Friday, November 29, 2013

It's a Cavalcade weekend

Update: See photos of the fantastic fireworks from the 2013 Cavalcade of Lights on my post here.

Fireworks and concerts at Nathan Phillips Square will cap a busy Saturday in Toronto that will include festivities at the Distillery District and in Berczy and St James Park.
You can start the day off with a visit to Lowe's Toronto Christmas Market in the Historic Distillery District which kicks off on November 29 and continues on weekends until December 15, 2013. The market opens at 10 am to 9 pm on Saturday and Sunday and will feature carols, concerts and Santa Claus.
Fans of NFL football can head to Yonge-Dundas Square on Saturday (noon to 5 pm) and Sunday (11 am to 4 pm) for a festival. "featuring live music, football-themed games, sponsor tents, giveaways and speacial appearances by Buffalo Bills alumni and the Buffalo Jills. Also, in support of the of NFL's Play 60 movement, and as part of Sports Day in Canada ParticipACTION will take part in an afternoon of football drills and skills led by experienced instructors." Sunday December 1 will also have the NFL game at 4 pm between the Buffalo Bills and the Atlanta Falcons at Rogers Centre with a licensed pre-game street festival on Front Street. The party starts at 11 am and finishes an hour before the game.

After Lowe's and some football drills you can join the Old Town Cavalcade of Lights starting at 5:30 pm in Berczy Park and later at 6:45 pm in St James Park. "Old Town Toronto lights up the holiday season with our annual Cavalcade of Lights celebration in Berczy Park (Front and Scott Street) and St. James Park (King and Jarvis) on Saturday, November 30th at 5:30 p.m. and 6:15 p.m. This FREE magical event features seasonal lights, Victorian Carolers and 1812 re-enactors, hot chocolate and hot apple cider. It's guaranteed to get you into the holiday spirit!"
The Cavalcade of Lights at Toronto City Hall starts at 7 pm on Saturday, November 30, 2013 and "will mark the official start to the holiday season in Toronto with the celebration of the 47th annual Cavalcade of Lights presented by Great Gulf. Featuring the illumination of Toronto’s official Christmas tree, performances by some of Canada’s top musical talent, a brilliant fireworks show and a skating party at Nathan Phillips Square, the festive event is a holiday tradition in Toronto.
The evening will begin at 7 p.m. with performances by pop favouriteTyler Shaw, rising star Cold Specks, award winning R&B and soul singer Divine Brown and Grammy Award winner Carvin Winans. The first lighting of the official Christmas tree sponsored by Great Gulf and a breathtaking fireworks display follow at 8 p.m.

The celebration continues at 8:15 p.m. with a live concert sponsored by Keurig® featuring electro-pop artist Diamond Ringsfollowed by an open-air skating party with DJ Dopey under the glow of thousands of lights in Nathan Phillips Square.The Nathan Phillips Square ice rink will be open for skating (weather permitting) during Cavalcade of Lights and skate rentals are available on site."

Thursday, November 28, 2013

My favourite pictures of #Toronto

See more of my pics of people, places and things of the great city of Toronto

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Black Friday Travel and Sales

The American Thanksgiving holiday is on a Thursday, and the Friday after the holiday has become known as Black Friday which is the start of holiday shopping. The day of slashed prices and outrageous door crashing sales have fueled a buying frenzy which has resulted in a number of tragic accidents and deaths from over excited shoppers. In 2014, Black Friday is November 29th and the day has spread like wildfire into Canada. For people who don't like crowds you can do much of your shopping online, in fact a new day has been named Cyber Monday which is the Monday right after the Thanksgiving holiday weekend.
Black Friday in Canada. Friday, November 29, 2014 at the Toronto Eaton Centre

Air travel peaks in the US on the Wednesday before the holiday and is the busiest period of the year through till the Sunday. Now we can get into some of that action ourselves by taking advantage of's Black Friday Week vacation promotions.

Book a trip to one of many destinations between November 25th and December 2nd and save up to 50% off of your hotel stay on select 3 and 4-star hotels · Deadline for travel is March 31st.

Sample Vacation: Beautiful Costa Rica

· Journey to Costa Rica and stay at the 4-star Radisson San Jose – Costa Rica resort, situated in the heart of the city's historic district, for only $793 per person for one week.
· Guests can enjoy visiting the Museo Nacional, stroll through the gorgeous Parque Nacional or head to Volcan Arenal to see one of the top 10 most-active volcanoes in the world.
· Travellers also will enjoy the comfortable (and affordable) luxury even more thinking about their shivering friends and colleagues back home.

