Friday, October 29, 2010

What to do About the Town Oct 29th – 31st

Halloween weekend is here and with Winter quickly approaching, we found events that will appeal to all. Don’t forget to pick up treats for the little ones that will surely be knocking on your door Sunday night.

International Festival of Authors

The 31st annual IFOA includes readings, lectures, discussions as well as book signings. This event at the Harbourfront Centre showcases the Scotiabank Giller Prize, Govenor General’s Literary Awards and Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction finalists.

TIFF Halloween Activities

This all weekend event at TIFF Bell Lightbox hosts scary movies, crafts and family friendly activities. Prices vary by event.


Flight Center Travel Expo

We love to travel so this is one that can’t be missed! This event is will have giveaways, vacation deals and advice from leading travel companies. Held at the MTTC North Building on Saturday only. Free.

Howling Hootennany

Black Creek Pioneer Village celebrates Halloween with haunted mazes, creepy creature shows, storytelling, pumpkin carving and much, much more! Free with regular admission.


Back at Exhibition Place for its 18th year, Screemers has re-built its Haunted House and even boasts a licensed Vampire Lounge. This event has rides not meant for the faint of heart but is guaranteed to be a screaming good time!

Zombie Dance

Inspired by Seth Grahame-Smith’s novel Pride and Prejudice and Zombies (retelling of the Jane Austen classic, Pride and Prejudice), this event pays homage to zombies of the 19th century. It’ll be a sight to see zombies grooving in torn regency gowns and pantaloons. Montgomery’s Inn.

*** Don't Forget: The Walking Dead Premieres Sunday @ 10pm on AMC! ***

Have a Safe and Happy Halloween!

images from official websites.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

How to Travel with Others and Keep Your Sanity

As you’ve probably noticed, our blog took a longer than usual hiatus while I, Veronica, was on holidays in sunny California. I wanted to thank Ashley for keeping up with it despite my abandonment.

I can understand how people would much rather travel on their own than with someone. When you’re on holidays with friend, spouse or other, you’re constantly trying to placate the other, making sure their needs are met before your own. As good and fun as that may be, as a fellow traveler, keep this in mind: you’re responsible for your own happiness.

If you don’t speak up and communicate what your needs are, don’t be upset or disappointed when things don’t pan out they way you thought it would be in your head. You can admit it; we’ve all done it as soon as the vacation is booked. You imagine how each and every day will be like and then have the obnoxious task of fulfilling these sometimes unreasonable dreams.

My goal with each trip is to simply have fun and not stress the small stuff. I am an advocate for being prepared though. I always do a web search about the city and area that I’ll be visiting, not just for sights but for places to eat. A lot of people don’t take into consideration how frustrating it is to find a place to dine when you’re not familiar with the area.

I do recommend picking up a guide book, having something tangible in your bag while out has been a saviour each time. One of the best I find for size, helpfulness and value are the collections of Frommer’s Day to Day Guide books.

When planning on which sight to see, it’s important that you group things into at least two lists. I usually have 3: the must see, would like to see and if we have time to see. The must see list will be comprised of the places you cannot leave without visiting. This is particularly important when visiting a large city or area with many activities that you may not be able to cover given your time. And if you miss something from your list, don’t fret, you can catch it next time.

I would recommend that you check on the weather situation before packing. Just because you head south, doesn't necessarily mean warm weather. That tiny yellow, polka dot bikini might not get any use at Venice beach in December when the average beach temperature is only 18 degrees Celsius.

If you're like me and require many outfits to choose from, finding space in your suitcase can be a challenge. Having the experience of packing for month long vacations in Asia, I've learned the best and only way to optimize on space is by rolling all your articles of clothing. Don't worry about wrinkles! You can iron them out upon arrival.

Most importantly, be self-sufficient. If you find yourself with some down or alone time, make the most of it, regroup and rest up for the next exciting thing on your lists. The perfect trip should be a combination of pre-planned events with enough spontaneity to allow for unexpected, last minute fun.

