This weekend! 

So it finally feels like fall but don’t start your hibernation yet. Lots happening this weekend! 

Danforth East Short Film Festival – Saturday from 8-10pm, $10 

Tickets can be purchased by clicking here or at the door! 2183 Danforth @ Time Capsule Board Game Café. 

DECA is a proud sponsor of the festival. 


Just Say “Boo!”, Sunday from 3-5pm, free

CareVillage is a newly formed not-for profit that aims to provide East-End Toronto parents with immediate solutions and long-term resources with the goal of building a self-sustaining network, a modern village. 

This Sunday, October 23rd, from 3-5pm at Kaza Family Centre, 1386 Danforth Avenue, they are hosting a family Halloween Event!

– games and activities for kids with fun prizes!

– any opportunity to get a professional photo of your little one in Halloween costume!

– and opportunity to meet local families and build your community!

CareVillage will also be accepting *new and unopened* toiletry and non-perishable food items, as well as hats, mitts, and scarves, that will be distributed to East-End families for their upcoming holiday food and toy drive.  Click here for more info.  

DECA is a proud sponsor of this event too!


DECA Pride October Mingle, Sunday from 3:30-5:30pm, free

Join DECA Pride at at Time Capsule, 2183 Danforth for a social event for east-end LGBTQ+ people, and any allies who also want to come. Come on your own, with a date, with friends or with your family and enjoy free game-playing, and light snacks courtesy of DECA. 

To be added to DECA Pride’s email list, click here and request to join. This is a DECA-led initiative. 


Halloween Swap, Sunday from 11am-4pm 

Bring any halloween related costume or accessory and receive swapping tickets for each item (10 tickets max). Items are worth between 1 and 3 tickets each, depending on size and condition.

The Sharing Depot is located at 1803 Danforth Ave and they promise to be haunting the place from 11am-4pm – bring your spooky items down and swap with your neighbours for new spooky items!

For more info about the swap click here. Learn more about the Sharing Depot here!


DECA Board Meeting, Monday from 7:30-9:30pm

Drop us a line at if you’d like to come!


 Save the date!

Our Annual General Meeting will be on November 21 from 6-9pm. Stay tuned for details. 

Thank you for another amazing year

Dear Neighbours,

I’ve been meaning to write this email for the past month, since I was elected as the Chair of DECA’s Board at our AGM on November 24 – better late than never! On that wonderful evening, many of you braved a windstorm to join the incoming and outgoing Board at Hirut Restaurant, where we ate, drank and generally had a great time!  We reviewed the year that we had, hearing from project leads for: DECA tree, Arts Fair, Farmers’ Market, #DanforthEast Garage Sale, Visioning, Holiday Festival, and the Pop-Up Shop/Revitalization Team.  We also elected a new Board:

Sheri Hebdon (Chair), Anita Schretlen (Treasurer), Alison McMurray (Secretary), Amanda Olson (Member-at-Large), Jane Davis-Munro (Member-at-Large), Melissa Peretti (Member-at-Large), Shelley Darling (Member-at-Large), Stephen Wickens (Member-at-Large), Catherine Porter (Member-at-Large), Audrey Kvedaras (Member-at-Large), Corinne McCabe (Member-at-Large), David Del Grande (Member-at-Large), Jodi Shanoff (Member-at-Large), Linda Ballantyne (Member-at-Large), Mark Rullo (Member-at-Large)

The Board said a special good-bye to our founding Chair, Natasha Granatstein, who stepped down from the Board after seven years (six as Chair or co-Chair). Natasha’s is the one who started the DECAdiaries blog, which has been one of our key points of communication, and I was lucky to have an opportunity to speak about Natasha’s contributions that night – here is an excerptt:

Natasha worked tirelessly on the pop-up project earlier on when it was 100% in the hands of DECA volunteers, and she has been very involved with the Art of the Danforth, along with a variety of other projects.  Whether it’s the farmers market, the Arts fair, the garage sale or the pumpkin parade, you can always count on Natasha to help out, take a shift, or just participate.  I don’t know how she finds the time or energy given her busy work and family life, but every single one of us who lives in this neighbourhood has benefited from Natasha’s efforts over the past 7 years.

