Thursday, October 30, 2014

@HondaIndy #Toronto 2015 will be in June

Official confirmation of next year's IndyCar race in Toronto was announced today with the date moving from July to June 12-14, while remaining in Exhibition Place.
The upcoming Pan-Am Games interfere with a July race period and negotiations led to talk of cancelling the race, moving it to a new location or trying for an earlier race. As the Verizon IndyCar schedule was finalized the June race proposed for Houston fell through and Toronto snapped up the date.

“Today’s a good day to wave both the green and checkered flags,” said Charlie Johnstone, President of the Honda Indy Toronto. “Scheduling an event of this magnitude is complicated in a normal year. Toronto is a growing city with many moving parts, and the same can be said for professional auto racing. There are a lot of details and coordination that go into the teams, the schedules, the races and the various sites, especially with street courses. We’re celebrating today and getting ready for the road ahead.”
“We are delighted with today’s confirmation,” said Dave Gardner, Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Honda Canada. “Honda Indy Toronto is an important event on our annual calendar and it’s something that draws us together with customers, dealers, partners, associates and passionate race fans. That’s important to Honda Canada and now that the date is confirmed, we can start preparing for our role in the event.”
IndyCar driver Helio Castroneves drives a scooter on the way to the pits

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

GO Transit train delays in #Toronto

The afternoon rush hour commute almost got thrown into disarray as an investigation near Union Station delayed several trains which were scheduled to go to Milton, Kitchener and Barrie. Starting before 4 pm the delay lasted about two hours before regular service on the lines resumed.
Early morning GO train sits at a station on Wednesday, October 29 waiting to head to Union Station

Bam, it's winter in #Toronto

Okay, I jumped on the upcoming frigid season a little too early but the sun has been scarce the last couple of weeks. Time that can usually be spent watching Fall foliage has become time spent under an umbrella instead. The multi-coloured leaves are mostly on the ground now and Daylight Savings Time arrives Sunday November 2, 2014 when clocks go from 2 am to 1 am.
Framework for the lights going up on the arches
The Weather Network says that "Halloween Snowfall possible in Southern Ontario" and below freezing temperatures expected this weekend. Already this year I have seen frost on the grass several times.
Fireworks at the Cavalcade

Meanwhile at City Hall the reflecting pool under the arches has been emptied and Christmas lights are being installed by municipal workers in anticipation of the Cavalcade of Lights. The Xmas festival is scheduled for Saturday, November 29 and will feature over half a million lights, fireworks and a giant Christmas Tree.
Some lights from previous years

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Snowmobiles and ATVs

Sleds and quads raced around the outdoor track at the 2014 #Toronto International Snowmobile, ATV and Powersports Show. The free parking at the International Centre was a great bonus as it sped up the process to get into and enjoy the enormous show. By the time noon Saturday rolled around the place was jammed with visitors enjoying the 15 manufacturer displays and the many other purchasing opportunities. Some of the top brands included Artic Cat, Ski-Doo, Polaris, Honda and Kawasaki.
Jet propelled pickup, now that's a powersport
The weekend's 27th annual show takes place October 24-26, 2014 in Hall One and Hall Two of the Convention Centre located at Derry Road and Airport Road. Saturday hours are 10am to 7pm and Sunday hours are 10am to 5pm. The outside track was made of hay and the machines tore up the route with their powerfull bursts of speeds in several classes of races and vehicles. Then the Niagara ATV club took a spin through a mud pit and came out slightly worse for wear.
The noon time extreme show jumping had to be cancelled on Saturday due to the high winds which made the high flying leaps a little too unsafe. The freestyle event featured crazy tricks and daring jumps and was sponsored by Ultimax Belts. Used and new part markets along with accessories and winter wear were available for purchase and you could check out tourist destinations for the off road adventurists among the long lines of vendors.
AMS Oil models

The show reminds us to 'Enjoy Winter in Ontario' and with the tourist destinations promoting the cold season and the winter toys for big boys and girls, you can soon be enjoying the 30,000 km of maintained trails in our province. Prime Minister, the Rt. Hon. Stephen Harper, P.C., M.P. letter to the show noted that "Canada is filled with scenery that inspires and leaves us breathless. From coast to coast to coast, our wilderness is a treasure to behold, but much of it can only be visited by getting off the roads and onto the trails. It is no wonder that Canadians and visitors to our country value snowmobiles and ATVs for their ability to help us escape into these wondrous landscapes." In support of winter sports the Canadian government will pump $10 million into snowmobile trails through provincial snowmobile organizations.

The outside extreme sports area featured two separate ramps that were used for some freestyle jump demonstrations by Sam Rogers, Fred 'Fuzzy' Rasmussen and Charles Bush.

More snowmobiles and ATVs after the jump.

