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What’s open & closed Christmas and Boxing Day in Toronto 2014

Sarah-Joyce Battersby | posted Tuesday, Dec 23rd, 2014

It’s the most wonderful time of the year but it can also be the busiest on the roads and at the malls. Here’s a look at all of the information you need to know about what’s open and closed during the Christmas.

Government offices:
Dec. 24: Most banks and other government offices open until the early afternoon
Dec. 25: Closed (no mail delivery)
Dec. 26: Closed (no mail delivery)

Toronto Public Library:
Dec. 24: 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Dec. 25: Closed
Dec. 26: Closed

Toronto garbage collection:
Dec. 24: Early pick-up starting at 6 p.m.
Dec. 25: No collection (All collections pushed forward one day. Click here for more information.)


Dec. 24: Regular weekday service
Dec. 25: Sunday service schedule (most routes start at 9 a.m.)
Dec. 26: Holiday service schedule (most routes start at 6 a.m.)

GO Transit:
Dec. 24: Early homebound service (Check the GO website for more details)
Dec. 25: Sunday service schedule
Dec. 26: Saturday service schedule


Bramalea City Centre
Dec. 24: 8 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Dec. 25: Closed
Dec. 26: 7 a.m. – 9 p.m.

Eaton Centre
Dec. 24: 8 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Dec. 25: Closed
Dec. 26: 7 a.m. – 10 p.m.

Dufferin Mall
Dec. 24: 9:30 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Dec. 25: Closed
Dec. 26: 9 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Fairview Mall
Dec. 24: 8:30 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Dec. 25: Closed
Dec. 26: 8 a.m. – 9 p.m.

Pacific Mall
The mall is open 365 days a year.

The Promenade
Dec. 24: 8:30 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Dec. 25: Closed
Dec. 26: 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Scarborough Town Centre
Dec. 24: 8:30 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Dec. 25: Closed
Dec. 26: 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Sherway Gardens
Dec. 24: 8 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Dec. 25: Closed
Dec. 26: 7 a.m. – 9 p.m.

Shops at Don Mills
Dec. 24: 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Dec. 25: Closed
Dec. 26: 9 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Square One
Dec. 24: 8 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Dec. 25: Closed
Dec. 26: 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Vaughan Mills
Dec. 24: 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Dec. 25: Closed
Dec. 26: 7 a.m. – 9 p.m.

Yorkdale Mall
Dec. 24: 8:30 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Dec. 25: Closed
Dec. 26: 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.

LCBO/Beer Stores

Dec. 24: Click here to see hours for your local LCBO
Dec. 25: Closed
Dec. 26: Closed. Some LCBO agency stores may choose to open on Boxing Day.

The Beer Store:
Dec. 24: Click here to see hours for your local store.
Dec. 25: Closed
Dec. 26: Closed

Christmas snow not likely as mild temperatures, rain move into GTA

Patricia D'Cunha | posted Monday, Dec 22nd, 2014


Environment Canada has issued a special weather statement for much of southern Ontario, including Toronto and the GTA, calling for “some un-Christmas-like weather for the first few days of winter.”

The statement extends to parts of eastern Ontario as well, including Kingston and Ottawa.

Winter officially arrived at 6:03 p.m. on Sunday, but milder weather is expected to move into the region over the next couple of days.

A low pressure system over the U.S. Midwest will track towards the Great Lakes, bringing some rain on Tuesday, the weather agency says.

680News meteorologist Jill Taylor says it will be mainly cloudy on Monday and a high of 3 C. On Tuesday, the forecast calls for rain in the late afternoon or evening and a gusty wind, with a high of 5 C.

Parts of Eastern Ontario could encounter freezing rain before warmer temperatures arrive later on Tuesday, the weather agency says.

White Christmas not likely

According to Environment Canada, rain is expected to continue into Christmas, with the temperature forecasted to hit the single digits and potentially the low teens in many areas.

Taylor says rain will be heavy at times on Christmas Eve, with around 15-20 millimetres in accumulation, a gusty wind to 50 km/h and a high near 10 C. Rain is expected to change to snow overnight and the temperature drops to 2 C.

As for Christmas Day, some areas could see some light flurries accompanied by a strong wind. Although the temperatures will be cooler, the weather agency says “don’t expect much if any accumulation for a white Christmas.”

Taylor says the GTA will deal with windy conditions and wet snow on Christmas Day. The high will be near 2 C but will feel like -8 C with the wind.

