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Which ‘plant water’ should you choose?

BT Toronto | posted Friday, Jul 29th, 2016

The summer months can require some extra hydration, which makes it a perfect time to have a refreshing glass of water. But did you know there are many varieties of water to choose from that go beyond your tap?

As many Canadians are moving away from sweet and sugary drinks, Canadians want more water but want a variety of waters to choose from. Thankfully, there are many healthy choices on the market. Holistic nutritionist Trionne Moore from The Healthy Road is here to give us a ‘101’ on plant waters and what you should be looking out for.

Coconut water

Most people have heard of coconut water, or are already drinking it. Dubbed “Mother Nature’s sports drink,” coconut water is high in electrolytes and contains four times the potassium than a banana. Coconut water is a great alternative to sports drinks, containing less than half the sugar one would find in a standard sized bottle.

However, not all coconut waters are healthy. When searching for coconut water, avoid “from concentrate” brands. Many coconut waters are concentrated, and many waters add flavours to compensate. Avoid any added ingredients… the only ingredient should be pure coconut water to get the most benefits.

Maple water

Maple water is slowly becoming a popular choice for water drinkers, as it is believes it contains many healthy antioxidant compounds. Maple water is the actual sap from the tree, filtered naturally by the tree. This process that maple water is produced makes maple water naturally organic, clean, refreshing, and subtly sweet.

However, there is little research on the health benefits of maple water. Despite maple water containing many vitamins and nutrients, there is no proven claims that maple water contains healthy antioxidant compounds.

Birch water

Birch water might be the new craze of 2016. Birch water is another sap water, much like maple water, and is local to Canada. It is high in nutrients, and only contains half the sugar as maple water. Birch water contains xylitol, proteins, amino acids, vitamins, and minerals, which makes birch water a good way to cleanse the body and boost your health.

Which ever water you choose to drink this summer, drink lots and stay hydrated!

All of the listed waters can be found at The Healthy Road on 518 King Street East.


August long weekend need to know: Caribbean Carnival parade, what’s open/closed

SAMANTHA KNIGHT AND PATRICIA D'CUNHA | posted Friday, Jul 29th, 2016

There will be plenty of dancing in the street, lively music and masqueraders in colourful costumes as the Toronto Caribbean Carnival parade winds it way along a stretch of Lake Shore Boulevard on Saturday.

The parade takes place during the August long weekend, and includes road closures. There are also road closures in place for TTC and road work.

Monday is a civic holiday – known as Simcoe Day in Toronto – but not everything is closed. Businesses are not required to close, so they may open at the discretion of the municipality. Below is a list of what’s open and closed.

Enjoy one of the last long weekends of the summer, because before you know it, winter will be around the corner.


Caribbean Carnival Grand Parade
Grab your masks, feathers and most extravagant costumes for the Caribbean Carnival Grand Parade. The event gets underway at 10 a.m. on Saturday.

The event attracts local, national and international attention, as it has been deemed the highlight of the three-week festival.

Paraders march down Lakeshore Boulevard at the Caribbean Carnival in Toronto on August 3, 2013. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Michelle Siu.
Paraders march down Lakeshore Boulevard at the Caribbean Carnival in Toronto on August 3, 2013. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Michelle Siu.


Masqueraders in colourful and striking costumes will wind their way from the assembly area at Exhibition Place along Lakeshore Boulevard. Click here for the route map.

Not only do ‘mas bands’ take part in the parade, it also features guest bands, cultural bands and steel bands. Click here to purchase tickets.

After the parade, masquerade bands will end up in Exhibition Place where they can party until 8 p.m.

TD Irie Music Festival
Come out and celebrate the best in reggae, soca and music from the African Diaspora at this year’s TD Irie Music Festival.

The multi-day music festival includes dance, food, arts, crafts and culture. It takes place in the heart of the city at Nathan Phillips Square, from 2 p.m. to 11 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday.

