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Free Science Events in Toronto for December 2015

November 24, 2015 | Jeannette | Comments (0) Facebook Twitter More...

The Science and Technology Department of North York Central Library compiles a monthly calendar of free science and applied science events in Toronto. Applied science includes health, gardening, pets and food; all subjects found in the department's collection. Here is the December calendar (PDF).

December's highlights include:

The Toronto Public Library also offers many free science and applied science events:

At the library, December's highlights include:

  • December 1: Healthy Holiday Eating, at Woodside Square Branch. In this presentation by Toronto Public Health, you will learn how to maintain healthy eating by using the Canada Food Guide, while still enjoying the holidays!
  • December 2: 12,000 Canaries Can't be Wrong, at North York Central Library. Dr. Molot explains how the environment contributes to the development and progression of chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia and other pain disorders, and chemical sensitivity. He also shows how these disorders are just the tip of a giant iceberg, linking environmental conditions to the increasing number of cases of common chronic illnesses in adults and even in children.
  • December 7: Savvy Cybersecurity: How to Fight 10 Common Threats, at Yorkville Branch. At this session, you will conduct a self-assessment of your cyber-security knowledge, learn about the top 10 threats and leave with tips to protect yourself. Identity theft, credit card fraud, email scams and more are covered.
  • December 8: The Cutting Edge: How We Discovered a Hidden Genetic Code, at North York Central Library. Dr. Brendan Frey tells the story of how he and his Toronto research team, aided by a computer tool that uses machine learning, discovered a hidden genetic code that will revolutionize medicine.
  • December 16: Design an LED Bookmark, at Danforth/Coxwell Branch. Learn how to build a small circuit to power one or more LED lights. All necessary resources and supplies including bookmark templates will be provided, but feel free to design your own.

Can't attend a program or want to read more about the topics covered? Try some of these books:

Hubble's legacy     The shark's paintbrush     The Lorimer pocketguide to Toronto birds     Cooking Light holiday cookbook

12,000 canaries can't be wrong     Cyber self-defense     Life's greatest secret     Brilliant LED projects

Store-wide Half Price Sale at Book Ends in NYCL

November 16, 2015 | Ann | Comments (0) Facebook Twitter More...

image from
Courtesy of geralt at Pixelbay. License: CC0 Public Domain / FAQ Free for commercial use / No attribution required

The festive season is arriving. Do you have enough books to read and share through the holidays? Do you love finding exciting and rare titles? Do you want to buy as many books for as little money as possible?    



Photo courtesy of the Toronto Public Library


 The Friends of Toronto Public Library, North Chapter

is hosting an amazing store-wide half-price three-day sale of their books with prices ranging from:

$0.25 to $0.50

(blue-dot, special-priced books excepted) 

This sale is at the Book Ends store which is located on the Concourse Level at the North York Central Library--which is located underneath (one floor below) the library's main entrance.  


SALE HOURS run from 10 am to 4 pm on:

  • Thursday, November 19, 2015
  • Friday, November 20, 2015
  • Saturday, November 21, 2015


North York Central Library, Concourse Level, 5120 Yonge Street, Toronto


Please bring your own bag. Cash only. No exchange or refund.  


Once you have completed our Book Ends Sale in the North, five days later there will be another Book Ends sale in the South region (from November 26th to November 28th) at The Toronto Reference Library.  

Bill V.'s blog, The Best Christmas Present Ever... provides the details of their big Book Ends sale on great reads and gift giving suggestions.

Also don't forget to follow us on Twitter @bookendsnorth and on Facebook for our weekly sales.

Flight and Freedom: Stories of Escape to Canada

November 9, 2015 | Carrie | Comments (0) Facebook Twitter More...

  Ratna Omidvar

Join us on Monday, December 14 from 7-8 pm at North York Central Library to hear Ratna Omidvar read and discuss her book Flight and Freedom: Stories of Escape to Canada. The book presents a collection of 30 interviews with refugees, their descendants, or their loved ones to document their extraordinary, and sometimes harrowing, journeys of flight.

