Sunday, May 27, 2018

Doors Open Toronto 2018

#DOT18 might be free but almost everything comes with a price, yours should you chose to accept it, is the time spent in lineup at some of the popular attractions. Still it is fun to check out a few places that you might not otherwise get to see. City Hall had several areas as part of the event such as the Interactive Lego Experience, Virtual Doors Open and Concept to Creation: An exhibition of Canadian costume art and design. The them for 2018 was Film: The Great Romance and the film and television attractions took centre stage.
Concept to Creation, costumes from The Strain
Waiting to get into Massey Hall
At the CityTV building

See more DOT after the jump.

Saturday, May 26, 2018

Anime North 2018

Over the May 25-27 weekend the Toronto Congress Centre and the Delta Hotel Airport will be anime central with a splash of manga, music, games and cosplay, cosplay, cosplay. The fan run Anime convention celebrates Japanese culture and features two costume competitions - the Friday Skit Competition and the Saturday Masquerade which focuses on costume craftsmanship.

Hours for the convention are Friday 5pm-1am, Saturday 10am-1am and Sunday 10am-5pm.

See more cosplay after the jump.

Friday, May 25, 2018

LIft & Co. Cannabis Expo Toronto 2018

 #liftcoexpo North America's largest consumer cannabis convention is at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre from May 25-27.  Over 250 International exhibitors and over 60 speakers doing stage talks are located in the north building. Industry Day is on Friday, May 25 and the Cannabis Expo opens to the public on Saturday and Sunday, May 26-27. Attendees of the Expo can fill up a passport with stamps from vendors for a chance to win a $1000 grand prize.
Canada's top vaporizer shop will operate a massive TVape Lounge showcasing the latest available vaping products by knowledgeable staff for those with medical cannabis patients. A Work Career Fair will help job seekers find the best training and experience for the cannabis industry as well as hold interviews and take resumes on-site. When they say it is a business you can't understand the size of the business. When legal weed hits Canada it is going to be huge.

Industry Day provides a chance to listen to experts discuss business trends and systems, partnerships, mergers and acquisitions with speakers like Jessica Billingsley, President and CEO of MJ Freeway, AC Braddock, CEO of Eden Labs, Andrew Wheatley, Jamaica's Minister of Science, Energy and Technology as well as other leading industry experts.

"Other highlights will include the Hub, a central installation by MedMen and Cronos Group, a cannabis demo area sponsored by MedReleaf, an artisan alley, surprise special guests, and so much more." The main stage will feature cannabis related talks and will include a panel of journalists discussing cannabis coverage in the media.

See more of Lift & Co. after the jump.

Toronto Pro SuperShow 2018 is coming

Health, fitness and muscles are coming to the Metro Toronto Convention Centre June 2nd and 3rd during the annual Toronto Pro SuperShow. With over 130 nutrition, sports, equipment and clothing vendors along with EXPO competitions and celebrity guests, the north hall exhibition space will be full of fans and sports enthusiasts. Entrance to Canada's largest health and fitness exposition is $20 a day with extra ticket costs for events in the John Bassett Theatre. Update: See photos from 2018's Pro Qualifier on my post here.
"The Toronto Pro SuperShow EXPO will be hosting Powerlifting, Weightlifting, Superkick'd Wrestling, Armwrestling, Crossfit, Model Searches, Pole Fitness Competition, Calisthenic Competition and IFBB Pro Bodybuilding, Fitness, Figure, Bikini and Physique Competitions." Many of the competitions and model searches can be seen on the EXPO stage throughout the weekend. The show hours are Saturday, June 2 from 9am to 6pm and Sunday, June 3 from 9am to 4pm.