This year’s headliners include internationally acclaimed artists KI, Bushman and Steele. Dance Immersion will return to the IRIE Music Festival to present their summer dance showcase on the second day of the event.

OVO Fest
Drizzy is back in the Six this long weekend for his annual OVO Fest, and he’s bringing an all-star line up with him. This year’s event includes a performance by Snoop Dogg and Whizz Khalifa on Friday night at the Molson Canadian Amphitheatre, and Machel Montano will take the stage with special guests on Saturday at 7 p.m. at Echo Beach.

The ‘Hotline Bling’ rapper himself, along with Future, will take over the Air Canada Centre for a two-night concert as part of their Summer Sixteen North American tour. The shows get underway at 6:30 p.m. on Sunday and Monday.

Drake performs at OVO Fest 2012 at Molson Amphitheatre on Aug. 5, 2012 in Toronto. WIREIMAGE/Sarjoun Faour Photography
Drake performs at OVO Fest 2012 at Molson Amphitheatre on Aug. 5, 2012 in Toronto. WIREIMAGE/Sarjoun Faour Photography


Drake’s most recent album is ‘Views,’ which was released in April of this year. In 2015, the 29-year-old became the first rapper to ever crack the top 100 artists on the Billboard charts, with the release of his surprise mixtape, ‘If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late.’

Sailor Moon Pop-Up
If you were a Sailor Moon fan in the ’90s, or if you’re still one to this day, then this pop-up shop is for you. Hirut Café is hosting a Sailor Moon Pop-Up Café this Saturday from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.

For $15, fans of the popular Japanese anime series can enjoy special service from in-character Sailor Moon staff. A Sailor Moon themed menu will be served, along with parfaits and Senshi drinks.

There will also be artwork to be purchased and Sailor Moon karaoke.

Toronto Food Truck Festival
If you’re looking for some indulgence this weekend, you can head on over to Woodbine Park and immerse yourself in aplethora of food trucks.

People hanging out at the Toronto Food Truck Festival. Photo via torontofoodtruckfestival.com.
People hanging out at the Toronto Food Truck Festival. Photo via torontofoodtruckfestival.com.


Toronto’s Food Truck Festival runs for three days straight, starting on Friday, and features over 30 food trucks. Some of the trucks include Bacon Nation, Chimney Stax Baking Co., Fidel Gastro’s, The Vegan Extremist, and of course, Beaver Tails.

The festival, which is in its third year here in Toronto, offers guests a chance to find a new truck to stalk, or an old favourite to visit.

Dusk Dances
Withrow Park in Riverdale will once again be home to a week-long outdoor dance festival that showcases traditional and contemporary dance.

Each night at sunset, the audience will be treated to dance pieces performed in different areas of the park. Each of the choreographed works are 10 minutes long and draw inspiration from the park’s natural habitat.

Admission is pay what you can. The festival starts on Civic Day and runs until Aug. 7.

What’s open and closed Monday

A closed on a storefront. GETTY IMAGES/huePhotography
A closed on a storefront. GETTY IMAGES/huePhotography



  • TTC will run on holiday service
  • GO will run on a Saturday schedule
  • Tourist attractions: Art Gallery of Ontario, Canada’s Wonderland, Casa Loma, CN Tower, Hockey Hall of Fame, Ontario Science Centre, Canada’s Wonderland, Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada, Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto Zoo
  • Major malls: Bramalea City Centre (11 a.m. to 6 p.m.), Dufferin Mall (10 a.m. to 6 p.m.), Eaton Centre (10 a.m. to 6 p.m.), Fairview Mall (10 a.m. to 6 p.m.), Pacific Mall (11 a.m. to 8 p.m.), Toronto Premium Outlets (10 a.m. to 9 p.m.), Square One (10 a.m. to 9 p.m.), The Promenade (11 a.m. to 6 p.m.), Upper Canada Mall (11 a.m. to 6 p.m.), Vaughan Mills Mall (10 a.m. to 7 p.m.), Hillcrest Mall (10 a.m. to 6 p.m.), Scarborough Town Centre (10 a.m. to 6 p.m.), Sherway Gardens (10 a.m. to 6 p.m.), Yorkdale Shopping Centre (10 a.m. to 6 p.m.), and select stores at Yorkville Village (10 a.m. to 6 p.m.)
  • Select Beer Store locations, click here for a list
  • Some LCBO stores will be open, click here to search your store
  • Select grocery stores, call ahead for your local store hours
  • City-run facilities like pools, splash pads, golf courses, historic museums, High Park Zoo, Toronto Island ferries
  • Garbage collection: Green and blue bin waste will be collected