The stories span two centuries of refugee experiences in Canada: from the War of 1812 - where an escaped slave and her infant daughter flee the United States to start a new life in Halifax - to the war in Afghanistan - where asylum seekers collide with state scrutiny and face the challenges of resettlement.

Ratna Omidvar is Executive Director and Adjunct Professor, Global Diversity Exchange (GDX), Ted Rogers School of Management, Ryerson University and Chair of Lifeline Syria. In 2010, she was named a Nation Builder of the decade for citizenship by the Globe and Mail.

To register for this program, please call 416-395-5660

If you are interested in reading more about the personal experiences of refugees in Canada, you may be interested in the following books:


  Lucky ones   Refugee sandwich Black refugees 
  Flight of the patriot   Citizens of nowhere  Boat people 

Toronto's New Poet Laureate and a Super Fun Poet Laureate Quiz

November 6, 2015 | Maureen | Comments (2) Facebook Twitter More...

Change is in the air, Torontonians! A new Prime Minister has been sworn in, and Toronto's current Poet Laureate will soon pass the torch to…wait, hold that drum roll. Before I introduce our new Poet Laureate, take my super fun poet laureate quiz!

  1. Who was Toronto's first poet laureate (from 2001-2004). Clue: He made a certain type of reptilian pie famous among Canadian children and their parents.
  2. Alligator Pie Civil Elegies Yesno Nightwatch

    Answer: Give yourself a gold star if your answer was Dennis Lee, who penned the classic children's poem Alligator Pie, and lots of poetry for grownups too.

  3. How many poet laureates has Toronto had?
    1. 2
    2. 17
    3. 4
    4. 9

    Answer: Not including the incoming poet laureate, whose name shall be revealed at the end of this post, Toronto has had four poet laureates.

  4. What are the duties of the Poet Laureate of Toronto?
    1. Write poetry about the city, and read it on important occasions
    2. Compete in poetry smack downs with poet laureates of other cities
    3. Come up with a unique project for our fair city
    4. Promote the literary arts

    Answer: There are two correct answers, c and d.

    The Poet Laureate of Toronto must be given the opportunity to write according to the City of Toronto website. But, unlike Canada's Parliamentary Poet Laureate, who may be called upon to write poems to mark important occasions, Toronto's Poet Laureate is not expected to crank out verse about the Big Smoke. Maybe this is a good thing -- if you think poetry should be inspired, not required. As the city's literary ambassador, the Poet Laureate of Toronto promotes the literary arts. But their most interesting duty, in my opinion, is the realization of a unique legacy project for the city.

  5. Which Canadian poet did Dennis Lee help immortalize in statue? Clue: The statue is at the north-east corner of Queen's Park.
  6. Al Purdy statue
    Photo: City of Toronto website.
    Answer: Al Purdy, often thought of as Canada's first national poet.

    The statue of Purdy, entitled Voice of the Land, was created by husband and wife sculptors Edwin and Veronica Dam de Nogales. (Others who had a hand in the project: Margaret Atwood, Michael Ondaatje, Sam Solecki and Scott Griffin, founder of the Griffin Poetry Prize.)

  7. Who is Toronto's outgoing poet laureate?
    1. Margaret Atwood
    2. Laura Lush
    3. Molly Peacock
    4. Sky Gilbert
    5. George Elliott Clarke
    6. Dionne Brand
    7. Alison Pick

    Answer: Annoyed at me for such a long list of choices? That was to stop your cheating eyes from jumping straight to the answer: George Elliott Clarke. I tried to blow your eyes out with Margaret Atwood's name and then dazzle you with the fabulous names Lush, Peacock and Sky. (Those three writers should collaborate on something, don't you think? I want to see that sublime combination on a book cover or a law firm.)

