Unique Giving Ideas

An Alternative Gift Fair at the Tool Library 

Were you gifted a fondu set that you still haven’t gotten out of the box? Shame. Or perhaps you got your child a beautiful wooden puzzle that didn’t get the warm reception that you had anticipated?  There’s likely someone in the neighbourhood that’s looking for those exact gifts for someone on their Christmas list.  On Sunday December 8th from 10:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. the Toronto Tool Library and Marketspace will be hosting an Alternative Gift Fair.  The idea is that you bring three new or lightly used items and exchange them for three gifts. Seems like a win-win. Check out the event Facebook page for all the details.


Share a Christmas with Centre 55

For 32 years Centre 55 has been delivering Christmas meals and toys to families in need of help in the east end with their Share a Christmas program.  This year they’re planning to deliver to approximately 800 families. What an amazing gift to our community!  There are a number of way you can help:

  • Donate non-perishabel food items
  • Help to pack and deliver the food and toys on Sunday, December 22nd
  • Adopt-A-Family: Customize a food hamper and gifts for a specific family in need that Centre 55 matches you with
  • Donate Canadian Tire money

Check out the Share a Christmas website for more specifics or give them a call 416-691-1113.

Golden Pizza episode airs tonight! And other news!

A while back, I spotted a reality tv show filming just down the road at Golden Pizza.  (Click here to read that post)  Since then, we’ve had periodic questions about the episode, but never quite knew when it would be on.  I think it was on a while ago for the first time, but set your PVRs because it is on again tonight at 7:00pm on the food network.

Here’s the link to the food network for more info: http://www.foodnetwork.ca/ontv/shows/restaurant-takeover/episode.html?titleid=291448&episodeid=291448

Don’t forget, today is also the day when Artisans at Work hosts their winter farmers’ market from 2:00-7:00pm (2071 Danforth Ave @ Woodbine).  Also, tomorrow night is the monthly Hirut Hoot comedy night starting at 9:00pm at Hirut. (2050 Danforth Ave @ Woodbine)

So much to do right down the road!

Oh, and one more thing – did you see the latest BlogTO write-up about our little gem and former pop-up shop, Len?  Here it is for those of you who missed it.  http://www.blogto.com/design/len-democratic-purveyors-toronto I was in last Sunday and got an armload of gifts to have on hand for the holiday season.  I am always amazed at how many beautiful things they fit into one little store!

BlogTO also wrote up the new shop a bit farther west (across from Red Rocket) called McCormick Imports, that you absolutely must go to if you haven’t already.  Read for yourself!  http://www.blogto.com/design/mccormick-imports-toronto

If you missed our recent events post, check it out here. Some events are ongoing!

AGM Wrap-up and 2014 Board Announcement

Another Great Year!

DECA Chair, Anita Schretlen giving the 2013 rundown at the 2013 Annual General Meeting and party

A note from DECA’s Chair, Anita Schretlen:

Thanks to all of you who made it out to DECA’s annual general meeting and cocktail party last week at Hirut Restaurant! It was so nice to mingle with neighbours, enjoy some great food, drink and music, and celebrate all that we have achieved this past year.  And we have so much to be proud of.

2013 in review

This past year, thanks to your participation, volunteer support and membership dollars, our little pocket of the city was a real hub of community activity.  Here are the highlights of what DECA accomplished:

  • our 5th year of weekly Farmers’ Markets from June – October
  • our 5th annual Danforth East Arts Fair, boasting 60 vendors
  • our 4th annual Pumpkin Parade – our biggest ever with over 700 pumpkins! (Thanks to Councillor McMahon for sponsoring)
  • we organized 20 pop-up shops, along with a Shop Local campaign (and an exciting partnership with Woodgreen, with support from the Metcalf Foundation!)
  • our 1st annual Danforth East Yard Sale, with 120 participating households
  • our 1st Holiday Tree Lighting, sponsored by Home Hardware and Danforth Mosaic BIA
  • an ambitious adopt-a-tree program throughout the area
  • the re-launch DECA’s Safety Committee and DECA Learns
  • getting our Neighbourhood Visioning team off the ground
  • continually connecting and informing our neighbours via DECA Diaries, Facebook and Twitter

…and we aren’t done yet for this year!  Stay tuned for more info about the upcoming Danforth East Holiday Festival!

It’s been an amazing year, but to keep this up we need your help.

Volunteer! All of our efforts are run by volunteers. If you can spare even just a few hours for one event or on one project, please consider volunteering with us.  Do you have an idea that isn’t on our list?  Great!  We love new ideas! Contact Jane, our volunteer coordinator, by emailing her here.

