Toronto Through My Lens

Category: Special occasions (Page 1 of 3)

A Christmas Walk

Well, it is a black and rainy Christmas this year in Toronto. Regardless, I took a little photo-spin yesterday to see how the city is setting up for the season.

There are some much-loved (at least by me) Toronto traditions missing this year: unfortunately no festive windows at The Bay on Queen and Yonge (due to the massive construction of the new subway on Queen Street). The Flower Show at the Allan Gardens conservatory is extremely scaled back due to the renovation of the Palm House, and “Holiday Fair”, normally held at City Hall, was moved to Mel Lastman Square in North York (I suspect, again, due to the mess caused by the Queen Street subway project). Despite these, it is still Christmas in the city… a special time. Here is a bit of what I encountered yesterday:

Allan Gardens Christmas Flower Show

I wish I had more shots to post here, but the few below were the extent of the Flower Show this year:

“Winter Glow” at Yonge-Dundas Square

Yonge-Dundas Square had a mini-festival going on, although I only saw a couple of people there. There were carnival rides, a 45-foot-tall Ferris Wheel, the “Great Canadian Carousel” and a few midway games.

On the Yonge Street side there was a 40-foot “Remembrance Tree”, sponsored by the Rotary Club. Visitors make a donation to the cause, then receive a yellow ribbon on which to write a message to a loved one who has passed.

Eaton Centre

As usual, the Eaton Centre was abuzz with people, a massive Christmas tree (114-foot high, said to be the tallest in North America) and giant glittering reindeer:


Christmas Lights: Rosedale & Bloor Street East

Finding a few dry moments from the incessant rain of late, I took a little spin last night to see some of the Christmas lights in Rosedale and on Bloor Street East.


The owners of this Rosedale home went to some *serious* effort to recreate The Grinch Who Stole Christmas, along with a miniature Whoville:

Moving on to Bloor Street East:

Allegedly, there are 138 lit Christmas trees along Bloor Street this Christmas; I never stopped to count…

Remembrance Day 2023

A sombre Remembrance Day ceremony took place today around the Cenotaph at Old City Hall, 60 Queen Street West.

The City focused this year’s events around the 70th anniversary of the Korean Armistice Agreement that brought about the end of the Korean War. Other milestones honoured today were the 75th anniversary of Canadian participation in peacekeeping missions for the United Nations and the centennials of the Naval Reserve of Canada and HMCS York, a Royal Canadian Navy Reserve Division in Toronto.

The ceremonies began at 10:45 AM, starting with the singing of our national anthem, a reading of In Flanders Fields, a two-minute silence at 11:00, and a trumpeteer playing The Last Post:

A fly-past by the Canadian Harvard Aircraft Association (CHAA)
Mayor Chow delivered her Remembrance Day message
The laying of wreaths on the Cenotaph
The ceremony concluded with people leaving their poppies on the Cenotaph
A special “Toronto Remembers” presentation on Queen Street West, outside Old City Hall

Other locations for today’s Remembrance Day ceremonies were:

  • Scarborough War Memorial: 2190 Kingston Road
  • East York Civic Centre – Memorial Gardens: 850 Coxwell Avenue
  • York Cemetery – Cenotaph: 160 Beecroft Road
  • York Civic Centre Cenotaph: 2700 Eglinton Avenue West
  • Etobicoke Civic Centre – Cenotaph: 399 The West Mall
  • Fort York National Historic Site: 100 Garrison Road

Halloween on Church Street!

It was another very busy Halloween night on Church Street once again this year. The weather was crisp and quite cool, but there was no rain to speak of. The turnout was massive, having a lot to do I’m sure with events re-energizing after COVID-19.

The mayhem ran from Carlton Street to Gloucester Street, and every inch of the street was packed with people. There were so many inventive and impressive costumes; people’s creativity never ceases to amaze me:

The non-slideshow version is here

Here’s a short video of the scene at Church & Wellesley Streets last night:

Happy Canada Day!

Time for some fireworks! The photoset below is from the Canada Day celebration of our 150th birthday. On July 1, 2017 the CN Tower hosted a massive fireworks display with a live music stream of Canadian music from Boom 97.3. Here’s how it went down:

Here’s a video of the entire show:

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