Other paid events including meeting bodybuilding celebrities like Flex Lewis the current Mr. Olympia 212 Bodybuilding Champion, Cedric McMIllan the 2017 Arnold Classic Bodybuilding Winner, IFBB Pro Chris Bumstead, 2017 Classic Physique Olympia Runner-Up, IFBB Pro Melissa Bumstead, 2017 Olympia Figure Finalist and IFBB Pro Iain Valliere. You can also check out Jim Stoppani, PhD, bodybuilding authority.
Saturday IFBB events

IFBB Pro judging 9:15 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on the EXPO stage
Toronto IFBB Pro Qualifier Finals 9:00a.m. to 5:00 p.m. in the John Bassett Theatre
IFBB Pro Championship Finals 7:00 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. in the John Bassett Theatre

Sunday IFBB and Model Search events

IFBB Pro Championship Finals 9:15 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. on the EXPO stage
Fit Model Search 1:00p.m. to 3:30p.m. on the EXPO stage

List of events.

Health and Fitness EXPO
Toronto Pro SuperShow IFBB Championships
Toronto Pro SuperShow Seminar Series
Absolute Touch / Muscle Insider - Bikini & Fit Men Model Search
Toronto PRO Qualifier
Pole Fitness Competition
Superkick'd Pro Wrestling
Powerlifting Invitational
Toronto Weightlifting Cup
Arm Melter Tournament
Sweat Rx Crossfit Championships
Calisthenic Competition
Hyperforce Strongman Competition

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Cheltenham Badlands have been tamed

In May 2015 access to the Badlands on Olde Baseline Road was halted, fences erected and no trespassing signs installed. The site made famous by erosion was deemed too important for people and the undulating, iron-rich shale exposed through agricultural and livestock uses in the early 1900s.
The view along Olde Baseline Road
The view from above, the Badlands are larger than the edge along the road. It has an L shape

Heritage Trust Ontario, owners of the propterty say "The striking landscape of the Cheltenham Badlands is one of Ontario’s geological treasures and is one of the best examples of Badland topography in the province. Over the years, its distinctive landscape has been attracting increasing numbers of visitors, resulting in accelerated erosion of the sensitive red shale surface and permanently changing its unique appearance."
After consultation with the they have built a viewing platform at the top of the hill, looking down over part of the eroded site. Parking for the area has been moved from along the road to a new, gated parking lot immediately to the east of the Badlands. That's right, they paved over paradise to put in a parking lot! Opening of the site is supposed to be in the summer of 2018 - reports say in August, to be operated by Credit Valley Conservation.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Throwback to IndyCar driver Sebastien Bourdais

Qualifying 5th for the upcoming 2018 Indianapolis 500, french driver Sebastien Bourdais is having a great season start in open wheel racing. Ranked 3rd in the 2018 IndyCar driver standings, Sebastien has won in Toronto twice - once in 2014 at the Honda Indy Toronto driving the #11 car and once in 2004 driving a CHAMP car in the Grand Prix of Toronto.
Sebastien Bourdais wins the 2014 Honda Indy Toronto - centre podium

His #18 Verizon IndyCar car is the SealMaster, Dale Coyne Racing with Vasser-Sullivan and he took it to the top of the podium during the first race of 2018 at the Firestone Grand Prix of St Petersburg in early March. The outstanding racer has four Championships, 37 career wins, took the pole position 34 times and has been in the top-five finishes within the last 5 races.

Sebastien Bourdais #11 Hydroxycut car in 2014

We look forward to seeing Sebastien take to the track in Exhibition Place during the 32nd edition of the Honda Indy Toronto from July 13-15, 2018.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Following the Welland Canal

Ships bypass Niagara Falls, beautiful but slightly inconvenient for waterborne travel, through the 43km canal between Lake Erie and Lake Ontario. The current canal route, part of the St Lawrence Seaway, was built in 1932, replacing several different variations first built in 1824. The canal allows ships to travel between the Great Lakes and the Atlantic Ocean. Both cargo, passenger and smaller craft (must be over 6m) go through the waterway, facilitated by 8 locks between Port Weller and Port Colborne, in about 10 hours. The best places to see the canal and locks are at Lock 3 (museum and viewing platform), Lock 7 with another museum, viewing stand and bleachers and at the park at Lock 8 in Port Colborne.
Locks are approximately 25m wide, 25m deep and about 260m long. The longest lock is the regulating Lock 8 at Port Colborne, which at 420.6m long is the World's longest lock. Lock 8 only goes up or down by about 1m, otherwise the elevation change in other locks is about 14m, with a total canal elevation change between Erie and Ontario of 99.5 metres. 
Locks 4, 5 and 6, known as Flight Locks, are twinned locks that allow two way traffic at the same time and go over the Niagara Escarpment. Here is a shot of the northerly lock 4 with the left ship going to Erie and the right lock having a boat going to Lake Ontario.

