Qualitifruits is back in Côte Saint-Luc and thriving

Qualitifruits is back and people from all over the island of Montreal are heading to 5818 Westminster Avenue in Côte Saint-Luc (corner of Mackle Road) to shop at this one of a kind store. Pasquale, Albina, Babu, Emma, Marvin, Frank and the rest of the team are there to greet you.

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Marvin, Emma, Babu, Albina and Pasquale.

 There are so many things I love about Qualitfruits. Not only do they have an exceptional selection of fruits and vegetables, including many items you cannot find anywhere else, but the layout is a wide and easy to navigate. The fruits are cut up and placed in either plastic containers or wrapped packages making it so easy to serve at home. Not all fruit stores offer this type of service. They do it at grocery stores, but the “quality” is usual sub-par at best. If you want a large fruit platter, they will make them to order for you.

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There is good space at Qualitifruits,

Qualitifruits is best known for its array of fresh meals and side dishes, mastered by chef Frank. Let them do the cooking for you. Be it fish, chicken or meat, dinner is served. I especially appreciate the sides: potatoes, cauliflower rice, mushrooms, green beans, zucchini and much more. The refrigerated windows have a wide selection to choose from. They can also cater your private event, notably barbeques in season.

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Prepared meals and side dishes are excellent.

This is the store’s third incarnation. When they closed last time Pasquale promised they would be back. His team took the necessary time to reorganize and so far they have knocked it out of the park.

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A great selection of fresh fruit.

Qualitifruits can be reached at 514-309-0169.


Mount Sinai Hospital Literacy Breakfast Club moves to Beth Israel Beth Aaron

The Beth Israel Beth Aaron Congregation in Côte Saint Luc is the new home of The Mount Sinai Hospital Literary Breakfast Club, an Auxiliary fundraiser, ongoing for the past 16 years!

The Club boasts a membership of over 250-plus avid readers, who recently engaged in the first of five reviews for the 2019-2020 season.

Prior to the last review, members chatted over a delicious mini breakfast, then proceeded to the synagogue sanctuary for a stimulating discussion of the novel “Where The Crawdads Sing” given by Ann Lagace Dowson of  CJAD Radio.

The next review, Song of a Captive Bird, a sumptuous debut novel, will be reviewed on October 30 by Linda Shohet, a winner of the Queen’s Jubilee medal!

Son of a captive

The Club takes a hiatus for the winter months, and continues with three  more reviews in April, May and June 2020.

The Auxiliary is grateful to all literary club and committee members for supporting this ongoing hospital endeavour.

Both members and volunteers have found a way to learn, enjoy and give on behalf of the patients of Mount Sinai Hospital.

For more information call the Auxiliary office at 514-369-2222 ext. 1337


Bus stop finally moved back on Kildare near Rembrandt

I am pleased to report that  the 162 bus stop has finally been move back from the corner of Rembrandt Avenue and  Kildare Road. It previously stood right at the driveway entrance to the highrise condo at 5790 Rembrandt.

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The new stop sign location.

 When I met with condo reps on Rembrandt last May it was agreed that in combination with the new stop sign across the street, the bus stop was creating a blindspot for motorists attempting to turn left. Police Station 9 Traffic Officer Simon Poitras and CSL Traffic Committee Councillor David Tordjman concurred. Our Traffic Engineer Spyro Yotis was then charged with the  task of trying to persuade the Montreal Transit Commission (MTC) to make this change, something they had refused in the past. We were fortunately successful in the endeavor this time around.

We recently installed a larger stop sign at Kildare and Rembrandt. I did receive some requests for a crosswalk, but our Traffic Committee stated that we do not wish to encourage pedestrians to cross at the corner. Instead they should either do so at Kildare and Cavendish or Kildare and Sir Walter Scott.


Major improvements about to get underway for Isadore Goldberg Park

From the day I was first elected as the city councillor for District 2, one of my objectives has been to clean up Isadore Goldberg Park. Strangely sandwiched between a number of buildings on Kildare Road and Sir Walter Scott, it has never been properly accessible to all.

While we have maintained the park and always kept it clean, our plan all along was to try and relocate it closer to Marc Chagall Avenue. One such consideration was the greenspace near the row of town houses. That was put on hold when we needed the land for a temporary lease in order to find an appropriate space for the  workers on the new Equinoxe apartment buildings to park their cars and store equipment. That lease  concludes next summer, at which time the developers must return the land to its previous form.

I would like to thank our Director of Public Works Beatrice Newman and her team for coming up with a solution to make Isadore Goldberg Park shine in its present surroundings. This week we sent letters to residents in the immediate area to inform of the improvements planned for the park, named after former Councillor Isadore Goldberg Park. Work will be done in  two phases. For starters we have removed invasive plants and tall weeds along the fence behind the townhouses and placed geo-textile and poured stone onto the newly cut pathway. This will provide a new entrance to the park from Marc Chagall Ave. In phase two, the city will add a fence along the path (and hopefully paving), benches, new lighting, and other features to the park. We will also give the lights a more decorative look. We hope to do a re-dedication and install a new visible sign.

There are two reasons why the city must remove invasive plants like buckthorn, phragmite, other tall weeds along with overgrown bushes and other bushes. First, this vegetation has attracted insects and rodents. Second, it is blocking our crews from accessing the park with equipment. We need proper access to the park to maintain and clean the park regularly as we do in all other parks in the city, remove old urban furniture in the park, and clean the sewer. Also, Côte Saint-Luc Public Security patrollers will be able to see more clearly into the park when doing their patrols.

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With horticulturalist Joane Warren and Beatrice Newman at the park.

As Ms. Newman notes, “we intend to make this park a beautiful space with an accommodating entrance for all.”

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The new gravel road.

 

I would also like to thank Sir Walter Scott resident Alexander Errore for his ongoing interest and encouragement for the state of this park

When the makeshift parking lot becomes greenspace again, I will meet with local residents to determine what we can do with that area as well.


