You’re Invited: Canadian Events Sept.28 – Dec.10, 2013 + Ontario & Toronto News + TTC Alerts

Here are some great events in Ontario, Canada.

  • Most events are FREE.

This video presents “Fall Colours Algonquin Park Sept 25, 2011.”

Ontario Parks: Spectacular Colours of Fall

  • Ontario’s provincial parks offer great opportunities for families and friends to see and enjoy beautiful fall colours; and it’s especially better when “there’s a nip in the air and an added bonus of no bugs!”
  • The Ontario Parks Fall Colour Report shows you when colours are at their peak in provincial parks across Ontario.
  • Here are the best viewing spots to check out.

  • Did you know?
    • In 2012, Ontario’s provincial parks received more than nine million visits and brought in $69 million in revenue, which supported jobs and businesses all across the province.
    • Ontario Parks employs more than 1,600 students each summer.
    • There are more than 330 provincial parks in Ontario, with more than 100 featuring visitor facilities.
    • Many Ontario parks provide barrier-free facilities.
  • Also, Provincial Parks are a “birdwatcher’s delight!”
    • Come and see what you can spot now or plan a trip to experience the annual migration in full swing.
    • Bring your field guide and binoculars to the following provincial parks for prime viewing spots and rare sightings.
      • Long Point sits on a 40-kilometre sand spit that extends into Lake Erie. Located southwest of Port Dover, it is a world-renowned refuge and stopover for migrating birds in fall and spring.
      • Presqu’ile, south of Brighton, is a major flyway for migrating birds, home to waterfowl and shorebirds, and a staging point for Mexico-bound monarchs.
      • Rondeau’s observation tower overlooks a marshland where herons, bitterns and rails nest. More than 80 per cent of Ontario’s bird species have been observed at this Chatham-area park.
      • Port Burwell, southeast of St. Thomas, is one of the best places to witness the fall migration of hawks, monarchs, blue jays and dragonflies.
      • MacGregor Point stretches along seven kilometres of Lake Huron coastline. Home to the annual spring Huron Fringe Birding Festival, this park south of Port Elgin is open year-round.
      • Lake Superior provides good bird watching opportunities because of the diversity of habitats in the park. The transition between the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence and boreal forests supports a mix of northern and southern species.
    • Birdwatchers can pursue their hobby by day or camp overnight.
      • Campsites can be reserved online 24 hours a day or by calling the park reservation line at 1-888-ONT-PARK between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m. daily.
    • Volunteer for bird count studies.
    • Find out what birds are on the Province’s Species at Risk list.

Arts Etobicoke in Partnership with Montgomery’s Inn


Montgomery’s Inn Youth Art Exhibition: The Food Project

FREE Admission

Continues to October 19

Arts Etobicoke
4893A Dundas Street West (West of Islington and Dundas and only a 5 minute walk from Islington Subway Station.), Toronto

  • The Food Project is a youth art exhibition inspired by nature, gardening and urban agriculture.
  • The featured works were created by participants of The Food Project, a program at Montgomery’s Inn that uses urban agriculture to help local youth hone their life and leadership skills.
  • Please click here for more info.

City of Toronto International Student Festival at David Pecaut Square

FREE Admission

September 28

1 to 6 p.m., Remarks at 1:45 p.m.

David Pecaut Square, 55 John St., Toronto

  • Councillor Chin Lee (Ward 41 Scarborough-Rouge River) will help the City of Toronto launch the second annual International Students Festival.
    • Toronto is Canada’s largest centre for international students with more than 30,000 enrolled in post-secondary institutions around Toronto.
    • The festival celebrates and recognizes the contribution of international students to the economic and cultural development of Toronto.
  • This FREE event will feature food, entertainment, information booths and excellence awards.

City of Toronto to Launch Steve Nash Youth Basketball Program

 FREE Admission

September 28

10 a.m. to noon, Remarks at 10:15 a.m.

L’Amoreaux Community Recreation Centre
2000 McNicoll Ave., Toronto

  • City of Toronto representatives will join community youth to kick off a nine-week local pilot of the national Steve Nash Youth Basketball program in Toronto.
    • Other VIPs attending the launch include:
      • Rowan Barrett, Assistant GM/Executive Vice President of the Senior Men’s Program, Canada Basketball;
      • Ron Yeung, Manager of Domestic Development, Canada Basketball;
      • and Michael Cvitkovic, Executive Director of Ontario Basketball.
  • The event on Saturday will feature basketball skills and drills.
  • The Steve Nash Youth Basketball program is a national youth basketball program developed by Canada Basketball and endorsed by Steve Nash.
    • The program is designed to teach fundamental basketball skills, sportsmanship and an appreciation of the game.
    • Nash plays for the Los Angeles Lakers and is General Manager of the Senior Men’s National Team for Canada Basketball.
    • Nash will not be participating in this Toronto launch event.