Images (c) Veronica & CityGirlScapes
image o1 - Newport Beach

image o2 - Santa Monica Pier

image o3 - Balboa Pier riptides

image o4 - Fountains at Bellagio
image o5 - Mojave Desert

Thursday, October 21, 2010

What To Do About The Town – October 22-24, 2010

Now that Veronica is back from sunny California, our regularly scheduled socializing will pick back up and we will be able to make more frequent posts again. In the mean time, here are some great city events to keep our minds off those long ago warm and sunny days.


Sherway Gardens’ Hometown Fair (local community groups) Show and sale of handmade items including woodwork, quilts, ornaments, toys and baked goods. Oct 21 – 23. Free.

Haunted Streets Of Downtown Toronto Guided tour with ghost stories. Oct 21 to 31, 7 pm. $10.


The Chocolate Ball (Sick Kids Fdn) Chocolate-themed gala party with Disco Inferno, DJs, a silent auction and more. $150.

Night Of The Literary Dead Zombie book launch party for Andrea Subissati's book When There's No More Room In Hell: The Sociology Of the Living Dead. 10 pm. Free. Cherry Cola's Rock N' Rolla Cabaret & Lounge.

Take Back The Night Toronto Rape Crisis Centre/Multicultural Women Against Rape celebrates 30 years of struggle, resistance and liberation with a community fair and rally (4-8 pm), a march (8-9:30 pm) and an afterparty wth DJs (9:30-11 pm). Yonge-Dundas Square.


Salsa Saturday Dinner Cruise Interactive salsa lessons from the Afrolatino Dance Co and dancing aboard the Captain Matthew Flinders. 7 pm-10 pm. $60. 207 Queen's Quay W,

Toronto Zombie Walk Dress up and join other zombies for a walk ending at Christie Pitts park. 3 pm. Free. NW corner Trinity Bellwoods Park (Dundas and Gore Vale),

Health, Food, Creativity Wellness fair. Oct 23 and Oct 24, 10 am-7 pm. $10, stu/srs $6, children free. LucSculpture, 663 Greenwood,

Toronto Roller Derby Semi-finals with Chicks Ahoy! vs Death Track Dolls. 7:30 pm. $18, adv $12. The Hangar, Downsview Park, 75 Carl Hall,


Best Buddies Challenge (Best Buddies Canada) Olympic medallists and other celebrities take part in this 1-10 K walk/run to support people with developmental disabilities. 8 am. $15-$60 registration. The Shops at Don Mills, 1090 Don Mills,

Canvas For Cause (Samaritan Fdn) Art raffle fundraiser with theatrical performances, live music, comedy and more. 7 pm-2 am. $5. C’est What 67 Front E, 416-867-9499,

Long Life Empowerment And Long Life Ceremony His Holiness the Dalai Lama discusses long life empowerment, plus a ceremony and The Eight Verses Of Training The Mind. 9 am to 4 pm. $100-$200. Tibetan Canadian Cultural Centre, 40 Titan,

For more events visit Now Toronto

Images from official webpages

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Make Room for the Divas – Priscilla Queen of the Desert @ Princess of Wales Theatre

While Veronica is off gallivanting around California, she left behind her ticket to the opening of Priscilla Queen of the Desert at the Princess of Wales Theatre last night. Though we have limited these posts to things we’ve gone to together, I figured I would do a little solo write up to keep things rolling.

Priscilla Queen of the Desert tells the over the top story of Tick (Will Swenson), Bernadette (Tony Sheldon) and Adam (Nick Adams) – a glamourous Sydney-based performing trio – on a road trip through the Australian Outback aboard the battered old bus named Priscilla on the way to a Casino in the middle of nowhere. Along the way, of course, they find far more than they could imagine, don spectacular costumes for impromptu performances and ultimately, find love and friendship in the most unlikely of places.

Swenson, Sheldon and Adams carried the show with the same elegant ease they did each elaborate headdress while Diva’s Jacqueline Arnold, Anastacia McClesky and Ashley Spencer were absolutely stunning extending from the ceiling to belt out each tune.

