Library board offers patrons staff-free extended hours

While she’s had a library card since she was a child, Marina Phillips-Anderson has never used the Todmorden library on the Pape Avenue. However, with a proposal to keep the library open additional hours coming this fall, that could change.

A pilot project for the Todmorden and Swansea Memorial libraries to extend their open hours will keep the libraries open as late as the community centre itself. The two branches have the lowest number of hours open to patrons, and although the proposal calls for extra hours of operation, librarians will not be present during those extended hours.

“I think it is a great idea,” Phillips-Anderson said. “Libraries are safe havens for people.”

Justin Van Dette talks to Tory and Wynne

Longtime local activist faces friendly fire at roast in his honour

Justin Van Dette is a staple of community activism in East York. He’s been a behind-the-scenes political operative for several local politicians. He’s the omnipresent community relations manager for the Michael Garron Hospital Foundation (formerly the Toronto East General foundation). He’s a tireless advocate for East York, most recently rallying residents for better TTC service at a December protest and then advocating for an East York “Hall of Fame” at the February meeting of the Kinsmen club. Columnist Joe Warmington of the Toronto Sun affectionately refers to him as “The Shaker,” for the way he likes to rattle cages.

Film prompts discussion on plight of Syrian refugees

Tasneem Fared, clad in a white bridal dress, tells the story of a horrific night in Syria in the documentary The Bride’s Side. That night, she recalled, she danced away, using music to drown out the sound of exploding bombs, occasionally taking off an earplug to check whether her home had been shelled.

Todmorden Legion event honours legendary member

Angie Gualtieri holds a book in her hands. Tales of Todmorden Veterans by Jack Aldred. It’s obvious this book means a lot to her.

Gualtieri recalls when the roof at her Royal Canadian Legion Todmorden, Branch 10, needed fixing. The branch couldn’t afford to fix it. Jack Aldred, a well-loved member of the branch, stepped up. Proceeds from Aldred’s helped raise money for the roof repairs.

“That’s who (Jack) was,” Gualtieri said. “A great man.”

Author highlights how Marconi ‘shrank’ the world

The year was 1912. On April 15, the sinking RMS Titanic sent out distress signals received by nearby ships. While more than 1,500 died in the sinking, during the next few hours on the North Atlantic, rescue ships picked up more than 700 survivors. Marc Raboy believes there was an upside to the disaster.

“(It) really opened the imagination to the importance of wireless communication,” he said. He credits wireless radio inventor Guglielmo Marconi.

“The world would never be the same again,” Raboy said. “We now had the capacity to do long distance communication.”

Freshman Philip Buque takes skills on ice outside the box

Philip and Alex Buque grew up playing hockey in the winter, lacrosse in the summer.

Alex played varsity and is now a superstar goalie in the National Lacrosse League; now, younger brother Philip is taking his shot with the Saint Leo University Lions.

Lions freshman Sydney Drummings adapting to change

ST. LEO, FLA. – Freshman Sydney Drummings has a tall task ahead of her. The 5-foot-11 South Plantation alum is confident in her field lacrosse skills heading into the new year and knows size has something to do with it. “My height, my dominant left hand when cradling and going down the field, my positive energy, […]

IMAX film inspires students to dream big

Pricilla Daniel sits in a large dining area at the Ontario Science Centre. She’s just had an unexpected movie experience.

“I thought we were just going to watch a movie,” she said, “but it was more than a movie. This was an experience.”

Shronak Datta saw the same movie. It explored an unusual aspect of engineering.

“Engineering is often too closely associated with economics,” he said. “The movie focused away from that and focused on how engineering is a method of problem solving in society. That really resonated with me.”

TTC pub crawl: unknown, but fun

TTC pub crawl — the concept is simple. There are bars, pubs and taverns close to every subway station along the TTC lines making it easy for commuters to hop off, grab a beer and jump back on the subway over to the next station where they can check out other watering holes and neighbourhoods. The trouble is that most people don’t know it exists.