  8. During George Elliott Clarke's poet laureateship, he collaborated with the Toronto Public Library on a fantastic project. What is the project? Clue: It is poetical, digital and geographical, all at the same time!
  9. Answer: The Toronto Poetry Map, which helps you locate poetry written about or inspired by particular locations in Toronto.

  10. True or False: If most excellent poet and frequent CBC radio contributor Lorna Crozier, pride of Swift Current, Saskatchewan, now living on Vancouver Island, wrote poetry about Toronto, she could be nominated to be Toronto's Poet Laureate.
  11. Answer: That's a big negatory. Sorry for the trucker slang -- just trying to make it harder for you to cheat. I'm running a clean Poet Laureate quiz here! To be nominated as Toronto's Poet Laureate, a poet's body of work must include poetry about Toronto subjects, AND the poet must live in Toronto. Sorry Lorna, no matter how many odes you compose in praise of TO, you're out of the running, unless you care to leave that boring mild weather behind and move to The Six.

  12. Which of the following Canadian cities does NOT have a poet laureate?
    1. Sackville, New Brunswick
    2. Barrie, Ontario
    3. Montreal, Quebec
    4. Edmonton, Alberta
    5. New Westminster, British Columbia

Answer:  The only city above that does not have a poet laureate is Montreal! I was as shocked as you are! What's up with that, Montreal? You have such a storied literary history. Irving Layton paced your enchanted streets, Leonard Cohen brooded on your small mountain. If Sackville New Brunswick and Barrie Ontario have poet laureates, why don't you?

The poet laureate quiz has concluded. How did you do? You can bring back that drum roll now.

Toronto's new Poet Laureate is Anne Michaels. Her first book of poetry, The Weight of Oranges, won the 1986 Commonwealth Prize for the Americas. Miner's Pond, her second book of poetry, was nominated for the Governor General's Award. Her most recent work of poetry, Correspondences, was shortlisted for the Griffin Poetry Prize in 2014. Anne Michaels is also a critically acclaimed novelist. Fugitive Pieces, her first novel, won numerous awards, including the prestigious Orange Prize for Fiction. She followed Fugitive pieces with the novel The Winter Vault, which was a finalist for the Scotiabank Giller Prize in 2009. I look forward to seeing what our new Poet Laureate's unique legacy project for the city of Toronto will be.

Here's the complete list of Toronto's Poet Laureates:

Dennis Lee, 2001-2004.
Pier Giorgio Di Cicco, 2004-2009.
Dionne Brand, 2009-2012.
George Elliott Clarke, 2012-2015.
Anne Michaels, 2015-

The weight of oranges - Miner's pond Correspondences - a poem Skin divers

I'll leave you with a couple of lines from a poem in Dionne Brand's book Thirsty, which is about the city. Maybe you can relate. I know I can.

Look it's like this, I'm just like the rest,
limping across the city, flying when I can

Colleen Jones Roars Into the Library!

October 31, 2015 | Margaret W. | Comments (1) Facebook Twitter More...

On Wednesday, October 28th, North York Central Library hosted an eh List program featuring world curling champion and CBC television personality Colleen Jones. Colleen read from her new biography: Throwing Rocks at Houses: My Life In and Out of Curling. This book is also available electronically.

During her illustrious career, Colleen won two world championships and six Throwing Rocks at HousesTournament of Hearts Canadian Women's Championships. In 1989 the native Haligonian was inducted into the Curling Canada Hall of Fame.

Colleen is also well known as a weather and sports reporter for CBC. She has been with the CBC for 27 years.

However, Colleen's careers, and life, were threatened in December of 2010 when she contracted bacterial meningitis, a disease that can cause swelling around the brain. Hearing loss, brain damage, and even death, can occur. Luckily for Colleen, she survived.

For Colleen, the day she became sick was a life-changing event. As she read from her book:

"In that moment, on that one day in my life, I had this amazing epiphany that life is precious and it can be over in a second. And I realized the importance of taking advantage of simple things in life, like walking the dog or enjoying a cup of coffee. 

