Friday, November 30, 2012

Jordan Szoke at Motorcycle Show #Toronto

Jordan has been named Grand Marshal for the upcoming December 7-9, 2012 Motorcycle Show - Toronto. The 17 time Canadian Motorcycle Champion will launch the Friday morning 11:45 am Opening Ceremonies and also show his skills at the Northeastern Ontario Trials Demonstrations. Photo of Jordan by John Walker.

"The Brantford, Ontario native, the 33-year old Szoke is considered the "Wayne Gretzky" of Canadian Superbike racing, notching eight national championships, along with five national Sportbike titles, three #1 plates in the Canadian Motorcycle Association Observed Trials Championships, and one national 250 GP championship during his illustrious 19-year career. Szoke has represented Canada at the Trials des Nations World Championship seven times. "I’m honoured the organizers of the Motorcycle Show-Toronto have asked me to be their Grand Marshal for the Show’s Opening Ceremonies,” said Szoke from his Brantford home. “It’s always an exciting weekend for everyone who loves motorcycles, because we get our first look at the hot new 2013 models for next year. I’m even more stoked now for the Show to start. It’ll be a cool weekend and I’m looking forward to meeting other bike enthusiasts and talking about the sport.”

Skating rink open at #Toronto City Hall

After ripping the reflecting pool completely apart and rebuilding the rink, it now has a frozen surface and outdoor skating is back at Nathan Phillips Square for the 2012 winter season.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Baby Jesus takes a beating

The new Nativity display in front of the #Toronto Courthouse/Old City Hall was damaged again. The little manger suffered damage including a lamb that was beheaded in the attack.
This is the fifth time that the Gethsemane Ministries' birth of the baby Jesus has been vandalized in the past six years, but the family looks has taken the damage in stride and it looks like they have already forgiven the attackers.
Christmas and Holiday decorations are going up all over town - pretty soon we will see the Chunukah candles lit - beginning on December 8, 2012 to the 16th. Menorahs are placed at both old and new City Hall.

Joey goes to Japan

@JoeyTheDingo is on a trip to Japan and he is sending back updates on his amazing adventures in Tokyo and beyond. His travel wish list includes the bullet train, Mt Fuji, the snow monkeys, getting stuffed into a subway, sleeping in a hotel tube and seeing the bizarre street vending machines. He has gone to see Mt Fuji on the incredibly fast (and on time) bullet train and has also met the cut little monkeys.
He didn't get the hotel with sleeping tubes because of the communal bathrooms. And the bathrooms are like horizontal urinals which take some getting used to.
There are some great signs in Japan - don't squat on top of the toilet!

Posted by Joe Hamilton. See more of exotic Japan sights after the jump.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Hailo and Molson Coors help make the holidays safer

Hailo #Toronto has partnered with @MolsonCoorsCDA to give out @OneMillionHailo dollars in taxi fares to "help make the Toronto's 2012 holiday season the safest yet". With the money provided by Hailo and with Coors taking care of the distribution, bar patrons can take advantage of $10 dollar Hailo discount coupons towards a taxi ride home. Toronto Police Service Deputy Chief Mark Saunders, Molson Coors representative Carole Berry and Hailo Canada President Justin Raymond pose with a million dollar taxi cab prop during the announcement, in the photo at top.
The Hailo holiday safety initiative found strong support from both the police and Molson Coors as they promote responsible choices. Deputy Chief Saunders noted that over 2,153 impaired driving charges have been laid to date in 2012 and by planning ahead and taking advantage of the Hailo and Molson Coors offer, injuries and deaths can be reduced.

"At Hailo, we make it easy to get home from any holiday gathering - allowing anyone to hail and pay for a taxi with two taps on the screen of their smartphone," said Justin Raymond, President, Hailo Canada. "And now, we're making it easier on the wallet, too. We want to make it simple for people to choose the safe way home after a holiday celebration."

"Safe travel becomes much more important during the holidays. At Molson Coors, we're committed to helping consumers make responsible choices about having a good time," explained Carole Berry, Lead, Corporate Responsibility Programming for Molson Coors Canada. "We're proud to play our part by encouraging every Torontonian to plan a safe ride home with Hailo."

The offer ends January 9, 2013 and you can find a list of participating establishments on their facebook page here.

Hailo has quickly become indispensable for many since launching on September 26, 2012 and the growing company has over 600 participating drivers. With two simple taps on a smart phone you can arrange for a cab and follow its route on your phone as it approaches your location.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

#Toronto Argo Victory Parade

2012 Grey Cup Champions the Toronto Argonauts had a parade and a rally on Tuesday, November 27 along Bay Street and into Nathan Phillips Square. Argo Cheerleaders kept the crowd entertained as the parade ended at the north side of City Hall and the players made their way to centre stage. Individual players and coaches were introduced to the happy crowd as people waved free towels that were handed out at the celebration.
Some of the Argo Cheerleaders
Dog wrapped in Argo flag

See more of the celebration after the jump.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Visit Santa at Sears Eaton Centre

Santa's chair sits near the Yonge-Dundas entrance of the Sears in the #Toronto Eaton Centre. He makes a quick run in from the North Pole on weekends to meet with children and find out what presents they want for Christmas.

Fridays 11am-4pm, Saturdays 1pm-6pm and Sundays 1pm-5pm, 2012

#Toronto Argo Grey Cup Champion Parade

Tuesday November 27, 2012 beginning at Yonge and Wellington the home town winners of the 100th Grey Cup march through Toronto in a well deserved victory parade. Their Sunday win of 35-22 against the Calgary Stampeders in the Rogers Centre was cheered by a very vocal crowd and now we have a chance to cheer them on in the streets.
"The parade to celebrate the club’s 16th Grey Cup win, its first since 2004, will begin at Wellington St. & Yonge St. (west side) and travel west to Bay St. It will then turn north and proceed up Bay St. The parade will culminate on stage in Nathan Phillips Square where city officials will read a proclamation announcing November 27, 2012 to be Toronto Argonauts Day!"