We also said a special thank you to Anita Schretlen, our outgoing Chair (who is thankfully staying on with the Board as Treasurer!).  Anita assumed the role of Chair quite unexpectedly part-way through the year a couple of years ago and she carried out her additional responsibilities with grace, humour, passion and unwaivering diligence. Where many others would have been frustrated and overwhelmed, Anita truly rose to the occasion. Another AGM speech excerpt:

Anita’s specific contributions as Chair are actually too numerous to try to list. She started our very successful Facebook page and managed it for a long time before bequeathing it to the social media team. She has been the point person for everyone from Councillors to academics looking to connect with DECA, not to mention all the Board members, project leads, pop up shop team members, and our pop-up shop partner agency, Woodgreen. She has arranged for us to have proper insurance, places to meet every month, agendas at those meetings and on and on. Every single thing that DECA has done over the past three years has had Anita’s hand on it in some fashion. I could stand up here all night to try to do justice to what she has contributed, and I would still fall short.

The fact that we have so many new board members joining us this year is a testament to the type of leader that Anita has been – people want to be part of what we are doing, and Anita is a huge part of that.

Looking ahead to 2015, I am very excited to be the Chair and grateful to all new and returning Board members. We always have room at the table for new ideas and new volunteers, but to commit as a Board member shows a willingness to take on even more than just the ‘fun stuff’, and for that I am very grateful. The work of DECA is done by so many more people than the Board. In addition to so many volunteers and sponsors, I wanted to mention our very dedicated project leads, including Melanie Ramsay (Arts Fair, Reskilling), Bruce Cooper (Yard Sale), Angela Matich (Holiday Festival of Lights), Heather Bean (Pumpkin Parade) and Anne Howlett & Catherine Dorton (DECA Tree).

The thing about being involved in the community association is that you cannot escape it. Our work is our neighbourhood, our colleagues are our neighbours, and we are all working toward the same goal, even if we don’t always agree on how to get there.  So this means that we conduct ourselves, always, with the knowledge that we will run into each other at the park, at the store, or on the street. This creates a really special dynamic – one that I hope will continue to be respectful and positive.

I will continue to lead the board with integrity, and with the spirit of collaboration and openness that has always been what makes DECA so special.  We say it all the time, but were the first resident’s association that was created not to oppose, but to build.  Everything that DECA does started with someone’s idea. So if there is something else that you think we could do or should do, and you want to lead it somehow – tell us!

One last thing that I want to say, is something I also said at the AGM. I want to thank all the people who stand behind the people who make DECA happen. The husbands, the wives, the partners, the children, the friends and other loved ones. As volunteers, the work that we do for DECA is usually during the time that we would otherwise be spending with you – so thanks to you all for being the truly unsung heroes in the community.

On behalf of the Board, I wish you all a very happy and healthy holiday season and all the very best for 2015.

Yours truly,
Sheri Hebdon

DECA’s 6th Annual Cocktail Party & Annual General Meeting – Nov 24

Please join us on Monday, November 24 for our party/AGM!


Candidates for Election to DECA’s Board of Directors

Sheri Hebdon (Chair) – current Treasurer

Anita Schretlen (Treasurer) – current Chair

Alison McMurray (Secretary) – current Secretary

Amanda Olson (Member-at-Large) current Member-at-Large

Jane Davis-Munro (Member-at-Large) current Member-at-Large

Melissa Peretti (Member-at-Large) current Member-at-Large

Shelley Darling (Member-at-Large) current Member-at-Large

Stephen Wickens (Member-at-Large) current Member-at-Large

Catherine Porter (Member-at-Large) returning Member-at-Large

Audrey Kvedaras (Member-at-Large) new

Corinne McCabe (Member-at-Large) new

David Del Grande (Member-at-Large) new

Jodi Shanoff (Member-at-Large) new

Linda Ballantyne (Member-at-Large) new

Mark Rullo (Member-at-Large) new

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

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.

DECA’s Annual Cocktail Party & AGM – this Monday!

Please join us Monday, November 18, 2013 from 6:30-9:30pm at Hirut Restaurant (2050 Danforth Ave), for our cocktail party and annual general meeting.  This is your chance to mingle, chat, hear about upcoming projects and general volunteer opportunities, join/renew your DECA membership ($10/household) and for members to elect the 2014 DECA Board.  See you there!