Previous month:
February 2019
Next month:
April 2019

March 2019

City and Condo Association work closely to prepare for Rembrandt Ave. garage work

For the  last  several months, our Urban Development, Public Works and  Public Safety Departments, have been working diligently with the administrators of the Condo Elysée on Rembrandt Avenue and how to assist them while major garage work occurs over the next four months.

Garage work on Rembrandt will last four months


The Elysée   data base of 84 cars license plate numbers have been submitted to Public Security. Residents in the immediate area can expect to see a lot of cars on the street. Those residing in the other condos  would be well  advised to use their own garages all of the time, even if they are only going in and out for a few minutes.

Public Safety has been very helpful in collecting vehicle information. Public Works will ensure that the recycling bins are attended to. A big thanks as well to Spyro Yotis, our traffic engineer.

Work like this on a street with many condo buildings can be disruptive. The administration of the Elysée has been very well organized. Hats off to Agneta Hollander and  Steve Acre in particular.

Unique new kosher donut shop to open at Quartier Cavendish

There is good news to announce from Quartier Cavendish. A new kosher donut store called Sfingy’s will be open in early May in the old mmmuffins spot and owners Marvin Fuks and his wife Maya Lallouz are hoping for the same customer reaction that Krispy Kreme created when it set up shop a number of years ago at Marche Central.

Fuksfamily pic
The Fuks family,

“People will see the donuts being made right in front of them and like Krispy Kreme if there is a lineup we will hand out samples,” Fuks told me.

I met with Michael Wolfe, the president of Mandevco Properties which owns and manages the Quartier and on-site manager Jeff Goodman. They were very excited to tell me that Sfingy’s has signed a five year lease.

Fuks most recently worked as the manager of Ernie and Ellie’s at Decarie Square, now closed. His wife  is a physio therapist by profession at the Jewish General Hospital. “This project of the donut shop started as her idea,” he said.  “Maya has a big sweet tooth, she would see on social media her friends posting all kinds of interesting non-kosher desserts and donuts, and she would always complain that we do not have anything like that in the kosher world in Montreal. Being that I am a chef, I decided to start experimenting with different recipes to find a delicious one. After five months of experimenting at home and countless trials of donuts, I developed a recipe that is delicious, kosher, pareve, and moist!! My wife and I are very excited to have the community try our donuts.”

The name “Sfingy’s” derives from the Moroccan donut Sfinge, but with an Ashkenazi twist. Hence, Sfingy’s. “We will be making mini Sfinge in a 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.”

Fuks said that the donut shop will have tables and chairs available for  customers to sit and enjoy their delicious treats with a hot or cold beverage.

“We will be offering different services to our customers, such as, customized donuts and other products for private events like weddings, bar mitzvahs, birthday parties and more,”  he said.  “We are very excited to be part of the MK family and looking forward to serving our community with delicious treats.

Sfingy’s is already on Facebook and Instagram.

Police Station 9 taking aim at cars that run stop signs on Kildare Road

It has been, sadly, a regular occurrence for years: motorists running stop signs on Kildare Road, between Marc Chagall and Rembrandt.

I see it when  I am driving myself  and whenever I walk the area. Perpetrators are most likely residents of District 2. Occasionally cars from Police Station 9 set up speed traps and try and nab the offenders. Such was the case today  as a patrol car sat at the corner of Merrimac and Kildare, Parents from JPPS and Bialik doing pickup and drop off tend to be the guilty parties as  well in some cases.

A police car looks for violators at Merrmac and Kildare.


On Kildare there are stop signs going west at the corners of Merrimac,  SIr Walter Scott and since last September, on Rembrandt. Vehicles typically make what I used to call "Chicago" stops. They slow down, but keep on going. A lot of research was done before adding the  stop sign on Sir Walter Scott a few years ago and most recently on Rembrandt, We are trying to keep the area safe. For some people,  the  only way this sinks in is if they get an expensive traffic ticket. The police will be setting up shop there more often so please  try and put your foot on the  breaks more consistently.

Remembering a very special pharmacist: RIP Arnie Smith

When I was very young and growing up at our Wentworth Avenue home the name "Arnie Smith" enjoyed legendary status.

Arnie was my dad's pharmacist. Originally, he worked out of a small storefront on Côte Saint-Luc Road near Randall and later took over the Pharmaprix at Cavendish Mall (now Quartier Cavendish). To my dad, Arnie was like a doctor. No matter what ailment hit a member of our family, dad would say, "We better go see Arnie Smith."

Arnie Smith

I can remember dad walking down the aisle at the Pharmaprix and asking Arnie to examine his eye. And he did.