With an audience full of glamourous Queens (who were kindly told to remove their wigs to prevent obstructing the views of others) and a list of classic disco and pop favourites, Priscilla Queen of the Desert was a fun and hilarious ride that I can’t even begin to accurately describe. The costumes were fabulous, the stage show was glamorous, but this is really the kind of show that you have to see for yourself to fully appreciate.

The limited Toronto engagement runs until early January before transferring to Broadway. For tickets go to or call 416-872-1212.

Images courtesy of official websites & google images

Friday, October 8, 2010

What to Do About the Town – Long Weekend Edition

Thanksgiving Long Weekend is here! With this weekend’s weather looking pretty spectacular, get out there and enjoy all the sunshine and fresh fall air! Be sure to visit a Farmer’s market to pick up a pumpkin or sit on a patio and people watch.


Halloween Haunt

Canada’s Wonderland is again holding their annual Halloween event that’s sure to illicit a scream or two. This runs every weekend until October 31st with attractions such as haunted houses and creepy mazes.

Toronto Maple Leafs

With the return of fall, our beloved boys in blue take to the ice in quest of the coveted Lord Stanley’s Cup. If you can’t get a ticket to see them take on the Ottawa Senators on Saturday October 9th, you can watch them from the comfort of your living room. Game time is 7pm, on CBC.

Thanksgiving Dinner at Black Creek Pioneer Village

This RSVP required event allows guests to experience Thanksgiving like the Pioneers did. The day starts with a reading followed by a traditional meal with music. Black Creek Pioneer Village @ 1000 Murray Ross Parkway Toronto, ON

Woodbridge Fall Fair

A cow-milking contest, straw maze, demolition derby, entertainment and more. Free. Woodbridge Fair Grounds, Kipling N of hwy 7,

International Home Show

Exhibits, model rooms, a green pavilion, reno tips, cooking demos and more. Friday 11 am to 9 pm, Sat 10 am to 9 pm, Sun and Mon 10 am to 6 pm. To Oct 11. $14, stu/srs $10, children free. International Centre, 6900 Airport,


Harbourkids Thanksgiving Harvest Festival

Performance by all-girl band the Good Lovelies, a kitchen hootenanny, sunprinting workshops, storytelling, seed games and more. Free. Harbourfront Centre, 235 Queens Quay W, 416-973-4000,

Come and try a variety of soups at this festival by Canada’s harvest sharing program Plant a Row, Grow a Row. Attendees can not only have soup but learn about process and methods of making these specialty soups! $5-25 in advance, $8-35 at the door. 11am-4pm. Heritage Court.


Mariposa Cruises'Thanksgiving Dinner Cruise

Enjoy Thanksgiving dinner with your family aboard the Mariposa Belle. 6:30 pm. $73. 207 Queen's Quay W,

For more exciting events, visit Now Toronto

Images from official websites

Thursday, October 7, 2010

How To Throw A Great Party - Team Opera 2010 Wrap Up - October 6, 2010

It was a bitter sweet end for Team Opera last night. We had our annual team party to wrap up the ball season and of course, to see each other one last time before storing our gear away for the winter.

What’s great about our team and what makes us play so well together is our bond. We spend time each season outside of our regularly scheduled games to catch up. We’ve grown into a bit of a summer family; so naturally, we had to throw ourselves a party to officially say our goodbyes until next Spring.

What makes a party a great party? Other than the people, the atmosphere can make or break a get together. Instead of going to a pub or restaurant where everyone is confined to their seats and conversation is limited to small groups within ear shot, we rented the party room in a teammate’s condo building, enabling easy mingling. The boys gathered around the tiny television to watch the endless loop of highlights showcasing Doc’s no hitter while the girls gathered around the tray of delectable veggies.

And what party is complete without great food? By providing our own food and beverages, we were able to cut costs and save money. We ordered wings from the local bar – the Richmond Rogue - (which turned out to be a great idea as they were delicious!) and pizza from Veronica’s usual pizza joint, Pizzaiolo. With ten pounds of wings, veggie sticks and three party-size pizzas, we had enough to feed our small army and then some. The food was a great hit and was gobbled up within minutes.