Hockey Night in Canada Cheat Sheet: Dec. 20

Jeff Simmons | posted Saturday, Dec 20th, 2014


his week, Hockey Night Canada has a great lineup in store for you.

There are four games being shown across the country, which include five Canadian teams.

In the Cheat Sheet each week, we’ll provide everything you need to know for Hockey Night in Canada:

Note: All games below are listed in Eastern time.


Ottawa Senators vs. Montreal Canadiens 
Channel: City
Broadcast crew: Paul Romanuk, Garry Galley
Game notes: Montreal has won its last three games against Ottawa…Habs defenceman P.K. Subban has 16 points (four goals, 12 assists) in 19 career games vs. Senators…Senators goalie Craig Anderson is 2-1-0 with a .931 save percentage in his last three starts.

Philadelphia Flyers vs. Toronto Maple Leafs 
Channel: CBC
Broadcast crew: Jim Hughson, Craig Simpson, Glenn Healy
Game notes: Toronto is 2-5-1 in their last eight home games against Philadelphia…Claude Giroux has 19 points (six goals, 13 assists) in 20 career games vs. Toronto…The Leafs are 8-2-0 in their last 10 games.

Also on Rogers: Tampa Bay Lightning vs. New York Islanders (FX)


Calgary Flames vs. Vancouver Canucks 
Channel: CBC
Broadcast crew: Dave Randorf, Mike Johnson
Game notes: Vancouver has won their last seven home games against the Flames…Calgary goalie Jonas Hiller has lost in each of his last five starts…Ryan Miller has a career .901 save percentage in five games against Calgary.

5 things to do this weekend: Hallelujah time, winter solstice celebration

Patricia D'Cunha | posted Saturday, Dec 20th, 2014


As our regular CityNews.ca series continues, we look at events happening in Toronto for a variety of ages and interests.

Dec. 19-21, 2014

Handel’s Messiah: Get swept up in the annual Toronto holiday tradition, featuring the Toronto Symphony Orchestra and Toronto Mendelssohn Choir. The pinnacle moment of the concert, the well-known Hallelujah chorus, will make you leap for joy and warm even Scrooge’s heart. Roy Thomson Hall, 60 Simcoe St. Friday (8 p.m.), Saturday (8 p.m.), Sunday (3 p.m.). Prices: $38 to $105. tso.ca

Breakfast with Santa: With Christmas less than a week away, Santa and his crew are very busy, but they always have time for their fans. First up, fill your belly with Mrs. Claus’ scrumptious breakfast buffet that includes pancakes with maple syrup, scrambled eggs, shortbread cookies, and croissants. Then, enjoy story time with the elves, taffy rolling, decorating sweets with Mrs. Claus, and of course, a visit with Jolly Old St. Nick. Palais Royale, 1601 Lake Shore Blvd. W. Saturday and Sunday, 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Children 12 and under: $15; adults: $20. Free parking. palaisroyale.ca

Holiday movie classics: “Every time a bell rings, an angel gets his wings,” one of George Bailey’s children says in the classic Frank Capra movie It’s a Wonderful Life, starring James Stewart and Donna Reed. Select Cineplex Odeon locations. Saturday, various showtimes.cineplex.com

Home Alone returns to this big screen in karaoke-style holiday quote-a-long, so feel free to yell out some of Kevin McCallister’s (a.k.a. Macaulay Culkin) memorable phrases like, “you guys give up yet? Or are you thirsty for more?” Bloor Cinema, 506 Bloor St. W. Friday, 9:30 p.m. $11, and get some goodies with a donation to their food drive in support of the Stop Community Food Centre. hotdocs.ca

Toronto Christmas Market: This is the last weekend for you to check out the Toronto Christmas Market, now in its fifth year. The market has a European flare with its cobbled walkways and a beer garden, but also embraces Canadiana with mouth-watering poutine and homemade fudge. Children can marvel at the life-sized gingerbread house, sing along with Santa’s elves, say hello to Santa, and catch performances next to the twinkling tree. Adults can sample some mulled wine or hot rum while warming up next to the fire. Distillery Historic District, 55 Mill St. Friday (noon to 9 p.m.), Saturday and Sunday (10 a.m. to 9 p.m.). Free admission. torontochristmasmarket.com

Kensington Market Winter Solstice: Usher in the winter solstice — the longest night of the year — with light as the season officially arrives at 6:03 p.m. ET on Sunday. Stroll through Kensington Market with handmade illuminated lanterns as you encounter giant puppets, watch shadow play theatrics, dance to eclectic music, and take in the dramatic fire finale in Alexandra Park at Bathurst and Dundas streets. The 25th annual event is hosting by the non-profit community group Red Pepper Spectacle Arts. Kensington Market, starts at Oxford and August streets. Sunday, 6:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. Free admission.redpepperspectacle.wordpress.com

If you have a suggestion, email us at torontoweb@citynews.ca,or submit it online at CityNews.ca or 680News.com, or via our iPhone & iPad apps.