Sign up or renew your membership for 2014!  An annual membership to DECA is only $10 per household.  This paid membership gives us a small budget for our projects and more importantly, gives us clout and credibility with city hall and other groups. Sign up/renew  here. Note: You have to live within our borders in order to be a member, but anyone and everyone is welcome to volunteer and/or come to our events.  Borders are Main (E) – Lumsden/Mortimer (N) – Monarch Park (W) – Train Tracks (S)

Announcing DECA’s 2014 Board!

The 2013 DECA Board.
The 2014 DECA Board

At the AGM, we  elected DECA’s Board for 2014. This year, we are welcoming committed DECA Volunteers Amanda Olson and Christal Psyhk as new members. We also have a change in Treasurer, from Lorraine Chen to Sheri Hebdon.

Over the course of 2013, we had a few board members leave us for various personal reasons – I’d like to thank Anne Howatt, Susan Bates, Darcy Fedorchuk, Catherine Porter and Tak Bui for their valuable contributions.

The DECA Board for 2014 is:

Anita Schretlen – Chair
Alison McMurray – Secretary
Sheri Hebdon – Treasurer
Amanda Olson
Christal Pshyk
Jane Davis-Munro
Lorraine Chen
Melissa Peretti
Natasha Granatstein
Paul Haines
Shelley Darling
Stephen Wickens

Thank yous!

Thanks to our local representatives who took time to join us at the AGM, Michael Prue, Councillor Mary-Margaret McMahon and Councillor Janet Davis.

Thanks also to Hirut Restaurant and owners Tibebe and Hirut for hosting our event this year, so warmly and graciously.  (If you haven’t been to Hirut Restaurant yet, I highly recommend it – such great food and warm atmosphere!)

And last, but certainly not least, I want to give a big thank you to our 2013 Board and to our committed volunteers from this past year.  It is your time, energy and passion that is helping to make our community such a wonderful place to be.


Pictures from the AGM/Party!

Mrs. Darling meets 'Mrs. Darling'
Mrs. Darling meets ‘Mrs. Darling’ (a.k.a. Shelly and Melissa)
Laurie talking Safety
Laurie talking Safety
Melissa (a.k.a. Mrs. Darling) talking Danforth East Arts Fair.
Melissa (a.k.a. Mrs. Darling) talking Danforth East Arts Fair.
Catherine talking DECA Tree
Catherine talking DECA Tree
Lorraine talking money
Lorraine talking money
Alison talking Farmers' Market
Alison talking Farmers’ Market
Amanda (minus her 4 week old baby!) talking Pop Up Shops
Amanda (minus her 4 week old baby!) talking Pop Up Shops
Some of DECA's youngest  volunteers
Some of DECA’s youngest volunteers
Randal, Melanie, Councillor Mary-Margaret McMahon.
Randal, Melanie, Councillor Mary-Margaret McMahon.
Alison joining Tak and the band for some melodies
Alison joining Tak and the band for some melodies

Fun school fundraisers this weekend

Support our local schools & have fun!

Gledhill School and Community Association Silent Auction – this Friday, November 22

Gledhill’s SACA Silent Auction is this Friday, November 22 from 7:00-10:00pm, 2 Gledhill Avenue in the gym.  Support a local school, have fun with neighbours and maybe even score some awesome stuff!  Check out the Gledhill SACA blog for more info.

Silent Auction 2013 Top Ten List

Early Beatty ‘Holiday in the ‘Hood’ Fundraiser – this Saturday, November 23 & Sunday, November 24

This weekend is the 2nd annual Earl Beatty Public School Holiday in the Hood! 55 Woodington Avenue – entrance through doors off of Woverleigh. Just north-east of Danforth and Coxwell.

Please join in on the fun Saturday 10am-5pm and Sunday 9am-2pm. We have some amazing artisans lined up and don’t forget the Santa photos and kids activities. Finish off the day with a Starbucks coffee and a treat from our bake sale.

Hope to see you there!


For more info, check out their Facebook page

Events, events, events!

Taming of the Shrew, Artisans at Work Christmas Craft Shows, Hirut Hoot, LEN Holiday Launch, Colour Creative, Childcare Summit and Budget Consultation…

Last night’s DECA AGM/Cocktail party was so much fun!  Were you there?  Many of you were and wow, what a spectacular time we had at Hirut Restaurant this year.  I continue to be amazed at the warmth and generosity of our local businesses.  We’ll send out an official recap with the 2014 Board announcement and all of that (and a rare photo taken of the entire Board!), but in the meantime, here is a smattering of events and info for the next little while.  Please take a minute to read through, and remember… forward this to a friend!