Community Day

Free Admission (with FREE General Admission* to Ontario Science Centre)

  September 29, 2013

10 am to 5 pm

Ontario Science Centre
770 Don Mills Road (at the corner of Eglinton Avenue East), Toronto

  • Celebrate Community Day with FREE general admission* to the Science Centre and a special price for IMAX® films!
  • Community Day is the Science Centre’s way of celebrating science with the whole community.
  • In addition to FREE admission and special programming in the Centre throughout the day, Ontario Science Centre invites all adults to become children again!
    • For this day only, adult visitors will be able to turn back the clock to see the popular IMAX films Flight of the Butterflies and Under the Sea at the children’s price.
    • *IMAX film tickets for all age categories on September 29 will be $9 per person.
    • For all IMAX ticket holders please arrive at least 20 minutes before the start of the film.
    • *Please note: Parking is not included. Parking at the Ontario Science Centre is $10 per vehicle.
  • Please click here for the complete schedule of Community Day Programs at the Ontario Science Centre

Two Lane-Naming Ceremonies in Harbord Village Community:

William James Lane: south end of the lane between Major Street and Brunswick Avenue at Sussex Avenue., Toronto
at 11 a.m.

Barker Fairley Lane: Robert Street, at the east end of the lane at Sussex Mews, Toronto
at 12:30 p.m.


September 29

  • Toronto Councillor Adam Vaughan (Ward 20 Trinity-Spadina) will join community members for the following two lane-naming ceremonies.
  1. The first ceremony, 11 a.m., will honour William James, a photographer who chronicled life in Toronto in the early 20th century. Approximately 10,000 of his photographs and slides are housed in the Toronto Archives.
  2. The second ceremony, 12:30 p.m., will honour Barker Fairley, a University of Toronto professor who was also a poet, a writer and a foremost scholar of German literature.

Shaping Toronto’s Suburbs: Chief Planner Roundtable Fall Series

September 30, October  28 & November 25

Toronto City Hall, 100 Queen Street West

  • Interested in Participating?

Department of Visual Art & Art History, Faculty of Fine Arts, York University


Group Exhibition – “Sporadic Colour Void”

FREE Admission

September 30, 2013 – October 11, 2013

Gallery Hours:
Monday – Friday, 10:30am – 4:00pm

Gales Gallery, 105 Accolade West Building, York University

Phone: 416-736-5187




October 1 – December 10, 2013

Opening Reception: Tuesday, October 1, 6:30pm

Free Admission

Istituto Italiano di Cultura
496 Huron St., Toronto

Infoline: 416-921-3802 ext. 221

Gallery Hours:
Mon – Fri: 10:00am – 1:00pm; 2:30pm – 5:00pm

Saturday Openings: Noon – 5:00 pm, October 19, November 23, December 7

  •  The exhibition is a collection of 35 drawings, projects and graphic works documenting the creativity of the team that called itself Alchimia.
  • Opening remarks by Tullio Guma, Consul General of Italy, and Alessandro Guerriero, founder of Alchimia.
  • Copies of the catalogue will be available for purchase and signing.
  • Studio ALCHIMIA was founded by Alessandro Guerriero in 1975, and became one of the most vital in the evolution of the Italian post avant-garde design.
  • Please click here for more info about the exhibition.