  • Government offices, municipal buildings, and banks
  • All Toronto Public Library branches are closed on Sunday and Monday
  • No mail delivery in several provinces including Ontario

Road closures

Road closures for events
Toronto Caribbean Carnival parade: Lake Shore Boulevard will be closed between Colborne Lodge Drive and Strachan Avenue from 1 a.m. on Saturday to 6 a.m. The TTC is adding extra service this weekend so that people can attend the parade.

Road work

The intersection of College Street and Lansdowne Avenue is closed in all directions until Aug. 8 for streetcar track replacement, sidewalk repairs and road work. Click here for traffic detours. TTC vehicles will also be on diversion, click here for details.

Ongoing work

Gerrard Street, from University Avenue to Elizabeth Street, is reduced to one lane until Oct. 15 for watermain and other road work.

Richmond Street West is reduced to one lane of traffic between Church and York streets until Nov. 30 for TTC track work, watermain replacement, and road and sidewalk repairs.

One lane of Queen Street West between Spadina Avenue and Bathurst Street is closed in both directions for watermain replacement and reconstruction work until around Oct. 8.

Gerrard Street, from Yonge to Church streets, is closed until the end of July for watermain replacement, road resurfacing and bike lane and sidewalk upgrades.

Clinton reaches out to Republicans mortified by Trump in convention speech

ALEXANDER PANETTA, THE CANADIAN PRESS | posted Friday, Jul 29th, 2016

PHILADELPHIA – Hillary Clinton used the biggest speech of her career to reach across the political aisle to voters mortified by their own party’s choice, casting the stakes of the election as far higher than a typical campaign battle of left versus right.

She rolled through the challenges of this era: stagnant wages, terrorist attacks, climate change, student debt, laying out promises for tackling them as a roomful of supporters waved U.S. flags, chanted her name, and drowned out periodic heckling from left-wing protesters.

Then Clinton raised the stakes.

She described this election as a moment of reckoning for a country that risks electing a uniquely dangerous man — whom she characterized as an ill-informed, thin-skinned, hate-mongering bully too reckless to hold the great levers of power.

“Imagine him in the Oval Office,” she said, after accepting the Democratic nomination as the first female presidential candidate for a major U.S. party.

“A man we can bait with a tweet is not a man we can trust with nuclear weapons.”

She referred to him calling women pigs, mocking a judge of Mexican heritage, miming a disabled reporter, and insulting former Republican nominee John McCain for being captured in Vietnam: “Here’s the sad truth,” Clinton said. “There is no other Donald Trump. This is it.”

She called him unworthy of a country whose Latin motto is, “Out of many, one.” Likening him to a childhood tormentor, Clinton shared a story about her mother refusing to allow her in the house as she tried fleeing a bully: “She literally locked the door. ‘Go back out there,’ she said… She was right. You have to stand up to bullies.”

It’s a recurring theme of the Democratic convention.

While the party has a variety of progressive planks in its platform it does not intend to fight this election on a left-right axis — but on other fronts. Unity versus division. Ideas versus a cult of personality. Her versus Trump. Or, as Protestant minister William Barber summed it up in a speech before she took the stage: “Some issues are not left versus right. They are right versus wrong.”