Okay, I am ready to go.

Fun things to do in #Toronto in Jan and Feb 2014

Last year I was thinking that we might not survive the Mayan end of the world prophesies but we did survive and had a lot of fun in our fair metropolitan city and a fresh new year awaits us.
Beginning the year off right we can freeze our buns off in frigid Lake Ontario during the Polar Bear swims. Afterwards plan events in the first two months of the year that will keep you warm because the weather is cold in Ontario - don't get cabin fever!

Fans of motorcycles can find 2014 Toronto events on my post here and further afield you can enjoy the Friday 13th Port Dover rally in June 2014.
Polar Bear Dip Wed, Jan 1.
Toronto Rock Lacrosse starts in January.
North American International Motorcycle Supershow Fri to Sun, Jan 3-5.
Canada's Bridal Show Winter 2014 Fri to Sun, Jan 3-5.
Toronto International Boat Show Sat to Sun, Jan 11-19.
Toronto No Pants Subway Ride Sat, Jan 12. Downsview Station starting at 4 pm.
Monster Jam Sat to Sun, Jan 18-19.
Interior Design Show IDS 13 Thurs to Sun, Jan 23-26.
Toronto Roller Derby League Sat Jan 25 Season Opener.
Toronto's Ultimate Travel Show Sat to Sun, Jan 25-26.
CIBC Lunar Fest at Harbourfront Sat to Sun, Jan 25-26.
Canadian Toy and Hobby Fair Sun to Tue, Jan 26-28.
Winterlicious Jan 31 to Feb 13.

Toronto Coldest Day of the Year Ride Sat, Feb 1.
Harbourfront Centre Kuumba Feb TBD.
Hey, it's Groundhog Day on Sun, Feb 2.
Downsview Park Winterfest Sat Feb ? from 11am to 4pm.
Chinatown BIA Chinese New Year Celebration (Spadina and Dundas) Sat to Sun, Feb 1-2.
Another Polar Bear Dip at Colonel Sam Smith Park Sun, Feb 2 from 10:30am to 12pm.
Toronto Sportsmen's Show Thurs to Sun, Feb 6-9.
Canadian Motorsports Expo (CME) Fri to Sun, Feb 7-9. Great winter show for race fans. "The Canadian Motorsports Expo Powered by Inside Track Motorsport News is a three-day celebration of Canadian racing that runs February at the International Centre (6900 Airport Road in Mississauga, Ontario (Canada)). In addition to booths and racing vehicles representing the entire spectrum of Canadian motorsports, the show is loaded with seminars and forums to entertain and inform racers and fans alike. Celebrity drivers will be at the CME to sign autographs and meet the fans. See photos from the show here.
Happy Valentine's Day Fri, Feb 14. Hugs and kisses everyone. I think it is also National Visible Thong Day.

Winterfolk Festival Fri to Sun, Feb 14-16.
Spring Fish and Boat Show Fri to Mon, Feb 14-17.
Canadian International AutoShow Fri to Sun, Feb 14-23.
Sears Great Canadian Chill Mon Feb 17 2014
Outdoor Adventure Show Fri to Sun, Feb 21-23.
Maybe we will see more got ass girls at the Motorcycle Show

Motorcycle Show Toronto Fri to Sun, Feb 21-23.
Annual Bike Couriers Ice Race at Dufferin Grove Park Sat, Feb 22, from 7-10pm.
Bloor-Yorkville Icefest Festival Sat to Sun, Feb 22-23.
Toronto International Bicycle Show Fri to Sun, Feb 28 - Mar 2.
Sexapalooza Fri to Sun, Feb 28 to Mar 2.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Ronald McDonald in the house

A new McDonald's Restaurant opened on Yonge Street and I had to drop in because I saw that Ronald McDonald was making an appearance.
I followed the red carpet and clown footprints to find the star

Breaking Bad RV in #Toronto

Fitted out as the fictional meth lab from the AMC production @BreakingBadRV recreational vehicle is in town for two weeks to promote the release of the final season on Blu-ray and DVD. Walter White and Jesse Pinkman couldn't make the drive north so visitors could take the chance to walk through the mobile chemistry lab dressed in hazmat suits and wearing gas masks.
All Bad things must come to an end
Chemical or body barrels - I couldn't tell 
Visitors waited in line to go into the RV dressed in 

