Happy Friday! I hope you had a great week and are ready for your weekend. I’ve had the opportunity to get out and be with the community quite a bit lately – and the connection in-person after the last 20 months has been wonderful.
This was an exciting week for parents and kids! Team Toronto Kids officially welcomed children aged 5-11 to get their COVID-19 vaccinations. A great step forward in the fight against the virus. Team Toronto has developed one of the best vaccination plans for children in North America – focused on creating an accessible and positive experience for kids and families, so that everyone can do their part to get vaccinated and keep our city safe.
It’s been a busy week with committees – a full agenda for Toronto-East York Community Council (TEYCC) & Planning & Housing Committee where we got a lot of work done. At Planning & Housing Committee we adopted a new approach to parking requirements for new developments and continued moving forward on changes to planning policies that will help create more housing options in Toronto through multiplex buildings.
Important changes came out of TEYCC earlier in the week, like moving forward the installation of an all-way stop at Balsam Ave. & Sycamore, and making changes to on-street permit parking rules on several streets where permit parking was installed without getting resident input in the previous term of Council. Those changes see through to completion a commitment I made at the beginning of my time on Council to make sure resident input is heard directly in the decisions that affect them most. More details on all of this and more below.
There is a lot happening in the community this weekend – and is a great opportunity to get out with friends & family to kick-off the holiday season. I’ll be at the tree lighting at Kew Gardens on Saturday and joining the members of the community at the menorah lighting at the Danforth-Beaches Chabad on Monday.
In This Issue
- New policies for multiplex housing getting closer 🆕
- A new horizon for parking policy! 🆕
- ActiveTO Bike Lanes – here to stay! 🆕
- Responding to resident feedback about permit parking on seven streets (Pine Crescent, Glen Ames, Long Crescent, Glen Oak Drive, Balsam Road, Pine Glen Road and Glen Stewart Crescent) 🆕
- Share your views – City of Toronto Animal Bylaw Review 🆕
- Introducing a new property tax class to support small businesses
- CafeTO – Made Permanent
- New policy to require affordable housing in development projects is approved
- Team Toronto Kids COVID-19 vaccination starts vaccinations for five to 11 year-olds 🆕
- EV Pilot Pushes Forward
- Transformed & Improved 311 Services
- Women4ClimateTO Mentorship Programme – Call for Applications
- A note on new disc golf ‘holes’ at Ashbridges Bay Park
- Leaf Cleaning Reminder
- Dogs in the City Campaign: Keeping dogs on leash and enjoying the outdoors safely
- Metrolinx work behind Little York Road and Norwood Terrace
- Munroe Park Avenue Stairs Closed for Construction
- Williamson Ravine Upgrades
- Portland Flood Protection Upgrades
- Road Restoration on Main and Lumsden
- Toronto Hydro – Kingston Road Overhead & Underground Electrical Update🆕
- Toronto Hydro – Woodbine Heights Upgrade
- Toronto Hydro – Danforth 4kv Conversion Work
- Toronto Hydro – Bartley and O’Connor Upgrade
- Construction Notice – Parkview Hills –
- Construction Notice – Hale Court, Leander Court and Stag Hill Drive
- Ashbridges Bay Park Welcomes Red Embers 🆕
- Crosswalk at Cosburn & Glebemount Ave Operational 🆕
- Danforth Planning Study
- New Mural for #Destination Danforth
- Community Centre 55’s November/December Senior Schedule
- Pop-up Vaccination Clinics – East Toronto Health Partners & MGH
- Seniors Snow Removal Program
- Community Centre 55’s 40th Annual Christmas Hamper Program
- Community Centre 55 Community Fridge
- Kick-start Virtual Tutoring Program
- Kick-start After-school Program
- Get your vaccine proof printed for free at Toronto Public Library
- Volunteers needed: In-home Hospice program
- Call for Blood Donors
- East Toronto Food Program
- Toronto District School Board – Essential Skills Upgrading
- Seniors Coffee N’ Mingle – Access Alliance
- EarlyOn Family Programs
- Seniors Cleaning Service
- Official IMLD Monument Unveiling Ceremony🆕
- Meet Santa in the Beach! 🆕
- Brunswick Bierworks & Blue Door Realty Holiday Fundraiser 🆕
- Annual Menorah Lighting 🆕
- Toronto East End (virtual) Christmas Market
- Breakfast with Santa! 🆕
- Toronto Miracle – city-wide food drive 🆕
- Bombing Misogyny – East End Arts event 🆕
- Upcoming Heritage Talk – The Beach & East Toronto Historical Society
- Dawes Road Library & Community Hub Consultation – December 13th
- Battle of the Beaches! 🆕
- Toronto Fringe’s Primetime Festival
- Thursday Trivia Happy Hour with Toronto Intergenerational Partnerships
- Remembrance Day Ceremonies
- Toronto Public Library’s Main Street Branch turns 100!
