BARRY MANILOW is a singer, songwriter, actor and producer. I’m not any of those things, but we do have self-quarantine in common. Says Barry – “In the first couple of months I was OK with it. I’m in that 70-year-old world, so I won’t want to tempt fate. But as time has gone on, it’s been rattling all of us. Restaurants are closed, theatres are closed, movies are closed. There’s nowhere to go.”Barry continues – “I’m lucky that I don’t live in a one-room apartment. I used to when I was younger (Barry was in a Brooklyn slum; and your’s truly in a studio on Eglinton Avenue East in Toronto). I know that plenty of people are living in one room. After all these months it must be very difficult to play by the rules.” – Barry Manilow’s Bubble, NYT, October 18/2020.As for me, during this ongoing lockdown: both the city and the house have never looked so clean; ‘torontosavvy’ needs everyday attention; I’ve written two personal books; we spent 14 summer afternoons doing driveway talks with friends and neighbours. They supplied their own wine and we set out the tables and chairs; I made good use of Kanopy and its huge collection of free movies; got my haircut twice; exercised and walked often; had one of the best gardens ever; broke in my new camera; looked forward to reading ‘Toronto Life’, the Globe and Mail, and the Sunday NY Times; became a regular e-mail correspondent; and I kept up-to-date on what’s happening south of the border. (That would be enough for two quarantines). Indeed, there’s misery all around us, but look on the brightest side possible. As Barry Manilow puts it – “I suffered for all of you. None of you need to suffer anymore.” <PHOTO – Princess of Wales Theatre, Toronto – Mirvish Productions>


<FREDERICK VICTOR POOLE seems to have painted every significant building in TORONTO. These three begin with DEERING’S THEATRE, Front Street East at Scott Street, 1912><THEATRE ST. PATRICK’S STREET, north of Pullan Place, 1912 ><THEATRE ROYAL, King Street West, east of York Street, 1912.  All of these paintings are from The Baldwin Collection of Art, Toronto Public Library.>


