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Among the many books published last year in time for the 150th anniversary of Confederation was Canada’s Odyssey: A Country Based on Incomplete Conquests, by Peter H. Russell. Now professor emeritus of political science at the University of Toronto, Russell is not only the dean of Canada’s constitutional scholars and a leading authority on the [...]

What draws Sue Dutton to the south of India twice a year? The simple answer is an orphanage in what was a small rural village, Podanur, outside of Coimbatore in the province of Tamil Nadu, where she is the director of education. In the 1970s, Sandra Simpson of Montreal saw the plight of children in [...]

A laneway runs through it

Full disclosure – there’s a laneway named after me. Krawchuk Lane runs parallel to Millwood and Malcolm between Randolph and Millwood. You read the story of its naming in Leaside Life’s August 2017 issue. But mine isn’t the only laneway in Leaside. There are five other laneways crying out for recognition in the form of [...]

January 1975 and my first part-time job

The turn of the calendar always prompts thoughts and memories of new beginnings, resolutions kept and abandoned—I’m particularly familiar with the abandoned category—and just how breathtakingly cold it can be in January. At this time of year, I spare a few moments to reminisce about my very first part-time job at a Leaside institution, Gyro [...]

Dear City of Toronto…

I need your assistance to help keep Trace Manes Park a jewel in our community. I’ve been cleaning it up for years. And lately I’ve given this matter a lot of thought. I know my requests may be complicated to implement, but they just make sense. I’m asking now because I won’t be here forever, [...]

Leaside shares a strong sense of community. And a community is a virtuous circle: when you help strengthen the community, a stronger community is there to help you. That lesson-in-life is being learned by Nada Albaradan, a Syrian refugee now in Grade 10 at Marc Garneau Collegiate Institute in Thorncliffe Park. Nada was having trouble [...]

Laird in Focus: it’s still about density

It’s Laird in Focus time again! This is the major development project affecting Leaside’s path, likely over the next 30 years, so we need to get it right. Laird in Focus Public Consultation No. 3 (Draft Emerging Preferred Alternatives), held on Dec. 5, focused on the “10 big moves”. Visit https://www.toronto.ca/city-government/planning-development/planning-studies-initiatives/laird-in-focus/ to learn more. But [...]

The Leaside Gardener: The Magic of the Bayview Pixies

Like a tiny seed that blows in the wind and lands on fertile soil, the magic of unseen forces stirs and something new begins. In 2015 a retired teacher and local resident wrote a letter about Bayview Ave. Not only did she identify the problem of weeds, trash and dying trees, she offered a solution. [...]

Ever made that age-old New Year’s resolution to lose weight? Out of all the New Year’s Resolutions made, an estimated 30 per cent focus on losing weight. But not all make a date to beat the scale. For some, the desire to gain weight is often just as, if not more, challenging. Kenzie Forbes, a [...]

Get involved! The LPOA wants you

Annual General Meetings provide an important opportunity for ratepayer groups to provide accountability to their members, and to the larger community. We were glad to see about 200 of you at the 2017 Leaside Property Owners’ Association AGM on November 29th, so we could fill you in on what the LPOA has been doing over [...]

Anyone who attends Glenview Presbyterian Church in Lawrence Park is probably aware of the City of Toronto sign that overlooks Yonge St. with a painting of the church adorned with these beautiful words. Those familiar with the Bible might know this message originates from Jeremiah, Chapter 29, Verse 7. A layman’s interpretation would be to [...]

When there’s a nip in the air and the leaves start to fall, the time is right to visit Leaside’s Father Caulfield Parkette, a tiny parcel of land sometimes called Triangle Park because of its unusual shape, located behind St. Anselm’s Church at MacNaughton Rd. and Cameron Cres. Naming parks after prominent figures in the [...]

22 Annesley: sometimes the system works!

If you’re a regular reader of this column you know that it’s often complaining about egregious minor variances and the dreadful decisions of the Committee of Adjustment (CoA). Usually, but not this time. At 22 Annesley Avenue I think the system worked. The application for 22 Annesley Avenue proposed to construct a two-storey addition to [...]