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Wild kittens in the GTA

Cute little kitty Doug says goodbye just before we take the wild kitten and his Mom Martha to the a helpful Humane Society. Toronto has approximately 100,000 wild cats and it is difficult to find a way to deal with the cute critters. One of the most beneficial options is to catch, spay and neuter the animals and return them to live out their lives in their home surroundings, thus reducing the continuous cycle of new kittens and hungry cats. Toronto Street Cats also helps with feral felines.
It is shocking to realize that each female cat can have two to three litters each year and each litter having around 4 kittens. One female and her descendants can reproduce on the order of 400,000 cats in only 7 years. Both domestic and feral cats will help to keep the rodent population down but will also seek to eat songbirds and other flying species and wild cats are probably hungrier and more motivated to treat nature like an all you can eat buffet. Cats will also poop a lot and they like to use your garden as kitty litter.

Friday, November 22, 2013

La Tour CN Tower

It is hard to imagine the #Toronto skyline without the CN Tower, it stands out like a … big tower thingy in almost all photos of the city. Opened in 1976 the 553.33 metre structure will soon be 40 years old (in 2016) and still attracts approximately 1.5 million visitors a year. 
Taking advantage of the smaller crowds at night we checked out the lookout and glass floor levels for several minutes before the fog completely shut down visibility. We got to see up close some of the 1,330 LED fixtures that put on an impressive light show and that add some much needed colour to the city. 
Great views of the city from the observation deck
Outdoor Sky Terrace bathed in red light

Some other features of the tower include the following. 

Edgewalk at 356 metres above the ground – billed as the highest external walk on a building, opened in 2011. 
360 Restaurant (revolves) 
Horizons Restaurant 
Motion Theatre Ride 
Movie Theatre 
Café and gift shop

See more of the space needle after the jump.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Tiny little tug

A small, rectangular tug boat was tied up at the Queens Quay Terminal in Toronto's inner harbour. The company was Galcon Marine Ltd and the boat was the David G and it was well suited for pushing barges around. Plus it was cute.

The sharp angled tug is quite different than the traditional looking tugboat shown here

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

@HarbourfrontTO Natrel Rink

Winter's cold can be tamed with a refreshing skate around an outdoor rink in #Toronto -  and there are plenty to choose from. Down by the lake is the Natrel Rink which started making ice in early November and opened November 16. Warm weekend weather melted a lot of the ice but you could still see the lines where skates have passed by. The City is still working on the rink at City Hall, usually it is finished just ahead of the Cavalcade of Lights which is scheduled for Saturday, November 30, 2013.
"Tucked away behind York Quay Centre and set against the beautiful shore of Lake Ontario, the city's most scenic rink awaits. The Natrel® Rink has been an unparalleled skating destination in Toronto for 30 years. It has a heated indoor change room with lockers and washrooms. Hot food and drinks are available at our rink-side restaurant, Lakeside Local Bar & Grill. Best of all – skating is FREE!"

See the City's media release about outdoor rinks after the jump.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Christmas Trees at Commerce Court

Dusk brings the amazing art installation Christmas Trees to life around the #Toronto @MyTOFD Commerce Court buildings at Bay and King Street.
When I first saw the trees I thought they were just regular trees that were brought in and strung up with strings and strings of white lights, but up close you can see that this tree is probably made of aluminum and many of the lights sparkle in the night.
There are two trees in the central courtyard. They share the space with the elephant family sculpture called Tembo by Derrick Stehpan Hudson.

One tree sits on the King and Bay Street Entrance
One tree guards the walkway into the inner courtyard - it makes sure no other tree will pass

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Day of protests

Protesters were busier than Santa Claus yesterday as a few gatherings were held in #Toronto - besides the usual Rob Ford protests there were also several environmental protests and a protest against main stream media.
Supporting the environment were calls of action against pipelines - especially line 9, GE's uranium in town, climate change and fracking. I liked the variety of subjects and the beginning of change always starts with knowledge and information.
Climate Change Denial eh?

Doors Open

Scarborough Bluffs





Lake Ontario

Nathan Phillips Square