- Glen Stewart Ravine Clean-Up
- Community Walk – City of Toronto’s Active & Safe Routes to School Pilot Project
- Pumpkin Parades
- Smoke Alarm Event at Fairmount Park
- Story Stick Project Installation
- Women’s Cycling Network – Successful Event
- Orange Paper Flowers for Reconciliation
Thanks for taking the time to read my bi-weekly newsletter! If you have any events, news, or ideas to share for our next one – please reach out to my office! Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org, and we can get you included in our next issue.
Updates & Announcements from City Hall
New policies for multiplex housing getting closer 🆕
At Planning & Housing Committee yesterday, we gave the green light to start consultation on new policies to introduce multiplex housing in more areas of the city. The need for housing options in the City is clear, and we have to strike the right balance between ensuring we preserve what’s best of our existing communities and making sure we’re giving them the space they need to grow and evolve.
The City’s planning department is looking at new ways to allow more gentle density in areas of the city that are close to transit and where the current rules can be quite restrictive. Allowing more housing options is about who gets to live where. Options determine who gets access to opportunities, and who gets to take part in the exponential success and growth Toronto will continue to experience in the years to come.
As the City goes out to develop new policies, conversations can get abstract. It helps me to remember that conversations about housing options and policy are really about your neighbour who is looking to care for their aging loved ones closer to home, about young adults starting out in the careers they have in front of them, and the newcomers to Toronto who are vital to keeping our main streets vibrant and our economy growing.
You can read more about the report here, and stay tuned for more information as consultations roll-out next year.
A new horizon for parking policy! 🆕
Few of us think about parking when we talk about the kinds of planning policies that are going to transform the way our city grows and develops in the 21st Century. But parking matters. Yesterday at Planning & Housing Committee, we adopted a new approach to parking spaces in new developments putting sustainability and affordability at the forefront. The parking standards currently embedded in our planning policies exist from a different era, when it was thought that everyone would move around the city in a single occupancy vehicle and the journey from home to work was from a highway to downtown. The changes brought forward today bring our approach to parking into the 21st century. We are making way for new standards of transportation: moving away from requiring parking minimums in new developments to lower the cost of building housing and help move the city closer to achieving it’s goals to reach net zero. Each community and project in the city has its own unique characteristics. That’s why this framework balances removing minimums and introducing maximums – it strikes the balance between how Torontonians are living now and the zero-emission lifestyle we’re working towards. We’re building a city where car ownership doesn’t have to be essential, and we’re supporting the active lifestyles Torontonians are living today. You can read the report here and tap the image below to hear my comments at committee.
ActiveTO Bike Lanes – here to stay! 🆕
Great news for all road users who want to see safer streets – and a win for main street businesses. I’m proud to join my Council colleagues today in support of making the Bloor-Danforth & University ActiveTO lanes permanent!
Our Destination Danforth lanes have been transformative in Beaches-East York. The benefits to the community and small businesses are clear and I’m glad to see recommendations in a new City staff report suggesting that we make them permanent.
Responding to resident feedback about permit parking on seven streets 🆕
At this week’s Toronto and East York Community parking I moved a motion to remove over-night permit parking on seven streets following clear community feedback requesting the change. Permit parking will be removed on: Pine Crescent, Glen Ames, Long Crescent, Glen Oak Drive, Balsam Road, Pine Glen Road and Glen Stewart Crescent.
Removing permit parking on these streets addresses community concerns about a decision made in the previous term of City Council, before I was elected. In 2017, permit parking was installed on over 30 local streets without the typical consultation process. The City simply went ahead and changed the rules on all of these streets through a motion brought directly to City Council, even though the City’s bylaws require an official poll before permit parking is introduced anywhere.
Since that polling was never done in 2017, I took steps to make sure there was an opportunity for residents to give their input on the parking rules for their street. This is basically affording every local resident the same opportunity to make their views heard as residents on every other street in the city. I’ve had extensive one-on-one conversations, held consultations in the spring of 2019 and asked the City to go through the polling process to give residents on these 32 streets the opportunity to have their voice heard. The majority of streets voted to main permit parking.
I made a commitment to respect the results of the polls and the community’s voice so, at this week’s community Council, I moved motions to remove permit parking on the streets where the majority of residents wanted it gone. There are only 27 permit holders on the streets where residents have voted to remove the on-street permit parking. We have been able to carve out exemptions where needed like keeping spaces available in front of a small rental building where we know seniors rely on the on-street permit parking spaces.
On the streets where the rules are changing back to the pre-2017 approach, people will still generally be able to park for the regular three-hour window allowed on residential streets. Visitors and other members of the community will still be able to come in and out of the neighbourhood comfortably.
353 residents took the time to return their ballots on the streets where permit parking is being removed. 73% of them wanted it gone. Had consultation and discussion happened earlier, we could have avoided the extra work of installing and later removing the permit parking in these areas.
