Martha McCabe, swimmer
Bennington Heights-raised swimmer Martha McCabe has been named Leaside’s first annual Athlete of the Year by the Leaside Sports Hall of Fame Committee.
A world championship medal winner who is aiming for the Olympics in Rio in 2016, she is a former Leaside High School student who credits her track coach at Leaside High, Dave Christiani, as one of her most important influences.
“He had a big part in making me the athlete I am. He let us decide for ourselves whether we were serious about doing the necessary training. I always knew I wanted to succeed but Dave Christiani helped me realise I had to take responsibility for my own training. It was great to learn that discipline while young.” Read more…
Skating on Thin Ice: That’s the title of the 60-page report released by Toronto Ombudsman Fiona Crean Nov. 7, which investigated and found major governance concerns with Leaside Gardens arena’s citizen board.
Local realtor Patrick Rocca was asked by the board in late December 2011 to match a firm offer made by Longo’s to pay $125,000 upfront for the rights to advertise on the arena’s Zamboni for the next 10 years. Rocca, who had held the rights since 2001, had paid $1,800 per year. Read more…
She’s 15, born and still being raised in Leaside, but for the first 11 days of this month she will be playing hookey from Leaside High School to play hockey in New Zealand for its national under 18 team against the Australia Women’s U18 team.
The aim: To play with New Zealand in the world championships.
Gabby Smyth has New Zealand citizenship because her father, Andrew, was born there.
As a result she went to New Zealand to try out for the team earlier this year with her dad, a board member of the Toronto Leaside Girls Hockey Association, which has worked with the Ontario and international associations to develop opportunities in non-traditional hockey markets.
He is now also involved with women’s hockey in New Zealand. Read more…
Stan and Loretta Flagler
I was saddened to learn of the passing of Loretta Flagler, the widow of the late Stan Flagler.
Stan served on Leaside council from 1956 until the merger with East York in 1967. He and the late Vern Page were both elected to Leaside council the same year.
Vern went on to serve a further six years as an East York alderman. Both Vern and his wife Anne passed away a few years ago.
Stan and Vern were close collaorators on Leaside council. They shared a similar view of municipal issues. Both tenaciously fought to maintain the physical character of our community and the integrity of the Leaside industrial area. Read more…
THE first Diamond proposal for Eglinton and Brentcliffe.
Leaside Life has run a large number of stories related to the neighbourhood’s growing pains in 2013. I think it’s fair to say it wouldn’t have done so if there weren’t so much happening on Bayview, Laird and along Eglinton.
With the exception of the go-go years between the two World Wars, the area’s current growth spurt appears to be like no other in its 100-year history.
As a reminder of just how much change is taking place (some of it good, some not so great) my last column of the year will recap the major business developments over the past 12 months. Read more…
The headline last month said Sarah breaks a BIG record. Our deadline was before the final figure was calculated, so we didn’t know HOW big.
It was really BIG.
Instead of the target of 24,000 pounds of food collected for the Daily Bread Food Bank, the total was a little more than 150 percent higher: 60,995 pounds.
The year before Sarah Jordan, 11, of North Leaside, had aimed for 12,000 pounds and raised 21,573.
The curlers at the Leaside Curling Club (LCC) — 950 members in total— haven’t gone thirsty this season after all and a crisis has been averted.
The city notified the club’s board in October last year that it no longer wanted to be in the bar business; either LCC could take over operations of its bar or the city would contract out to a third party.
The board spent the summer worrying a solution wasn’t to be and there would be a loss of the time-honoured tradition of the winning team buying a beer for the losers: a calamity.
LCC’s board elected to run the bar themselves and worked out an agreement with the city that pays the municipality a percentage of sales.
Peter O’Neil, LCC’s marketing and communications person, says “The city was more than fair” about the entire process.
Front row from left, Pamela Sellers (sister of Walter David Newel, killed in 1943), Ella Newel (Walter Newel’s sister-in-law), Mary Newel (Walter’s niece; Ella’s daughter), Chris Aylott (Mary’s husband; Walter’s nephew-in-law), Nora Sellers (Walter’s niece; Pamela’s daughter). Second row, third from left (with red hair) Hazel Lazier, sister in law of Vernon John Lazier, killed in 1944.
Leaside Memorial Community Gardens rededicated its memorial plaque last month, and corrected a mistake.
The plaque, mounted on the old arena and originally dedicated in 1963 during Leaside’s 50th anniversary year, had misspelled the name Walter David Newel, one of the 17 young Leaside soldiers who were killed in World War II.
The plaque had been taken down during construction of the new arena, refurbished and was remounted on the outside of the new rink in time for the Nov. 8 ceremony in Leaside’s 100th anniversary. Read more…
Caryn Ramos and Amy Usme read from the list of remembered soldiers, with the help of St. Anselm Principal Richard Walo. From left behind them, MP John Carmichael, Councillor John Parker, arena board member Allan Williams.
Students from grades 3 and 8 at St. Anselm Catholic School researched the 17 servicemen named on the renovated plaque and read out their names and additional information. Grade 3 teacher Keith Chittick and grade 8 teacher Jason Pedra led that project. Principal Richard Walo said, “The students felt extremely proud to be part of this very special ceremony.”