Leaside’s grilled cheese guru sweeps away cares

Most mornings Stephen D’Amico can be spotted sweeping in front of Millwood Melt, the grilled cheese restaurant he runs with his wife Aniko at 902 Millwood Rd. This is more than an act of tidiness, however; it is a meditative act which he picked up while working with some Mennonites on a farm near Waterloo. [...]

Leaside teens, don’t get into a Jam

For generations, kids have attended outdoor parties. Field, ravine, “bush,” and park parties are nothing new and have been popular activities for Leaside kids looking to let off a little steam. But for this generation of teens, what’s new is the size of these parties and how kids learn about them. With the proliferation of [...]

Even if you haven’t been inside, you probably know Robert Lowrey Piano Experts at the west corner of the strip just south of Eglinton, east of Brentcliffe. This well-known piano emporium is well worth a visit. Here you’ll find a number of “affordable” pianos, made by Pearl River, Knabe and Heintzman. Pearl River, the largest [...]

Leaside Garden Society members know Alice Carriman well. Any time there’s a call to help plant a garden, especially one where local schoolchildren are involved, Alice is sure to be on hand. This is all the more interesting since Alice does not actually live in Leaside. She has lived in the same apartment in Thorncliffe [...]

Winter was more fun when we were kids

I’m a believer in the science and the reality of global warming. That’s the engineering graduate talking. But I don’t actually need reams of data, scientific symposia, and time-lapse photographs of diminished glaciers to be convinced. My own memories of Leaside winters suffice to confirm that temperatures are rising. When I was growing up in [...]

Members of Leaside’s various sports communities joined the family and friends of the inductees and athlete of the year in the William Lea Room at the arena on Friday evening, Nov. 17, for the fifth annual induction ceremony of the Leaside Sports Hall of Fame. The honourees or their representatives are, from left to right: [...]

Sitting atop a stack of rugs, I had a conversation with Sam Tehrani, one of Bayview’s latest merchants to join the strip. Sam is a carpet dealer and enthusiast who runs Ghazal Rug Gallery at 1693B Bayview. As a fourth generation carpet dealer, he says almost every picture of him as a kid has a [...]

MacKenzie Bier’s extraordinary shoe drive

Christmas, seen as a time for giving, often brings out the best in us. In MacKenize Bier’s case, I’m reminded of the Mary Ellen Chase quote: “Christmas is not a date. It is a state of mind.” MacKenzie Bier and her quest to provide running shoes for neighbouring kids is an inspiring story of a [...]

LET’S TALK Turkey!

Since the holidays are just around the corner, it’s time to start thinking about what you will feed the loved ones around your table this year. If you’re anything like me, you’ll need all the help you can get. Luckily, we have amazing retailers in Leaside who can help you make holidays easy, delicious and [...]

Wildcats: “You can’t be what you can’t see”

While this might not be the official motto of the Toronto Leaside Girls Hockey Association (TLGHA), it’s an objective the league aspires to meet in all aspects of their organization. With more than 1,600 girls playing hockey at the learn-to-play, house league, and competitive levels, the Leaside Wildcats’ mission is two-fold. The league focuses on [...]

Welcoming the holiday season at our schools

In December, Toronto stores are filled with music, bright lights decorate homes, and our schools welcome the holiday season…Christmas, Kwanzaa, and Hanukkah. We get ready to bid goodbye to 2017 and greet 2018. The TDSB embraces children from around the world, and although our school board is a secular system, it is open to teaching [...]

LPOA: news: Leaside’s newest hotspot

The sounds of screeching brakes, car horns, and occasional ambulance sirens during rush hours are the all-too frequent scene these days at the intersection of Bayview Ave. and Parkhurst Blvd., Leaside’s newest accident hot spot. This been an increasingly fraught intersection for some time, and it’s getting worse. Drivers try to avoid the LRT construction [...]

My love letter to Bayview

As we enter the holiday homestretch, I thought it would be nice to finish the year identifying things I love about Bayview from a business perspective. Here, in no particular order, are 10 things I love about Bayview: Boutique La Muse I first wrote about Sarah Barr’s new women’s clothing store in July. At the [...]

Revisiting Leaside’s tree protection

Just over one year ago (November 2016) this column addressed street trees, and whether existing protections are adequate, based on experience of a demolition and redevelopment on Airdrie Rd. But interior (private) trees on the same or adjacent lots may need protection as well. Has the City increased tree protection efforts? A recent case is [...]