There are three tunnels under the Welland Canal and a lot of lift and scissor bridges along the route that tend to open early upon the approach of a ship. They say that the average crew on each tanker is 22.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Free Concert with Death From Above

Aurora Cannabis presents, as part of the Illumination Summer Concert Series, a free rock concert featuring headliners Death From Above as well as special guests Casper Skulls and Teenanger. The concert is May 31, 2018 at the Phoenix Concert Theatre at 410 Sherbourne St in Toronto - doors open at 7:30pm. You can get a chance to win the free tickets by registering by May 24 and sign up for their email newsletter to get info on future concerts.
Jesse Keeler and Sebastien Grainger, photo provided

Jesse F Keeler and Sebastien Grainger of the Canadian rock band Death From Above formed in 2001, broke up in 2006, reunited in 2011 won a Juno Award for Rock Album of the Year in 2018. They return to their hometown as part of a summer-long series of free concerts across Canada.
"Illumination Concert Series presenter Aurora Cannabis Inc. is a world-renowned, integrated cannabis company with a reputation for continuously elevating and setting global cannabis industry standards. Through wholly-owned subsidiaries, strategic investments, and global partnerships, Aurora provides a wide range of premium quality cannabis and hemp products and services, develops innovative technologies, and promotes cannabis consumer health and wellness, delivering an exceptional customer experience across all its brands. Aurora’s operations span multiple continents and focus on both medical and recreational cannabis production and sales, patient education and clinic counselling services, home hydroponic cultivation, extraction technologies and delivery systems, and hemp-based food health products."

Abandoned Ontario Place

Rides only remaining in the memory of some and rides that remain partly in place, remnants of what was an adventure ride log flume around concrete silos. A bustling island park south of Exhibition Place, then the government closed it one day. Slowly the park has been reclaimed and brought back to life with some free festivals bringing people back into Ontario Place.

Still, it is fun to explore the abandoned amusement park and remember the times before and hope they leave some of it place for people to explore.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Verizon IndyCar races towards Toronto

Defending Champion Josef Newgarden now sits in first place in the 2018 standings, just 2 point ahead of Alexander Rossi, while Sebastien Bourdais is in third with 5 of the 17 races completed. The Honda Indy Toronto race weekend comes to our fair town July 13-15. in Exhibition Place.

Before the trailers start unpacking the semi-trailers in Exhibition Place there are a number of races that have to happen first, including the 102nd running of the Indianapolis 500 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on May 27. Qualifications take place Saturday and Sunday, May 19-20, then the drivers don't put the petal to the metal until the following Sunday.

Meanwhile back in Toronto May is giveaway month at the Honda Indy Toronto for extra incentive to purchase your tickets early. The street circuit barriers and fences through Exhibition Place and onto Lake Shore Boulevard West won't start taking shape until early June. The track build takes one month and finishes July 11, just days before the race is ready to go. Construction is spread out to minimize impact to Toronto's traffic.
In addition to the Verizon IndyCar headline race on Sunday, July 15 there are a number of other race series that will fill the Honda Indy RaceFest schedule - the Battery Tender Global MX-5 Cup presented by BFGoodrich Tires, the Ultra 94 Porsche GT3 Challenge Canada by Yokohama, the Mazda Road to Indy Presented by Cooper Tires and the NASCAR Pinty's Series which will feature Saturday's headline race; the Pinty's Grand Prix of Toronto.

As we get closer to the Honda Indy Toronto I will be looking at the track build, the schedule of events, the updated festival map and of course making sure I have some good ear plugs ready to go. And free entrance on Fan Friday is still a go this year so see you there!

Doors Open

Scarborough Bluffs





Lake Ontario

Nathan Phillips Square