Curling taught me about competition and nurtured in me a desire to win, but my brush with a disease that had the potential to kill helped me to keep perspective. It might be my greatest victory of all." 


Colleen Jones
Colleen Jones (left) with an audience member at the Library event

A lot of people may have heard of curling but know very little about it. Bill Weeks, author of the book Curling for Dummies, does a nice job of summing it up.

He writes Curling for Dummiesthat "In its simplest form, curling is a game where two teams of four players each slide 40-pound granite rocks (also called stones) down a sheet of ice toward a target at the other end. Each team tries to get more of its stones close to the centre of the target than the other team."  

Of course, like any other sport, it's not as easy as it sounds! The technical aspects of curling can fill many books.

Curling is believed to have originated in Scotland, around the sixteenth century, although this has been contested. 

Soldiers of the 78th Highlanders brought curling to Canada in 1759. It took hold in Quebec and, with some growing pains, slowly spread to the rest of Canada. The first club in Toronto was established in 1837.

The name of the sport probably comes from the old Scottish word curr, which refers to the roaring sound of the rocks as they travel over the ice. It is this same sound that is behind the game's moniker: The Roaring Game.

Interested in learning more about curling? Check out some of these books, available in the Toronto Public Library system: 

Open House Curling, etcetera

Roaring Game


      Open House

Curling, etcetera The Roaring Game  

‘Spooky’ Asteroid on Halloween

October 30, 2015 | Jeannette | Comments (6) Facebook Twitter More...

Tomorrow is Halloween. Are you ready? Preparations for parties, costumes, candies and fun are all underway. But did you know an asteroid, larger than a skyscraper, will also be zooming by Earth tomorrow?

The asteroid, 2015 TB145 or ‘Spooky’, is approximately 290 to 650 meters wide. Spooky will travel at a speed of 35 kilometers per second. That’s 126,000 kilometers per hour. 1,260 times faster than the legal speed limit on most Canadian highways. 787.5 times faster than a Via Rail Train. 142 times faster than a commercial airplane. 75 times faster than the speed of the Earth's rotation. 28 times faster than a speeding bullet. Wow!

Rest assured, Spooky will not make contact with Earth. It will pass by Earth at a distance of 483,000 kilometers which is slightly further than the Moon.

Unfortunately, if you want to observe the asteroid you’ll need a telescope. Hopefully, there will be clear skies this time around, unlike during the Supermoon lunar eclipse.

Although Spooky won’t be making contact with Earth, I can’t guarantee other spooky things won’t. Have a happy and safe Halloween!

If you want to read more about asteroids, take a look at these books:

Asteroids, a history  Asteroids   Asteroids, comets and dwarf planets   Asteroids, meteorites and comets

Are you ready for your Halloween party? Here are some ideas for great Halloween dishes:

Betty Crocker Halloween cookbook   A ghastly-good Halloween   Ghoulish goodies   A Halloween cookbook

Don’t have a costume? Don’t panic. Make your own. Here are some books on how to make costumes for kids:

Glue and go costumes for kids   Halloween costumes   Nifty, thrifty, no-sew costumes and props   Quick costumes for kids

Don’t worry, we have books for adult costumes, as well:

1000 incredible costume and cosplay ideas   The costume technician's handbook   Instant period costumes  The mask-making handbook

Free Science Events in Toronto for November 2015

October 27, 2015 | Jeannette | Comments (0) Facebook Twitter More...

The Science and Technology Department of North York Central Library compiles a monthly calendar of free science and applied science events in Toronto. Applied science includes health, gardening, pets and food; all subjects found in the department's collection. Here is the November calendar (PDF).

November's highlights include:

The Toronto Public Library also offers many free science and applied science events:

At the library, November's highlights include:

Can't attend a program or want to read more about the topics covered? Try some of these books:

Fossil fuels and pollution   The upward spiral   Developmental robotics   GMO food

Printing things   Good medicine   A clone of your own   Strength training bible

Citizenship/Settlement Programs at North York Central Library!