All Female Taming of The Shrew at Danforth & Coxwell, until November 30

How cool is this??  Support local theatre and go see this all female Taming of the Shrew!  Dates and times listed below on the poster. For more info and to purchase tickets online, visit their website: http://www.jaybirdproductions.ca/taming.html


Artisans At Work Christmas Craft Show

Our friends at Artisans at Work (2071 Danforth Avenue) have rotating vendors selling everything you need for your holiday shopping list.  Stop into this neighbourhood gem!  According to their website, craft show hours are:

Fridays: 11:00am-9:00pm+, Saturdays: 10:00am-8:00pm, Sundays: 10:00am-6:00pm

unnamed-3Regular shop hours are: Mondays (by appt), Tues, Wed and Thurs 11am – 8pm, Friday 11am-9pm, Saturdays 10am-8pm, and Sundays 10am – 6pm.


Send an e-mail to Tara with any questions, and don’t forget to ask her to add you to her mailing list so that you never miss a thing!

Hirut Hoot – Comedy Night – $5

Friday, November 29, 2013 starting @ 9:00pm at Hirut Restaurant, 2050 Danforth Avenue, just west of Woodbine. Hosted by Kevin MacDonald.

Evan Carter
Rose Giles
Luke Gordon Field
Paul Haywood
Victoria Stewart
Jon Steinberg
Todd Van Allen

This event happens on the last Friday of every month, so book your sitters, call your friends, and come enjoy high quality comedy in one of the most special venues on the Danforth.

LENmas13Official Launch

(A message from our friends at LEN – 698 Coxwell Avenue @ Danforth)

On Saturday, November 23, LEN will have transformed into a winter wonderland, bursting with holiday cards, decorations, one-of-a-kind art and items for everyone and is yours to discover. Our official LENmas13 Holiday Launch begins at 11 AM and all day Saturday we invite you to join us for some holiday treats, sparkling drinks and get first dibs on the best stuff!

Be your own superstar this season and knock off your entire list a month early, then kick back and enjoy the weeks ahead stress and guilt free!

For more info about their beautiful things, please visit LEN’s website.

Colour Creative Early Bird Special

Colour Creative has an Early Bird special on right now.  Registration for any 2014 Art Passport or Winter/Spring after school course that is completed before December 1st receives a free one hour private class.  Here is the link to the website  and Facebook page for details.

Let’s Talk Child Care Campaign

On November 4th, The City of Toronto launched its Let’s Talk Child Care campaign.   The goal of the Summit is to hear directly from Toronto parents regarding their experiences with child care.  Parents and guardians are invited to participate in discussions at several locations throughout the city. There will also be opportunities for residents to gain a better understanding of Toronto’s child care system as well as to obtain more information about City programs for families.Register here for one of the four Summits happening around the City.  For more information about the campaign read here.

Community Consultation on the 2014 Budget

From Councillor Janet Davis:
The Operating and Capital Budgets recommended by City staff will be released on November 25th. Please join me on Wednesday, November 27, at 7:00pm, in the Stan Wadlow Clubhouse for a Ward 31 Budget Open House where we will learn more about these budgets and what they will mean for the our area and services you rely on. The budgets will be presented and then City staff will answer questions. I hope you can join me for this important and informative evening.
As always, please contact my office with any questions or concerns about the City Budgets or any other municipal matter. Email: Councillor_Davis@Toronto.ca  

Watch the Mail, Watch This Space & See You TONIGHT!

Watch Your Mailbox…

As hinted at previously here, we’ve been working away like Santa’s elves on a new Shop Local project and the results are in! Watch your mailbox today for a holiday coupon booklet including deals and featured items from 50 local businesses.

There are tons of great savings from your favourite stores and maybe even a few shops you haven’t discovered yet. For example, did you know that tucked away beside The Wool Mill (who are offering a coupon for 10% off) we have an amazing courier company, A-Way Courier, that provides meaningful employment for people with direct experience with the mental health system? Try them out with a coupon for a free delivery. Or did you know we have a brand new spot for yoga, Ankh Yoga studio, at the corner of Moberly and Danforth? Try a class for $10 with your coupon booklet.

If you don’t receive your copy in the mail, you can print it off here. Please bring your booklet with you when you do your holiday shopping to redeem all the deals. Only 1 coupon per customer, per store.

HUGE thank yous to volunteers Niamh Hill for managing the project and to graphic designers Heather Corbin and Queenie Best for making the booklet look gorgeous.

Watch This Space: Our Newest Pop-up Shop

All the Pop-up Shops are also featured in the coupon booklet (click here for current shop details), including our newest one, jewelry store Zilberschmuck. Located in Yummy Stuff’s old space at 1938 Danforth, Zilberschmuck will be opening this Friday, November 22 (or possibly earlier). The store carries contemporary, Canadian-made jewelry like the beautiful necklace pictured below.

Photo: Beautiful jewellery by Canadian artists including this lovely piece by Dianne Karg Baron.