Mourning the passing of Councillor Ruth Kovac

Two days ago I sent my friend and colleague Ruth Kovac an e-mail

"I want you to know how much you are in my thoughts and I pray for a New Year Miracle," I wrote. "You are the toughest lady I know.. Enjoy your family and I hope we can speak this week!"

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"Thanks Mike," she wrote right back. "We can try tomorrow. Rather complicated, Shana tova."

On Monday Ruth was admitted into Palliative Care at the Mount Sinai Hospital, ironically an institution where she served as a volunteer for many years. Today she passed away, after valiantly (and very privately), battling cancer for several years.

Ruth was first elected to council 29 years ago. Like others she sat out the four years of the forced mergers with Montreal, but returned when Côte Saint-Luc was reconstituted in 2005. That was when I was first elected. I had first met many years earlier, even prior to her assuming council duties. She was a member of the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) and a volunteer in the figure skating program. I helped her in that first election and when she won (alongside the man she would call her council husband -Glenn Nashen) she and her husband Peter took us both out for a steak dinner.

Ruth was a devoted councillor and cared deeply for our community. It was interesting to see the fire in her belly at council meetings and this something she kept going until her final days. Just a few years ago, Ruth convened the mayor and council to share some dark news. "I have been diagnosed with cancer," she said. "Only my family knows.But you are my council family. Please do not share this news outside this room. I will fight this."

And "fight" she did. We were all in awe of Ruth. Despite her treatment and side effects I cannot recall her missing one meeting or private event. She was stoic indeed and for a time it looked as if she had defeated the dreaded disease. When it returned she still kept it to herself and her loved ones. Most of us were not even aware. But a few months ago her condition worsened. She shared with us that at this point there was no cure.

Most people in her position would have stepped down, gone into a dark room and get angry about their fate. But not Ruth. I will forever admire how she comported herself. Some nights she was not well enough to join us, so instead we got a detailed group e mail with her comments on every single agenda items. She was at our last public meeting on September 9. You can see the video here. I knew things were not good when she asked me to carry a small file folder into the council chamber for her. She was too weak to lift it. That night Ruth was as active as ever in our discussions.

What a brave lady! It was extraordinary to see how emotional she was on decisions we were taking on issues that would only come into play a year from now.

Last Friday she e-mailed me again, wishing to know how things were progressing on a certain dossier we were both interested in.

Ruth was a devoted wife, mother and grandmother. My sympathies go out to her entire family.

Funeral services for Ruth will take place on Thursday, October 3 at 11 am at Paperman and Sons.I am still in shock over this sudden news. We all feared we would lose Ruth soon. But it came too quickly for us to accept it.


Crossing guard post filled at Cavendish and Kildare

I have some terrific news to report. After a lengthy search, our Human Resources Department has finally engaged the services of a full-time crossing guard for the crucial corner of Cavendish and Kildare.

Danilo Aaragao will start work on Monday, September 30, working with Lt. Anthony Tsakon  and  Jean-Marc Dubois from our Public Safety Department.  He will succeed Norman Klein, who left the post for a security post at a local condo. Of course the legend there was the late Archie Kwiatt worked  that corner for many years.

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Norman Klein previously patrolled the corner.

This our busiest cross-section. There are many students from JPPS-Bialik and pedestrians from nearby streets who frequent the corner and we need someone responsible to make sure they abide by the  signals. And yes we have to watch out for the motorists as well. Decades ago there was a fatal accident involving a Bialik student. I still get chills recalling that moment.

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Danilo Aragao

 

 


Fifth annual JFK Foundation Stroll for Kids set for this Sunday in CSL

The Just for Kids Foundation (JFK) will hold  its  fifth Annual Stroll for Kids event, a fun-filled philanthropic day that celebrates family and community,   on Sunday, September 22 (9:30 am to 12:30 pm)  at Pierre Elliot Trudeau Park (6975 Mackle Road) in  Cöte Saint-Luc.  More than $600,000 has already been raised.

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Scenes from last year's Stroll for Kids.

 

Stroll for Kids is a family oriented activity-filled day, where those involved give back to their community while spending quality time with their loved ones.  Those who take part must register online, as a team or individually, and are encouraged to make a donation.  All funds raised will contribute to supporting JFK’s Comfort and Care Campaign which is dedicated to supporting the Montreal Children’s Hospital’s Operating Suites, the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), the JFK Kangaroo Care Program, and the JFK Sibling Park.  

Throughout the day there are various entertainment and activities such as a petting zoo, clowns and carnival games to name a few, and snacks and lunch from some of the city’s favourite restaurants (such as Arthur’s, Venice, Gentile’s to name but a few!)

This year, funds raised will also aid in equipping the NICU with 46 new specialized recliners, created specifically for Kangaroo Care, the ultimate method of comfort and care for the tiniest patients. 

Jodie Zimmerman-Frenkiel  and Alana Geller  are the co-founders of the event.

 “ The event has always brought together families from within and around our community,” says Co-chair Tania Kakon. “Over the years new activities, food vendors and entertainment have come along so it really grows  into something newer every year. The driving force of the event is the loyalty of our returning supporters. The event reflect the values of the community serving a higher purpose that being the  ‘Just for Kids Foundation’  in this case.

"It really is thanks to Jodie Zimmerman - Frankiel and Allana Geller for having this incredible idea to get families together and teach their kids at a young age the importance of giving back and community all while having fun,” added Co-Chair Jaclyn Hoffman. “We have a strong and supportive community and the event brings 100 plus families together every year,  the majority of whom are returning families. Many families hear about this event through word of mouth, and by being supporters of the JFK Foundation.  This year we targeted new moms and dads, with the hope that they will return year after year with their growing families!  This is the first year we are introducing a theme for the stroll, a carnival theme, which adds a fun and different twist to the event compared to past years.”

Just for Kids Foundation raises funds to purchase high-priority medical equipment, and to support initiatives that improve the quality of care for patients of the Montreal Children’s Hospital. Over the past 30 years, we have purchased over $11 million of equipment, touching almost every department at the hospital. That is more than 200,000 children treated and 1,500 healthcare professionals who are better equipped to care for their patients.  