The most important thing about this whole process was giving community members an opportunity to go through the typical process. We often hear about times where people don’t like the process that’s in place, that’s a separate conversation. But at a minimum, I believe we should be consulting the community on decisions that directly affect them the most.
The results of the polls and further background information on the polls is available here:
Share your views – City of Toronto Animal Bylaw Review 🆕
The City is undertaking a review of the Animal Bylaw to improve the coexistence of humans and wildlife, to decrease nuisance behaviour and to enhance animal welfare.
The review aims to modernize the rules related to the feeding of wildlife, pet licensing, and the ownership of rabbits, guinea pigs and pigeons. It will also explore topics such as cosmetic procedures on pets and the feasibility of developing a list of animals that people can keep as pets.
Find out more about what’s included in the review here.
The survey is available here and is open for feedback until December 17 at 11:59 p.m.
Introducing a new property tax class to support small businesses
Since before the pandemic, I’ve working right alongside our local businesses and BIAs to support our main streets. A key policy change we’ve heard for many years is the excessive property tax pressures on many small businesses with a mom and pop being taxed like a condo. This week City Council approved a plan to create a new tax class so small businesses face a lower tax burden and can go into COVID-recovery with every available support from the City.
During my time as the small business lead on the Mayor’s Economic Support and Recovery Taskforce, I’ve been able to work closely with the small business community to shape the supports and advocacy our businesses need.
This new tax class will ensure the preservation of our diverse Main Streets as they continue to work through the unprecedented challenges brought on by the pandemic. Eligible businesses be able to receive a 15% property tax reduction starting in 2022. No application is needed and the reduced rate will automatically be applied to property tax bills.
To qualify, businesses located in the downtown, on the central waterfront, in designated growth centres or avenues in the City of Toronto’s Official Plan must:
- be classified within the commercial or new commercial tax class (with certain property types excluded)
- have a Current Value Assessment (CVA) less than or equal to $7 million
- be 7,500 square feet or less, or for commercial condos a gross floor area of 2,500 square feet or less
Businesses located elsewhere in the City must:
- be classified within the commercial or new commercial tax class (with certain property types excluded)
- have a CVA less than or equal to $1 million
This new tax class is about creating fairness for small businesses within our commercial property tax class. Local mom and pop shops shouldn’t be taxed at the same rate as the large commercial businesses. This step forward is about levelling the playing field for the small businesses who have struggled significantly during the pandemic. We need to continue the work to support them into a strong recovery.
CafeTO – made permanent!
There’s more good news in terms of ways we’re supporting small businesses – City Council approved a plan to make the CafeTO program permanent and waive the application fee in 2022. During this past season, the CafeTO program saw a 51% increase in participating restaurants from 2020. The program has involved over 1,200 restaurants and sixty-nine of the City’s Business Improvement Areas have had at least one restaurant participating in the program. We know this program was a lifeline for these restaurants during the pandemic when indoor dining was not permitted, or only allowed at a limited capacity. Having these outdoor patio spaces let restaurants open their doors to guest and showed us how we can reimagine the design of our City streets. This is a testament to the best of what city government can accomplish. Permanent program status provides a guaranteed option for restaurants and small businesses on the road ahead. Plus, we’re waiving permit fees in 2022 to keep #smallbiz recovery and vibrant Main Streets moving forward. Catch you on a patio next summer! The full staff report on the 2022 program and recommendations for future iterations can be read here.
New policy to require affordable housing in development adopted by Council
This week, Toronto took the historic step of becoming Ontario’s first city with Inclusionary Zoning. The adoption of this new policy is a critical tool available to us to help address the affordable housing crisis and build strong, vibrant communities in the years ahead. We’re moving ahead on requiring up to 22% affordability in areas across the city in the coming years. Getting here has been years in the making and is a win – for housing and for the future of our growing city. More details on the program are here:
Beginning in 2022, Inclusionary Zoning will secure five to 10 per cent of condominium developments as affordable housing, increasing to eight per cent to 22 per cent by 2030. The amount of affordable housing required would vary depending on the area of the city, with the highest requirements in the Downtown.
Toronto’s proposed Inclusionary Zoning framework proposes foundational requirements for affordable housing in new development that will ensure affordability is maintained for 99 years. In the City’s policy, rents and ownership prices would be based on proposed new income-based definitions of affordable housing, targeting households with an annual income of between $32,486 and $91,611.
Inclusionary Zoning is already used in more than 800 jurisdictions in the U.S., Australia and Canada. While no two cities have the same Inclusionary Zoning policy, each one is tailored to the municipality’s local housing market and needs. Toronto’s proposed policy was developed based on detailed financial impact analysis, including a peer review, and input received through extensive consultation.
The policy will be closely monitored and reviewed after one year to allow for adjustments based on evolving market conditions and opportunities to expand its implementation to broader areas of the city.
