Category Archives: Our Roncesvalles

Garden Days on Roncy

While celebrating Garden Days 2018, the Roncesvalles Village BIA reflects on the importance of streetside gardens to our community and streetscape. Garden Days is Canada’s national celebration of gardening and its impact on communities across the country. Garden Days begins on Saturday June 16 and concludes on Sunday June 24.

RoncyWorks, the Dundas Roncesvalles Peace Garden, and the Roncesvalles Village BIA will be hosting a garden tour on Sunday June 24th from 1:00 to 3:00 pm starting at the Peace Garden, at the intersection of Dundas and Roncesvalles.

Garden at 233 Roncesvalles Avenue

The planting and maintenance of streetside  gardens is an ongoing collaboration between all three groups to create a colourful and scenic environment, and is supported by the Roncesvalles Village BIA.

Established in 2011, RoncyWorks is a community volunteer group made up of residents that aim to enhance the Roncesvalles Avenue streetscape.

The history of the existing sidewalk gardens on Roncesvalles Avenue dates back to 2009, when the Roncesvalles Village BIA set up the sub-committee named Roncesvalles Renewed to focus on potential enhancements for the street during the anticipated reconstruction. Composed of community members and the BIA’s Beautification Committee Chair, Roncesvalles Renewed consulted local groups, residents’ associations and key stakeholders. The group recommended the construction of garden beds, made design recommendations to City planners, and assisted in the planting of more than 100 diverse, native trees. In 2011,  the City of Toronto constructed 21 garden beds along Roncesvalles. The RVBIA assumed responsibility for their maintenance, and began the collaborations with volunteers to maintain the street’s garden beds, along with help from member businesses.

The Friends of Dundas Roncesvalles Peace Garden is a sister organization formed in 2009 to turn a barren jut of concrete at a busy intersection into a green, commemorative, community gathering place. Multiple community partners pressed forward the remarkable design and interesting features seen today. The Mississaugas of the New Credit First Nation joined in to share history identifying the origin of this portion of Dundas Street as an Indigenous path, and local participation in the War of 1812. They worked together with the Peace Garden group on the City’s first cooperative community arts project with a Toronto youth group, which produced a set of 24 engraved pavers known as the Peace Path. It winds around the Garden. These projects are illustrated on a jointly sponsored plaque. At the entrance to the Peace Path is the City’s first utility box painting by an Indigenous artist, created to celebrate the opening of the Peace Garden in 2016. Each year Indigenous plantings, complete with story and celebration, are featured. This year, Chief Stacey Laforme and two local children planted sacred tobacco. Watch it grow, in a large circle on the eastern side of the Peace Garden.

Garden Days is about celebrating how gardening contributes to a cleaner environment and happier community, which is something the RVBIA has prioritized with their streetside gardens. The RVBIA, RoncyWorks and the Friends of DRPG volunteers have prioritized the planting of more pollinator, and sustainable perennial plants that can weather Toronto winters and regrow in the spring. Annual plants, typically colourful flowers, complement the perennials to create lush gardens bordering the street and sidewalk. We encourage you to take a walk down Roncesvalles to see or sit by the gardens, watch for a butterfly, and enjoy the close-to-nature ambiance of the street.

We will be producing a series of blog posts to celebrate our gardens and the extraordinary gardeners who volunteer their time to design and maintain them.

Mural Artists to Unveil Preliminary Design Elements at Roncy Rocks for Community Feedback

After two community consultations, the preliminary design elements for the new mural will be presented by artists Philip Cote and Jim Thierry Bravo at Roncy Rocks on June 9. at 1:30 pm. They  will be on hand to discuss their components with community members until 3:30 pm. The community consultation will take place at the site of the future mural oat Garden and Roncesvalles Avenue, next to Solarski Pharmacy. Roncy Rocks will serve as another opportunity for community members to participate in the mural envisioning process.

The mural project is being funded by the Roncesvalles Village BIA in partnership with the City of Toronto’s StreetARToronto program.

To learn more about the project, read our post  A New Mural for Roncesvalles Village.

More information on Rocky Rocks can be found on their website.

 

Mural Artists to Discuss Design Concepts with Community

As part of the StreetARToronto Parntership Program, the Roncesvalles Village BIA has commissioned two artists renowned for their public art, Philip Cote and Jim Thierry Bravo, to produce mural for Roncesvalles Village. The mural will be located at the intersection of Garden Ave and Roncesvalles Ave. 

Part of the process involves gathering feedback by the artists from the community. We’ve held an online survey to gather initial thoughts around the thematic framework. During the second stage of our consultation the community will be able to meet and speak with the artists on June 2nd from 1:30 to 3:00 pm. The third stage will include a survey and consultation to be held at Roncy Rocks on June 9th from 1:30 to 3:00 pm at the site of the new mural.

To learn more about the project, read our post  A New Mural for Roncesvalles Village.

To register for the community consultation to be held June 2, 2018 from 1:30 to 3:30 pm at the High Park Library, please register on our eventbrite page.

see and discuss the proposed concept, meet the artists during Roncy Rocks on Saturday June 9th, at Roncesvalles and Garden Avenue between 1:30 and 3:00 pm.

Start Your Holidays on Roncy!

The Holiday Season is fast approaching. Kick it off with us on December 1 and 2!

On December 1st Shop Roncy Late. Participating shops will have promotions, sales and activities until 9:00PM, with select shops staying open until 10:00 PM.