For more information on Just for Kids Foundation’s Stroll for Kids event visit the event page and register at www.JFKStrollforKids.com. You must raise a minimum of $250.

 

 

 


Bellagio condo holds its own art exhibit


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Some of the beautiful paintings.
Bravo to the residents of the  Bellagio Condominium  building on Marc Chagall Avenue who recently contributed to a vernissage.
 
"The condo lived up to our namesake," said  Allan Familiant.
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The Bellagio resembled a museum.
When the building organized an art exhibit  last week, eight resident artists and/or sculptors responded, an extremely high proportion for a relatively small building.
 
The artists were:  Maxine Bloom, Shalom Bloom Shirlee Rosen, Dale Dobrovsky, Debbie Dworkin, Jacqueline Familiant, Al Garellek, the late Yetta Garellek, Mala Raducanu, Linda Saks and Laura Winerman.

 

 
 
 
 

I am happy to see new flashing stop sign on Kildare Road

In  a continued effort to make Kildare Road in District 2 safer, we have just installed a brand new flashing stop sign at the corner of Sir Walter Scott. Hopefully this will deter motorists who have either run through the sign or made short stops. We do not have many signs this noticeable in the city so I would like to thank our traffic experts for recognizing the need here.

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The new flashing stop sign.

Further down the road we have another stop sign  that was  installed just over a year ago. As noted in previous articles,  we  did so in order to give an opportunity to Rembrandt motorists to get off their street safely. Prior to the stop sign some  were inching out dangerously out of impatience. Our Traffic Committee and the local Police Station Traffic Officer have monitored this corner regularly, several times in my company, to examine and confirm its efficiency.

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The little girl with the backpack.

We  also have a sign of a little girl with a backpack on a pole closer to Merrimac, warning motorists that there are small children travelling back and forth to school and to watch their speed. These type of signs are posted in strategic spots throughout the city and I think they are very effective.

 


Autism Speaks Dog Walk a big succcess

As the city councillor responsible for Animal Protection, I was  thrilled to once again be part of the Autism Speaks Canada Promenade de chiens/Dog Walk on Sunday September 8. This was the second year for the event, both times occurring at our own Trudeau Park. Mother Nature cooperated and the sun was shining. A nice crowd  turned out - man, woman, child and of course many dogs of different shapes and sizes.

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Aren't these dogs beautiful?

Krista Leitham worked tirelessly to make it all happen, seconded by ever-so charismatic ambassador Matthew Moses. Originally Matthew was looking forward to bringing his beloved Rookie along. Sadly, Rookie passed away a week earlier. While still very much in mourning, he needed to fill that gap in his love. He and his family adopted a large puppy they named Houston and the canine made his first public appearance at the walk.

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With the Goldman family.

 

There were a number of kiosks set up,  including sponsor Nutrience. Greyhound Rescues were  on hand as was Cindy Davis from Inspirations Newspaper and Principal Nicholas Katalifos from the Wagar Adult Education Centre, where Matthew is a student. The Laval Rocket setup a booth as a tribute to Matthew, who is one of their most devoted fans.

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With Matthew Moses and Houston.

The Dog Walk is a fundraising initiative for dog lovers and the autism community to celebrate the unconditional love of these fur-babies and the therapeutic benefits of dogs to families and individuals living with autism. "Together, we can increase awareness, understanding, acceptance and inclusion for the autism community," said Krista.

It was a wonderful sight to see so many people doing the walk together through the pathway at Trudeau Park.

Jonathan  Goldman, the chair of our CSL Dog Owners Committee, was on hand with his dog and members of the family. It was  nice to catch up with my old friends Mark Wineck and Warren Gornitsky, both there with their dogs. I hope we can help this event get bigger and bigger each year!


Pay as you go art classes with Noa in CSL

There is a new concept in registering for art classes, when the artist pays only on the afternoons they paint.

You can meet art teacher Noa Ne’eman on Wednesday, September 18 from 5 pm to 7 pm at  the CSL Public Library at 5751 Cavendish Boulevard. Refreshments will be served. Her students are exhibiting their artworks in the Community Art Space from September 12 to October 20.

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Noa
Noa has Tuesday weekly “drop-in” classes from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. in the Art Room at the CSL Aquatic and Community Centre  (5794 Parkhaven).  So bring your brushes, paints and canvases. No oil paint is permitted.

Fees

Senior CSL Residents: $22
Senior non CSL Residents $28
Residents $28
Non-Residents $35.

 


CSL Public Library to screen YidLife Crisis documentary Chewdaism September 10

After nearly 20 screenings in a matter of months at Jewish film festivals all around North America, as well as Bucharest, the YidLife Crisis duo of Eli Batalion and Jamie Elman finally launched their feature-length documentary called Chewdaism: A Taste of Jewish Montreal for a hometown audience last spring at The Rialto. Now it will make its way to Côte Saint-Luc via our Public Library and a presentation on Tuesday, Sept 10 (2 pm to 4 pm). Admission is $5 in the Harold Greenspon Auditorium.

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Elman and Batalion toast to Wilenskys.

The film is a tribute to Jewish Montreal and tells the story of the city through a day’s worth of eating throughout the town. “It’s both fattening and educational,” says Batalion, who tells me that he and Elman are working with Tourisme Montreal and may be releasing the film with the CBC soon.

Chewdaism follows Batalion and Elman as they discover the roots of the city’s Jewish community through a series of classical Jewish eateries telling the story of their community in the last 100 years, with various guests along the way sharing tales and meals. YidLife Crisis is dubbed as the world’s first 18 and over (or Chai Plus) Yiddish web series and Jewish cultural comedy brand. It has spawned numerous live presentations and screenings across the globe, as well as the travelog web series, Global Shtetl, the precursor to Chewdaism.

