The McMichael Canadian Art Collection Kleinburg

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The marvellous McMichael Collection of Canadian Art located in the picture -perfect village of Kleinburg is (relatively speaking) just a short hop north of Toronto.

Located cheek by jowl to the Kortwright Centre – a delicious wilderness of maple trees and trails, capped by an excellent Visitor Centre (with Maple Syrup tapping in the Winter) – a trip to Kleinburg makes for a wonderful day trip.

That said there is enough to do at the Gallery itself to warrant a full day. A gorgeous building designed to blend harmoniously into the surrounding 100 acres of conservation land. With thirteen galleries housing a stunning collection of works by the Group of Seven and their contemporaries, there is a special focus on the works of Tom Thompson, alongside works by First Nations and Inuit. And should your taste be a little more eclectic then the McMichael regularly injects new life into their Gallery spaces by hosting major exhibitions of the works of other artists who have made a contribution to the development of Canadian art.

Currently the Museum is hosting two “guest” exhibitions: a “Mary Pratt” retrospective and “Changing Tides: Contemporary Art of Newfoundland and Labrador”

The Gallery – styled like a huge log cabin perched high up on the valley escarpment is a nook and cranny delight for slumping into a “Stickley” armchair to contemplate the art or to gaze out onto the stunning scenery – on a good day, and from the right window it is even possible to see the CN Tower way out in the distance. A stark reminder in this peaceful serene space of the proximity of our sprawling metropolis.

When Robert and Signe McMichael discovered Kleinburg, they felt that the area evoked the images of the Canadian wilderness they so loved. They consequently purchased ten acres of land in the village and in 1954 – with the help of architect Leo Venchiarutti – built a pioneer-style home (complete with barnboard walls and fieldstone fireplaces) and named it Tapawingo (believed to mean “place of joy”), the forerunner of today’s Gallery space.

Initially the McMichaels started their “Group of Seven” collection with a painting by Lawren Harris called “the Montreal River”. This was followed by a purchase of Tom Thomson’s “Pine Island” and by 1965, their private collection numbered 194 paintings and had been visited by hundreds of people who flocked to the McMichael’s frequent open houses. Realizing they were the custodians of a national treasure, the McMichael’s donated their collection, home and land to the Province of Ontario in return for an assurance that the buildings be maintanied and the art retained and conserved in the spirit of the original intent. Eight months later in July 1966 the “McMichael Conservation Collection of Art” officially opened.

Today the collection has expanded – through purchases and donations (from private individuals and artists) to about 5500 works of art. Despite extensive additions the Gallery retains many of its original rustic features; classically smart it radiates the warmth and charm one imagines the original home to have held almost as if the current custodians had had a hotline to Robert and Signe during all the remodellings.

And when you are done with the art, the restaurant – located in the split level basement – has a beautiful outdoor patio area open during the summer with drop-away views of the forested Humber River valley.

The hiking trails are open year round but occasionally one or two are closed during winter because ice and steep slopes are a treacherous combination.

Before you head out take a moment to admire the totem pole in the Grand Hall, entitled “Where Cultures Meet”, which was carved specifically for the Gallery by artist Don Yeomans.

Beforep embarking upon a trail have a stroll around the new Sculpture Garden and peer through the windows of Tom Thomson`s original log cabin.

website: https://www.mcmichael.com/

Telephone 905 893 1121 or 1888 213 1121

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Ripleys “You’d better Believe It” Aquarium

You’d better Believe It
Best Aquarium I have ever visited and I am an Aquarium “freak”
Costly at $39 for the entrance fee but worth every penny
Don’t miss the baby shark eggs hatching, the seahorses, the Travelator that wends its way under the enormous glass fish tank, and oh everything else.

Surreal Disney meets spa music playing on a loop enhances the feeling of being in an alternate reality!

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Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) The Scenes behind the Screens

Toronto International Film Festival logo

Toronto International Film Festival logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“My name is Carol

I am an ordinary person who on several days during early September had the privilege of doing an extraordinary job

A job you cannot do anywhere else in the world…….