How do you make a party more than just a party? The highlight of the night
was the presentation of the much anticipated year end plaques. After the traditional MVP-esque awards our first year, we have started trying to appeal to the team on a more entertaining and personal level. This year’s theme was Famous Movie Quotes! Ashley and Veronica had a great time reciting memorable movie quotes and trying to match them to each teammate.

Quotes that made the cut:
  • "There's No Place Like Home" Dorthy Gale, The Wizard of Oz (1939)
  • "Tell 'em to go out there with all they got and win just one for the Gipper" Knute Rockne, Knute Rockne, All American (1940)
  • "Go Ahead, Make My Day" Gary Callahan, Sudden Impact (1983)
  • "The Stuff Dreams Are Made Of" Sam Spade, The Maltese Falcon (1941)
  • "Do Or Do Not, There Is No Try" Yoda, Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980)
  • "I'm The King Of The World!" Jack Dawson, Titanic (1997)
  • "Round Up The Usual Suspects" Capt. Louis Renault, Casablanca (1942)
  • "I'll Be Back" The Terminator, The Terminator (1984)
  • "I feel the need - the need for speed!" Lt. Pete "Maverick" Mitchell, Top Gun (1986)
  • "Say Hello To My Little Friend" Tony Montana, Scarface (1983)
  • "Nobody Puts Baby In A Corner" Johnny Castle, Dirty Dancing (1987)
  • "I Think This Is The Beginning Of A Beautiful Friendship" Rick Blaine, Casablanca (1942)
  • "I'll Have What She's Having" Customer, When Harry Met Sally (1989)
  • "You talkin' to me?" Travis Bickle, Taxi Driver (1976)
  • "A martini. Shaken, not stirred" James Bond, Goldfinger (1964)

The plaques and the party were, of course, well received by the entire team, wrapping up yet another exciting ball season. Cheers!

images (c)citygirlscapes

Friday, October 1, 2010

What To Do About The Town – Oct 1 to 3

Kick off Rocktober on the right foot with some of these exciting events happening in Toronto this weekend!


Fall Home Show
Tips from home and decor professionals, eco-products, celebrity appearances, exhibits and more. Sep 30 11 am-9 pm, Oct 1 11 am-9 pm, Oct 2 10 am-9 pm and Oct 3 10 am-6 pm. $13, youth/seniors $11, children free. Better Living Centre, Exhibition Place.

Indie Can Film Festival
At at the University of Toronto’s Innis Town Hall where you can see low budget independent movies from local talent. Features, shorts, music videos and documentaries made by filmmakers working outside of mainstream channels. Free.


An Evening with David Sedaris

The author and humorist celebrates the release of his new book Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk: A Modest Bestiary. Massey Hall. 8 pm. $32-$52.

Sherway Gardens' Holiday Job Fair

With the busy holiday season quickly approaching, Sherway Gardens’ finest retailers are looking for a little extra help. Participating stores include: Aldo, Apple, The Bay, BCBG Max Azria, Boathouse, The Children's Place, Footlocker, Hollister, Holt Renfrew, La Senza, Lenscrafters and Sears. 9:30 am-6 pm. Free.

Scotiabank Nuit Blanche
The annual all-night contemporary arts festival takes over the streets, galleries and cultural institutions in three zones with art installations and performances from 6:57 pm to sunrise. Free.


Shameless Fall Issue Launch
Feminist magazine Shameless celebrates the launch of its fall issue with a party at the Toronto Free gallery. Music by Allie Hughes and DJ Maggie MacDonald, live art, dancing, prizes and treats. 3-6 pm. $5 (includes copy).


Case 39 (Renee Zelwegger, Bradley Cooper)

The Social Network (Jesse Eisenberg, Justin Timberlake)

Let Me In (Kodi Smit-McPhee, Chloe Moretz)

: Whedon Fest that was scheduled for this weekend has been cancelled due to low tickets sales.

For more events, check out Now Toronto.

Images from corresponding event websites.