I was fortunate to receive a screener of the film and I liked it so much that I have already watched it three times. The breakout star of this film just may be Zev Moses, the bright young executive director of The Museum of Jewish Montreal. He is a walking encyclopedia of this city’s Jewish history and while I have yet to personally visit the Museum his performance has given me a reason to do so now. And boy will this film make you hungry as Batalion and Elman nosh at the likes of Fairmont Bagel Factory, Schwartz’s Deli, WilenskysCheskies, a Sephardic Jewish home in Côte Saint-Luc and Fletchers at the Museum.

Besides Moses, Concordia lecturer Steven Lapidus, Outremont Councillor Mindy Pollak and historian Pierre Anctil share their expertise on screen. “After years of touring around the world capturing the culture and the food in different corners of the world, we decided to turn the cameras on our own culturally unique backyard of Montreal to show the world all the great things the Jewish community has contributed to it, well beyond the bagel,” says Elman.

You can find out more about the film by going to www.yidlifecrisis.com.

Meanwhile, Batalion tells me that an upcoming episode of YidLife Crisis was shot entirely in Côte Saint-Luc and deals with the topic of antisemitism. "It’s all part of a bunch of advocacy work we’ll be doing in the month of September , and ultimately hoping to take this stuff to the schools as the hip way of talking to the youngsters about these issues," he says.

Elman and Batalion attended Bialik High School in CSL.

 


Excellent photography exhibit at the library

The Côte Saint Luc Men’s Club is a happening place where men, retired or mostly retired, come together to meet old friends, make new friends and have fun together.

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Members of the Photography Class.

 One of the classes is photography Class and it has proven to be a wonderful place for social interaction where members can find their creativity and develop new outlets for self-expression in an atmosphere of camaraderie and mutual encouragement. This class is led by Charles Eklove, who is an accomplished photographer with formal education in photography from Concordia University, and who provides a professional level of instruction. The mix of students ranges from new photographers to award winning and retired photographers. There is a wonderful chemistry in the class with a continued exchange of ideas and a great synergy in the group. We learn from each other in class and on the class photography trips that we take.

These talented men now have put together an exhibition of their work which runs to September 8 in the Community Art Space of the CSL Public Library. Many of these works are exceptional and all are a pleasure to look at. The members of the photography class invite you to see this exhibit and, if you like, leave your impressions in the accompanying book. I took a walk through the other night and it was most impressive! 

 


I am proud of our amended smoking bylaw which now prohibits cannabis in public areas

Smoking is an addiction and for all of my life I could never figure out why anyone liked puffing away at cigarettes or anything else of that nature.

Many years ago, when I was a cub reporter for The Suburban,  I covered the adoption of a then groundbreaking non-smoking bylaw in Côte Saint-Luc. The  late Councillor Eric Helfield championed this legislation and it spread to other municipalities.

A few weeks ago some constituents contacted me to advise that there were people smoking cannabis at Rembrandt Park. They wanted to know what we could do about it. Well at that time the  Liberal government's legalization of cannabis held the upper hand.  I told them to be patient and that our council would be strengthening our own smoking bylaw to cover this. At our most recent monthly meeting we did just that!

Pursuant to the adoptions of the Cannabis Act (federal) and the Act to constitute the Sociéte québécoise du cannabis, to enact the Cannabis Regulation Act and to amend various highway safety-related provisions, our council decided to amend our smoking by-law to incorporate provisions for the consumption of cannabis.

 

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Council has decided that the same provisions for smoking tobacco will apply to consuming cannabis.  A similar amendment was made to by-law 2374 for electronic cigarettes. Smoking (cigarettes, electronic cigarettes and cannabis) will be prohibited in the following place as per the new by-law:

Any place as indicated within the Provincial Tobacco Act and any of its amendments (all of which apply on the entire territory of Côte Saint-Luc); All Laundry Rooms of Apartment Buildings; All elevators, escalators, or stairways in any Building or part thereof; All Lobbies, Reception areas, halls hallways, or stairwells in any Building or office or part thereof; Lunch Counters; Food Courts; Transit shelters; Any playground, splash pool or sports activity; In all municipal parks, during, a special event, green spaces, municipal dog runs, community Gardens; and All municipal outdoor pools.

The appropriate prohibition signs will also be updated to reflect these changes.

I am proud of our council for taking this position. And by the way,  none of our nine members smoke!

Here is a link to the new bylaw.

 


Parkhaven Towers is the latest luxury rental to arrive in Côte Saint-Luc

Anita Benabou Rozenblat and Ron Basal know how to throw a party!

Following the construction of The Equinoxe Phase 1 on Marc Chagall  and 6700 The Avenue, billed as luxury rentals, Parkhaven Towers is the latest to share that category in Côte Saint-Luc.

This 112 unit high-rise project was conceived by builder Ron Basal. Construction and management of the facility is being carried out by renowned Gestion Elm Developments of Toronto. Benabou Rozenblat, a real estate broker with pure star power, is overseeing the signing of leases. Working with her are daughters Brittney and Taylor (running in-house sales),  son-in-law  Jacob Strich and Sandra Bohbot. Independent agent Robert Iny is also part of  the team.

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Taylor Rozenblat, Judith Basal, Ron Basal and Anita Benabou Rozenblat

As for the party, well on August 18 Parkhaven Towers formally unveiled its new sales office at Quartier Cavendish. Champagne was flowing and a decadent sweet table (including to die for Sfingy’s donuts) was parked right next to the brochures promoting the development. Occupancy is expected by November. History will note this is on the land that housed the Griffith McConnell Seniors Residences. Benabou Rozenblat and Basal  recently collaborated on a stacked town house development next door.

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An artistic rendering of the new high-rise.

The high rise  is  a pet friendly building (I am always happy to hear that)  strategically located right next door to our renowned Aquatic and Community Centre and the Wagar Adult Education Centre. It is within walking distance to Pierre Elliott Trudeau Park,  the Caldwell Strip Mall and Medical Centre, Quartier Cavendish and the  Samuel Moskovitch Hockey Arena.