I was a Volunteer at the Toronto International Film Festival – part of the TIFF volunteer army at what is widely considered to be the largest Public Film Festival on the planet

Forget the glam, the glitz and the galas, this is the grass roots level of the Festival, the crowds, the chaos (organized of course), and the queues; the lost, the confused, the angry and the excited.

We of the orange TShirts are your directions; your answers to questions; we are the “live” version of your Festival Guide.

You can count on us – as you line up to claim your ticket; your seat; your glimpse of Celebrity.

You will find us behind every red carpet “updo” and mega watt smile; at every barrier, theatre or stage door and even on the the corners of streets in the downtown locales of the streets.

Our iconic orange Tshirts are the beacon of sanity amidst the wonderful annual brouhaha that is TIFF.

So what’s a day working at the Festival like?

Read On….

To even get to this day volunteers have submitted an essay on why we should be chosen; attended a selection session; an interview, and attended 2 training sessions. We have had the Customer Service doctrine drummed into us “in the nicest possible way” and we are expected to be totally professional around the myriad celebrities that will walk into our line of vision.

6.30 am wake up call (for a 7.45 start today at the TIFF Bell Lightbox on King Street West). Unfold and fight my way into a freshly pressed “Florida” orange volunteer TShirt – (4 sizes fit all)

7.30am Arrive at The Tiff Bell Lightbox – O&B Canteen shut so no coffee before kick off. Greeted at entrance by the early bird Orange T shirt shift who at this point are marshalling volunteers to the Volunteer Lounge on Floor 4

Arrive at the Volunteer Lounge – All virgin territory for me, so look through the scattered clipboard lists and find I am not on any of them. Can I go home then?

Because I signed up to do an “ACE” go anywhere anytime duty today, I need to report to another Volunteer desk – also on the 4th to receive “transfer” orders.

As it stands I get assigned to Scotiabank which even at 8.30 in the morning is a “bun fight”.

9am – Our volunteer lounge here is a curtained off section of the ticket plaza on the ground floor, already seething with shoals of orange clad volunteers, I slide in unnoticed, stow my rucsac of worldly goods behind a chair, (praying it will still be there 7 hours later) fill my water pouch, don my badge and report to my shift supervisor.

9.15am Travel up the “Matter of Life and Death“ Scotiabank escalator – I digress here -seriously look at it next time you go to this theatre and if you’ve seen this iconic David Niven film, recall the moving staircase to heaven which moved out of the black and white genre to colour ( a technical triumph in its day). The Scotiabank escalator is so long, the movement appears juddery and the building is so futuristic and light filled that it appears to extend into heaven – theatre heaven in this case as this is an enormous multi level multi screened complex with an IMAX and several UltraVox screens.

Anyway, Scotiabank is an enormous multi-level multi screened complex with an IMAX and several UltraVox screens. The bulk of TIFF movies will be shown here because of its sheer capacity. Just trying to get to one’s position can take 15 minutes; manoeuvering around crowd control barriers, dodging line-up dead ends and trying to get through the Volunteer “link up” barriers – where Volunteers link arms to form a human chain to minimise line pollution and confusion of those folk exiting and entering theatres. If you hate crowds and even though this is controlled bedlam, this will blow your mind

9.30 to 2pm – Today is largely Press and Industry screenings so fairly straightforward as most of these know the ropes.

Get assigned as one of the theatre Ushers in two films – “Club Sandwich“ (Mexican) and Yikes a horror film called “The Sacrement”.

Ushers are supposed to ensure that all guests ar seated; no-one is pirating; all cellphones are off and to keep an eye open for any audience issues. This is an easy duty at at press and video screenings as this demographic are allowed “work” on electronic equipment throughout the film and many simply pop in and out to catch bits of a movie before moving onto the next screening.

2.45pm – collect my TIFF reward voucher (for a screening if I can book one) and battle my way out of the theatre.

Day done

Three more fun filled days followed and aside from queue management; general herding and ticket tearing, I was lucky enough to again get to usher in the actual movie theatre ( twice for star studded Q&A screenings) again several times. A real perk of volunteering and in no way guaranteed.

