Pumpkin Parade in Berczy Park

21 Oct

TSA_OldTown_Halloween2019The St Lawrence Market Neighbourhood BIA will host its popular Old Town Toronto Pumpkin Parade in Berczy Park this year (due to the construction closure in St Jame Park).

Visit Berczy Park on the evening of Nov 1st to admire the jack o’lanterns carved by local kids, businesses and other community members, illuminated to make a spooky, fun evening, and great photos!

And, thanks to event sponsor BMO Bank of Montreal, Front & Berkeley Streets, you can enjoy live music and free hot chocolate and cider.

Want to contribute your own pumpkin artwork to the display? By all means! Bring your carved artwork to the event so BIA volunteers can add it to the parade. BIA staff will remove all pumpkins at the end of the evening.


Cheer for the Marathoners in Berczy Park on Sunday Oct 20th!

10 Oct

Marathon poster FINAL-3As usual, the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon route will run along the border of Berczy Park, on Sunday October 20, beginning at 10:30am.

Join the rambunctious, annual neighbourhood cheering squad (organized by Jamii arts organization, Princess St Children’s Garden, Canada Running Series and Friends of Berczy Park). Pick your spot along the street by Berczy Park (between Church and Scott Streets) and enjoy the music and excitement while rooting for these world-class runners as they complete the final kilometre to the City Hall finishline.

And, by simply showing up and contributing your voice or applause to our noisy cheering squad, you can help the St. Lawrence Neighbourhood again win a prize for ‘Best Neighbourhood Cheering Section’ by the Marathon organizers. This award includes prize money from the Marathon sponsor that will be directed to non-profit groups and community activites right in our neighbourhood.

Want to involve your children or pets? Then come out at 9:30am on the 20th to join the 1Km Family Run. Meet at the St Lawrence Cafe at 248 The Esplanade for a fun run through the community with prizes.

So, come out to have some fun cheering for the runners and support your local community at the same time!

And special thanks to our generous community sponsors including Concert Properties (88 Scott and The Berczy), Great West Life Realty Advisors (33 Yonge Street), Tim Horton’s (33 Yonge and 55 Front ST East), Aramarck Scotiabank Conference Centre (40 King West), Aroma Espresso Bar (20 Wellington ST E), and Novotel Toronto Centre.

Cheer on the Marathon on October 20th

19 Sep

On Sunday, October 20th 2019, the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon will be passing through our neighbourhood, specifically on Wellington St. E, adjacent to Berczy Park. The first runners are expected at approximately 10:45am.

IMG_0460The Marathon offers a unique opportunity to each of the 12 neighbourhoods that the race passes through, to organize their own cheering section in hopes of being awarded a monetary prize for “Best Neighbourhood Cheering Section”.

Jamii, in partnership with Friends of Berczy Park and Children’s Princess Garden, has organized the St Lawrence Market neighbourhood cheering section for the past 5 years, with the sponsorship support of Canada Running Series Foundation. We have won the First Prize two years in a row. This prize money has allowed all three not-for-profit organizations to bring more programming and events to our community, especially for youth and families. The marathon is a very important fundraising opportunity for all three local community groups.

fullsizeoutput_2257As part of our cheering section this year, we will have drummers (African and Brazilian), dancers, crafts and decoration. The music, together with the runners’ families and marathon fans will help motivate the 25,000 runners from around the world on their last kilometre before the finish line. The entertainment will start at 10:30am and willend at 3pm.IMG_0455

Thank you in advance for your tolerance to the noise that the cheering section will generate. Your support of our cheering section is important. We encourage you to join our groups, neighbours and plenty of kids at the cheering section to support the runners at the final kilometre.

If you have any concerns about the cheering section, please contact us at isorine@jamiiesplanade.org

The Jamii team, Friends of Berczy Park, Children’s Princess Garden

Discover Nordic Pole Walking

12 Sep

batons_randonnee_-_tactil_poles_-_tsl_outdoor_1Friends of Berczy Park is happy to promote this community activity organized by residents of Old York Towers, including their residents who participate in our weekly drop-in knitting group in the park and knit the wool scarves that decorate our dog fountain sculptures in wintertime.

If you enjoy walking, you will LOVE Nordic Pole Walking.  It not only is a great aerobic workout for your legs, lungs and heart, Pole Walking also provides upper body strength training while improving posture, balance and coordination…all in one easy to learn, easy to do, very social group activity

Learn more about Pole Walking at a freeinformation session:

DATE:                        Monday September 16

TIME:                         2:30-3:30pm

PLACE:                      Courtyard behind Old York Tower, 85 The Esplanade.