December 2nd bring your family to Roncy and visit Santa at Willem and Jools at 125 Roncesvalles in the early afternoon before you make your way over to the High Park Library for story telling followed by a fake snowball fight on the Library lawn. Carolers will sing in the season during the day and at dusk as our community tree is lit in front of the Roncesvalles United Church.

There is no cost for our community events, but we encourage you to bring donation items for the Roncesvalles United Church Sunday Meal Program, Dinner with Dignity. This program serves 16,000 fresh meals per year; lunch and dinner every Sunday. Every little bit helps! The church accepts donations Monday to Friday between 9:30 AM and 5:00 PM or all day Sunday. We will be accepting perishable food items on their behalf from 4:00 PM – 5:30 PM on December 2nd.

Schedule of Events:

December 1st
Late Night Shopping
Shops are open until 9:00 PM with special in store activities or promotions
*Select stores open until 10:00 PM

December 2nd
Holiday deals continue along Roncy all day long!

1:00PM – 4:00 PM – Santa at Willem and Jools
Enjoy hot cider and cookies and get your photo taken with Santa
*No cost, pictures will be emailed afterwards
4:00 PM : Storytelling at High Park Library
4:30 PM : Fake Snowball fight on the library long
5:15 PM : Community Tree Lighting in front of the Roncesvalles United Church

Donations accepted outside from 4:00 PM – 5:30 PM.
Otherwise please bring them to the church office.

Follow our Event Page  to stay up to date!

Roncesvalles Village Volunteer Appreciation Dinner

Our Volunteer Appreciation Dinner, this year was once again a huge success.

We are so lucky to live in a village in this big city, where many of our residents and shopkeepers believe in contributing their time and effort — and cash — to making our community better in so many ways.

Having people who are willing to spare time for volunteer work is not something we take for granted, Life get’s so busy that it’s hard to fit in one more task. Yet, so many in this community make time despite the pressures, and for that we are so grateful.

For the second year, we held The Roncesvalles Volunteer Appreciation Dinner to thank those who contribute significant time to the enhancement of our street and the BIA’s community events. 

Our special guest this year was Carolyn King of the Mississaugas of the New Credit First Nation, who was also an early champion of the Dundas Roncesvalles Peace Garden. She was involved in sharing heritage stories, and inspiring young artists in making designs for the Peace Path. She consulted on native trees and plants as well as the Garden design, and continues to be a Friend of the Peace Garden. Carolyn initiated the Moccasin Trail project, which marks places of Indigenous history and invites observers to understand why these places are significant. The Peace Garden is marked with the Anishinaabe moccasin design. Carolyn is a leader in advancing the causes of recognition, renewal and justice for her people. She encourages better relations with Canada’s Indigenous people, and is a model of inspiration for Indigenous and Non-Indigenous people alike. To know her is to love her, and to laugh with her, whenever possible.

We gave special recognition to a few new volunteers and some who took on new roles:

Welcome Aboard Award for New Volunteers:

  • Daniele Stoddard: social media for Roncy Rocks and the Roncesvalles Polish Festival
  • Karen Pivnick and Ken: for adopting the native garden near The Westerley 

Snowball Award for Volunteer taking on new roles

  • Rahel Schneeberger-Brown: for planting an edible garden at George Brown and spearheading activation of the north end during the Polish Festival, with the addition of a DJ stage, sponsored and operated by George Brown and friends
  • Alexis Victor: for her multiple roles including sponsorship, graphics, the Art Zone, and the Art Gallery at Back Lanes Studio 

Roncesvalles Abroad Award for volunteer efforts extending from Roncesvalles and beyond.

  • Emma Coulter: for her ever increasing commitments to the Dinner With Dignity program at the Roncesvalles United Church which serves 16,000 meals per year.

A big thank you from all who attended to our Members who contributed the exceptionally tasty food:

 
La Cubana
Pizzeria Defina
Alimentari
Barque Smokehouse and Butcher Bar
De la Mer
The Dizzy
The Ace
Mable’s Bakery and Specialty Foods
McAuslan Brewery

 

A delighted thank you from all our community volunteers to the businesses that contributed volunteer gifts:

A Good Read
Alimentari Italian Grocery
Another Story Bookshop
Barque Butcher Bar
Barque Smokehouse
Cookery
De La Mer
Drapes and More
Image Photography
Kennel Café
La Cubana
Lexco.Art
Moretti Hair
My Olive Roncesvalles
Pollocks Home Hardware
Pizzeria Defina 
Roncesvalles Apple Specialists
Roncesvalles Welcome Guardian Pharmacy
Scooter Girl
Snap Fitness
Stasis Preserves Deli & Pantry
Sweet Thrills
The Ace
The Dizzy Gastro Sports Pub
The Mercantile
The Revue Cinema
Willem & Jools 
Wine Rack Roncesvalles

And last, but not least, a very special heartfelt thank you to David Neinstein of Barque Smokehouse and Barque Butcher Bar who orchestrated this wonderful event, and for our Masters of Ceremonies:  Reverend Anne Hines of the Roncesvalles United Church and Brian Bertrand of the High Park Library who challenged our knowledge of the Village, kept us laughing, and helped make this evening one to remember.

If you or someone you know is interested in volunteering with the BIA, contact us at info@nullroncesvallesvillage.ca