October 26, 2015 | Emoke | Comments (0) Facebook Twitter More...

Pass the Canadain Citizenship TestThe Toronto Public Library offers a vast variety of New to Canada and Citizenship Test Preparation classes and programs on an ongoing basis. The library website under New To Canada is a good place to look for information on: Learning English for all levels and ages, Citizenship Test, Settling in Toronto, Jobs, Training & Certification, Materials in Your Language, Your Library Card, and so on.

You can also do a search on the library website using the words "Citizenship" and you will find all the many library programs and classes and other materials and information and recommended websites that will help you with citizenship information.

The Citizenship Test Section of the website has some sample questions and answers and links to the booklet to help you study for the Citizenship test: Discover Canada. There is also a link to Learning Express Library, a database you can use with your library card even from home, with more citizenship tests.

The third floor of the North York Central Library usually keeps free copies of Discover Canada to hand out, and various other libraries also have copies to loan out or for use in the library only.

The Society and Recreation Department also has three major Citizenship/Settlement Programs: New to Canada? Speak to a Costi Representative!, Canadian Citizenship Test Preparation (name changing to: Canadian Citizenship Information in 2016) and Discover Canada Citizenship Mentoring Circle.

The first program, New to Canada? Speak to a Costi Representative! is held once a month, on the last Friday of the month. At the library sessions, a COSTI representative will answer your questions about employment, education, health, housing, and settling into your new environment. COSTI Immigrant Services is a community-based multicultural agency which has been serving all immigrant communities and new Canadians for many years. Some of the topics of the most interest to newcomers are: finding a job, family sponsorship, continuing education at secondary and post-secondary levels, improving English, residency requirements to maintain permanent resident status, applying for citizenship, maintaining OHIP coverage, and OAS pension eligibility

Fridays, October 30th, November 27th, 2015 (1 p.m.- 2 p.m. in Farsi, 2 p.m.- 3 p.m. in English), North York Central Library Room 2/3. Free. Drop In.

And for next year:

Fridays, January 29th, February 26th, and March 25th, 2016 (1 p.m.- 2 p.m. in Farsi, 2 p.m.- 3 p.m. in English), North York Central Library Room 2/3. Free. Drop In.

The second program, Canadian Citizenship Test Preparation (name changing to: Canadian Citizenship Information in 2016) involves a representative from the Toronto District School Board discussing what it means to be a citizen, what to expect from the test, and how to prepare using the Discover Canada guide. You must bring your Permanent Resident card to the session.

In December, North York Central Library is having its last program called Canadian Citizenship Test Preparation. It will be on Tuesday, December 15th, 2015 at 6 p.m.- 8 p.m. in the Auditorium at the North York Central Library. Register at 416-395-5660.

In the new year, instead of this one 2-hour session, North York Central Library will be dividing this program in two and having two 2-hour sessions. They will be:



Learn about the Canadian citizenship application process. Find out the latest information about eligibility (age, residency requirements, proof of language ability etc.), completing and submitting the forms, fees, application processing times and more. Presented by a Toronto District School Board representative. You must bring your Permanent Resident Card. It will be held on Wednesday, January 27th, 2016 at 6 p.m.- 8 p.m. in the Auditorium of the North York Central Library. Register at 416-395-5660.



Learn about the Canadian citizenship knowledge test. Get study tips and try some practice questions based on the Discover Canada study guide. Presented by a Toronto District School Board representative. You must bring your Permanent Resident card. It will be held on Wednesday, February 24th, 2016 at 6 p.m.- 8 p.m. in the Auditorium of the North York Central Library. Register at 416- 395-5660.