The introduction of this policy tool represents a shift in how the City treats new developments. It will ensure affordable housing is incorporated in new developments on a consistent basis rather than being negotiated on a site-by-site basis, providing clarity for all parties from the very beginning. The policy reflects a balanced, forward-looking and equitable framework that will help the City achieve the HousingTO Action Plan target of approving 40,000 affordable rental homes and 4,000 new affordable ownership homes by 2030.
Team Toronto Kids COVID-19 vaccination plan released for five to 11 year-olds 🆕
Team Toronto Kids hit a milestone this week – officially starting the vaccinations of children aged 5 to 11-years. For more than six weeks, Toronto Public Health and Team Toronto partners have been preparing to vaccinate this population. The plan is needs-based, data-driven, and equity-focused which will provide access to COVID-19 vaccinations to more than 200,000 eligible five to 11 year-olds living in Toronto.
Team Toronto has placed every available resource into a multi-pronged clinic delivery model once the vaccine is approved and delivered by the province. This model includes large fixed-site clinics – including the five City-run immunization clinics – school-based clinics, hospital and community-based clinics, more than 450 pharmacies and a number of pediatric and family physician practices.
Appointments can be booked by visiting the City of Toronto COVID-19 page and clicking the blue button or by calling the provincial vaccine booking line at 1-833-943-3900.
EV Pilot Pushes Forward
An exciting week for Toronto Parking Authority – we’re moving ahead on the EV Pilot! 32 new chargers were approved for parking facilities across the city. As demand for EVs continues – we’re responding with the infrastructure to keep Toronto reducing emissions and hitting our net-zero targets. Vital progress for a cleaner, greener future ahead!
Transformation of 311 – New & Improved
This month, the City of Toronto launched an improved 311 online portal, making the service easier and more convenient to use, which includes providing real-time status updates from start to finish. The City continues to rapidly evolve and modernize service delivery to improve access to services while providing a consistent service experience that builds trust & confidence in municipal services. With the launch of this new service, all of the approximately 600 services that 311 offers are now available online, including requests for snow plowing and tree maintenance, overflowing catch basins, dogs off leash and inadequate heat in apartment buildings. Residents, businesses and visitors now have the option of calling in to speak with an agent, live online chat or submitting a service request online. Users will be able to track the status of their request from start to finish and can opt-in to receive real-time status updates via text (SMS) or email notification. For more information and how to create & track a service request, visit here.
Women4ClimateTO Mentorship Programme – call for applications
The City’s Women4ClimateTO Mentorship Programme empowers and supports women working on innovative projects to help address the climate emergency. Participants will
receive mentoring, training and networking opportunities to help them take their climaterelated project or business start-up to the next level.
Following the mentorship program, the City and its partners will host a pitch competition with the chance to win cash awards and other supports to help you further advance your project.
Applications will be accepted until Nov. 28, 2021. Learn more and apply!
A note on new disc golf ‘holes’ at Ashbridges Bay Park
My office has heard from a handful of community members about the additional disc golf locations that have been installed at Ashbridges Bay Park. Initially there were some concerns because they were new and there wasn’t a lot of information about how or why they were put in. Understandably residents wanted to know if there was due diligence and careful planning before they went in. There wasn’t a lot of communication before the installation, this is something the City can do better as a whole and something I’m working hard to bridge every single day.
I’m sharing this information this information in case it’s helpful and you notice the new disc golf ‘holes’. The City’s constantly looking for ways to improve services and amenities for residents. These disc golf holes are a popular amenity in the park and just add to the list of long activities you can enjoy down at the waterfront. Making this changes to the area will also help ensure there’s a regular user-group in the area to help maintain the park and keep it safe.
To be clear, the area where the holes have been installed is part of the natural beach landscape at Ashbridges Bay Park, and is neither protected nor off-limits to anyone. It’s already a well-used section of the allowable off-leash dog area that exists from November 1st to March 31st.
To install the 9 baskets and tee signs that comprise this disc-golf course, no plants or trees were removed and existing desire-line pathways were utilized. The eventual maturation of younger plantings were taken into consideration during all phases of course design and installation.
Disc golf doesn’t exclude the park space being used by others or for other passive enjoyment of the space. It doesn’t need booking and is really no different than putting down some bags and jackets for a game of frisbee in the park. The area is still open for dog-walkers, pedestrians, birders and everyone who currently enjoys the space. There are no plans, and never will be any plans, to fence off or restrict the place. There’s no plan to mow or remove any of the naturalized environment and the course was designed to allow the area to continue to naturalize. The newly planted trees in the area can mature without any interference.
For anyone who hasn’t been down to the area, the entire eastern section of this area closest to the lake (divided by the sand access road) was left completely alone. City staff teams have been clearing out the collection of beer cans, liquor bottles and general refuse while the course was being installed. Overall, the disc golf community will help keep the area cleaned up and leave it in a safer, cleaner condition than before.