Each unit is designed like a condo, offering you your own washer / dryer, beautiful greenery, spectacular views and  professionally designed kitchen and bathrooms, with  an open concept floor plan. There are  ceramic floors throughout, private balconies and stainless steel appliances all included.  There is easy access to shopping/dining/transit,an in-house concierge, 24 hour security and doorman, underground parking, a Shabbat elevator,  a gym and a party room. There is easy access to many parks and recreational facilities that caters to all different lifestyles. 

The Rozenblat Realty Group has a stellar reputation, especially in Côte Saint-Luc and Hampstead. Over 900 properties  have been sold since 2009.

I noticed a number of my constituents in the sales office, some them the owners of condos and others living in rental properties. Irving Schok, the noted Leopard of Louvain, was also on the scene. The personable Century 21 Vision real estate broker might have some clients to steer this way as well.

For  more information log on to www.parkhaventowers.ca . Drop by the sales office or call Anita at 514-502-6627 or by email at  anitarozenblatrealty@gmail.com

Cheers to another development in Côte Saint-Luc.


Little boy is an inspiration to all of us: Nikan Nassiraei does not let disability stand in his way

Five year old Côte Saint-Luc resident Nikan Nassiraei,his mother Dr. Mehrnoosh Movahed, MD, PhD, and members of the city council presented a cheque for $1,700 to Karianne Robert of the The War Amps organization at the start of our council meeting of Monday, August 12, 2019.

The $1,700 was raised during the Canada Day event in Côte Saint-Luc at a table organized by Dr. Movahed. The fundraising table featured art created by Nikan, who was born missing his right arm. He has been part of the Child Amputee (CHAMP) program since he was one month old. Nikan’s family received support from the The War Amps, including information and financial assistance for Nikan’s special artificial arm, which allows him to play musical instruments and be active in sports. His mother says the CHAMP seminars also give Nikan a sense of belonging and confidence.

"When Nikan was one month old and we took him to the Shriner's Hospital the doctor told us, 'You will be surprised what he can do' and he was right," said Dr. Movahed. "He is unstoppable."

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Nikan and company showcase the cheque.

As the editor of Inspirations Newspaper, which focuses on individuals with special needs, I applaud Nikan and all of the other individuals affiliated with the War Amps.

The War Amps is a not-for-profit charitable organization and is funded by donations and key tag services and does not receive any government grants. Last year, the WarAmps celebrated its 100 years of services. Their support to thousands of amputees around Canada, help them to live and enjoy life to the fullest.

To donate to the War Amps, visit https://donate.waramps.ca/eforms.aspx?edonate. In the section “Select the donation type”, select “In Honour” and add the name Nikan Nassiraei. 

 
 

Sfingy's kosher donut shop (and much more) opens at Quartier Cavendish; owners dream big

Mayor Mitchell Brownstein and I were at the Quartier Cavendish today to formally welcome Sfingy’s to our community. The new kosher donut shop officially opened on July 7, with the husband and wife team of Marvin  Fuks and Maya Lallouz working endless hours and from what we saw a loyal following has already materialized.

This is good news for the Quartier, which already  has the MK certified Café de L’Avenue. The latter has been a success since its launch two years ago.

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Mayor Brownstein and I with Marvin Fuks and Maya Lallouz. (Darryl Levine photo)

 Sfingy’s  is located  in the old mmmuffins spot. It is open Monday to Thursday from 8 am to 8 pm, Fridays from 8 am to 2 pm and Sundays from 10 am to 8 pm. That is quite a challenge for this young couple, who have three year old  Ariel Mordechai  and a nine month old Coby Abner at home. Marvin gets in by 6 am to start making the donuts. They also have, muffins, croissants,  waffles and crepes,  popular  breakfast and lunch options.

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A cookie monster donut.

While I have been on an exercise  kick and watching carefully what I eat the past week, I had no will power to resist one of these donuts. Let me tell you the one I sampled was equal if not better than Krispy Kreme, which is now  opening new stores in Montreal

Sfingy’s  has quickly become  a hit on the special events circuit, with orders coming in for weddings, bar mitzvahs, birthday parties and baby showers. On Fridays, clients pour in to purchase donuts for Shabbat dessert. “We make the donuts with different themes as well,” said Marvin. “The kids love that. We have an edible printer.”

The name “Sfingy’s” derives from the Moroccan donut Sfinge, but with an Ashkenazi twist. Hence, Sfingy’s.  They are also making mini Sfinges in ball form, mini gourmet donuts with out of this world toppings, smoothies, cookies, muffins, coffee, and much more,” Fuks explained.  “I will always be trying to develop new recipes for new products to launch in the store. Our customers will be able to choose from many different toppings and sauces to put on top of the Sfingy’s. In the beginning, we will be offering fried donuts and Sfingy’s, but I am working on a baked version, as well as a gluten free and vegan option.”

As the city councillor for District 2, which encompasses the Quartier Cavendish, I extend a warm welcome  to a new business.

Sfingy’s is on Facebook and Instagram.

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Councillor Mitch Kujavsky enjoys a donut.

 

 


Another safety measure to occur on Kildare Road and Rembrandt: bus stop to be moved back

I am pleased to report that a new security measure will soon be put into place at the corner of Rembrandt Avenue and  Kildare Road.

Last September we added a new stop sign at that section heading towards Cavendish. Motorists on Rembrandt had been locked in, particularly during rush hour, for many years. Our Traffic Committee did a number of studies for taking this measure. I had promised to review it in  the spring. Councillor David Torjdman (Traffic Committee Chair) and I met with Police Station 9 Traffic Officer Simon Poitras  and did so with a group of Rembrandt Ave. condo reps. I then  went with Officer Poitras to observe the intersection. Not only did Officer Poitras agree that the area is safer now with the stop sign, but he supported a suggestion from our meeting related to the Montreal Transit Commission.

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This photo shows where the bus stop will be moved.à

The 162 bus stops directly at Rembrandt and Kildare. This creates a partial blindspot for cars turning left from Rembrandt. After interventions from our Traffic Engineer Spyro Yotis the MTC has agreed to move the stop back 15 meters. This will make a big difference and improve the situation even more. The MTC does not adhere to requests like this often. We hope the work will be completed by the end of August.