Ontario News and TTC Alerts

Ontario Offers Online Driver’s Licence Renewal

  • Ontario is now allowing drivers to renew their licences online ­– the first province in Canada to do so.
  • Ontario drivers need to renew their licences every five years.
  • If a new photo is not required, you may be eligible to renew your driver’s licence online.
    • Your driver’s licence renewal notice indicates whether a new photo is required to complete the licence renewal process.
  •  Now, eligible drivers who renew online at will be able to use their existing licence photos for an additional five-year renewal cycle, meaning they will only need to renew in person every ten years.
    • When drivers renew their licences online, they can also get licence plate stickers, driver abstracts and other driver and vehicle products in the same transaction.
  • Eligibility will be determined as the user goes through the online application.
    • Drivers who do not meet the eligibility criteria will be advised to visit one of Ontario’s nearly 300 ServiceOntario centres.
  • Drivers will be able to renew their driver’s licence online provided they:
    • are not required to take a new photo,
    • hold an Ontario driver’s licence card that has a licence class type of G or D or M (including condition L) or any combination,
    • have a driver’s licence card status that is not cancelled or suspended,
    • have a driver’s licence card that is expiring within six months of the date of renewal or within 12 months past the date of renewal,
    • are between the ages 16 and 79,
    • have not changed their address within the last 90 days,
    • do not have an enhanced driver’s licence or an Ontario Photo Card,
    • are not required to take tests (vision and/or written and/or road),
    • have no outstanding fines or fees,
    • are not removing any existing vision condition, such as corrective lenses, from their driving record,
    • do not have any new medical conditions that prevent them from driving, and
    • are not required to change information that appears on their driver’s licence, such as their date of birth or name.
  • Temporary driver’s licences
    • When a driver has a licence that expires within 28 days of the date of renewal or a licence that expired within one year of the date of renewal, a temporary driver’s licence will be electronically issued.
    • The temporary driver’s licence must be printed and kept with the existing driver’s licence card for the licence to be valid.
    • The temporary driver’s licence will be valid for 90 days from the transaction date, allowing for processing and delivery of the new card.
      • The self-printed temporary driver’s licence is recognized by the enforcement community and is also valid outside of Ontario.
  • Drivers can now use Interac® Online, in addition to major credit cards, to pay online.
  • To renew your driver’s licence online, please visit

Co-op Housing Amendments Pass

  • Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing recently announced that Bill 14, the Non-profit Housing Co-operatives Statute Law Amendment Act, 2013, passed third reading after debate in the Ontario legislature.
  • When it comes into force, the bill will amend the Residential Tenancies Act, 2006, and the Co-operative Corporations Act to enable co-ops to apply to the Landlord and Tenant Board to resolve tenure disputes.
    • Previously, co-op housing providers and their members had to go through the courts to resolve disputes, which were costly and time-consuming.
    • They will now have an easier, cost-effective and accessible way to resolve disputes including persistent late payments, illegal behaviour, and intentional damage to property.
      • Co-op providers and their members will also enjoy many of the protections and benefits provided to landlords and tenants under the Residential Tenancies Act, 2006, including access to mediation services.
  • Did you know?
    • There are about 550 not-for-profit housing co-ops in Ontario with 44,000 households, representing almost 125,000 people.
    • Non-profit co-ops have played a vital role in Ontario’s affordable housing system since the 1970s.

Toronto’s Executive Committee Endorses New Development Charges

  • The City of Toronto’s Executive Committee recently endorsed the Development Charges Study and the proposed Development Charges Bylaw.
    • The staff report comes after the completion of a comprehensive study on development charges that determined the rates that can be levied under the provincial Development Charges Act.
    • This report will be considered at Toronto City Council at its meeting on October 8 and 9.
  • The new fees will help pay for the cost of infrastructure required to service new development, such as roads, transit, water and sewer infrastructure, community centres, and fire and police facilities.
  • According to Mayor Rob Ford, Chair of the Executive Committee, Toronto’s rates remain well below the average charges imposed in the GTA (Greater Toronto Area) despite the increase under the proposed new bylaw.
  • Please click here for more info about the 2013 Development Charges Bylaw Review.
Tier 2 of the Toronto Green Standard for Development Charges (Photo: City of Toronto)
Tier 2 of the Toronto Green Standard for Development Charges (Photo: City of Toronto)

Toronto Improves Green Standards for New Development

  • The Toronto Green Standard is a two-tier set of performance measures related to sustainable site and building design for new private and public development.
    • New planning applications have had to comply with Tier 1 environmental performance measures since 2010.
  • After consultation with the development industry and its stakeholders, the City of Toronto has updated the Toronto Green Standard to include higher energy conservation targets for new buildings.
    • The updates, which Council approved at its July meeting, will apply to new development starting January 2014.
  • Toronto is one of the only cities in North America with required green standards applying to new construction.
  • The updated Toronto Green Standard ensures that new buildings and the surrounding site contribute to a greener city with green or cool roofs, cycling infrastructure, tree-canopy cover, water and energy conservation, and bird-friendly glazing on buildings.”
    • A working group composed of representatives from City Planning, Toronto Building, the Environment and Energy Office, Toronto Atmospheric Fund, Toronto Hydro, Enbridge, the development industry and other relevant stakeholders will be established to assist the industry in meeting the new energy efficiency standards.
  • Applicants that meet both Tier 1 and 2 of the Toronto Green Standard – Tier 2 is a voluntary, higher level of environmental performance than Tier 1 – are eligible for a refund of 20 per cent of the City’s development charge.
  • City Planning’s official Twitter feed is @CityPlanTO.