The convention saw speakers and scoreboard videos name-check Republicans including McCain, Ronald Reagan, Mitt Romney, George W. Bush. Barbara Bush and Marco Rubio in an effort to make the case that this candidate should be uniquely unpalatable to self-respecting Republicans.

The message was underscored by speakers like President Barack Obama. He extolled the conservative values of his grandparents’ Kansas and described the Republican candidate as a demagogue unworthy of being associated with them.

Current and former Republicans filed to the podium like Michael Bloomberg, the ex-New York mayor. On Wednesday, a former official in the Reagan administration said he would vote Democrat for the first time, because his loyalty to country exceeded that to party. Doug Elmets compared him unfavourably to his own party’s hero: “Donald Trump, you are no Ronald Reagan,” he said. “Reagan saw nuance.”

In a campaign where Trump proposed a blanket ban on Muslim travel to the U.S., before rewording the proposal to apply to immigration from an unspecified list of countries, American Muslims were given a sequence of speaking roles.

Basketball star Kareem Abdul-Jabaar spoke. Then came Khizr Khan whose son, a Muslim immigrant, was killed while serving the U.S. Army in Iraq: “The best of America,” he said of his son, Humayun. “If it were up to Donald Trump, he would never have been in America.”

He urged all immigrants to take this election seriously, and for all voters to teach Trump a lesson on Nov. 8.

The challenge of reaching out to moderates was underscored repeatedly Thursday.

The left-most tip of the party’s left wing was conspicuous in its annoyance all week. Dozens of the hardest-core supporters of Sen. Bernie Sanders repeatedly heckled military speakers, including retired Gen. John Allen and veteran Florent Groberg, who lost his leg in a suicide attack.

Protesters repeatedly chanted: “No more wars,” and, “Peace, not war.” They got annoyed stares and demands to keep quiet from the rest of the crowd. They were drowned out by chants of, “U-S-A!” and were made to disappear behind the waving of large American flags distributed to delegates around them.

Many on the left were already convinced the party was biased against them, unconvinced that Clinton had defeated Sanders fairly — even though she got one-quarter more primary votes and won many more states.

They were annoyed when Sanders endorsed her. And fuel was poured over their still-smouldering anger in form of internal party emails, which the U.S. government suspects were stolen by Russian hackers and provided to the site Wikileaks.

Some held up a banner that read, “WIKILEAKS,” in all-caps.

Clinton was introduced by her daughter Chelsea. A Clinton aide said the nominee had still been working on the speech Wednesday. She had been working on it for weeks, with her staff and her husband Bill.

“(Bill) knows her voice extremely well, having spent years by her side,” said aide Kristina Schake. “So he’s helping her craft the message that she wants to give tonight to the American people.”

Tory ‘horrified’ after developer clear-cuts 30 trees

CityNews | posted Friday, Jul 29th, 2016

Mayor John Tory says he is “horrified” after a developer chopped down 30 trees on two lots in York Mills, adding it may be the worst case of illegal clearing ever in Toronto.

He said forestry staff estimates dozens of trees were destroyed without a permit over the weekend, at 103 and 108 Bayview Ridge near Bayview Avenue and York Mills Road, confirming a story CityNewsfirst reported on Wednesday.

The Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) recently approved the development there of 11 townhouse units and four single, detached dwellings.

“This, I’m told by our official … may well be the largest single alleged infraction ever in terms of the number of trees and the size of the trees that were cut down,” Tory told reporters on Thursday.

“This should be a case … that calls for a very harsh penalty. The kinds of penalties we’ve seen sometimes imposed in the past don’t even begin … to indicate how unacceptable this conduct is if it’s found to have contravened the law.”

The maximum fine for removing a protected tree without a permit is $100,000 a tree. That fine has never been levied.

