their annual general meeting will be held on Saturday September 25 at 603-1/2 Parliament. The meeting will start at 10 am with a tour of the Rose Ave Public School garden and an 11 am tour of the Winchester Public School garden. From noon to 2 pm, the meeting and lunch will happen at their offices. For more information, call 647-348-5437.

Wow – Labour of Love
Regina keeps getting rave reviews about her new store, Labour of Love (242 Carlton), in the city’s big newspapers. This week, NOW Magazine has a lifestyle article about her that expands into a great review of a dozen other Cabbagetown landmarks. You can read it here: . You can catch up with the special offerings available at Labour of Love through their web site,

Butter Chicken Factory
Gurinder has officially opened his new restaurant at 556 Parliament, on the corner at Prospect. He’s done a lovely renovation and turned his space into a charming, inviting room. As part of our mission at the BIA, we’ve done extensive research into his menu – so far, we’ve had thali for lunch and dinner with butter chicken and lamb with madras spices. Delicious. There’s a $9.99 lunch special and for dinner, there’s a full range of northern Indian dishes. Take-out and home delivery are also available.

More Quebec cheeses
At Epicure, Patty is continuing her heart-stopping, adrenalin-laced weigh-your-own coffee contest. Just fill a bag with your beans and aim for one exact pound (454 grams). If you are exactly on the mark, you’ll get a second one free. People win regularly, so join the fun. And do it while she has her special offer running on Reunion Island beans – one pound for $10 or $2.20 for 100 grams. Patty is also very pleased to offer two award-winning Quebec cheeses – Le Chevre Noir and Douanier.

Blowout at Barracuda
Gerry and his staff have a store-wide blowout sale underway. You can enjoy big savings on furniture, ceramics and garden containers.

Getting ready for Thanksgiving
Turkey orders are now open at St Jamestown Steak & Chops (Parliament). Tell Mark what you want and your bird will be ready for you just before the holiday.

Mi Casa
The beautiful home furnishing available at Mi Casa (238 Carlton) are still on sale through this weekend. Save up to 70% on items throughout the store.

What’s happening at the gas station?
Our local Esso station (581 Parliament) is undergoing some regular maintenance. The underground tanks have been checked and repaired. After several days’ work, the hole has been filled and the fencing is coming down.

Paris in Cabbagetown
The first delivery of charming décor accessories and serving ware from Europe has just arrived at Kendall & Co (438 Parliament across from Spruce). To make room for all this, they’re holding a 50% off clearance sale on selected items. They also have a special 20% sale on Bumble Bee & Dragonfly French glassware and on their lamps and classic furniture.

Tour of Homes
With another Tour of Homes just successfully completed, it’s timely that Kendall Williams received his Chairman’s Award plaque this week – in recognition of his fine contribution to the Tour in previous years. He joins Bruce Prouty, Helen Coltrinari and Dave Pretlove who also served as Tour chairs and also received this recognition of their work.

Friday, 17 September 2010

Thanks Kelsey
Kelsey Butler has just finished her summer work at the Cabbagetown BIA. She did an outstanding job for us organizing the Festival. She focused on our “people” projects – the parade, the program, the vendors and the street patios. These are difficult and detailed problems and she managed them with considerable skill. She has a friendly enthusiasm that makes other people happy to work with her. As many people have already noted, our 2010 Festival was a great success and much of the credit for our success belongs to Kelsey. Our thanks and best wishes to her as she heads into her final year at Ryerson.

A great Festival
We had a marvelous time – from Parliament Street to Riverdale Park and to all the garage sales in between. More about all of that next week.

Gifts to Cabbagetown from the TD Bank
The official opening for our new TD Canada Trust (493 Parliament) happened on Friday September 10 with a pleasant event inside the bank. Senior staff from TD Bank joined people from our local branch and community groups. They distributed gifts to the Cabbagetown BIA, the Cabbagetown Youth Centre, Green Thumbs Growing Kids and the Heritage committee. Their generosity has made it possible for the Cabbagetown Festival to embark on aggressive advertising and fundraising campaigns and we indeed appreciate their help.

Tour of Homes
On Sunday, hundreds of people will descend on Cabbagetown to visit seven unique homes in our neighbourhood. A grand Victorian mansion, a formal Edwardian and an acclaimed modern interior are just three of the treasures that you’ll see. The Tour is always a satisfying experience. It draws visitors from all across the GTA for an afternoon of relaxed sightseeing.