*Berkeley Street Theatre, 26 Berkeley Street,
*Bluma Appel Theatre, 27 Front Street East,
*CAA (formerly Panasonic) Theatre, 651 Yonge St.,
*Elgin Theatre, 189 Yonge Street,
*Fleck Dance Theatre, 207 Queens Quay W.,
*Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts (Opera House), 145 Queen St. W.,
*Princess of Wales Theatre, 300 King St. W.,
*Royal Alexandra Theatre, 260 King St. W.,
*Sony Centre for the Performing Arts, 1 Front St. E.,
*Streetcar Crow’s Theatre, 345 Carlaw Av.,
*St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts, 27 Front St. E.,
*Toronto Centre for the Arts, 5040 Yonge St.,
*Winter Garden Theatre, 189 Yonge Street,
*Young Centre for the Performing Arts, Distillery District,
*Young People’s Theatre, 165 Front Street East, THEATRES
*Alumnae Theatre, 70 Berkeley Street,
*Bad Dog Comedy Theatre, 875 Bloor Street West,
*Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, 12 Alexander St.,
*Cahoots Theatre Company, staging diversity, 388 Queen St. E.,
*Coal Mine Theatre, 1454 Danforth Av.,
*Factory Theatre, 125 Bathurst Street,
*Hart House Theatre, 7 Hart House Circle, University of Toronto,
*Lower Ossington Theatre, 100a Ossington Ave.,
*MacMillan Theatre, Faculty of Music, University of Toronto,
*National Ballet of Canada, Four Seasons Centre, 145 Queen Street West,
*Red Sandcastle Theatre, 922 Queen St. E.,
*Rose Theatre, 1 Theatre Lane, Brampton, Ontario,
*Second City, sketch comedy theatre that’s launched many careers, 51 Mercer Street,
*Shaw Festival Theatres, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario,
*Stratford Festival Theatres, Stratford, Ontario,
*Storefront Theatre, 955 Bloor Street West, pushes creative boundaries, an original,
*Tarragon Theatre, 30 Bridgman Ave.,
*Theatre Centre, 1115 Queen St. W.,
*Theatre Passe Muraille, 16 Ryerson Avenue,
*Toronto Dance Theatre, 80 Winchester St., Cabbagetown,
*Yuk Yuk’s Comedy Club, 224 Richmond St. West, HALLS
*Danforth Music Hall, 147 Danforth Av.,
*George Weston Recital Hall, 5040 Yonge Street,
*Glenn Gould Studio, CBC Broadcasting Centre, 250 Front St. W.,
*Harbourfront Centre, 235 Queens Quay West,
*Hugh’s Room, 2261 Dundas St. W.,
*Koerner Hall, 273 Bloor Street West,
*Massey Hall, 178 Victoria Street,
*Opera House, 735 Queen St. East,
*Roy Thomson Hall, 60 Simcoe Street,
*Trinity-St. Paul’s Centre, 427 Bloor St. W., http://www.trinitystpauls.caCENTRAL CITY CINEMAS
*Carlton, 9 screens, fully licensed, $5 Tuesdays, 20 Carlton Street,
*Grand Gerrard Theatre, 1035 Gerrard St. East, independent, film screenings, live music, comedy, performance art, one of Toronto’s oldest cinemas,
*Hot Docs Ted Rogers, specializing in documentaries and films seldom shown in the multiplex, 506 Bloor Street West,
*Market Square, 80 Front Street East, several screens,
*Mount Pleasant, 675 Mount Pleasant Road, big screen, 2nd run features, some European films, etc.,
*Ontario Science Centre Omnimax,770 Don Mills Road,
*Paradise Cinema, 1006 Bloor Street West, newly restored, independent, an outstanding schedule of films old and new,
*Regent, 551 Mount Pleasant Road, 2nd run features, big screen,
*Revue, 400 Roncesvalles Avenue, neighbourhood cinema, second-run, documentary & foreign features,
*Royal, documentaries, festivals, foreign, second-run features, 608 College Street,
*Scotiabank Toronto Imax (Cineplex), 259 Richmond Street West, multiplex & IMAX, 14 screens,
*TIFF Bell Lightbox, 5 screens, movies that don’t play in the multiplex, for times and schedule go to
*Varsity Cinemas (Cineplex), Manulife Centre, 55 Bloor Street West, 12 screens,
*Yonge-Dundas Cinemas (Cineplex), multiplex & IMAX, 26 screens, 10 Dundas Street East,
******Complete movie times, Toronto cinemas, reviews, from NOW Magazine, a handy address – IN & AROUND TORONTO
*Aga Khan Museum, 77 Wynford Drive,
*Art Gallery of Hamilton, 123 King St. West, Hamilton,
*Art Gallery of Mississauga,
*Art Gallery of Ontario, 317 Dundas Street West,
*Bata Shoe Museum, only two in the world, 327 Bloor St. West,
*Black Creek Pioneer Village, heritage museum, partly outdoors, 1000 Murray Ross Parkway,
*Casa Loma, 1 Austin Terrace, Toronto’s castle,
*Fort York National Historic Site, 250 Fort York Boulevard,
*Gardiner Museum of Ceramic Arts, 111 Queen’s Park,
*Hockey Hall of Fame, 30 Yonge Street,
*Justina M. Barnicke Gallery, University of Toronto, 7 Hart House Circle,
*Mackenzie House Museum, 82 Bond Street, interprets Victorian life of the 1860’s, 416-302-6915
*McMichael Canadian Art Collection, Kleinburg,
*Metropolitan Toronto Police Museum & Discovery Centre, 40 College St.,
*MZTV Museum of Television, 64 Jefferson Ave., Liberty Village,
*Ontario Science Centre, 770 Don Mills Road,
*Power Plant, Harbourfront Centre, 231 Queens Quay West, free,
*Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada Museum & Archives,
*Royal Ontario Museum, 100 Queens Park,
*Ryerson Image Centre (RIC), 33 Gould Street, large photography gallery, free admission,
*Spadina House Museum and gardens, 235 Spadina Rd., 416-392-6910,
*Textile Museum of Canada, 55 Centre Street,
*Varley Art Gallery of Markham, 216 Main Street, Markham, http://www.varleygallery.caCITY CENTRE ART GALLERIES
*A Space, established contemporary, 401 Richmond St. West,
*Barbara Edwards Contemporary, 1069 Bathurst Street,
*Bay of Spirits, 156 Front St. West, First Nations art,
*Canadian Sculpture Centre, 500 Church Street,
*Christopher Cutts, 21 Morrow Avenue,
*Clint Roenisch, 190 St. Helens Avenue, contemporary, avant-garde,
*Corkin Gallery, 7 Tank House Lane, Distillery District,
*Daniel Faria, contemporary, converted warehouse, 188 St. Helens Avenue,
*Diaz Contemporary, 100 Niagara Street,
*Koffler Gallery, Artscape Youngplace, 180 Shaw Street,
*Mercer Union, contemporary art, 1286 Bloor St. West,
*Mira Godard, 22 Hazelton Avenue, long-established, Canadian & international artists,
*Olga Korper, 17 Morrow Avenue, long-established,
*Propeller Centre for the Visual Arts, 30 Abell Street, founded in 1996,
*Sandra Ainsley, 100 Sunrise Avenue #150, leading dealer in contemporary glass,
*Stephen Bulger, 1356 Dundas St. West, long-established photography gallery,
*Thompson Landry Gallery, 32 Distillery Lane, Distillery District, specializes in Quebec art, both contemporary & the masters, http://www.thompsonlandry.comLGBTQ COMMUNITY INFO
*(ArQuives), formerly the Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives, 2nd largest in the world, 34 Isabella Street,
*Legit, 2nd Thursday monthly, immigration legal counsel, 519 Centre, 519 Church Street,
*Metropolitan Community Church (MCC), 115 Simpson Avenue, just above Gerrard St. East,
*Out and Out, LGBTQ outdoors club,
*Pink Pages, gay, lesbian, trans, bi, leather, queer directory,
*ProudFM 103.9, Toronto’s LGBTQ radio station,
*Rainbow Railroad, a charity which helps individuals in countries where being LGBTQ invites violence, imprisonment or even death,
*Righteously Outrageous Twirling Corps,
*Xtra magazine, gay news from Toronto, Vancouver & Ottawa,