The developer, Format Group, issued a statement to CityNews saying their arborist had prepared a report for the city outlining the number of trees to be removed and they figured they could start preparing the site before the permit arrived.

“We assumed we were allowed to follow the report and prepare the site in anticipation of the building permit, since it was clear that the documentation was imminent,” the statement reads.

But Tory said if the company’s owner was sophisticated enough to hire a lawyer to go to the OMB and conducted a complete inventory of trees on the property, he likely knew what he was doing.

“The notion to me that this is some mystery, that this person knew nothing about this and didn’t know they had to apply for a permit or thought the OMB decision authorized a permit is not really believable.”

Forcillo granted bail as he appeals conviction in Yatim death

THE CANADIAN PRESS | posted Friday, Jul 29th, 2016

A Toronto police officer sentenced to six years for gunning down a troubled teen on an empty streetcar three years ago has been granted bail while he appeals the conviction.

The appeal judge, Justice Eileen Gillese, said in her decision that Const. James Forcillo poses no risk to the public “as there is no risk that he would commit further offences.”

Gillese noted that until Thursday, the Crown consented to bail being granted every time the issue arose, including after Forcillo, 33, was convicted of attempted murder in January in the death of Sammy Yatim, 18.

A condition of Forcillo’s bail is that he surrender himself on Nov. 9. Gillese said that before that date, the Crown and defence lawyers should update the presiding judge on the status of the appeal. If the appeal isn’t ready to be heard, Gillese said the surrender date can be modified.

James Forcillo Bail Decision by CityNewsToronto on Scribd

At sentencing on Thursday, Justice Edward Then said Forcillo abused his authority in a way that undermines public trust in law enforcement and the justice system.

Then said that in letting loose a second volley of shots on Yatim, Forcillo committed an “egregious breach of trust” and his sentence must serve as notice to other police officers.

Forcillo’s lawyer, Peter Brauti, said an appeal had already been filed on the conviction and sentencing.

Both sides were in appeal court shortly after the sentencing as the defence applied for bail pending appeal.

The defence argued that Forcillo should be granted bail because he wouldn’t be likely to reoffend, given that the conditions under which he shot Yatim would not be repeated.

Related stories:

Forcillo sentenced to six years for Yatim shooting death

Yatim’s family delivers emotional statements at Forcillo sentencing hearing

Police officers need better training, and they need it urgently: ombudsman

After the sentencing, Toronto police suspended Forcillo without pay, according to spokesman Mark Pugash.

Police Chief Mark Saunders said in a statement that Forcillo still faces a disciplinary matter in the Toronto Police Service Tribunal, but declined to comment on the criminal case.

The outrage over Yatim’s death prompted Saunders’ predecessor to launch a review of officers’ use of force and their response to emotionally disturbed people.

Then cited cellphone video as “powerful evidence” that what Forcillo said occurred on the streetcar that night did not actually happen.

Forcillo did not mistakenly believe that Yatim was getting up after being struck with a first volley of bullets, as the officer testified in court, Then found. Instead, he based his decision to fire again entirely on the fact that Yatim had managed to recover his knife, he said.

Under police training, that alone would not justify shooting a suspect, the judge said. The second volley of shots was “not only contrary to (Forcillo’s) training, but unreasonable, unnecessary and excessive.”

Toronto officer who fatally shot Sammy Yatim sentenced to six years

Paola Loriggio, The Canadian Press | posted Thursday, Jul 28th, 2016

A Toronto police officer has been sentenced to six years in the shooting death of a troubled teen on an empty streetcar.

Const. James Forcillo was convicted of attempted murder in the 2013 death of 18-year-old Sammy Yatim, which was was captured on a cellphone video that went viral and spurred outrage in Toronto.

The disgraced police officer, wearing a dark suit, stood straight and stone-faced as he was handcuffed. Murmurs ran through the courtroom as Justice Edward Then delivered his sentence. Yatim’s parents looked at Forcillo, then turned to one another in silence.