INSTRUCTOR:         Lorne Opler, former fitness instructor at OYT

Lorne is a certified Nordic Pole Walking instructor and has been teaching Nordic Pole Walking classes across the GTA since 2010


For those interested, a 10-week Pole Walking course will begin:

DATE:   Thursday Sept. 19 and every Thursday till Nov 21

TIME:    9:45-10:45am

PLACE: meet outside Old York Tower, 85 The Esplanade.

COST: $10/class ($100 for entire course, paid in fullat week one)

*NOTE: minimum class size:  10 students.  Poles can be purchased through Lorne at first class  ($80 for standard poles, $90 for travelling poles, which can fit in a travel bag)

For more info: email Lorne at: contactlorne@gmail.com

Phone:  (647) 860-4838  Website:   www.trainerlorne.com

Status of Jacob’s Ladder artwork/play structure in Berczy Park

2 Aug

Bard in Berczy Park performers rehearse by ‘hanging laundry’ props from the Jacob’s Ladder public artwork

While the upcoming ‘Bard in Berczy Park’ production will be using the giant bronze hands of the “Jacob’s Ladder” public artwork as a backdrop for their upcoming performances of All’s Well That End’s Well – as seen in the adjacent image – some community members have asked about the status of this incomplete public artwork/kids play structure.

Here is an update from Councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam’s Office:
The hands and ‘string’ (ie. thick rope) were meant to be one piece that were not meant to be ‘interactive’ (ie. you could not remove/change the position of the rope) but were meant to allow kids to play on it. When the rope was installed, following the bronze hands, it was found that the ropes did not sit properly, which could allow them to be disrupted. The rope was sent back to the manufacturer in Montreal, and installers need to install stronger connections to reinstall the rope, according to City staff. Staff also want to deal with drainage issues in the park, including the grassy hills and valley surrounding the Jacobs Ladder artwork, before reinstalling the rope. The Park is still under warranty, and Parks and the contractor are trying to settle issues regarding soil quality, which has resulted in some grass looking poor. City staff do not have an estimated date for the return of the rope, but assuming the drainage/soil issues are solved they could see it returned before the fall, contingent on a a quick resolution with the contractor.


Artist testing rope lattice for Jacob’s Ladder artwork in fall 2018.


The initial installation of Jacob’s Ladder art/play structure.

Safety alert for pet-owners in Berczy Park

26 Jun



Pet-kicking, disturbed woman sighted in Berczy Park again on July 1, 2019.

Update July 1: Please see the latest photo of the pet-kicking woman, sighted in the Berczy Park mural garden on July 1, and identified by the June 27 victim, in the photo below. Pet-owners, be alert. Police advise that there is little or no recourse against this woman except to avoid her at all cost. Stay clear for the safety of you and your pet.

Update on June 27: Buster is doing okay so far; If you see the accused, call 51 Division Police, 416-808-2222, and reference case #11847705.

Safety Alert: Pet-owners, watch out for this violent woman (see image) who chased a local pet-owner and kicked her dog in the stomach today. At 8:15 Wednesday morning, the dog owner was walking her bassett hound on the Berczy Park lawn near Scott Street when a stranger approached her, yelled that she was allergic to dogs, and proceeded to chase the owner and kick the 9-year-old dog in the stomach. The victim managed to photograph the fleeing attacker, who she describes as 5’6″, brown hair, sunglasses covering her face, surprisingly-average looking and normally dressed in black and gray, but carrying many shopping bags. If you see this woman, contact 51 Division Police, 416-808-2222, to provide information on the June 26 morning dog assault in Berczy Park. Pet-owners, keep your distance from this individual.

Berczy Beats – lunchtime and evening music in Berczy Park

20 Jun

IMG_1472Thanks to the St. Lawrence Market Neighbourhood Assoc. BIA, “Old Town Toronto”, visitors to Berczy Park during lunchtimes in July and August can enjoy free acoustic music performances each Wednesday from 11:30-1:00pm.

Check out the stage in the southwest corner of Berczy Park (Scott & Front Streets) to savour a variety of musical talent all summer long.

Grab a chair, a bench or a spot on Berczy Park’s green hills to soak up a bit of music during your summer lunchtime!

And, new in 2019, enjoy a couple of “Berczy Beats at Night” concerts, July 18 and August 15.

Visit OldTownToronto.ca and see ‘Events’ for these and other great community music, movies and festivities.



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