 

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This is where the bus stops now.

 


Action being taken to resolve excessive noise emanating from the Equinoxe ventilation system

Once again, the  Equoinoxe Marc Chagall is keeping me very very busy responding to complaints. Such has been the case since work first began to transform a large vacant piece of land - very regrettably zoned residential 30 years ago -into two high rise residential apartment buildings modelled condo-style. Phase 1 opened just over a year ago; Phase 2 should be complete by next June.

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The dysfunctional ventilation system.

Quite justifiably,many residents of the neighbouring Rothchild I Condo on Mackle are being kept  up at night due to excessive noise from the ventilation system.  See my video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jqES11zKrs0

Last winter it was their generator that caused similar disruptions until our administration stepped in and helped speed up the installation of their final hookup from Hydro-Québec.  The thing is not only are residents from another building having sleepless nights from  this, but so are many of the Equinoxe's own tenants - people paying substantial monthly rent. I went there today and spoke to some very unhappy people. Several people said they cannot even sit out on their balconies. Not only did I hear that terrible noise again today, but residents complained -rightfully so again- that the garbage and recycling was put out on Sunday afternoon. This was well before our bylaws allow material to be placed at the curb.   Public Security has been advised.

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Recycling bins out early.

This is all very unfortunate for we created a committee composed of representation from the developers and reps from the condos (and now even the Equinoxe) to air any issues and have them resolved. For the most part this has been successful.  There is also a new member of their team, Ariel, who has been very helpful. He is on holday.  Nonetheless, every week something new seems to materialize like this ventilation noise. I spoke to Mayor Mitchell Brownstein and we will not allow this to continue. Our senior staff have made this issue a priority. We will take whatever legal measures necessary. 

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A bin on the street.

The latest information from the Equinoxe is that due to the construction holiday, a permanent fix will not be possible until the week of August 5. At that time the complete system motor will be replaced. In the interim  We understand the dilemma everyone affected by this unfortunate turn of events face, and truly wish we can find a very quick solution,. The Equinox does not wish to close the ventilation system for safety reasons due to the Co2. They do not wish to take any risks at that level either. For now they have agreed to keep it on during the day only.

 
 

Significant improvements being made on The Avenue

We are aware of the inconvenience that neighbours  have had on The Avenue because of the construction project at the apartment building  in recent years.

New ownership recently took over and we have been able to address the concerns many residents have shared with us. As can be seen on site, the process of finishing the project is underway. The visitor parking at the rear of the building is being prepared for landscaping and paving, for which a minor exemption is needed. Over the coming weeks, there will be repairs to fencing, repairs to the city path and unistone along The Avenue, landscaping of the site as well as removing debris and grassing of the park space at the corner of Park Place and The Avenue.

Residents with  any questions or commens can contact me at mcohen@cotesaintluc.org or Urban Planning Division staff at urbanplanning@cotesaintluc.org. 

 

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A refreshed look.

 

Sprucing Up the Street
 
The Avenue also  has a new look .
 
A total investment of less than $10,000, includes 10 new concrete pots creatively measured with  membranes, styrofoam, crushed rock and soil. The city planted over a half dozen varieties of annuals. Our Department of Public Works also replaced all dead shrubs and ornamental grasses that were missing and fluffed up the soil at the flower beds with trees. Mulch was replaced only at the block after the Quartier Cavendish on the Avenue.
 
Take a stroll down the Avenue and take in the beauty. 
 
I would like to thank our Urban Planning team headed by Jeff Davey and our Director of Public Works Beatrice Newman and her group.
 

Mark Bergman joins The Beat

Exactly three months to the day of his departure from Virgin Radio, Cote Saint-Luc native Mark Bergman returns to the airwaves for the summer with The Beat 92-5! “It’s a thrill to be back on-air, connecting with Montrealers again! And the amazing team at The Beat understands exactly what it means to connect locally.” said Bergman, who will be replacing hosts this summer including on the drive home show, all next week. 

Over the last three months Mark has been keeping busy producing, hosting, and consulting on podcasts for the EMSB as well as his own clients. It’s a business opportunity he says, that he will continue to grow. “My heart will always be in radio, and my time as a brand director widened my skills which I now use in helping other brands to best showcase their own content through social media, and most recently through podcasting.” 

Mark says that he’s happy to fill in for whatever shows The Beat needs him for this summer. My guess is, that we’ll be hearing a lot more of Mark.


CSL has launched a brand new website

 I am pleased to formally announce the launch of the new CoteSaintLuc.org website. The biggest change visitors will  notice is the look of the site, which will display nicely on smartphones. The pages are organized  somewhat differently but the content is more-or-less identical to the old site. In Phase 2 of the  website project, we will add new content, implement A/B testing of pages, and continue tweaking the look and feel to improve things.

In addition to having a cleaner design, our new site is now responsive to mobile phones and tablets. It is also equipped with a custom site search that should increase engagement thanks to live results, control over which result to present, and analytics that inform us about user intention and actions. Another useful feature: results are now presented by the type of content (pages, news, jobs or events), making it easier for visitors to find what they need.

 

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Our website theme also allows us to present content in a variety of ways. You will therefore find  pages that use accordions or tabs to present a large amount of information, while other pages  favour index and grid-style presentations. Larger text, breadcrumbs and highlighting of principal options — to prevent information overload —  are a few more characteristics that should help CSL residents find their way around our city  website. Navigation and information architecture have changed and will most likely be tweaked in  upcoming months as we examine how people use our new website. We will also add more content and   features based on the needs expressed by residents and city departments.

Our Public Affairs and Communications team, headed by Darryl Levine and Regine Banon,  built the site in-house, with a bit of help from the  outside. Over the last two months, our new Web communications officer Maryse Bézaire has led the  effort of moving over content from the old site.


Philip Chateauvert appointed CSL's new Director of Public Safety

I was among those who was delighted when City Council confirmed  Philip Chateauvert  as the Director of Public Safety in  Côte Saint-Luc.
 