Ushering duties which should have been the “quietest” role, unearthed some unexpected excitement. An issue with an angry reporter in a press and industry screening, and during one film I had to man the second floor gallery of a theatre for the RUSH crowd. These folk are literally “rushed” up during the last minute and inevitably this means that not all are seated whilst the house lights are up meaning that seats have to be found in the pitch dark. – The reality of this: 1 usher (moi) for around 50 guests all arriving at the theatre entrance completely fazed by the pitch black. Although comprising all walks of life many many of “my” RUSH visitors were elderly and unable to walk up and down the steps with ease, their challenge compounded by the dark. Every guest who needs help with seating must be assisted so I had a very up-close and personal interaction with many audience members that day.

Crowd control involves moving large quantities of folk from outside the theatre, into the relevant line-ups in the atrium at any given location, and then moving the lineups to the actual theatre to another lineup outside their movie destination whilst trying quickly and safely “herd” those exiting the theatre out of the – by now – heaving cinema atrium in a manner that doesnt spoil a guests experience. The moveable “crowd control” barriers are indeed a site to behold and those in charge work their magic with controlling the many and varied lineups in a seamless manner remembering that at any one time for instance in TIFF Bell Lightbox – the Mother venue – there are as many as 4 simultaneous screenings, press junkets and events happening within that space.

As an added challenge there are also hordes of TIFF junkies queuing up outside theatres in temperatures of 35% just on the off chance of acquiring a “RUSH” ticket to a potentially under subscribed movie. People are mostly in a good humour – the buzz in the theatres is unbelievable and there is always off chance that a celebrity might be “in the house” and if you are in the general area all TIFF week spotting celebs on the Red Carpet outside one of the theatres; in the theatres, in a movie or simply wandering around the area is virtually a dead cert.

Being a movie-goer at the festival is not for the faint hearted. Guests range from serious TIFF aficionados who research every TIFF contender simply wanting to get a first shot at seeing a movie that will go on general release very soo, to those that want to catch a “never to be publicly released gem”. Others will take vacation after pouring over mind blowing colour coded schedules; trying to decipher the movie pass/members’ pass dynamics. They will queue up to watch back to back films whilst working out how to skew the space/time continuum in order to catch a movie at a theatre 10 minutes away from a screening that ends 5 minutes before the next one starts!!!.

Queuing amongst these are those that merely want to be part of something very special, to catch a little red-carpet reflected glamour. Whatever the reason, as a Volunteer I got to see from the inside the amount of trouble and care taken to maintain TIFF’s standing as the largest public film festival in the world and to maintain its reputation as the “go to” Film Festival for both Movie makers, celebrities, press and public..

In short TIFF has it all sewn up from the inside out

Mainly Press and Industry screenings going on here so most of these know the ropes. Got assigned as one of the theatre Ushers in two films – “Club Sandwich“ (Mexican) and Yikes anhorror film called “The Sacrament” This was an unfortunate assignment for me as I HATE the whole Horror film genre and just stood with my eyes averted the entire time and concentrated entirely on the reaction of the audience. If I’d had a paper bag I would have popped it over my head and added earplugs for complete protection – oh yes that would have been very professional because as the Usher one has to watch out for signs of videoing/texting etc, for audience members with issues.

This is an easy call at press and video screenings as this demographic are allowed “work” on electronic equipment throughout the film and many simply pop in and out to catch bits of a movie before moving onto the next screening. On one of my duties there was an exciting little incident with a journalist taking umbrage at a fellow reporter who texting continuously and overtly at the front of the theatre was assumed to be “pirating” by said journalist. The situation was superbly handled and diffused by TIFF Management and Cineplex staff but the angst and shouting added a certain dimension to the experience and it was unfortunate for me that I was the Usher actually in the theatre and therefore the first recipient of his ire.

Three more fun filled days followed and aside from queue management; general herding and ticket tearing, I was lucky enough to again get to usher in the actual movie theatre ( twice for star studded Q&A screenings) again several times. A real perk of volunteering and in no way guaranteed.