Last year Arnie and his wife Frances became constituents of mine when they moved into a condo on Marc Chagall Avenue. Arnie was so happy with his new home. Sadly, he did not get to enjoy it for very long. He passed away on  Saturday, March 9.

Even well after Arnie sold the pharmacy, he was still very active behind the counter and up and down the aisles. My dad passed away just over six years ago and until his final days he always put his faith in the Smith team.  David Banon and his wife Sarah Ettedgui are the present-day owners of the  Pharmaprix at Cavendish (as well as Caldwell) and they indeed carry on the same special relationship with clients Arnie did.

Arnie sat near me at Tifereth Beth David Jerusalem Congregation in Côte Saint-Luc during the  high holidays and he was always eager to know what was new in our community.

"I go back with Arnie 62 years. ago when we were both working at Phillips Drug Store in Park Ex.," said his former colleague Simon Shatzky. "Arnie was just not a pharmacist, but he was a human being in every respect.He did not have a bad bone in his body.He was a kind, generous, understanding, sympathetic and patient person." 

Added Hampstead Town Councillor Harvey Shaffer: "He was a gentleman and mensch in regards very sense of those words. He was kind and considerate, always willing to do whatever he could to help his numerous customers.Arnold was the pharmacist of pharmacists. He always went the extra mile."  

Rhona Elias said she and her husband George go back with Smith for more than 40 years.  "He was always available to answer any question and  never too busy to stop what he was doing to give you his attention. A true mensch; always so warm and  kind." 

Educator Dr. Shimshon Hamerman commented: "What a sad day to learn that a sweet, gentle and kind man has left us. Arnold was an institution in Côte Saint-Luc and Hampstead. He was the go to person at Randall Pharmacy when someone could not get to see a doctor. He helped and healed hundreds of people. Always a kind word; always a smile; always polite--that was Arnie."

CSL Men's Club president and retired pharmacist Mannie Young remarked: "I have lost my mentor, my teacher, my friend. Arnie was the pharmacist who taught me the art of listening to the customer's needs above all else. We go back to Randall Pharmacy. He was a true mensch, always ready to go above and beyond to satisfy. I will truly miss him. " 

Fred Goltz, who runs the excellent toy store at Quartier Cavendish, said Smith was his first employer when he was just a kid at Pharmaprix. "Over the years we built up a relationship and even became neighbours up in St Agathe," he noted. " I will so miss my friendly talks with him, be it up north or as he did his walking through the Mall."

Funeral service from Paperman & Sons, 3888 Jean Talon St. W., Montreal, will be on Tuesday, March 12 at 1 p.m. Burial at the Tifereth Beth David Jerusalem Congregation Cemetery, Tifereth Jerusalem Section, de la Savane. Shiva at his home from 2 to 4 and  7  to 9 p.m. daily. Donations in Arnie’s memory may be made to the Scleroderma Research Fund c/o the Jewish General Hospital Foundation, (514) 340-8251.









We can all help in the search for Jesse Galganov: Fundraising Bazaar set for March 17

On September 24, 2017, 22-year-old Côte Saint-Luc resident Jesse Galganov left home for an eight-month backpacking trip through South America and Southeast Asia.  He was last seen on October 1, 2017 in the Cordillera Blanca Mountains of Northern Peru, in Huascarán National Park.  Image-31

Alisa and her son Jesse.

Jesse’s mother Alisa Clamen has left no stone unturned in an effort to find him, notably engaging a prominent Israeli search and rescue company called Magnus International. Their search and investigation is ongoing and Alisa has full confidence that they will succeed in locating him. However, the costs related to the search have already exceeded $2 million.  

As part of fundraising efforts to support the search,  Alisa and her co-chair Jen Gian are organizing A Bazaar for Jesse, a multi-faceted fundraising initiative: garage sale, bake sale, sale of new items, raffle, auction and community event. It will take place on Sunday, March 17 (9 am to 4 pm) at the Lawrence Bergman Chalet at Trudeau Park in Côte Saint-Luc. All funds will go directly to the Jesse Galganov Fund at the Missing Children’s Network.

Some of the high end items available for sale will be   headphones, televisions, fur coats and many gift cards for dinners (Montreal and Toronto) and gyms,   paintings., Tumi luggage, Swarovski Jewelry, Juliet et chocolat gift baskets  and much more.

Alisa notes that her committee is already in receipt of donations of many goods and services from many generous individuals and businesses. Donations of garage sale items can be dropped off at the Chalet on Friday, March 15 from Noon to 3 pm and Saturday, March 16 from 9 am to Noon  and from 7 pm t o 10 pm.  For more information email

This Sunday, March   10,  Alisa  will be a guest on CJAD'S Life  Unrehearsed with hosts Matt Del  Vecchio and Corrie Sirota  at 4:30 pm. Matt and Corrie  are both very caring and passionate individuals so Alisa is in good hands to continue telling her story.  You are being encouraged to like the show's Facebook page  here so you can  also have access to a  Facebook Live feed,

Mayor Mitchell Brownstein and our  entire council encourage  everyone to  visit the  Bazaar and help in any way we can. 