Like many cities and towns TORONTO has its share of unique, hidden stuff well worth a look.  <ABOVE – An East End mural><The Terra Cotta House, 20 Jerome Street><The final resting place of famed pianist Glenn Gould in Mount Pleasant Cemetery. Mr. Gould was buried beside his parents.><The infinity swimming pool on top of the Thompson Hotel, 55 Wellington Street West><Highway 401 pedestrian overpass><Canada’s largest pipe organ, Metropolitan United Church, Queen East at Church Street><Ryerson University’s secret garden off Gould Street, close to Yonge><Interior of the Native Family Services Building on College Street><One of those unique TORONTO houses><And it’s a city near water – sometimes too much>


‘THE ONE’ is a skyscraper under construction, which will turn out to be the tallest building in Canada.Designed by the U.K.’s Foster + Partners, with developer Sam Muzrahi, the building will rise 1,014 feet (85 storeys), and occupy a large piece of prime real estate.The total cost for the property is reputed to be about $1-billion, and as of September/2020 75% of the apartments have already been sold.The first 18 storeys will include restaurants, event spaces, two major retailers and a luxury Hyatt hotel under the Andaz brand. The retail portion is scheduled to open in 2020. The residential section will have a total of 416 units. Four penthouses will be included, along with four storeys of parking underground. The structure will connect with the Bloor-Yonge subway station and the underground walkway system – a smaller version of TORONTO’s PATH network.<ABOVE – a rendering of how this building will dominate the Bloor-Yonge intersection.>


For Your Information – As recently as 30 years ago, the rusty-patched bumble bee was one of the most common in TORONTO. In the past 15 years, it has become exceedingly rare and is listed as endangered in Ontario and Canada. Suspected causes of the species’ decline include climate change, pesticide use, spread of disease and loss of habitat. The rusty-patched bumble bee was once an important pollinator of wildflowers. – Chris Darling, senior curator, Entomology, Royal Ontario Museum, TORONTO.

Photo: Susan Day/UW–Madison, Wisconsin Arboretum – Rusty-Patched Bumble Bee


Pumpkin patches can be found all over Canada and the United States. They’re very versatile when it comes to pies and other desserts; some grow into amazing sizes, with the largest up to a ton; raw pumpkins provide food energy – an excellent source when eaten daily; and on Hallowe’en they’re in entertainment mode. The kids love them, and so do TORONTO’s black squirrels, who tear them apart and chew them up.