So I experienced (from the inside as it were ) a star-studded screeningof an amazing Newfoundland based film called the “Grand Seduction` with Q&A from actors and Director starring Brendan Gleeson ( Harry Potter, the Guard etc), and again that afternoon manned the theatre in a screening of “The Invisible Woman” with Ralph Fiennes and Kristen Scott Thomas.

Ushering duties which should have been the “quietest” role, unearthed some unexpected excitement. During one film I had to man the second floor gallery of a theatre for the RUSH crowd. These folk are literally “rushed” up during the last minute and inevitably this means that not all are seated whilst the house lights are up meaning that seats have to be found in the pitch dark. – The reality equals 1 usher (moi) and around 50 guests all trying to locate a seat; many of them elderly and unable to walk up and down the steps, their challenge compounded by the dark. One of my “guests” actually momentarily passed out on me at the entrance to the second floor auditorium. With the help of two willing and able members of the audience who came forward to assist we made her comfortable and established her identity and current medical status and then I was able to run out of the auditorium and quickly deploy what is known as a “headset” (a Supervisor with a means of communication to the Mother ship) I had to watch her like a hawk for the duration of the film with regular visits from TIFF “Management for support. The lady was met at the end of the film by TIFF personnel and escorted to her next film.

Crowd control involves moving large quantities of folk from outside the theatre, into the relevant line-ups in the atrium at any given location, and then moving the lineups to the actual theatre to another lineup outside their movie destination whilst trying quickly and safely “herd” those exiting the theatre out of the – by now – heaving cinema atrium in a manner that doesnt spoil a guests experience. The moveable “crowd control” barriers are indeed a site to behold and those in charge work their magic with controlling the many abnd varied lineups in a seamles manner remembering that at any one time for instance in TIFF Bell Lightbox – the Mother venue – there are as many as 4 simlutaneous screenings, press junkets and events happening within that space. As an added challenge there are also hordes of TIFF junkies queuing up outside theatres in temperatures of 35% just on the offchance of acquiring a “RUSH” ticket to a potentially under subscribed movie. By and large most of the guests are there to enjoy themselves and rarely did I hear any complaints. The endless queuing is part of the enigma that is TIFF; and of course there is always the offchance of seeing celebreties either in the theatres, on the red carpet or simply wondering around Toronto.

Just looking from the inside out I can see why the Toronto International Film Festival (the largest public film festival in the wortld) has such a great reputation, their actual staff have it all sewn up.

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Get out of Toronto for the day – 10 Unforgettably Unusual ideas for a getaway – Part 1

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Toronto is the best in terms of the diverse nature of entertainment and culture available within its realms; but traveling just a few hours outside opens up a whole “other” world of unusual possibilities.
All of the following are experiences you can only have outside the city: many afford the opportunity to make a weekend of it

#1
Hot Air Ballooning
Up, up and away with Sundance Balloons, and see the gorgeous Lake Simcoe area of Ontario from a different perspective. Hop into your wicker “gondola”, spend a tranquil hour silently floating over the countryside below and then celebrate your return to earth with one Ballooning’s oldest traditions – a Champagne toast http://www.sundanceballoons.com

#2
Warplane Heritage Museum
Reach for the skies and take a ride in a WW2 warplane. Choose from a Douglas Dakota or a de Havilland Tiger Moth bi wing
at the bottom end of the price spectrum to the chance to fly in the worlds last passenger carrying “Dam-Busting WW2 Lancaster
http://www.warplane.com

#3
St Jacobs Mennonite Story – St Jacobs Ontario
Tuck yourself into the heart of Mennonite -country at the “St Jacobs Mennonite Story” and learn about the fascinating culture of both the Mennonites and the Amish that occupy this part of Ontario. Look out for the ubiquitous black horse drawn cabs that dominate the country lanes round these parts.http://www.stjacobs.com/mennonite-story