The third program, Discover Canada Citizenship Mentoring Circle, is 10 weeks long and is currently running. The dates for this year are:

Mondays, September 14th to November 23rd (except Monday October 12th), Room 1, North York Central Library. All sessions run from 6 p.m. - 8 p.m. Even though the program has started, you may still join in.

The dates for 2016 are: Mondays, January 18th to April 4th, 2016 (except February 15th and March 28th), Room 1, North York Central Library. All sessions run from 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.

In these sessions, you will review and discover the Discover Canada study guide with a CultureLink staff member and a team of trained Citizenship Education mentors. Every participant is matched with one mentor. Newcomers can improve their vocabulary and boost their confidence in speaking English by participating in conversations on various topics. Paricipants can also connect with local volunteers, network and share experiences and stories.

Provided by CultureLink. Free. To register, contact Hashem Rahin at 416-588-6288 x220 or

I hope you will find these sessions helpful and useful and that they help you pass your Citizenship Test and settle into Canada in a positive and successful manner!

'They fell with their faces to the foe.' The First Battle of Ypres Commenced

October 19, 2015 | Ann | Comments (3) Facebook Twitter More...

World War I Daily Mail Official War Photograph, Series IX, No. 68, titled Ypres "after two years of war."
This artistic work created by the United Kingdom Government is in the public domain. This is because it is a photograph created by the United Kingdom Government and taken prior to 1 June 1957.

This verse is written by Robert Laurence Binyon and taken from a poem called, For the Fallen. Binyon composed this while looking out towards the sea atop a north Cornish coastline. His words conveyed the English soldiers' ultimate sacrifice to protect their land. This poem is very similar to another piece written by a Canadian Lieutenant stationed in Ypres as he gazed at the red poppies springing up through the tightly packed graves in Flanders Fields.


First World War centenary: the assassination of Franz Ferdinand, as it happened written by Richard Preston 8:19PM BST 27 Jun 2014
Drawing of Galvrilo Precip killing Archduke Francis Ferdinand of Austria in Sarajevo published on July 12, 1914 from Italian paper, Domenica del Corriere. This media file is in the public domain because its first publication was published prior to January 1, 1923.

The event that precipitated the First World War occurred on St. Vitus' Day, Serbia's National Day, on June 28, 1914 with the assassination of the Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife, the Countess Sophie Chotek. From that point forward, preparation for war was underway.

October 19, 1914, 101 years ago today, marked the First Battle of Ypres in Belgium where the French and British armies prevented the Germans from capturing Ypres and heading towards France. Historical resources showed the challenges that the World War I soldiers endured in this first year of battle.  

A trench on the Canadian front showing "funk holes"
Image courtesy of Library Archives Canada on an  Attribution 2.0 Generic Creative Commons licence.

To appreciate how the soldiers persevered through trench warfare, Anne Perry distilled this particular experience in a series of mystery novels. The novels also examined how the Great War was fought on distant lands. The main character, Captain Joseph Reavley, was based on Perry's actual stepfather who fought in the Great War. He shared stories of that period with Anne and this sparked an interest to incorporate these experiences into her rich historical novels.  

No graves as yet by Anne Perry Shoulder the sky by Anne Perry Angels in the gloom by Anne Perry At some disputed barricade by Anne Perry We shall not sleep by Anne Perry

The first book began with the four Reavley siblings living quietly and contentedly in England. A tragic accident suddenly killed both of their parents on the same day that Franz Ferdinand and his wife were assassinated. Joseph and Matthew Reavley started an investigation on the cause of their parents' deaths and located a secret document that could prevent the War from happening. If this document were placed in the hands of the enemy, Europe would fall under German control. The remaining four books (representing each year of the war), detailed the adventures of the four siblings as they gathered government intelligence to bring the enemy spies and their parents' murderers, to justice.