Special Tour offers
Ten Parliament Street businesses are extending special offers to Tour visitors. Bring your tickets and get a discount or a free gift. The Ben Wicks (424 Parliament), Stonegrill (51B Winchester), Peartree (507 Parliament), Rashna’a (307 Wellesley), and Big Mamma’s Boy (554 Parliament) – all have Tour discounts and special treats available for you on brunch and dinner. Mi Casa (238 Carlton) and Kendall (438 Parliament) have special discounts on their fine furniture and home décor. Tim Hortons (Parliament & Winchester) and Starbucks (483 Parliament) have complimentary drinks and donuts. And Sweet Creamery has a 10% discount on scoops and dishes of their ice creams and gelatos.

Congratulations to Fair Trade Jewelry
The Sun Media chain ran an extensive article about FTJCo (523 Parliament) in its papers in mid-August. The story appeared right across Canada. Ryan Taylor has devoted his business to the principles of fair trade mining and environmental sensitivity. He offers his customers detailed information about the source of the precious metals and gems that adorn his creations. He provides assurances that the people and the landscape that contribute to his jewelry are treated with respect. For the full story, click here:

Epicure has a coffee weekend
It’s back – Patty’s wild and wooly weigh-your-coffee event. If you pour yourself exactly one pound of coffee beans, you’ll get a second pound free. People with heavy duty gambling addictions are advised to stay away. This is also the last week for Epicure’s Reunion Island special – only $10/pound (save $3). Snow Goat Brie is also on sale at $3.49 for 150 grams, a saving of $3. The Epicure Shop, 473 Parliament.

Mi Casa has a sale
This is an event worth checking out. The beautiful furniture and decorations at Mi Casa are now on sale and being offered at discounts up to 70% off. Alex tells us that these bargains include new designs. The sale runs from Saturday September 18 to Sunday September 25. Mi Casa also has special incentives for people who have purchased tickets for the Tour of Homes. 238 Carlton.

Fields of Gold campaign
Margaret and Chris are making great headway with their fundraising for the Canadian Cancer Society. You will recall that they want to plant 2000 daffodils in the Parliament and Prospect area. Every gift made to the cancer society’s campaign earns their team additional bulbs. To date, they’ve raised over $2000 and their target of $3500 now seems within reach. If you’d like to donate and also help with this beautiful garden effort, please click here:

Rugs at Kendall & Co
Kendall & Co (438 Parliament) has a new collection of plush, 100% wool rugs from New Zealand and they’ve dedicated them to Cabbagetown. Each one is named for one of our streets. The rugs are fair trade certified. They range from 2X3’ to 10X14’ in round, rectangular and runner shapes. Prices start at $89 each. Come and find your style, colour, size and street. Kendall & Co will host a Welcome Refreshment Station on Winchester during Sunday’s Tour of Homes.

Fall goodies at Foxy
Michelle at Foxy Boutique (251 Gerrard) is now releasing her new line of Fall coats, hats, woolens, scarves and leather goods. She has her best boot collection ever. Her 50% sale continues with selected items from her summer lines.

Get wired
Daryl Hobbs has created a free wireless network on Parliament north of Carlton. To help with the costs, he’s looking for businesses and groups willing to advertise on his web site. You can see his network on your wireless device by connecting to “FreeWirelessNeighbourhoodNetwork” and then clicking on “Continue to the internet.”

World Jazz for Haiti
For several months, George Rondina and the staff at Number 9 Audio have been producing a jazz album as their contribution to Haitian relief programs. World Jazz for Haiti will launch on Sunday evening, September 26 at Hugh’s Room (2261 Dundas). The party will feature John McDermott, Laila Biali, Mike Janzen, Jane Bunnett and many other artists who appear on the album. $22.50 in advance, $25 at the door and all proceeds go to the Canadian Red Cross Haitian Relief Fund.

Gerry Gold makes great pickles and he’s just returned from The Burning Man
This guy is busy. He attended the Burning Man event in the Nevada desert in early September, returned to Toronto in time for the Festival and took care of the management of his fine Barracuda store (527 Parliament). In the meantime, he made dill pickles – and his pickles are so good that someone in my house says she’d marry any man who can perk up a burger like that! It’s no surprise that he proudly displayed his Cabbagetown Tee while cavorting in Nevada.