#4
Dundern Castle in Hamilton
Immerse yourself in the authentic atmosphere of a 1830,s “Castle”. Once the dynamic home to Canada’s first Prime Minister Sir Allan McNab (and erstwhile ancestor of Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall and wife to Prince Charles), the clock has been stopped at a time somewhere in the early 1800’s as the house and docent interpreters are “dressed” to represent this historic mansion during its Regency heyday. Christmas is a great time to visit as the house lends itself beautifully to the annual “Victorian Christmas” event.
http://www.dundurn.com

#5
Bell Homestead
Not many people realize that this unassuming white Ontarian house was backdrop to the events leading up to one of the scientific breakthroughs that would reshape History. This was the home of Alexander Graham Bell; the home where he breathed life into his ideas for a “speaking telegraph and the original home of Canadian Telephone operations in 1880.
http://www.bellhomestead.ca

#6
Encaustic Workshop at the beautiful Alton Mills Art Studio
Create amazing tactile artwork at “The Hive” in the stunning Alton Mills Art Studio. Encaustic media is a melted down melange of delicious Beeswax and oil paint. “The Hive” at Alton Mills offers half day and day workshops from beginner to advanced levels with all sorts of variations between.

#7
Collingwood’s Elvis Festival
The king of Rock and Roll may be dead (or is he?) but his spirit is alive and kicking at the annual Collingwood Elvis Festival
“Long live the King”
(http://www.collingwoodelvisfestival.com/)”

#8
From the Bard to “The Biebs”
Everybody knows that Stratford Ontario is famous for its Shakespeare Festival but did you know that you can walk in the footsteps of Ontario’s pop sensation “Justin Bieber” – literally.
This ingenious Justin Bieber Tour of Stratford utilizes a specially created map detailing all his favourite childhood haunts: his favourite ice cream parlour; the schools he went to and the place he took his first date
(http://www.visitstratford.ca/justin/justin-bieber.html)

#9
Tour the Spirit Tree Cidery
Ontario is blessed with scores of great wineries but how about watching a cider press in operation and tasting samples of both hard and sweet cider in the Spirit Tree’s tasting room. Pair your cider sipping with a home baked treat fresh from the wood burning oven.
(http://www.spirittreecider.com/)

#10
Visit Ontario’s Badlands
French trappers called these “les mauvaises terres à traverser” – “the bad lands to cross” and that just about sums up the characteristics of
The Cheltenham Badlands with its
steep slopes and gullies of alternating shale and clay, forming massive spectacularly coloured (red and green) undulating rock striations.
Located on the Niagara Escarpment and by default a part of the Bruce Trail.

Part 2 of this article in a few weeks Enjoy….

Toronto’s Hidden Gems part 2

Edgewalk
Okay not so much hidden as unique and a world first – how about walking full -circle hands- free around the CN Towers main pod, 356m/1168ft above the ground.
Attatched to an overhead safety rail, walk out with a small group of six others and see Toronto from a different angle – literally. Led by trained guides, thrill seekers will be “encouraged” to push their personal limits during the walk by leaning back off the tower into the sky above Toronto’s impressive downtown city core.
$175 for 1.5 hours including 30 minutes of adrenaline fuelled “sightseeing” on the Edgewalk
http://www.edgewalkcntower.ca

• Yoga or Life Drawing at The AGO

Perfect your downward dog in one of the stunning Frank Geary designed spaces of the Art Gallery of Ontario. Swap your mirrored yoga studio for a workout amidst priceless artworks either in the Henry Moore Gallery or Galleria Italia. Currently running 3 times a week on Mondays, Thursday and Sundays: check out the website below
If yoga doesn’t appeal, how about a spot of life drawing – with a model, in one of the AGO’s public galleries?
The AGO runs a couple of 2 hour sessions on one day every week. You can book for 10 sessions or simply drop in on a first- come first- serve basis. Normally around 10 Easels are set up so arrive well before the scheduled time.
http://www.ago.net