10 ways to make holiday baking easier

Kristen Eppich | posted Thursday, Dec 18th, 2014


Holiday baking is wonderful. The nostalgia, the aroma, the sugar – it brings back memories and allows us to indulge in some of our favourite recipes. But who’s kidding who, the best thing about holiday baking is having it done – so we can enjoy the wares minus the mess and time.

Here are 10 quick tips to make your holiday baking a little friendlier, and relieve you of at least one sticky measuring spoon this season. Happy baking.

  1. Keep two sets of measuring spoons on hand. One for wet ingredients, one for dry.
  2. Measuring something sticky like molasses or honey? Lightly spray your measuring cup or spoon with cooking spray and it will slide right out.
  3. Eggs to cold? If your recipe calls for room temperature eggs, drop them (in their shell) into very warm water and let them sit for 5 minutes. Use immediately (do not return these to the fridge).
  4. Leave your butter out the night before. Defrosting butter in the microwave changes the composition of the butter and it won’t react the same way as naturally room temperature butter.
  5. Always bake on parchment paper. It saves cookies from sticking and time on clean-up.
  6. Making icebox cookies that need to be rolled and chilled? Cut the inner tube of a roll of paper towels in half lengthwise and rest the wrapped cylinders of dough inside. It will help them keep their round shape while the firm up in the fridge.
  7. If you want to shape cookies in advance, but bake off later in batches, freeze first on a tray. Once frozen, stack in an airtight container and keep frozen. Bake cookies from frozen.
  8. Buy disposable piping bags to make life easier for you and your kids when it comes to decorating sugar cookies. This allows you to have multiple colours on the go, and they can be rinsed out and reused.
  9. Use gel food colourings to tint icing. Gel colourings have less liquid so they don’t dilute your icing and they also have a more intense colour (so add sparingly).
  10. Know some basic substitutions such as these to save time running to and from the grocery store:
  • 1 cup cake flour = 3/4 cup + 2 tbsp all-purpose flour + 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • Rice flour, potato flour and cornstarch can all be used interchangeably.
  • Buttermilk can be made by adding 1 tbsp lemon juice to 1 cup milk. Let sit for a few minutes until it curdles, then proceed.
  • Spelt flour can replace all-purpose flour 1:1

Cineplex postpones ‘The Interview’ screenings in Canada amid hacker threat

BT Toronto | posted Wednesday, Dec 17th, 2014


Those looking to take in the upcoming Seth Rogen and James Franco satire, The Interview, will have to wait a little longer.

Cineplex Entertainment announced on Wednesday that it would be postponing the Canadian screenings of the film after hackers threatened 9/11-like attacks.

“Cineplex takes seriously its commitment to the freedom of artistic expression, but we want to reassure our guests and staff that their safety and security is our number one priority,” the company says in a release. “We look forward to a time when this situation is resolved and those responsible are apprehended.”

The film about the assassination of North Korean President Kim Jong-un was scheduled to be released nationwide on Dec. 25, with Toronto’s premiere screening scheduled for Thursday at the Scotiabank Theatre.

A representative for Sony Communication told CityNews they are unsure right now if there will be future screenings of the film.

The movie’s New York premiere was also cancelled Wednesday due to the threats.

The hackers, who said they were also responsible for seizing control of Sony Corp.’s computer system last month, have warned people to stay away from cinemas showing the film and darkly reminded moviegoers of the Sept. 11 hijacked plane attacks on the United States in 2001.

“We recommend you to keep yourself distant from the places at that time,” the hackers wrote.

“(If your house is nearby, you’d better leave.)”

Sony executives had earlier told theatre owners it would not pull the film but added they would not object if they decided to cancel screenings, according to a person familiar with the discussions.

Police departments in Los Angeles and New York said they were taking the warning seriously.

