Program Lineup Announced for The Big Draw Festival

Posted on September 20, 2019

The Big Draw Festival at Toronto’s History Museums announced its program lineup for Saturday, September 28 and Sunday, September 29. The weekend celebration of drawing, mark-making and artistic inspiration features more than 50 free art projects and workshops over two days across 10 city-wide historic sites.

All activities, unless otherwise noted, will take place Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The public are encouraged to bring their own art supplies, however, each museum will have an “all-you-can-art” supply buffet with free materials to support all activities. With both outdoor and indoor activities offered, the event will keep participants drawing all weekend long, rain or shine. The weekend will also be an opportunity to explore all 10 Toronto History Museums’ interiors, courtyards and gardens to learn more about Toronto’s many stories.

 Participants can put their personal touch on a collective work of art inspired by the neighbourhoods around the Toronto History Museums as part of many community mural art projects taking place during The Big Draw weekend.

Program highlights

  • Colborne Lodge will present hourly botanical artistry workshops called Still Life in Gardens with artist Katherine S. Brown on Saturday and a cyanotype workshop on Sunday with artist Marjan Verstappen.
  • Fort York National Historic Site will feature Shadow Story Boxes led by Red Pepper Spectacle Arts, which includes making a miniature shadow-puppet story box, and an introductory drawing class with Sam Horne in basic drawing techniques.
  • Gibson House will present a “Take It Outside” art and storytelling zone: produced by spoken word artist and storyteller Patrick de Belen. Activities include ‘zine and chapbook making with BAM!Toronto Youth Poetry Slam, a writing and sharing circle with poet Thunderclaw Robinson, graffiti mural painting with artist Rowell Solar and a selfie photo-booth with UG Productions.
  • Mackenzie House will print-making using the 1845 printing press and a Creative Works studio workshop in still life drawing, while also giving visitors an opportunity to learn about the healing power of artistic expression.
  • Market Gallery will feature mural making with StreetARToronto and AKIN Collective, and visitors on Sunday will be guided by one of the City’s artist ambassadors and use the City of Toronto’s Fine Art Collection as inspiration.
  • Montgomery’s Inn will feature the creation of a stained-glass nature mural with Arts Etobicoke and artist Sladana Zivkovic, and a “historic” graffiti wall where participants can leave their mark. 
  • Scarborough Museum will offer the community an opportunity to learn the basics of cross-stitching and leather-stamping techniques, and will unveil “Equal Night: All is in Balance,” the second outdoor painting in a series by Indigenous artist Catherine Tammaro.
  • Spadina Museum will present botanical art taking inspiration from Spadina’s gardens and blind-contour drawing, where participants learn to sketch the outline of a subject without looking at the paper. 
  • Todmorden Mills will feature woodland-style art workshops with Anishinaabe artist Mike Ormsby on Saturday and hand-drawn animation techniques with artist Cristal Buemi on Sunday. 
  • Zion Schoolhouse will feature VIBE artists helping visitors develop graffiti skills and also learn chalk-art techniques.

Full program details are available at

Secondhand Sunday Returns September 29!

Posted on September 18, 2019

Sunday, September 29, 2019 is your chance to share any unwanted, reusable household items with your community. Simply leave them on your property next to the sidewalk for your neighbours to take for free. Then, do the same! That thing your neighbour no longer wants could be exactly what you need.

Participating is easy:

  1. Leave your reusable items on your property next to the sidewalk or curb on Sunday, September 29. Please, no hazardous, illegal or non-reusable items.
  2. Leave a “free” sign beside the items you are giving away.
  3. Always keep sidewalks and fire hydrants clear and obey the local traffic laws at all times.
  4. Join in by hunting for treasure in your neighbourhood. Share your Secondhand Sunday “before and after” photos online by tagging #SecondHandSundayTO or emailing
  5. At 5 p.m., take back any remaining items or drop them off at a second-hand shop or charity. Search for locations near you.

Secondhand Sunday is an event supported by the City of Toronto. For more information visit

High Park North – Yard Sale – September 28

Posted on September 12, 2019

High Park Community Alliance is having a fundraising Yard Sale on September 28, 2019 from 9:30 am – 3:00 pm at 66 Oakmount Road.

Donations are accepted and donors can bring the items to 66 Oakmount Road on September 27th after 6pm. Further details in the flyer below.


Annual 14 Division Open House – September 14

Posted on September 12, 2019

The Community Police Liaison Committee will be hosting their annual Open House on Saturday, September 14th, 2019 from 11am – 2pm at the 350 Dovercourt Rd. Meet your neighbourhood police officers.

Refreshments will be provided and food donation for Parkdale Community Food bank will be accepted.

Join the High Park Stewards for Seed Collecting – September 22

Posted on September 12, 2019

Join High Park Stewards on Sunday, Sept. 22 from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm.

Meet in front of the Grenadier Restaurant. They will be collecting a variety of native plant seeds in The Tablelands to be used in next year’s plantings. Work on the Boulevard Beds will continue. Please do not wear fleece or other non-smooth clothes as seeds stick to them. Bring water, a hat and sun-screen.