Update on Vaccine Clinics
Leaf cleaning reminder
It’s that time of year when the leaves begin to fall! For several years in the past, the City has only been doing scheduled mechanical leaf collection in Scarborough and Etobicoke. This is where crews would come through, rake excess trees off the boulevard portion of a property and into the street, with the bucket truck behind picking everything up.
In our part of the City, crews have only been going out as part of the regular street sweeping which is meant to happen on local roads every two months. In general, if there’s a big accumulation of leaves outside of Scarborough and Etobicoke, 311 takes requests for a sweeper to come by and clean-up.
If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to my office.
Dogs in the City Campaign
With more people outdoors enjoying Toronto, the City has launched a public education campaign to remind residents about responsible dog ownership. From July 26th, online and on social media ads will run to remind residents that they need to:
Keep dogs leashed in public, unless in designated dogs off-leash areas: Dogs must be kept on a leash no more than two metres long.
Stoop and scoop: Residents need to pick up after their dog and put dog waste in a Green Bin. The City has Green Bins for organic waste in all dogs off-leash areas in parks, other select locations in parks and a few street litter bins that accept dog waste across the city.
Respect the natural environment: Dog owners should respect the natural environment in parks and trails. Dogs should be allowed off-leash only in dogs off-leash areas so that they don’t trample plants or chase wildlife.
More information is available at toronto.ca/DogsInTheCity
Work in the Ward
Metrolinx work behind Little York Road and Norwood Terrace
Munroe Park Avenue Stairs leading to Silver Birch Beach Closed for Construction
Please be advised that the Munro Park Ave stairs leading to Silver Birch Beach will be off limits for construction starting this morning. The existing wood and brick staircase is being removed, and concrete steps with a metal handrail are being installed. Weather permitting, this is expected to take approximately 2 weeks (end of November)
The cancellation of another project allowed Parks Construction to quickly prioritize this important work, hence the last-minute nature of this advisory.
Access to the Beach can be gained from Neville Park Blvd and Nursewood Rd to the east, and Silverbirch Ave and Willow Ave to the west.
Williamson Ravine Upgrades
Urban Forestry is proposing to plant native trees and shrubs this fall in Williamson Ravine. These plantings are intended to increase the urban tree canopy, improve biodiversity, restore the native plant community, and to prevent soil erosion, following invasive vegetation management. This work is being done as part of the City’s Ravine Strategy.
Portlands Flood Protection Upgrades
In addition to the information I provided above, here is the detailed construction notice relating to the work happening in the Port Lands which relates to the Gardiner East ramp closure and improvements to Lake Shore Blvd East.
My website also has a two pager and other links you can access for fuller details.
Road Restoration on Main and Lumsden
Toronto Hydro – Kingston Road Overhead & Underground Electrical Update🆕
Toronto Hydro will be undertaking improvements to the electricity system in the following area:
- Kingston Road between Southwood Drive (East) and Glen Stewart Crescent (South).
The work is expected to begin December 2021.
Toronto Hydro – Woodbine Heights Upgrade
Toronto Hydro – Danforth 4kv Conversion Work
Toronto Hydro – Bartley and O’Connor Upgrades
Construction Notice – Parkview Hills
Construction Notice – Hale Court, Leander Court, and Stag Hill
Ashbridges Bay Park welcomes Red Embers 🆕
Grateful for the opportunity to join the official opening of Red Embers at Ashbridges Bay this week. The Red Embers gates are a sacred memorial to Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls, Trans, and Two-Spirited folks, envisioned and created by an all-womxn team of artists and community partners. The #EastEnd is fortunate to be hosting these banners and charred cedar posts for the next 6 months as they provide a space of commemoration and reflection while serving as a reminder of the continued work towards Truth and Reconciliation. Thank you to Elder Jacquie Lavalley for your wisdom and blessings, to the drummers and jingle dancers offering healing, Lisa Rochon of Citylab and Pamela Hart of Native Women’s Resource Centre of Toronto, their teams and partners, and to the thirteen teams of womxn artists from across Turtle Island who created these special works of art.
Crosswalk at Cosburn & Glebemount Ave Operational 🆕
Exciting news! The crosswalk @ Cosburn & Glebemount is officially operational – providing a safe place to cross between Woodbine & Coxwell.
I want to thank the community for their help in making this happen & for continuing to push to keep road safety a top priority in #BEY.
Danforth Planning Study
The City of Toronto is undertaking a Complete Street and Planning Study of Danforth Avenue, one of the most recognizable and major avenues in the City.
The full study area will span a six kilometre stretch of Danforth Avenue between Broadview Avenue and Victoria Park Avenue. Within that stretch, there will be three types of studies undertaken including:
- Complete street study (Broadview Avenue to Victoria Park Avenue) to examine the roadway width and review options for a complete street design and the potential for on-street protected bike lanes in order to improve road safety.