Lieutenant Trueman William Albert Anderson served in the Royal Canadian Artillery Unit. He was born in 1916 and died on February 9, 1945 at the age of 29. He was the son of Herbert and Maude Anderson and husband of Hazel Anderson of Toronto, Ontario. He is buried in GROESBEEK CANADIAN WAR CEMETERY, Netherlands. Read more…
Christine Smeeton, left, with Raquel O’Halloran and coach David Trombley.
When Erin Sorhaug first approached Henry Stachelbeck, the manager of Leaside Gardens, three years ago, she was looking for a deal. Stachelbeck, with the backing of the board, gave them one: time on the ice at below-market rates, because there were only 10 women, some of whom had never skated with hockey skates, or played hockey.
Now the Chicks with Sticks, as Stachelbeck likes to call them jokingly, pay the full rate and are playing like harridans.
What happened between then and now?
Starting out by asking women in the Rolph Road schoolyard if they were interested in playing hockey, Sorhaug, new to the neighbourhood and not knowing a soul, soon discovered that getting a chance to play hockey was something of interest to a surprising number of local women.
I spent a Wednesday morning at the new ice pad at Leaside Memorial Community Gardens chatting with some of the women and watching them do drills and a short scrimmage. There are more than 40 women on Tuesday and/or Wednesday mornings for a cost of $20 each a week. Read more…
Strange goings-on in Leaside in November – four adults were spotted squished inside a photo booth at the corner of Moore and Bayview having their photo taken; other groups were washing windshields at the opposite corner, some were singing Ring of Fire in front of Leaside’s firehall. It was all part of the car rally fundraiser to support El Hogar Projects Canada. Over 160 people participated, raising an estimated $20,000.
And various cartoon characters roamed the streets Halloween week, sent from Leaside High School as part of the school’s annual Halloween fundraiser. Tigger, Piglet (aka Emmalyn Hohner) and friends were collecting donations to support Amici, a charity that sends boys and girls from low-income families to overnight summer camps. Read more…
Thirty not-for-profit groups in Leaside will have tables set up in the William Lea Room at Leaside Memorial Community Gardens on Sunday, Dec. 1 from noon to 6 p.m. so you can take a look at the possibilities for getting involved in a local group. Admission is free.
There is representation from sports, cultural, recreation, and “off-the-beaten-track” groups according to organizer Virginia Gallop Evoy from Councillor John Parker’s office.
There is a holiday air to the afternoon, because the theme is Leaside 100, and it is certainly the beginning of the holiday season.
Participating groups are hoping this first-ever such event will raise their profile and be a success.
An arts highlight of the afternoon will be a display of art works from Leaside High School, curated by North York Arts. Bookending the display will be a table with local artist John H. Smith, who was profiled in the October 2013 issue of Leaside Life.
In March last year Jack-Daniels, a Leaside dog, was diagnosed with spinal disk disease. Every disk in his neck and all but two in his back were calcifying. The usual diagnosis: paralysis.
This month Jack-Daniels will be competing in Orlando, Florida for the first-ever American Kennel Club Obedience Classic.
The difference? His owner Alison Smith, of Aerodrome Blvd., a dog trainer and part owner of a dog training centre, Personal Paws in Scarborough, recognized there was a serious problem when he started limping for an unknown reason.
After an X-ray, an $11,000 operation paid by insurance that cleaned out all the calcification, and four months of being carried around, Jack-Daniels was cured. Read more…
A group of seven dedicated Leaside residents got together Oct. 21 to generate some ideas for resurrecting a Leaside chapter of the Lions Club.
The original Leaside chapter got its start in 1938 with the help of then Leaside Mayor Howard Talbot and town solicitor Stan Schatz. Although its 75th anniversary is this year, the chapter is now based in the west end of the city and has been since 2007.
The group is holding a membership drive Dec.1 from noon to 6 in the William Lea Room at the Leaside Gardens arena. Membership forms will be made available. Should you have additional questions contact Marnie Phoeinx.
Nominations have opened for next year’s Agnes Macphail Award. Nomination forms are available at public buildings in East York, including the library, or from www.toronto.ca/ macphail_award/. Nominees must be residents of East York and an outstanding community contributor.
Watch Jane Pitfield talk about the history of Leaside in these early excerpts from the Leaside Centennial Productions video, 100 Years Inside Leaside. Go to YouTube to see the video.
Work on the documentary started in August last year and covers the 100th anniversary events this year as well as stories about the old days.
The producers are looking for volunteers to help find people with stories, photos, referrals to resources or help in any way.
Lea100productions@gmail.com, or Barry Samuel at 416-849-7325, Anthony Regan at 416-422-0543.
As construction of the Eglinton Crosstown LRT heads in Leaside’s direction, the city and Metrolinx have each held public meetings to discuss planning, development and traffic issues, and several LPOA directors have attended. Many of the city’s proposals are very positive, but in this column I will concentrate on the proposals which we do not support.