In handing down his sentence, Then said the cellphone video was “powerful evidence” that what Forcillo said occurred on the streetcar did not happen.

The judge spent almost 90 minutes dissecting the evidence that came to light during the trial, delivering a series of stinging rebukes to Forcillo’s conduct that July night three years ago.

Forcillo’s behaviour “constitutes a fundamental failure to understand his duty to preserve all life, not just his own,” Then said.

He also rejected the defence’s assertion that Forcillo should not be subjected to the mandatory minimum sentence of five years in prison for the attempted murder conviction. But he also said the Crown’s request that the officer spend between eight to 10 years behind bars was “unreasonable.”

Forcillo’s lawyers, who had argued for house arrest instead of a prison sentence, filed a constitutional appeal, arguing the mandatory minimum was never intended to apply to peace officers who legitimately carry a gun at the behest of the state in order to protect society.

Prosecutors say the mandatory minimum is meant to apply to everyone, arguing police officers shouldn’t get special treatment.

They also argued that Forcillo’s case appears to be “among the most egregious examples of unjustified violence by a police officer in Canada.”

Related stories:

Yatim’s family delivers emotional statements at Forcillo sentencing hearing

Mandatory minimum sentence ‘overboard’ for Forcillo’s case, lawyer says

Police officers need better training, and they need it urgently: ombudsman

Prosecutors say the mandatory minimum is meant to apply to everyone, arguing police officers shouldn’t get special treatment.

They also argued that Forcillo’s case appears to be “among the most egregious examples of unjustified violence by a police officer in Canada.”

The outrage over Yatim’s death prompted the city’s police chief to launch a review of officers’ use of force and their response to emotionally disturbed people.

Yatim’s mother, Sahar Bahadi, told the court she will never forgive Forcillo for killing her child.

“They say to move on, you have to forgive,” she said during her victim impact statement. “But as a mother, I will not forget and I will never forgive. Human life matters. My son, Sammy, matters.”

The teen’s father also said he struggled to make sense of his son’s death and wondered what would have happened if another officer had been on duty that night.

Forcillo’s wife, meanwhile, said her husband doesn’t deserve to go to jail because he isn’t a risk to society.

In a letter Then, Irina Forcillo said her husband is “the one whose purpose has always been to protect.”

Forcillo had been out on bail since being charged. He’s seeking bail again today pending an appeal.

The officer fired two separate volleys – three shots and then six shots – at Yatim, who had consumed ecstasy and was wielding a small knife on an empty streetcar.

Forcillo testified that he never wanted to kill anybody when he confronted Yatim, but fired because he thought the teen was about to come at him with his switchblade.

Pearson Airport could set new summer travel record

Kevin Misener | posted Thursday, Jul 28th, 2016

Nearly 10 million people will pass through the gates of Pearson International Airport this summer, setting a new record for summer travel.

Pearson has been handling an average of 120,000 fliers a day this summer. That is an increase of about 10,000 travellers a day compared to this time last year.

Shabeen Hanifa with the Greater Toronto Airports Authority said that continues an upward trend.

“We’ve seen in the past three to four years about a six-per-cent increase each year,” she explained,

The next four Fridays will be the busiest travel days at Pearson, with between 147,000 and 148,000 passengers each day.

Hanifa said an improved economy, combined with high summer demand, is behind the increase.

“We have three real peaks throughout the year – Christmas, March Break and then summer which is a bit more prolonged because kids are out of school,” she explained. “There’s peaks within each day – during the early morning, as well as around the dinner hour.”

Hanifa said social media is the friend of the modern traveller, especially during high peak times.

“Follow us on Twitter at Toronto Pearson because we provide travel updates through our twitter feed,” she said.

To reduce long line-ups, travellers are advised to check in online, have documents ready for security and for those using Terminal 3 there is now a self-serve baggage drop.

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