- Economic and retail study (Broadview Avenue to Victoria Park Avenue) to provide an understanding of the economic environment of the area and issues faced by retailers along Danforth Avenue in order to support and promote economic vitality.
- Planning study (Broadview Avenue to Coxwell Avenue) to identify future city-building opportunities, guide new development, and enhance the public realm and quality of place.
Great e-turnout at the Danforth Study meeting. Keeping our Main Streets thriving is key to vibrant communities – your input will help shape the future of our much loved avenue! More information here.
New Mural for #DestinationDanforth
East End Arts, City of Toronto Culture, and Transportation Services partnered up to deliver a new mural on the Sobey’s property at 2451 Danforth. The artists, Lara Lucretia, Xuan-Yen Cao, & Caitlin Taguibao, have done a magnificent job on this project. We’re so fortunate in the east end to have a wide array of murals being painted as part of the #DestinationDanforth pilot project. The artists have shared the following statement about their artwork:
“Our mural is meant to show how racism is prevalent in our communities, and how we need to collectively band together to dismantle it. A Red-Tailed Hawk swoops down and breaks apart the many cogwheels that are part of a greater system of oppression. Behind its wings, the mural features designs and messages of acceptance, anti-discrimination, anti-racism, and love that were created by community members from the 2019 program, #EastEndLove. Images included in the cloud bubbles were created by Triangle Program, Toronto Indigenous Business Association, Hijabi Ballers, Muslim Girls Taking Initiative, Kennedy House, and attendees of public workshops, and each one has its own story. This mural, appropriately titled “Resilience!”, is about the resilience of the community coming together to collectively address and combat racism; it’s about hope for the future, as this is an ongoing fight and we will not stand for racism”.
Community Centre 55’s November/December Schedule
CC55 has a great set of Senior activity classes scheduled for November and December. Check out their calendar and find a class right for you. For more information and a summary of classes, visit their website.
Pop-up Vaccination Clinics – East Toronto Health Partners & MGH
Shoppers World Danforth (3003 Danforth Avenue, Toronto, ON M4C 1M9)
November 27 & 28:
- 10:15 am – 6pm, or until supplies last
Gerrard Square Shopping Centre (1000 Gerrard Street East, Toronto, ON M4M 3G6)
November 27 & 28:
- 10:15 am – 6pm, or until supplies last
To book an appointment, visit here.
Find the latest information on vaccine clinics in our east end here.
You can also book a vaccine appointment at Shoppers World Danforth here.
Seniors Snow Removal Program
Community Centre 55’s 40th Annual Christmas Hamper Program
Community Centre 55 Community Fridge
Community Centre 55 operates a community fridge where community members are encouraged to donate food to keep it from going to waste and to help those who may be in need. The fridge is located at Community Centre 55 at 97 Main Street at the south side of the building. It’s open Monday through Friday from 9:15am-3:45pm. You can donate fresh produce, dairy, bread, proteins, and frozen meals in the fridge/freezer section or non perishable goods in the pantry section. For safety reasons, the Centre asks that you don’t leave any opened items or items set to expire in the next 48 hours in the fridge. If the fridge or pantry are full, bring your donation inside and the volunteer team will make sure it’s stored appropriately. If you have any questions you can reach out to them at 416-691-1113 or email@example.com.
Kick-start Virtual Tutoring Program
Kick-start After-school Program
Get your vaccine proof printed for free at Toronto Public Library
Volunteers needed: In-home Hospice program
Call for Blood Donors
There is an immediate need for new and returning blood donors to fill open appointments. As COVID-19 restrictions gradually ease and we move into a new normal, the need for blood is rising due to increasing demand and unfilled appointments.
There are three permanent Canadian Blood Service centers in Toronto: 2 Bloor Street East, 67 College Street, and 163 King Street West. If you’re in good health, please visit blood.ca to book an appointment.
East Toronto Food Program
The pandemic has been tough for all of us, but it’s impact hasn’t been equitable. Our most vulnerable are feeling the worst impacts as many of the critical supports they rely on have been strained over the past year. Thankfully, we’ve had countless community organizations and residents step up in inspiring ways to help out.
The East Toronto Food Program purchases ~100 meals from local small businesses each week and donate them to people in need. If you’re in a position to support this work, they have a GoFundMe available to collect funds that will be directly used to feed those who need it in our community. You can find their page online here.
Toronto District School Board – Essential Skills Upgrading
Seniors Coffee N’ Mingle – Access Alliance
Every Friday at 4pm, seniors have a chance to connect, hear each other’s voices and exchange and share their experiences during this difficult and unprecedented time while we deal with COVID -19. Seniors enjoy their virtual tea/coffee with other participants while chatting on different topics. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to register
Seniors Cleaning Service
Toronto Intergenerational Partnerships in Community Seniors Assistance Home Maintenance (SAHM) program provides assistance to seniors, as well as disabled and convalescing individuals, who need work done in and around their homes and apartments. Work includes garden and yard work, snow removal, light housekeeping and odd light jobs. These services enable individuals to direct their own care while living safely and independently in their own homes longer. For additional information or to register click here.