Parade attendees will be the CFL Toronto Argonaut team including quaterback Ricky Ray, CFL most outstanding player Chad Owens, most valuable Canadian DE Ricky Foley, Head Coach Scott Milanovich along with the Argo Cheerleaders and the Argos' pep band the Argonotes. Leading the parade will be the ceremonial and bands from the Toronto Police, Fire, EMS and transit units.

Mayor Rob Ford appears at City Hall after removal judgement

Just hours after being removed from the office of Mayor of #Toronto, Rob Ford meets a packed media for the launch of the city’s 2012 Toy Drive. Ignoring hordes of journalists the embattled Mayor does not discuss the court case or the Monday, November 26, 2012 judgment as he made a speech and later handed out presents to children. Rob Ford was found guilty of conflict of interest.
The Mayor comes into the Toy Drive press conference
Before the Toy Drive the Mayor indicated that he would be fighting the conflict of interest charge and will look for a stay to continue as Mayor during the legal fight. The extreme and madatory sledgehammer  penalty requiring that members vacate their office slammed down on Rob Ford. While it might make many happy, is it really fair in this situation? 
Addressing the crowd and the media
The Mayor presented gifts to the small children

“Mayor Rob Ford and City Manager Joe Pennachetti along with a number of children acting as "honorary elves" kicked off the 2012 Mayor's Toy Drive today. Together, they accepted the first donations to the campaign and began to fill the Toronto City Hall donation box. "This is a great start to the toy drive," said Mayor Ford. "In 2011, we collected more than 1,500 toys, gifts and gift cards. I am hopeful that we can exceed that number this year and make this a festive and memorable Christmas for everyone in Toronto." "City staff have a long history of giving back to the community," noted Pennachetti. "I know that as we did last year, staff will once again embrace this initiative with enthusiasm."

Residents and City staff are encouraged to drop off new, unwrapped toys, gifts and gift cards to any of the following toy drive collection locations, during operating hours, until Friday, December 21:

• City Hall, 100 Queen St. W.
• Metro Hall, 55 John St.
• Etobicoke Civic Centre, 399 The West Mall
• North York Civic Centre, 5100 Yonge St.
• East York Civic Centre, 850 Coxwell Ave.
• Scarborough Civic Centre, 150 Borough Dr.
• York Civic Centre, 2700 Eglinton Ave. W.

The toys, gifts and gift cards collected will be distributed through established toy drive programs run by Global Toronto/Toronto Fire Fighters' Toy Drive and the CP24 CHUM Christmas Wish. Donations will help provide a festive Christmas for Toronto children and families who might not otherwise have one.

All toy and gift donations are appreciated. There is typically a shortage of gifts for infants and teenagers. Gift cards for grocery and department stores help to make the holidays enjoyable for families who need assistance.

Toronto is Canada's largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.7 million people. Toronto's government is dedicated to delivering
customer service excellence, creating a transparent and accountable government, reducing the size and cost of government and building a transportation city. For information on non-emergency City services and programs, Toronto residents, businesses and visitors can dial 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.”

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Watching 100th Grey Cup Live on TSN

Half time show just about to start for the Sunday, November 25th game at #Toronto Rogers Centre. The Argos are leading the Calgary Stampeders. Catch the free TSN live field access coverage at their website (these are all TSN screenshots). For audio check out TSN Radio Toronto with live audio coverage of the game. Argos win 35-22 as Ricky Ray wins his third Grey Cup Championship.
Argo Quarterback Ricky Ray #15
TSN screenshot of Justin Bieber's half-time show

Argos huddle

See more football after the jump.

#Toronto ComiCON Nov 2012

Here are some cosplay photos in honour of the latest edition of the Hobbystar ComiCON taking place at the Royal York Hotel from 11am-5pm on Sunday November 25, 2012.

GO Transit: Art Train

I finally found the ART TRAIN Conductor No. 9 car on my happy commute through Toronto and the GTA. Surprisingly only the ceiling  inside was covered in art, although the outside is wrapped as well. The covered car is in service for six months from June to December 2012 then back to the plain car afterwards.

It looks a bit like a freaky spaced invaders video game

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Remember the beach

Sun and sand make a great combination when you add in the cool, refreshing waters of Lake Ontario. These pictures were from the tail end of the season of the beach but it is all we have until summer returns to us.

Orange Box of Heck

This was a new box that appeared suddenly on the streets of #Toronto. Bright orange it screamed the number of the beast. I stopped because I imagined it was the number of the breast. See that number after the jump - if you dare!

Friday, November 23, 2012

Festival of Cheerleaders

Football fans from around Canada are making their way into Nathan Phillips Square at #Toronto City Hall as the 100th Grey Cup Festival builds up steam leading into the weekend Championship Game. The various CFL cheerleading teams are making their presence know with waving pom-poms and group cheer routines. Fans from all the teams are sporting jerseys and way out costumes as they lend their excitement to the pre-game festivities.

A free Calgary Pancake Breakfast is being prepared by Calgary supporters and the lineups to taste the flapjacks are long while on the main stage providing entertainment to the large crowd is the band “High Steppin’ Daddy”.

Doors Open

Scarborough Bluffs





Lake Ontario

Nathan Phillips Square