Other popular World War I works of fiction are available through our Toronto Public Library catalogue including:

A duty to the dead Maisie Dobbs: a novel The blood royal A test of wills


To lighten the mood from the deadly battles against the enemy, the British soldiers created some light humour by publishing a magazine called, The Wipers Times. Copies of this magazine (and the movie by the same name) are available to view and borrow from the Toronto Public Library. It is worth noting that the British soldiers mispronounced Ypres as Wipers--hence the name for this magazine.

The Wipers Times, issue cover March 1916 Wellcome
This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license.

For readers interested in the history of the Battle of Ypres and the First World War, the following titles may draw your attention:

Ypres: the first battle, 1914 Douglas Haig and the First World War Ypres, 1914-15 A storm in Flanders: the Ypres salient, 1914-1918: tragedy and triumph on the Western Front
It was their war too: Canadian women and World War I The courage of the early morning: a biography of Billy Bishop, the great ace of World War I Mothers of heroes, mothers of martyrs: World War I and the politics of grief The Great War as I saw it

For more information on Ypres, glance through these intriguing websites located around the world:

  1. Canada and the First World War from the Canadian War Museum website.
  2. Toronto Public Library's Pinterest page on Ypres.  
  3. Allied Powers from the editors of the Encyclopedia of Britannica.
  4. The battle to feed Tommy: New exhibition looks at the diet of a WWI soldier from Imagine the food these soldiers ate and how they had to prepare their meals.
  5. Tony Allen's Picture Postcards of poetry and verse from the Great War.
  6. WW1 Monuments and Memorials from The Great War 1914-1918 website.
  7. Germany - provides a visual collection of the different German artifacts of war.
  8. Britain and World War I on BBC provides historical background on how Britain became involved in fighting this war.  
  9. Australian War Memorial illustrates Australia's involvement with naval and military expeditions. 
  10. Villages East/North-east of Ypres from the World War One Battlefields website provides a good visual tour of the cemeteries in the past and present.
  11. Germany during World War I from First World is an American historical perspective on the Great War.
  12. "You Say Ypres, I Say Ieper, Can't We Just Get Along?" from What Do I Know, Anyway? blog that provides light satirical articles on various intriguing topics including the many different pronunciations for this Belgium city. 

This major event occurred over a century ago, but its repercussions helped to shape the future in culture, politics, and technology of our world today.

Ontario Garlic: The Story from Farm to Festival

October 2, 2015 | Jeannette | Comments (0) Facebook Twitter More...

I don't know much about garlic. When I think of garlic, I think about the food my mom makes (the vegetable stir fry that is loaded with minced garlic), the bad breath afterwards and my ability to ward off vampires with it. A bit silly, huh?

Well, garlic has actually been used throughout history for both culinary and medicinal purposes.

According to WebMD and the University of Maryland Medical Center, garlic is used to prevent or treat a wide range of diseases and conditions, including heart disease and common colds. It is also rich in antioxidants that help strengthen the immune system.

Garlic is native to central Asia. 68% of Canada’s garlic are imported from China. Here in Ontario, 2,500 acres of garlic are grown. If you want to grow your own, the best time is to plant them in the fall and harvest them the next summer.

To learn more about garlic, join author and Toronto Garlic Festival founder, Peter McClusky as he talks about the history of garlic and how it became one of the most popular spices in Ontario. He will also discuss the chemistry of garlic, tips for growing and cooking garlic, cultural stereotypes and much more.


What: Ontario Garlic: The Story from Farm to Festival

When: Wednesday, October 7 at 7:00 – 8:00 PM

Where: North York Central Library, in Room 1

Registration: Call (416) 395-5649


In the meantime, to learn more about garlic check out these books:

Cooking well, garlic   Garlic   Garlic, an edible biography   Garlic and other alliums

Garlic, onion and other alliums   In pursuit of garlic   The miracle of garlic   Ontario garlic

Welcome to North York Central Library. We're one of the City's most welcoming spaces, open to all for study, research, relaxation and fun.

Our extensive digital and print collections, programs and services are yours to use, borrow and explore. Expert staff are always on hand to help. Meet us in person or join us online.