Official IMLD Monument Unveiling Ceremony🆕
Join us tomorrow – Saturday, November 27 at 10:00 am as we (finally!!) officially unveil the International Mother Language Day Monument at Dentonia Park. This monument commemorates the right of all people to speak their mother tongue in Toronto.
Meet Santa in the Beach!🆕
Head over to Kew Gardens next Saturday November 27 between 1-5:30pm to meet Santa in the Beach! There will be live music, photos with Santa, Community Centre 55’s Toy Drive, activities & games – followed by the Christmas Tree Lighting happening at 5! A big thanks to The Beach BIA for working so hard to make this happen. See you there!
Brunswick Bierworks & Blue Door Realty Holiday Fundraiser 🆕
Join Blue Door Realty and Brunswick Bierworks as they host a holiday fundraiser in support of CTV’s Toy Mountain! As part of the fundraiser, they will be collecting new, unwrapped children’s toys and/or any non-perishable food items. Monetary donations are also welcome which will go directly to the cause. Join them Sunday November 28 at Brunswick Bierworks – 25 Curity Ave from 12:00 – 4:00 pm. There will be food, drinks, holiday photos, a raffle, silent auction, and more! If you can’t attend on November 28, they will be accepting donations between now and December 15 – and can be dropped off anytime Brunswick Bierworks is open.
Annual Menorah Lighting 🆕
On November 29, join Chabad of Danforth-Beaches as they celebrate the Annual Menorah Lighting with a drive-in celebration. You are invited to gather at 5:00 pm at the Woodbine Park parking lot (south of Eastern Ave.) where there will be a short car Menorah Parade – which will head towards the Ashbridges Bay parking lot. Following the parade, there will be a family sing-along concert with “Rabbi B.” To register for the event, visit here.
Toronto East End (virtual) Christmas Market
Join the East End Market on the weekend of December 3-5 to discover and connect to over 50 local small businesses at the Toronto East End (virtual) Christmas Market. Get all your holiday shopping done locally from the comfort and safety of your home. Find gifts for every member of your family and enjoy some music from an incredibly talented local singer/songwriter Ally Cribb.
Find the market by following both of Toronto Virtual Market’s social media accounts. Just search Toronto Virtual Market on Facebook and @torontovirtualmarket on Instagram. We are also very excited to announce that Toronto Virtual Market will be donating the proceeds of the market to Community Centre 55’s Share A Christmas Program. Last year we donated $1800 and we would like to beat that so let’s get together (virtually) and show our city what COMMUNITY is all about.
Toronto Miracle – city-wide food drive 🆕
Join Toronto Miracle as they host a city-wide food drive on December 4th and help them reach their goal of collecting 250,000 lbs of food in one day!
Food Bank visits aren’t just on the rise in Toronto, they are skyrocketing, with 1.45 million visits last year and for the first time ever new food bank users are surpassing existing food bank users.
Breakfast with Santa! 🆕
Join the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 11 as they host Breakast with Santa!
Happening December 5, 2021 from 10:00 am – 2:00 pm. Tickets are $5 and will be available for purchase ahead of time or at the door.
Proof of vaccination is required for individuals 12+ and masks must be worn to enter.
Bombing Misogyny – East End Arts event 🆕
Street art is an important reflection of our society, and yet, it remains a field dominated by men. Women artists are rarely given the largest commissions, and like so much work in public, continues to be unsafe for femme and transfemme bodies.
How can we create more space for women and gender diverse 🌈 folks to participate in street art culture? Join East End Arts for Bombing Misogyny, an afternoon panel talk and brainstorming session on December 9th, with some of the best artists in the street art world to jam on how to bomb the patriarchy (with spray paint)!
Moderated by Natalie Very B, and featuring mural artists like Fiya Bruxa and Monica Wickeler. Learn more and register HERE.
Upcoming Heritage Talks – The Beach & East Toronto Historical Society
Mark your calendars! The Beaches & East Toronto Historical Society has another heritage talk coming up in December:
Tuesday December 14, 7-8:30 pm
A celebration of the 100th anniversary of the Main Street Branch Library with library historians Fiona Smith and John Puusa + a history of the Main & Gerrard neighbourhood with Barbara Myrvold.
Due to Covid restrictions both events will be Zoom virtual presentations.
Dawes Road Library & Community Hub Consultation – December 13th
Please join us for a consultation on the Dawes Road Library & Community Hub construction project.
To access meeting login information:
Battle of the Beaches! 🆕
Join Bob Acton/Beast Instructors vs. Parent All-Stars Charity Game on Sunday, December 26th @ Ted Reeve Main Arena.