Toronto’s Civic Centre Wedding Chambers Now Offer Online Bookings and Payment

  • Every year nearly 1,000 couples get married at the City’s three civic centre wedding chambers.
  • The chambers at City Hall was operated by a third party and must be booked in person.
  • Now, via a new online booking and payment system, the wedding chambers at the Scarborough, North York and York Civic Centres can now be booked and paid for online.
    • A half-hour booking at one of the three civic centre wedding chambers is $104, plus HST.
    • Couples must bring an officiant and two witnesses. Decorating the space and playing music is permitted.
  • Please click here for more info about marriage services at City Hall..

Portion of TTC Bloor-Danforth Subway Line Closed Sept. 28-29

TTC Map: Weekend closure between Kipling Station and Islington Station. Effective September 28 and 29.
TTC Map: Weekend closure between Kipling Station and Islington Station. Effective September 28 and 29.
  • The Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) will be conducting track work on a section of the Bloor-Danforth line Sept. 28-29 that includes the replacement of approximately 500 metres of subway track between Kipling and Islington stations.
  • A frequent shuttle bus service will operate and Wheel-Trans buses will be stationed at Jane and Kipling stations to assist customers who require accessible service.
  • Normal subway service will resume on Monday, September 30 at 6 a.m.
Subway Closure (Photo: TTC)
Subway Closure (Photo: TTC)

TTC October Subway Closure Revised to Oct. 12-14 Only

  • The Toronto Transit Commission has revised its subway closure plan for this October as it continues to install and upgrade its 60-year-old signal system.
  • Subway service in the downtown core of the Yonge-University line from Bloor to St George stations – the “U” – will be closed from Oct. 12-14 only.
    • A previously announced closure of Oct. 19-20 is cancelled..
  • A comprehensive shuttle bus service will be in place from Bloor-Yonge Station to St George Station from Oct. 12-14 using Yonge St. and University Ave.
  • Full subway service will resume at 6 a.m. on Oct. 15.
  • Please click here for more info.

Toronto, Ontario, Canada


September 27, 2013

Mayor Ford to lead Toronto music business mission to Austin, Texas

After Toronto City Council endorsed the creation of a music city alliance with Austin, Texas in July, Mayor Rob Ford decided to lead a music and cultural business mission to Austin.

The purpose of the mission is to meet with City of Austin officials and music industry representatives to solidify the terms and scope of the Austin-Toronto Music City Alliance.

This music and cultural business mission will aid the City in its goal of positioning Toronto as a leading live music tourist destination, while providing insight into how the City of Toronto can continually promote and foster Toronto’s internationally respected music sector.

The Mayor and mission participants will meet with Austin City officials and industry representatives on Thursday, October 3 and Friday, October 4. Mission attendees will also meet with the producers of the highly successful Austin City Limits music festival.

The Mayor will be accompanied by Councillor Michael Thompson (Ward 37 Scarborough Centre), Chair of the Economic Development Committee; Councillor Gary Crawford (Ward 36 Scarborough Southwest), Councillor Josh Colle (Ward 15 Eglinton-Lawrence); and Councillor Doug Ford (Ward 2 Etobicoke North). Renato Discenza, President and CEO of Invest Toronto, and Randy McLean, Director of Strategic Growth and Sector Development, Economic Development and Culture.

Toronto music industry representatives participating in this music business mission include Jeff Cohen, Owner of Collective Concerts and Toronto’s Horseshoe Tavern and Lee’s Palace venues; Graham Henderson, President, Music Canada; Amy Terrill, Vice President, Public Affairs, Music Canada; Jesse Kumagai, Director of Programming at the Corporation of Massey and Roy Thomson Hall; and Mike Tanner, Manager, Communications and Operations, North By Northeast Festival.

Mayor Ford, Councillor Ford and all music industry representatives will be paying for their own expenses while the other participating City councillors and Mr. Discenza’s expenses will be covered by Invest Toronto. Economic Development and Culture will pay for Mr. McLean’s expenses.

Toronto has one of North America’s largest music sectors with an impressive number of live music venues, recording studios, independent and major labels, music festivals and artists. This sector generates thousands of jobs and significant economic growth and tourism.

The City of Austin, recognized as the Live Music Capital of the World, shares many of the same characteristics of Toronto’s music economy. Over the last 20 years, Austin, a city a third the size of Toronto, has created a music industry that generates three times as much economic activity as Toronto’s music industry.