Director Chateauvert has worked here since 2014 in the role of Manager of Operations. Previously, Director Chateauvert was a security manager at organizations such as the Port of Montreal, the École de Technologie Supérieure, and the Société de la Place des Arts. Before that, he was a firefighter. Director Chateauvery has also directed medical operations in events such as the Thriatlon International de Montréal and the Montreal Marathon.

“Philip Chateauvert brings a lot of experience to the job both during his tenure in Côte Saint-Luc and his other positions,” Mayor Mitchell Brownstein said. “He knows our community well and will be an invaluable member of the team.”

The Public Safety Department is responsible for Public Security, Emergency Communications dispatch centre, Emergency Medical Services, volunteer Citizens on Patrol, and Emergency Preparedness.
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Philip Chateauvert

“We are very excited to have Philip Chateauvert as our new Director of Public Safety,” said Councillor Oren Sebag, who is the council members responsible for public safety issues. “It’s an important role that requires professionalism, knowledge of our town and residents needs. The skills Philip has developed over the years as division chief will serve our residents well. I look forward to working with him.”

Director Chateauvert replaces Jordy Reichson, who headed the department from 2009 to 2019 and did an outstanding job. He has now moved on to new duties with the City of  Montreal.

“I am excited by the opportunity to have an even greater impact on our ability to help the community by making it safer,” Director Chateauvert said. “I am motivated by the prospect of recommending to the City Council policies and procedures that can save lives.”

We are also very fortunate to have Jean-Marc Dubois as our Manager of Operations for Public Safety and Lt. Anthony Tsakon who handles a number of important dossiers. These three gentleman always respond to any calls I have for assistance and this is truly appreciated.
 
 
 
 

Weather conditions were simply ideal for the 40th annual Côte Saint-Luc Golf Classic at Meadowbrook on July 4.

I was pleased to chair the event once again, working hand in hand with our invaluable event coordinator Alvin Fishman. After a round of golf on the back nine, everyone headed to a special awards banquet at the Aquatic and Community Centre. This year we honoured former city councillor and long-time high school teacher Allan J. Levine.

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With David Birnbaum, Michael Maislin and Allan and Harvey Levine.

 

Players competed in the Masters   (age 65 and older) and Eagles groups (age 64 and younger).

The title sponsors were Marc Ezerzer and Hagay Brener from Vantage Realty Group,   Michael Maislin of Total Customs Services,Mitch Heft and Tony Lapia from Orangetheory Fitness, businessperson Mitch Garber and Silver Star Mercedes Benz,. The guest speaker was Global TV hockey analyst Brian Wilde.

Meadowbrook is a thing of beauty in our community and I am reminded that when I golf there once a year. This is such a fun event. I very much enjoyed spending time with members of my fivesome – D'Arcy McGee Liberal MNA David Birnbaum, Michael Maislin and Allan and Harvey Levine.  We do not have to keep score. This is literally the only time I take out my clubs. Each hole I found myself getting a bit better, remembering the tutelage I got from my late grandfather Lewis Sherwin more than 40 years ago.

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Members of the Levine family with Mayor Brownstein.

 

Honouree

Allan J. Levine was a member of Côte Saint-Luc City Council for more than 30 years. He also taught math and science at Wagar High School for more than three decades, where for a number of years he doubled as the driver’s education instructor. Well-known for his great sense of humour, he remains active in the community today as president of the Brigadier Frederick Kisch Branch 97 of the Royal Canadian Legion, a position he holds with great pride as a tribute to his late father who was a veteran. Allan has also played an important role in the local tennis community.

Allan was   joined by his lovely wife Rhoda, Brother Harvey, Sister Gloria, his children, grandchildren and other family members.

“It’s no secret that I have a passion for tennis and love a great match,” Allan said in his speech. “Well, over the past 57 years Côte Saint-Luc and I have been a great love match. It started in 1962 when I met the great love match of my life, my wife Rhoda, who lived here in Côte Saint Luc. Compared to where I grew up, I quickly realized that Côte Saint Luc was, in the words of the TV show The Jeffersons, ‘Movin’ On Up.’ My years teaching at Wagar High School confirmed that this is a special place committed to children, families and education.

“In 1983, I made Côte Saint Luc my permanent home and had the pleasure and privilege to serve on city council for over 30 years. My work on council and my work with our city’s veterans has been an honor. I raised my children here, and now my grandchildren have come to love and appreciate this community as well. We are blessed to live in such a great city, and I am blessed to have had the opportunity to serve it. Thank you for this great honor and recognition. In the words of tennis great Serena Williams, ‘Everyone's dream can come true if you just stick to it and work hard.’ Thank you for allowing me to work hard for you and achieve my dreams. “

I want to add that Allan was not only an honouree, he sat on our committee as did Councillor Erdelyi.

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A special cake was rolled out for Allan.

Towards the end of the event we rolled out a beautiful cake, decorated with automobiles. We also had a nice photo montage prepared by our Director of Public Affairs and Communications Darryl Levine (no relation to Allan).

Pierre Brunet Fund

Once again, donations were accepted for the Pierre Brunet Parks and Recreation Bursary Fund sponsored by the local McDonalds Restaurants Cote Saint-Luc Shopping Centre franchisee Pierre Brunet. This helps families who cannot afford to register their child in a program and takes into account requests from children with special needs as well. I am so proud to have created this fund in conjunction with Pierre and former Parks and Recreation Department stalwart Harold Cammy.

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Dennis Murphy and Anik Ferron present their cheque.

For McHappy Day each May our Parks and Recreation Department staff take a leadership role in volunteering at the Côte Saint-Luc franchise. Donations from that day added up to $2,100 and two of Pierre’s managers, Dennis Murphy and Anik Ferron presented us with the cheque. Next up were Mannie Young and Syd Kronish. On behalf of the CSL Men’s Club they presented a cheque for $1,800 to the fund. It was not over yet. MNA Birnbaum had a contribution of $600. Honouree Levine added another $600 from the Legion. Then came a big surprise. Our already generous sponsors Ezerzer and Brener stepped up with a $500 cheque. That all added up to $5,600 in new revenue!