There is an event page for  the Bazaar you can access here.

See this video by Alisa as to what is available at the Bazaar.


Here is Mayor Brownstein's extended interview with Alisa.



Mayor of Gaza-border town shares stories about missile attacks at CSL talk

On the  final swing of a  cross-Canada tour for the Jewish National Fund,  the Mayor of a small  Israeli town only one kilometer from the Gaza Strip spoke at the Tifereth Beth David Jerusalem Congregation in Côte Saint-Luc.


Sidney Benizri, myself, Anthony Housefather, Mayor Brownstein, Mayor Davidi,  David Birnbaum, Dida Berku, David Tordjman and  Dorel Abramovitz.


Alon Davidi, the Mayor of Sderot, has been travelling across the country with his Director of Resource Development  Dorel Abramovitz in order to share the town’s story, as well as to raise money for a Zoo-therapy centre for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)  victims. I was among the members of city council, along with Mayor Mitchell Brownstein,  D’Arcy McGee Liberal MNA  David Birnbaum, Mount Royal Liberal Member of Parliament Anthony Housefather, Israel Consul General David Levy and other dignitaries at a cocktail with the Mayor. This was followed by a talk open to the public.

Mayor Davidi and his wife Nurit  have seven children. Born in Be'er Sheva, he studied at the Benny Wolfson Yeshiva in the city and later at the Karnei Shomron hesder yeshiva. BA in Education and MA in Administration and Public Policy. He arrived in Sderot 22 years ago. He taught for two years at the local high school and managed the hesder yeshiva in Sderot, served as advisor to the Minister of Housing Effie Eitam and founded the "Headquarters for the Security of Sderot,"which worked hard to restore security to the residents of Sderot. He was elected to the city council in 2008 and since 2013 serves as mayor of Sderot.  

JNF  Montreal Executive Director Galith Levy presents a Habs shirt to the mayor.

Over the years Sderot has been pounded by missile attacks fired from Gaza. A town of  28,000 people against a Hamas-controlled terrorist territory which is home to 1.7  million. It is hard to believe that despite this danger and the necessity to consistently hide in bomb shelters, people keep flocking to live there.  The Mayor estimated  that by 2025 he expects  the population to swell past 50,000.

The incidents of PTSD in  Sderot are alarming – 80 percent of kids are victims. The Mayor spoke about one of his children and how the attacks  affected her. It was the animal assisted therapy program which finally broke her out of her shell. The new Resilience Centre they are building will cost $1.5 million. When they  arrived in Canada  they were $465,000 short of their goal. Donations via JNF Canada are being solicited.

“It’s very tough,”  the Mayor said. “Hamas wants to destroy not only Sderot, but all Israel.”

A captain in the IDF, the Mayor expressed the community’s gratitude to Israel’s military for protecting the city. “We continually visited soldiers and gave them food, clothing, everything,” he declared.

There is presently only one Reslience Centre in Sderot  and it does not have the capacity to serve all the children that need treatment. “It’s not enough, it’s never enough,” said Abramovitz. “The city of Sderot is working alongside JNF to create another Resilience Center that can serve the entire Gaza envelope."

Much of the development that has taken place in Sderot over the past 15 years has been in spite of the efforts of Hamas to tear down their city and force the people out. "I think the fact that our city is growing and thriving is a counter to their attacks,” said Abramovitz.

Bravo to JNF for organizing the tour. It is too bad more Montrealers did not attend this interesting talk.

New safety measure implemented on Marc Chagall Avenue

Concern has been rising over the last couple of years regarding speeding cars on Marc Chagall Avenue. We did place seasonal speed bumps closer to Kildare Road, which helped.  Seasonal planters were eliminated for now because of the many  trucks that use the street for construction and snow dump work.

In recent months I have heard from some new residents of the Equinoxe  building who enjoy walking to the  library. But they raised concern over crossing at the turn between the Marquise and Bellagio condos and that blind curve. I brought this issue to the Traffic  Committee. As an initial measure,we now have a "Lentement" sign near the Marquise and buttons on both sides of the street where  the crosswalk is situated. The buttons signal flashing lights which are meant to warn vehicles to slow down.

I saw the procedure in action today. The problem is a lot of people are not yet aware of it. We will try to spread the word and hopes  this improves security. We  have also asked  police to keep an eye on the stretch,

The crosswalk, warning sign, button and flashing light.