This mission presents a significant opportunity to exchange knowledge and best practices that will help drive economic development and job creation by further positioning Toronto as one of the leading live music tourist destinations in the world.

Quotes from select Austin-Toronto Music City Alliance mission participants:

“Austin has shown the world how music can be a strong economic driver for a city’s entertainment and tourist industries. Toronto already has one of the largest music sectors in North America, but it can be bigger and better. We have the talent and we have the potential. This trade mission will help us translate that talent and potential into economic development and jobs.”
Toronto Mayor Rob Ford

“An even more successful music industry will bring additional creative sector jobs and economic activity to both Austin and Toronto, while allowing for new opportunities for musicians and music lovers in both markets. Our vibrant creative sector is spurring job growth and this partnership will only add to that.”
Austin Mayor Lee Leffingwell

“This mission marks the beginning of what we expect to be a solid, long-term relationship with Austin’s music industry. The business of music is complex, and our alliance with Austin provides Toronto a backstage pass to study one of the world’s great music business cultures. Both cities have a lot to gain from this new partnership, and the future creative initiatives that it will spark.”
Councillor Michael Thompson, Chair of Toronto’s Economic Development Committee

“Our research shows that Toronto can gain a great deal from working closely with Austin, Texas in development of our music cluster. Both cities boast highly active music industries that employ thousands of people and generate a great deal of economic activity. Austin can demonstrate how to leverage our music scene in order to attract tourists, talent and business investment in music as well as related industries.”
Graham Henderson, President, Music Canada

“The city of Austin has already had a huge effect on our municipality, NXNE, programming at the Horseshoe Tavern, food trucks and the Toronto Urban Roots Festival. The idea of our Mayor and a delegation seeking an official music alliance can only lead to better things locally which I hope someday includes a city of Toronto Music Office and a stronger relationship between our city hall and the music industry, as it currently exists in Austin.”
Jeff Cohen, Owner, Collective Concerts, Horseshoe Tavern, Lee’s Palace, TURF TO

“Music can be a catalyst for happy, healthy and prosperous cities. Austin has demonstrated this in spades as America’s fastest growing city, fuelled in no small part by their vibrant music scene. With many parallels between Austin and Toronto, we’re excited to share best practices and bring home ideas to help bolster our own cultural economy.”
Jesse Kumagai, Director of Programming, Corporation of Massey Hall and Roy Thomson Hall

“Like all who love live music and wish to see more of it in our city, NXNE is very excited about the recent Toronto-Austin music alliance – particularly with our strong ties to SXSW. As part of the Toronto delegation, I’m looking forward to learning from our Austin counterparts and helping to bring some new ideas and perspectives back home. Thanks to Music Canada for its instrumental role in making all of this happen.”
Mike Tanner, Manager, Communications/Operations, NXNE

A final media itinerary will be released prior to October 3. Media representatives who wish to be accredited for this mission should contact Shane Gerard in Strategic Communications (information below) for more details.

City Council’s Austin-Toronto Music City Alliance decision of July 2013:

City Council has also endorsed an economic growth plan called Collaborating for Competitiveness – A Strategic Plan to Accelerate Economic Growth and Job Creation in Toronto. This plan sets targets for improving the quality of jobs in Toronto and commits to harmonizing the policies/activities of the City of Toronto and its agencies to help create a more attractive climate for business and investment. More information about the plan and how the City helps business in Toronto is available at

In 2011, City Council unanimously endorsed the Creative Capital Gains: An Action Plan for Toronto, which provides strategic advice and recommendations for the support and growth of Toronto’s cultural sector. In 2013 City Council also endorsed the multi-year allocation of $20 to $25 million to the arts and cultural sector from Third Party Sign Tax retroactive revenues. $6 million of those revenues were allocated this year alone.

Toronto is Canada’s largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.8 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.


Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) Contact Info

  • Information on fares, routes, schedules and service.
    • 416-393-4636 (INFO)

    • Recorded information available 24 hours daily.

    • Operator-assisted service is available from 8:00am to 6:00pm daily, except statutory holidays.

    • TTY Hearing Impaired Service, 416-481-2523, Daily, 8:00am-6:00pm; except statutory holidays.

  • Main Switchboard
    • 416-393-4000

    • Monday to Friday, 8:30am to 4:30pm

City of Toronto Contact Info

Phone within Toronto city limits: 311.

Phone outside city limits: 416-392-CITY (2489)
(can be used within Toronto if you can’t reach 311).

TTY customers: 416-338-0TTY (0889)
Fax: 416-338-0685

If your matter is urgent, please call them. They are open 24/7.


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