#Toronto Zombies walk again

The undead torment #Toronto as the Halloween Parade and @TOZombieWalk ghouls fill Nathan Phillips Square on Saturday, October 25, 2014. The gathering started around noon as shuffling groups of zombies begin to smell brains at City Hall and photographers began to smell photo opportunities.
Vender booths and sponsors are helping to keep the walk of the undead alive as financial issues almost benched this years march. This Zombie Walk is in support of the Canadian Wildlife Federation's Save the Bats campaign Heart and Stroke Foundation and celebrates the 12th annual spooky event which started as a tiny walk of seven people in 2003 and now has grown to thousands. The Halloween Parade and Zombie Walk is scheduled to leave City Hall at 3pm.

See more of the horror after the jump.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Be careful of Pigeons in Trinity Square

A courtyard square beside the #Toronto Eaton Centre and the Church of the Holy Trinity is bounded by a double row of trees enclosing a paving stone labyrinth. Triple arches lead into the circular pathway that promises to bring about a peaceful meditation during the journey in its single pathway.
The area is full of pigeons and often I see piles of food left out for the pigeons. When they consume copious quantities of bread crumbs they like to fly around the trees and carpet bomb the area in bird poo. The one bike has been in the same spot too long and not much of the surface is free of excretions.
Leaving your bike locked up at a rack along the edge of the trees leaves the pedal powered vehicle in perfect territory for some collateral damage of the waste type.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

The Lending Journey Pedal Against Poverty

The Bike Tree features a number of donated bicycles hanging from a large Willow Tree in Halton Hills. I hope they are not like Fall leaves, waiting to drop down as the days get shorter! The two-wheeled installation is helping to promote the Nov 9, 2014 500 km uphill bike race along the Pan American Highway through Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Honduras.
Their mobile fund raising campaign is to battle global poverty and to raise money to provide loans to a 1,000 or more people in South America.

"We offer loans to women in need in impoverished countries to start up, expand, or continue a business. The Lending Journey was created to help people in the global south improve their social and economic conditions. Most of the women we find ourselves dealing with are poor and often have very little education. They are very enterprising and, given the opportunity, are prepared to work hard to create small businesses. Currently, our primary focus is with small town in Ecuador and Nicaragua."

Posted by Ann Hamilton.

#Toronto Snowmobile & ATV Show this weekend

The World's largest Snowmobile and ATV Show comes just before the snow flies this year, darn it's getting cold, at the Toronto International Centre. Joining the sleds and ATVs will also be assorted Powersports for the October 24-26 event in the over 500,000 square foot facility. Actually the fun can't be contained in the massive building - it also spills outside for some extreme sports action.

"If you’re in to snowmobiles, ATVS and an all around Powersports enthusiast, this is the show for you! As soon as you step foot on the show floor, you’ll be blown away with the incredible roster of exhibitors and the feature events taking place around the show, not to mention the enormous Outdoors Event Area with Live racing and Freestyle Shows. You’ll find huge Manufacturer Displays showcasing all of the 2014 sled and ATV line-ups. With more corporate manufacturer displays at this snowmobile and ATV Show than any other across North America, you’ll be sure to see: Arctic Cat, Can-Am, Dodge, Honda, John Deere, Kawasaki, Phantom, Polaris, Ski-Doo, ODES UTV, CFMoto and Yamaha. All of these machines under one roof, over one weekend, you can’t miss it! We guarantee it will be worth the drive to get here."

Clouds over City Hall

Fall has been bringing plenty of clouds and when you get some sun it is time to celebrate. Recently on my walk into work there were some incredible clouds in the sky over Toronto.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

#Toronto Zombie Walk 2014 this weekend

The famous annual painful shuffle of grey and ghoulish zombies starts at City Hall on Saturday, October 25. The undead will meet at noon and head out on the Zombie Walk and Halloween Parade at 3 pm.
"The plague returned every year, and the zombie count grew into a large and deadicated legion of the undead. Not only did the plague hit Toronto, it hit New York, Vancouver, Ottawa, Melbourne and numerous other cities around the world. In 2006 The Toronto Zombie Walk joined forces with the Toronto After Dark Film Festival, to ensure zombies have an enjoyable evening of flicks to see after their flesh eating endeavors. 2012 marked our ten year anniversary and we hoarded in over 10,000 people!"

Wigs for sale

Neon posters and stickers are up around Union Station in #Toronto. From far away they look like ads for cheap wigs, instead it looks like negative advertising regarding the upcoming election.

'Some Goons Shattered Lies' for only $9.99

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Little kittens at the Animal Shelter

Not surprisingly, several cats greeted us as we walked into the cat room at the Brampton Animal Shelter. Some of the furry guys were a little standoffish but otherwise most were glad to see us, then, yes, only then by goodness, we were told of a special room. A room so secret that few would guess about its contents or of its very existence. Who would believe that the shelter has a kitten room?
Kittens so adorable, so tiny and so, so furry all gathered together into a single room of unbearable cuteness. All ready for some loving and purring.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Web slinging superhero

#Toronto Spiderman hangs out at Yonge-Dundas, meeting fans and posing for pictures. Street buskers keep the area fun for tourists and regular visitors as well as fighting crime and those weird bad guys like Doctor Octopus and the Green Goblin.
This could be the famous Mary Jane Watson, Spidey's girlfriend

Doors Open

Scarborough Bluffs





Lake Ontario

Nathan Phillips Square