An Opportunity to Build Environmental Leadership in Parkdale-High Park – October 2nd, 2019

Posted on September 9, 2019

Green 13, Green Parkdale-Roncesvalles, and Safe Rail Communities have arranged for the Parkdale-High Park All-Candidates Debate on the Environment and climate to take place the evening of Wednesday, October 2nd7:30 pm, at Humbercrest United Church, 16 Baby Point Road. This is one of the more than 100 Debates on the Environment ( set to take place across Canada the first week of October, ahead of the federal election.

Join in locally on October 2ndPlease register/RSVP at

High Park Stewards invite you to Fall Planting – September 8, 2019

Posted on September 3, 2019

High Park Stewards invite you to their annual fall planting! Happening September 8 from 10:30 am – 12:30 pm. Meet up in front of the Grenadier Restaurant. A variety of native plants that thrive in the Black Oak Savannah will be planted. There will also be work done in the The Boulevard Beds in front of the Grenadier Restaurant. Tools are provided. Please bring water, a hat, and cover your arms and legs. Please wear socks and closed shoes as well.

Grandparents Day at High Park Zoo – September 8, 2019

Posted on August 29, 2019

Some of our animals are grandparents! Come visit them with your families on Sunday, September 8 from 10:00 am – 2:00 pm and play the Lucky Llama Dip. Every $2.00 ticket will win a prize! All proceeds will go to support our Master Plan for capital improvements at the Zoo.

Register for the event here .

High Park Zoo

High Park Stewards Late Summer Native Plant Sale

Posted on August 16, 2019

Sunday, August 25th, 11:00 am to 2:00 pm

In front of the Greenhouse (off Centre Road SE from the Grenadier Restaurant)

Thousands of plants and over 80 species available!

CASH ONLY. No parking. Large orders after 1:00 from the remaining stock. The sale is in front of the greenhouse.,

More Plant Sale info

Temporary Adjustments to Traffic and Parking Regulations for 2019 CNE – Jersey Barriers will be installed during this year’s CNE

Posted on August 15, 2019


Every year, temporary traffic and parking amendments are required to improve traffic operations and pedestrian safety during the annual Canadian National Exhibition (CNE), which takes place from August 16 to September 2, 2019. These changes were introduced at Toronto and East York Community Council (TEYCC) in June.

Some of these temporary changes include:

‘No Standing’ signage on:
• Thorburn, north side, between Tyndall and Dufferin;
• Temple, north side, between Tyndall and Dufferin; and
• Tyndall, both sides, between Springhurst and Thorburn.

’24 hour Permit Parking’ signage on:
• Springhurst between Jameson and Dufferin, north side.

The complete list of yearly changes that will be introduced at TEYCC is available online:

In addition, traffic and safety concerns raised by South Parkdale Residents were shared with Exhibition Place.
In response, Exhibition Place and CNE have agreed to keep the southbound lane of Dufferin Street and British Columbia Road open during the week and completely closed on weekends for this year.

Jersey barriers will be installed along Dufferin Street and British Columbia Road to allow southbound traffic during the week.

Weekdays (with the exception of Labour Day)
• Northbound and Southbound Lanes open from 12AM-9:30AM
• Only Southbound open from 9:30AM, Northbound Closed

• Both Northbound and Southbound lanes are closed
Labour Day Monday
• Both Northbound and Southbound lanes closed(both lanes to reopen at 12AM Tuesday September 3rd)

Temporary Parking Permits
Community members raised concerns with the number of Temporary Parking Permits issued on local South Parkdale streets during the CNE. In response to this, Permit Parking Staff temporarily restrict the issuance of Visitor Parking Permits to the residential addresses located in the area bounded by Dufferin St, King St W, Jameson Ave and the lake for the entirety of the CNE. During this period, temporary parking permits will be issued — with proof of residency and guest’s licence plate number — at the City Hall counter, 100 Queen Street West. Online applications will not be permitted.

Further, the following actions will take place again this year:
• CNE to communicate in the ‘CNE Guide Book’ and in media releases that “Paid Parking on residential properties in South Parkdale is no longer permitted during The Ex” with information on parking lots and bike rack locations;

• City Transportation to sign the boundary of the South Parkdale area (Dufferin/King, Jameson/King intersection) to communicate message to deter drivers from entering the area to look for paid parking on these residential streets, and instead direct them to parking lots with directions to parking lots;

• City Transportation to post signs on Liberty at Dufferin, as well as at the entrance of Springhurst (at Dufferin) and Temple (at Dufferin) advising that only permit parking holders can park on residential streets in south Parkdale during the CNE;

• Toronto Police, Parking Enforcement, and City Bylaw enforcement staff have been asked to monitor South Parkdale for infractions during the CNE;

• Toronto Police and Parking Enforcement have been asked to, when appropriate, use foot and bike patrols in South Parkdale during the CNE to lessen the number of vehicles in the area;

• Toronto Police have been reminded of ongoing safety concerns during the CNE when the one way at Springhurst, from Dufferin to Tyndall, is not respected;

• CNE working with Traffic Management Centre to monitor traffic and manage traffic flows and monitor traffic lights.

Transportation Staff worked towards more and better signage with CNE, Ex Place and Police in and around Parkdale.
Please feel free to contact my office at any time if you have questions or comments about this or any other Ward 4 or city-related matter.

Gord Perks


September 2019
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