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The Men's Club donation.

We would also like to thank Pharmaprix Quartier Cavendish   Pharmacists David Banon and Sarah Rachel Ettedgui and Store Manager Ian Macdonald for donating assorted cosmetic items which were placed in our grab bags – donated by Quartier Cavendish. To Lenny Rosenberg from TCBY, who once again donated 150 TCBY Cups for dessert? Silver Star Mercedes donated a one week free rental car as a main door prize.   Provigo St. Jacques provided    assorted soft drinks and bottled water. Peter Lipari of IGA Lipari Côte Saint-Luc Road donated   bottled Perrier water, coffee and vegetable juices for our reception.  Universal Safety Equipment and Supplies on St. Jacques   generously donated a  gift of a golf bag for our door prize drawing. Everyone receive a free pass to try Orangetheory Fitness. Pierre Brunet and his team set up a welcome kiosk before golfers hit the links and provided the coffee table with assorted flavored coffee, sumptuous pastries and muffins. Police Station 9 Director Luis Oliveira and his staff, notably Officer Marie-Christine Nobert, had a welcome table as well with nice caps, water bottles and other swag.

Council Presence

Mayor Mitchell Brownstein, Councillors Steven Erdelyi, Mitchell Kujavsky and David Tordjman and Liberal MP for Mount Royal Anthony Housefather were also on hand. I was happy to see former Councillor Sam Goldbloom with us. He co-chaired this event with me for many years.

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Thanking Brian Wilde.

Brian Wilde

Brian Wilde is one of the best sports television broadcasters Montreal has ever seen. After more than two decades with CTV Montreal, he has now taken a step back to enjoy life. His passion is covering the Canadiens and he still does so for Global TV, with appearances on the morning show during the season and a fantastic post-game “Call of the Wilde” blog.  He told a great story of his first interview as a sportscaster well more than three decades ago in his native Edmonton.  Superstar Wayne Gretzky had hurt his toe and Brian was dispatched to a golf course where Gretzky was playing to get a clip. Little did he realized that the Great One and broadcaster Rod Phillips had a joke planned? When a petrified Wild asked Gretzky about his toe he was met with a terribly rude response. Shocked and dismayed, be began to leave the scene when Gretzky apologized for the joke and agreed to do an interview. Still quite shook up, Wilde asked one question and took a mere eight second response and returned to work – even turning down an offer of dinner and drinks with Gretzky.

Our guests had some good questions about the Canadiens, their ill-fated attempt to sign free-agent Sebastein Aho and where GM Marc Bergevin goes from here. It was such a privilege to have this great hockey mind with us. Mannie Young already plans to book him for the Men’s Club.

Awards

We handed out eight trophies.

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Louise Ferland is presented with her trophy.

Closest to the Pin: Irving Leiner  and Louise Ferland (Men’s and Women’s Masters); Eric Friedman and Janine West (Men’s and Women’s Eagles).

Longest Drive:  Michael Rabinovitch and Joy Hayes (Men’s and Women’s Masters); Dale Tatnell and Joan Zafran (Men’s and Women’s Eagles).

 Final Thanks

Finally, thanks to Robin Chemtov for  providing the music, the ever so reliable Rami Negev for his photos  and to volunteers Toby Goldner-Shulman, Maureen Hankin, Doris Gottheil, Peter and Rhoda  Sternberg  and  Cyla Hus. To our staff,  Cornelia Ziga, Raymond Valiquette, Denis Kopitas, Steve Papp, Mauricio “Moe” Giobbi, Beate Hewel, Elaine Litman – Waisgrus, Marvin Pincus, David Blond, Sean Fraser. Charles Price, Meghan Panarello and all  of our ACC blue   and white collar staff. A final word about Alvin Fishman, a tireless and devoted worker. The two of us began planning this event in January and for more than six months, not even a  nasty bout with kidney stones stopped this one-man show from taking care of the endless details that go along with planning for such a large event.

 

 


Wagar Field proves to be an excellent venue for Canada Day

Due to renovations at the Samuel Moskovitch Arena, much of Pierre Elliott Trudeau was off limits so we moved this year’s Canada Day festivities  in Côte Saint-Luc to Wagar Field on Parkhaven. It was very well received from those  I spoke to throughout the evening.

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Congratulating these new citizens from Mexico.

As per tradition,  we started things off with a Canadian Citizenship Ceremony at our Aquatic and Community Centre. The ageless Judge Barbara Seal presided over an eloquent program in which  40 new citizens from 15 different countries were sworn in. “Immigration is a source of richness for our country,” commented Mount Royal Liberal MP Anthony Housefather.

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Councillor Sebag and I take the oath ourselves.


Mayor Mitchell Brownstein was joined by myself,  Councillors David Tordjman, Oren Sebag, Steven Erdelyi, Sidney Benizri and D’Arcy McGee Liberal MNA David Birnbaum at the event.

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Delicious Canada Day cupcakes.


After the ceremony we walked across the street to my former high school.  Hats off to Parks and Recreation Director Cornelia Ziga, Event Coordinator Laura Trihas and the rest of our staff who worked so hard to make this event a huge success, our Public Safety and VCOP teams. Kudos as well to Councillor Ruth Kovac, the event chair who was unable to attend. CJAD personalities Dr. Laurie Betito and Dan Laxer served as emcees.

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People were dancing up a storm.

 

Activities included an airplane exhibit, inflatables, a petting zoo, pony carousel, tons of games for kids, face painting, food trucks, a photo booth and live music from the singing group Smash. We distributed delicious cupcakes sponsored   by Scotiabank. The evening culminated with an entertaining laser show.

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Smash performs.


Many of us agreed that the venue of Wagar Field is actually a better and more controlled spot than Trudeau Park. For this year fireworks were not permitted in this area.  We like the idea of keeping festivities here and efforts will be made to find a formula to make a fireworks display work.

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Activities culminated with a laser show.