First is what is called “as of right” zoning along Eglinton, especially between Bayview and Brentcliffe, where single family homes prevail, and four storeys is the maximum permitted height.
We do not believe that to automatically permit taller buildings (in this case mid-rise, perhaps six storeys) gives adequate protection against over-development. Read more…
The golden arches of McDonalds are probably going under the wrecking ball.
Metrolinx is negotiating with the property owner to purchase the land on the southeast corner of Bayview and Eglinton to make way for the main station entrance for the Bayview stop on the crosstown LRT.
Metrolinx has yet to select a designer or a builder for LRT stations. Construction on the property, which is not owned by McDonald’s, isn’t expected to begin until 2016.
Hyundai is known for some of the greenest cars in the automotive industry, including the Elantra, the Automobile Journalists Association of Canada’s 2012 Canadian Car of the Year.
It’s appropriate then that when Gyro Auto Group partners J.P. Kovac, Paul Kmet and Jim Krigos held the grand opening Nov. 8 at their new dealership, Gyro Hyundai, guests got to take in all the eco-friendly aspects of the new facility at 127 Laird Dr. Read more…
Looking north to Mallory Cres. during construction of the Bayview Extension.
The valleys and cliffs on three sides of Leaside make it a unique urban neighbourhood.
My childhood street was Mallory Cres. on the edge of the Don Valley.
My earliest valley memory was a face-to-face encounter on a narrow pathway with a giant blue bird. After hearing my story my kindergarten teacher informed me that lying was not acceptable.
Years later a zoo keeper at the Riverdale Zoo told me that their peacocks often escaped into the valley. Vindication for an embarrassed child! Read more…
Is the wrong guy called out of touch?
Reference Issue # 22, November, Redway Out Of Touch.
Surely it is Barry Schneider who is Out Of Touch. Barry is correct in pointing out that Alan’s business park (not industrial park) is becoming a retail park and he goes on to support that change. Unfortunately, the only way today’s Leaside retail park can survive is for our residents to have money in their pockets! Read more…
Did you see the 100-year anniversary exhibit called the Layers of Leaside? For those who, like me, grew up here it brought back a lot of memories, especially when I read the Leaside Business Directory of 1943-1944.
At that time there were two Leaside shopping districts: Bayview Ave. from Millwood to Fleming and Millwood Rd. from Rumsey to Airdrie.
In those days as I walked up Bayview before getting to the actual shopping district I could stop, if I had the necessary nickel, at Kerr’s Drug Store on the corner of McRae and Bayview (now Royal LePage Real Estate) for an ice cream cone. Read more…
With December upon us we come to the close of the 100th anniversary of the year of our community’s founding; the year of Leaside 100.
Things took off in earnest on April 23 when a number of events took place at various locations to mark the 100th anniversary of the actual founding date. (Or so we all thought, until historian Mike Filey revealed April 23,1913 to be merely the third reading date of the Queen’s Park private member’s bill authorizing the town’s establishment; the town itself was not formally proclaimed into existence until the following May 7!) Read more…
Two young Leaside women helped make an arrest one evening this fall by following a thief while talking to the police on a cell phone.
When arrested at the corner of Parkhurst and Hanna, a young man was carrying a stolen cell phone, credit and debit cars, and a fake gun he used in the robberies.
The women, Martha Parker, 24, and her long-time friend (who prefers her family name not be used), followed the man when they found out he’d stolen a cell phone from the friend’s younger sister. Read more…
Work on the pedestrian bridge at the CNIB on Bayview, closed because of structural problems two years ago, is expected to be complete in April.
The federal government’s Community Infrastructure Improvement Fund is contributing $822,000 towards the $2.4 million construction budget. CNIB is looking for community partners for the rest of the money.
MP John Carmichael was at the groundbreaking ceremony late last month.
NORTHLEA UNITED CHURCH, 125 Brentcliffe Rd., Christmas and Advent events: Sun. Dec .1, Metropolitan Silver Band, 10:30 a.m. Tues. Dec. 3, Taize service, 8 p.m. in the sanctuary, with repetitive simple songs, readings and time for silent meditation, Marc 416-899-7239. Wed. Dec. 4, Service of Memory and Hope, 7 p.m. Sun. Dec . 8, Carolling in the Pines, 7p.m. Sun. Dec. 15, Children’s Christmas Pageant, 10:30 a.m. Sun. Dec. 15, Candlelight Service of Lessons and Carols, 7 p.m. Tues. Dec. 24, Family Christmas Eve Service, 7 p.m. Tues. Dec 24, Communion Candlelight Service, 11 p.m. Read more…
Will the introduction of warehouse store giant Costco to Overlea Blvd. lead to a new line up of big box stores there like what has happened to Laird Dr.? And will the traffic affect Leaside? So is this in fact a Leaside issue?
Several Leasiders attending the community consultation on Thursday, Nov. 7 thought so. Let’s take traffic for a start. This is a double barrelled impact – Costco is a destination store and will attract customers from the whole of the Yonge corridor from York Mills in the north to Queen St. in the south and from Bathurst to Victoria Park.
Sound familiar? Read more…