The cost to attend is $5/person at the door with all proceeds going to Centre 55.
Toronto Fringe’s Primetime Festival
Tickets are on sale for Toronto Fringe’s Primetime Festival! Catch interactive sketch comedy, go on an adventure with a genie, or enter a magical portal! The Festival will run from November 3rd to November 28th. Tickets are Pay What You Can. Check out the full details of the festival here.
Thursday Trivia Happy Hour with Toronto Intergenerational Partnerships
Remembrance Day Ceremonies across Beaches-East York
There were several special Remembrance Day services that took place yesterday, Novemeber 11, across Beaches-East York to honour the brave veterans who served their country and sacrificed for our freedoms.
I attended a moving service at Kew Gardens hosted by the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 1/42 in the morning, and was very grateful I was able to visit Branches 11, 22 and 345 throughout the rest of the day. Many are still bravely serving beyond our borders helping bring peace and stability to other parts of the world – and to continue fighting for our freedoms. Thanks to all the Remembrance Day ceremony organizers in Beaches-East York and across this great city. I am grateful to have been able to pay my respects in person, and felt the love and support our community had for our veterans. Thank you to the incredible individuals who worked tirelessly to make these special ceremonies happen. Remember to support your local legion. In Beaches-East York, we have four:
- Royal Canadian Legion Branch 11
- Royal Canadian Legion Woodbine Heights Branch 22
- Royal Canadian Legion 1/42
- Royal Canadian Legion 345
Toronto Public Library’s Main Street Branch turns 100!
Glen Stewart Ravine Clean-Up
Thank you to the Friends of Glen Stewart Ravine for hosting an incredible clean-up event last week in the ravine. It is so important to keep our Parks and Ravines clean and healthy – so a big thanks to these great leaders in our community who continue to stand up to protect to help us protect these fragile spaces.
Community Walk – City of Toronto’s Active & Safe Routes to School Pilot Project
A big thanks to CultureLink Toronto who hosted a great community walk last week around George Webster Elementary to talk about the City’s Active & Safe Routes to School Pilot Project.
Road safety is incredibly important, and collecting feedback from kids and parents on this program is crucial to how we can keep improving.
Learn more about what we’re doing to make it safer for kids to walk & bike to school.
Pumpkin Parades Across Beaches-East York
There were several fantastic Pumpkin Parade events that took place around Ward 19 on November 1. From Dentonia Park, to Moncur Park – East Lynn Park to Stephenson Park, there were many creative pumpkins which turned into a beautiful, fun and creative art show. After a long time, it was great to see the community come together to celebrate art and creativity.
Thank you to all the organizers of the Pumpkin Parades this year who worked tirelessly to make sure they ran smoothly.
Fairmount Park – Smoke Alarm Event
There was a great turnout at Fairmount Park this week where we were handing out new fire alarms and encouraging residents to check their smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors to ensure they’re working & to change the batteries.
Thanks to our friends at Toronto Fire Service for talking fire prevention & answering fire safety questions.
We still have more smoke alarms – connect with my office at email@example.com to pick one up.
Story Stick Project Installation
The Story Stick Project involved a series of intergenerational and youth workshops online and in person in August & September. East End and Scarborough residents learned to wrap natural tree sticks with textured and colourful yarns, a simple yet powerful artmaking process to represent, reflect, and tell their life stories and experiences.
The Story Stick Project Exhibit was co-created with local residents and gives form to personal stories, collective hopes, and visions for social change. Each stick in the installation has one to three different stories wrapped on it.
Story Stick Project is a form of climate change art. It is about nurturing care and commitment to positive change, for the earth and community we live in.
Visit the Story Stick Exhibit located at Fontbonne Ministries’ Mustard Seed Site, at 791 Queen St East, Toronto, ON M4M 1H6. You can view the exhibit until December 14. Visiting hours are 8:00am – 9:00pm daily.
Women’s Cycling Network Hosts Successful Event
The Women’s Cycling Network’s bike match program was able to deliver 65 bicycles to those who needed them.
A big thank you to the many people who donated bikes and made this such a success. See you next year, #BikeMatchWNC!
Orange Paper Flowers for Reconciliation
A local resident, Margot Rockett, is making and selling orange paper flowers to raise money for Reconciliation Canada and raise awareness for Truth and Reconciliation Day later this year. Margot will make at least 215 of these flowers to honour the 215 lives lost at the Kamloops residential school.
The large flowers are $10 each, with smaller flowers available for $4 each or $10 for 3. For information on ordering the orange paper flowers, please send a text to Margot at 647-208-5388 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks for taking the time to read my bi-weekly newsletter! If you have any events, news, or ideas to share for our next one – please reach out to my office! Send me an email at email@example.com and we can get you included in our next issue.
Have questions, comments or concerns? Just hit reply to this email and get in touch with me.
For real-time updates on the local issues that matter to you most, please follow any of my social media accounts!