• Ride a Segway round The historic Distillery District
A national heritage site and the home of the Gooderham and Worts Distillery for 153 year, this pedestrianized village is one of the oldest most charming spots in Toronto. With cobbled lane-ways and North America’s largest collection of Victorian Industrial architecture, the distinctive 100 foot chimney, red brick and green shuttered buildings – now house around 90 restaurants, boutiques and galleries. The perfect setting then for a guided Segway tour led by a certified instructor. The tour starts with a run down on the basic techniques followed by 60 minutes discovering the area
$69 plus tax for 60 minutes, reservations required
http://www.segwayofontario.com

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Stop Press – My picks of cool upcoming “Don’t miss” Experiences” in Toronto

Of course this is not an exhaustive list (you’d need to read “Now” cover to cover for weeks for that sort of detail) and doesn’t include the Stratford,& Shaw Festivals and summer contenders like Caribana, Canadian Stage Shakespeare in High Park etc. The following is stuff that is either upcoming, doesn’t fit a particular genre or which maybe a little out of the ball park.

Theatre
Going going gone – Until Saturday June 1 at the Yonge centre “Video Cabaret” perform this incredibly original interpretation of the “War of 1812”. One chapter in Michael Hollingsworth’s epic 21-part play-cycle, “The History of the Village of the Small Huts” this has to be seen even if you are not into Canadian History. A cross between Punch and Judy, Spitting Image and a Restoration comedy you will be blown away by this intimate theatrical production
http://www.yongecentre.ca

Agatha Christies -“The Mousetrap”
Originally commissioned by the BBC in 1952 to celebrate Queen Mary’s 80th birthday- Agatha Christie’s Mousetrap is the longest running play in the history of live theatre. Celebrating over 60 years of continuous performance it is currently playing at Lower Ossington theatre till June 19
http://www.lowerossingtontheatre.com
Phone: 416-915-6747

“The Sonnet Show” at Montgomery’s Inn
Montgomery’s Inn is the century old Inn that is home to the Humber River Shakespeare Co.
14 lines – A Shakespeare sonnet serves as an inspiration for a new play
14 days – A writer to write the play
14 minutes – each new play will run 14 minutes
Different eh?
Everything we’ve seen these guys do has been a blast so this should be no exception.
May 24
Humberrivershakespeare.ca

The Scriptease show is coming to the Tank House theatre in June. Both Naomi Sniekus and Matt Baram (collectively The National Theatre of the World) are seasoned improv artists and Second City alumni.
They do a progressive improv show at the John Candybox Theatre on Peter Street on Friday nights where beside their own brand of brilliant “seat of your pants” comedy they showcase new and promising acts.
The Scriptease show has been running for a few years on and off in some of Toronto’s most interesting theatre spaces such as “Passe Muraille” and the now defunct “Bread & Circus” stage.
Here’s how it works: they ask ten well known playwrights to write the first two pages of a play. They do a cold reading of the two pages and then improvise the rest of the play. They are in costume and there’s a set.
http://www.yongecenter.ca
thenationaltheatreoftheworld.com

“Book of Mormon”
Currently playing, this irreverently witty, camp and gobsmackingly politically incorrect stage show is a collaboration between South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone, and Avenue Q co-creator Robert Lopez (so you get the picture right?) playing at the Princess of Wales theatre until June 9.
Look out for the welcoming committee of suited and booted young Mormons recruiting outside the theatre before each show!
http://www.mirvish.com/…/thebookofmormon

The Tall Ships are visiting Toronto Harbour in June
To see our modern skyline vying with the jumble of masts from tall ships berthed on Toronto Harbour is unforgettable!
Don’t miss the official launch of the TALL SHIPS® 1812 Tour. 20-23 June 2013.
Toronto will be the only port to host the full fleet of ships as they travel throughout Ontario during this pan-provincial event to commemorate the bicentennial of the War of 1812. .
For more info See my blog “The Tall Ships have left Toronto harbour written after their last visit in July 2010.
Torontowaterfrontfest.com

Free Movies at Yonge/Dundas Square
One of Toronto’s many free outdoor summer movie pop-ups opens at City Yonge Dundas Square end June through August.
Edward Scissorhands/ Napoleon Dynamite, Anchorman and other off the wall movies
Free start at 9pm Tuesdays
YDSSQUARE.ca