Friday, 3 September 2010

One week to go -

Find out all about this year's Festival events at our new website

19th Annual Short Film & Video Festival
Kick off your annual Festival weekend with an evening of short films from around the world. This year, seventeen films are being shown – from filmmakers living here at home and in far flung spots in Spain, England, France, Germany and even Winnipeg. This event is always a sold-out favourite. If you plan to attend, we suggest that you get your tickets in advance (at 237 Carlton, 416-921-0857) or be at the box office when it opens at 7 pm.
For lots of detail, click here: and then scroll down the page.
Tickets $15. Friday September 10, box office opens at 7 pm and screenings start at 8 pm, 80 Winchester Street.

TD Bank’s Official Opening
As everyone now knows, the TD Bank (493 Parliament) has been open for a few days already. They’re hosting their official opening on Friday September 10. Drop by and take a look. The whole corner has been transformed as the landscaping finishes and the interior is a very friendly, welcoming space. TD Bank have been very generous sponsors of our 2010 Cabbagetown Festival. They’ll be in the parade and in a booth outside the branch throughout the event.

Beauties at Pet Valu
Pet Valu (240 Carlton) is hosting our 1st annual Cabbagetown Festival Dog Show onj Saturday September 11. This decision follows extensive studies done by store staff and Festival organizers - we wanted to learn exactly which categories would have the greatest appeal for you. We can reveal some of them now: biggest nose, curliest hair, shortest legs, longest tail, smallest owner, look-a-like with owner, best dressed and silliest tricks. Bring your dog! There’ll be fame, glory and lots of prizes for the winners. Saturday, 240 Carlton, after the parade (approx noon).

Marilyn is one of the judges
It’s the first Saturday in the month, so Marilyn from Diggity Dog is back at Pet Valu (240 Carlton). Get your pal spiffied up for the Dog Show. Marilyn is one of the judges so it can’t hurt if you exert some pressure on her in advance. She’ll be doing her nail trimming and grooming specials on Saturday September 4.

Menagerie Pet Shop
Menagerie Pet Shop (549 Parliament) will be another pet owner’s destination during this year’s Festival. They’re hosting Dr Jennifer Day, the vet at Cabbagetown Pet Clinic (239 Gerrard), along with some rescue agencies and a dog fitness specialist.

Hair Lift has Festival specials
Kiki is preparing special sales to offer Festival visitors on Saturday and Sunday. She has retail products from Goldwell, AG, Hemp and others at 20% discounts. They’ll have a table out front where you can shop easily for your latest hair products. Hair Lift, 503B Parliament.

Wake up in time for the Festival
This week, as a pre-Festival caffeine boost, Patty is featuring Reunion Island coffee at very good prices - $2.20/100g. That works out to $10/pound or a savings of $3/pound. At our household, we drink her Reunion Island continental dark so I’ll be there for some of her supplies. The Epicure Shop (473 Parliament) is open as usual from 9 am to 5 pm on Sunday and closed all day on Labour Day.

Thanks to Kendall
Kendall & Co Design and Décor (438 Parliament) have named one of their accent rugs “Carlton”. It’s in recognition of the work that has gone into this year’s festival by the BIA staff at 237 Carlton. This beautiful and plush rug is a welcome mat to residents, business owners and visitors who will be making another event such a great success.

Belatedly – happy birthday
Simmons Flowers (540 Parliament) turned 116 in July. Founded in 1894 at Yonge and Elm Streets by John Simmons, the shop was a major success. Mary Pickford was a regular customer. John’s son, Ernest, was a founder and eventually president of the FTD system. They were Toronto’s first florist to use a motorized vehicle for their deliveries. Merion Clement bought the business forty years ago and 25 years ago, she moved to Parliament Street. Today, Simmons is one of our landmarks and Merion and Tina can be deeply proud of the contributions that they continue to make to our community.

A few Festival reminders
We want Cabbagetown’s artists to remember that we’re offering free booth space to you on Saturday afternoon. Just call Kelsey at (416) 921-0857 for more details.
Our entertainers are Cabbagetowners. Danny Marks, Jim Heinemann, Cabbagetown Steve Grant (and Code Green), CYC Choir, U4Change, Snooky Tynes, Da Youngstas - all are our friends and neighbours.
Our parade this year will be one of our biggest. Almost fifty groups are participating. It starts at Parliament and Wellesley at 10 am and goes south to Gerrard and then west to Ontario.