With files from Reuters

The year’s top YouTube stars

Adrian Lee | posted Tuesday, Dec 16th, 2014


Is this the year the Internet found its soul? Some of 2014’s most viral videos had an eye on issues—from a woman filming her catcall-filled walk around New York, to Emma Watson’s stirring speech about feminism at the UN. One, First Kiss, a short film where 20 strangers lock lips, was both artful and sweet. Then again, that catcall walk spawned a number of spoof spin-offs (“5 Hours of Walking in NYC as a Jets fan”). And some of the year’s other biggest hits involved a man getting kicked in the head by a train engineer while taking a selfie, and a “devil baby” prank video. Honourable mentions: The Tonight Show’s edit of clips from news anchor Brian Williams so that he performed Rapper’s Delight; and Too Many Cooks, an absurdist swell of genre films and sitcom tropes plucked from intentioned obscurity that propelled scores of think pieces. Here’s some of the best videos from the year that was:

Schadenfreude is a powerful, addictive thing, and this video of a selfie-taker being kicked in the head by the driver of a passing train proves it, with its 35-million views.

A newscaster takes advantage of a break to let loose and dance to the viral-on-its-own remix of a quote from the rapper T.I.—to the dismay of his co-anchor.

An argument between three toddlers over how to precisely describe how much it had rained ended up poking more than 11-million people right in the heart.

The Tonight Show edits NBC newsmen Brian Williams and Lester Holt to rap the Sugarhill Gang’s seminal song—with respects due to Sugarhill Gang’s real-life Big Bank Hank, who passed away this year.

This trailer for an otherwise forgettable horror flick loosed an animatronic ‘devil baby’ in the streets of New York, ratcheting up a stunning 48-million views. But while New Yorkers’ terror is amusing, the video’s popularity can perhaps be exclusively explained by the unimpressed passerby in the video’s middle portion.

The message of “10 Hours of Walking in NYC as a Woman” was powerful, but just as the enduring legacy of “S*** Girls Say” was its template for spin-offs of other niche categories, the video’s real success can be measured in the copycats it spawned. Some were equally stirring (“10 hours of walking in NYC as a woman in a hijab”); others were more jocular (“10 hours of walking in NYC as a Lamborghini”).

Good news: Emma Watson, refusing the typical dance that some female actresses feel the need to practice to avoid talking about feminism, made a speech to the United Nations that helped push it to the fore. Bad news: it earned her threats from men’s rights trolls on the controversial network 4chan.

It was never meant to live—it was intentionally consigned by absurdist cartoon purveyors Adult Swim to 4 a.m. infomercials—but we’re better off that someone loaded the catchy Too Many Cooks up to Youtube for the masses to relish. Ends up too many cooks don’t spoil the broth, after all.

Lauren Hill, a freshman player on Mount St. Joseph’s basketball team who was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour, lays in the game’s opening basket—to the roar of another school’s crowd.

More from the sports file: five days before Isaiah Austin was expected to be drafted in the first round of the NBA draft, his draft physicals found a genetic disease that would immediately end his career, before it could even begin. So on draft day, the league commissioner Adam Silver decided he needed to right that cosmic wrong.

Harry Potter’s Daniel Radcliffe is a wizard after all—at rapping, at least.

Viral videos are sometimes all about luck. This pilot lost the camera he had attached to his plane and it plummets, somehow, landing intact and face-up—where it is greeted by a confused yet hungry pig.

On the other hand, virality can also require the extreme, delicate precision needed to hand-craft tiny burritos to feed to a hamster.Either way, this is adorable.

John Oliver’s takedown of net neutrality may not have received as many eyeballs as most of the clips on this list, but the fact that a video about deeply wonkish material got 7-million views—and inspired one legislator to actually deny the video’s claim that he was a dingo—means it well-earned its spot.

Chris Picco was set to have a child with his wife Ashley. But then Ashley died suddenly during childbirth, and his son, Lennon, had to bedelivered prematurely by C-section. Knowing that he would likely pass away too, Chris sang the Beatles’ mournful tune. Lennon died the next day.

Richard Dunn, trapped alone in the Las Vegas airport, filmed a creative music video for Celine Dion’s All By Myself—earning more than 16-million views and a plaudit from Celine herself.

All by myself from Richard Dunn on Vimeo.

With remarkably advanced moves, this plump baby from Korea captured more than 13-million hearts. (The one on the left gives a valiant effort, also.)

This artful short film of 20 strangers kissing ended up being an ad for a clothing line—but wasn’t a less cynical time when we simply believed in the pure spontaneity of 20 beautiful people making out?

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