Oh and if you’re into ZeppelinTribute band Zeppelinesque play Yonge Dundas square on July 19 as part of Indiefest

Summer Music Series at “Casa Loma”
The wonderful homegrown ballad -maker Jesse Pitcher pitches up on June 25 at Casa Loma as part of their Summer Music series
Oh and for Fathers Day how about becoming a Knight for the day? – also at Casa Loma
Plus you can also learn archery, bee keeping, or track ghosts there this summer
Just sayin…….
See website for details
Www.casaloma.org

The Warplane Heritage Museum – Hamilton
It’s “fly in a WW2 plane” experience begins in June. There are around 16 warplanes that you can book a flight on, with the iconic Lancaster bomber being at the top of the tree. For a cool $2800 or so (with tax receipt) you can have an hour’s flight on the only passenger operating Lancaster in the world!!
She and the other aircraft start flying June 1 but a warning: the Lancaster’s flying days are numbered – she is almost at her sell-by date. For more info visit my blog on the museum “Bombs Away” 18 September 2012 or visit
Www.warplane.com

Coming in October at the Yonge Centre – “The Norman Conquest trilogy”
This Alan Ayckbourne trilogy (written in 1973) has lost none of its freshness and appeal because it’s subject matter – the human condition remains unchanged no matter which century.
6 characters take the stage in three different plays that take place on the same weekend in different parts of the house and garden
Each play “Table Manners”, “Living Together” and “Round and Round the Garden” – is self-contained, and may be watched in any order, some of the scenes overlap, and on occasion a character’s exit from one play corresponds with his/her entrance in another.
http://www.yongecenter.ca
Soulpepper.ca

Oh and for any “I Love Lucy fans, some of the antics of the feisty red-headed iconic heroine are being showcased in the upcoming “I Love Lucy” stage show in November
Mirvish.com

Over and Out

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Toronto’s Hidden Gems Part 1

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The Elgin and Winter Garden Theatres

Elgin and Winter Garden theatres tour
Go off-stage with a free guided tour of one of the world’s last stacked double -decker theatres at the Elgin and Winter Garden Theatre centre.
The action takes place behind the scenes with this docent-led tour of this National Historic site. Lasting 1½ hours, it includes the history and restoration of the complex with a visit to both the original and new lobbies; the elegant Elgin Theatre and the floral themed Winter Garden with its ceiling vines and murals. Check out the world’s largest collection of vaudeville scenery and the Winter Garden’s original Simplex Silent Film Projector. Thursdays at 5 p.m.; Saturdays at 11 a.m.
Adults: $12, Students and Seniors: $10 (includes HST) Cash only. No reservations required.
http://www.heritagetrust.on.ca/ewg

• Casa Loma
Take an archery class in the grounds of a Castle.
Don the arm guard, place the nock into the bow string, brace the bow and release ….. William Tell eat your heart out. A unique city archery experience back dropped by a faux gothic castle and overlooking the city and CN Tower below, this is a hands-on workshop suited to adult beginners that will afford all participants the chance to develop and hone their archery skills.
Class size is small (10 people per session) and Reservation is a must.
Other archery options are also available see website for more details
You can also do ghost tracking, watch a Shakespeare play or listen to jazz in the gardens….
See http://www.casaloma.net for details of all upcoming events

• Sail on an original WW2 powered Tall Ship – SS Kajama
One of three masted vessels run by the “Great Lakes Schooner Company” – Kajama is a 1930’s 3-masted schooner that now spends her autumn years plying Lake Ontario.
Whilst she initially sets off under power, once the wind picks up her sails are unfurled and she is set free to sail as history intended. For those that want to hoist a mainsail or two there is the option to participate in sailing but landlubbers can simply sit back, have a snack or a drink and enjoy the sail.
Stop press …..
The “Tall Ships” armada is coming to Toronto 20-23 June – this is an incredible sight – the masts of 15 or so vessels vying for attention with the skyscrapers of Toronto’s skyline.
http://www.tallshipcruisestoronto.com/

Over and Out