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Seniors' Discovery Fair returns in Scarborough!

September 24, 2015 | Soheli | Comments (0)

Last year, the Seniors’ Discovery Fair was held right here at the Cedarbrae Branch, and was a smashing success!

This year's event returns at the Malvern Branch. It will run from 2:00 to 3:30 PM on Wednesday, September 30, 2015 in the branch's Community Room. Everyone is encouraged to attend.

Just like in previous years, the fair will be a chance for seniors, caregivers, friends and family, to meet with a variety of local organizations and service providers.

Here are some of the groups that will be present at this year’s Seniors’ Discovery Fair:

  Older couple sitting on couch.

Image courtesy of Pixabay  on a Creative Commons Licence.

This free event is a wonderful opportunity to learn more about what services are available for older adults, right here in Scarborough. There will be light refreshments and the chance to win prizes, so come by and find out what is available in your community.

Malvern Branch staff will be on hand to introduce you to upcoming library programs and services. There will be demonstrations of the library’s online databases for eBooks and eVideos, such as Overdrive, Zinio, and Hoopla.

  Overdrive   Hoopla Zinio

Looking forward to seeing you there!

Pan Am Inspirations at the Cedarbrae Branch

September 1, 2015 | Soheli | Comments (0)

Although the Toronto 2015 Pan Am and Parapan Am Games have since passed, we still have fond memories of the programs we enjoyed at our branch during the Games. 

To honour the Games, we held the Cedarbrae Branch's first ever Pan Am inspired Competition. It was a chance for our community's kids to showcase their physical prowess and get their game face on!

We played a variety of fun games including the very silly (but misleadingly difficult!) Junk in the Trunk, which had our kids hopping around like mad. We also had teams take on a giant version of Kerplunk, as well as the classic bean bag toss and ring toss.

Kids of all sizes competed for gold, silver and bronze standings. As we quickly found out, many of these games required not only some physical skill, but also some thoughtful planning and strategy.

We learned not to doubt even the smallest of competitors - you never knew what skills one could bring to the table!

The comptetition was a great success, with over fifty kids participating, and lots of parents to cheer them on. We ended with a medal ceremony to celebrate all the efforts everyone had put in.

PanAm Competition
Some of our happy gold medalists!

This competition was also a chance for us to talk about what some of our favourite Pan Am Games events were (soccer was a popular one for a number of kids!) and what we were all looking forward to watching at the Parapan Am Games in August.

We also had our Cedarbrae kids design their own version of the Pan Am/Parapan Am Games' mascot, Pachi. There were lots of variations, including mini Pachis, a Pachi that hits the gym, and many, many more.

a pair of Pachis

Pachi and friends

Pachi mayhem!

In addition to both of these programs, we also hosted a sports trivia contest for teens, enjoyed a steelpan concert and created community murals to celebrate the feel of the 2015 Games.

Pan Am Mural One of the murals designed by kids in our community.

We had lots of fun this summer with PanAm/Parapan Am inspired events. If you missed out on any of these programs, be sure to check in with us and see what other things we've got planned for this Fall!

Thirty Before Thirty!

July 31, 2015 | Soheli | Comments (2)

Have you ever been on the cusp of a milestone birthday when it suddenly occurs to you that the years are just flying by? Whether you're turning 25 or 75, time often has a way of creeping up on us and putting a lot into perspective.

Cupcakes with Candles
Image courtesy of April on a CC license.

The Guardian has an article about impending milestone birthdays and a few writers share their thoughts on turning 30, 40, etc. I'm approaching my 30th very soon, so Abigail Radnor's piece really resonated with me. She writes,

Twenty-nine feels like an age that can be worn very differently. I know 29-year-olds on Tinder and 29-years-olds raising toddlers. I know 29-year-old students and others running their own companies. But if there is one common theme among my peers over the past year, it is change: new jobs, careers, partners, flatmates, countries of residence, births, marriages and deaths. Could that be said of any age? Surely not so sweepingly.

Change is a huge thing for 20-somethings headed into the next chapter in their lives. Everyone deals with it differently, but many of us like to try to be prepared. What that means exactly will be different for everyone, but for me, it's making lists (which is, according to one of my former professors, a 'very librarian sort of thing'). I decided to do thirty things I'd never done before I hit thirty this summer. Here are three from my list. 

1. Become completely student loan-free.
This was initially a fairly realistic goal when I graduated in 2010. After all, five years seemed like plenty of time. Except, of course, the rest of your life happens. And, life gets expensive.

There are some good ways to plan out your finances, however, to help make a goal like this a reality.

If you've got a similar goal, why not try out some books on my list?

Debt Free Forever Oxlade  Debt Free for Life Bach  Debt Free Spending Nagler 

We've also got lots of business, legal, and personal finance related workshops and presentations available at a number of branches throughout the city. For example, at the Dufferin/St. Clair Branch, there is an upcoming program on raising financially independent children. Smart!


2. Get my (full) driver's license.
I was a little late when it came to driving. I actually completely avoided it for as long as possible. If you're a natural, this may not seem like a big deal, but if you've ever gotten anxiety taking a test, or if you're prone to making reaalllly wide right turns, you might understand why this is a goal for many people!

If you're studying for your written test and need to review the rules of the road, be sure to check out the online preview of the Driver's Handbook. Similarly, most library branches have a reference copy on hand for you to use in the library as well. 

If you're already a driver on the road, keep in mind that new rules will come into play this Fall 2015. Be sure to be in the know by checking out the Heads Up! website where changes are outlined.


3. Dye my hair a 'wild' colour.
This one has no particular educational or self-improvement angle. Gotta have a little fun sometimes, right? Fun note: when small children come up and ask why my hair is bright pink, I get to tell them I'm half mermaid!

Dolls with pink hair
Image courtesy of Aimee Ray on a CC license.

BuzzFeed has a fun (and informative!) article about bright coloured hair, particularly for people with darker complexions and hair. If you're feeling like a risk-taker, and want to learn more about how to dye your own locks, here are a few resources to get you started. Keep in mind, however, that it can be super tricky and is often best left to the pros!

HairColor Mix  World of Hair Colour

 Do you have any silly or serious goals you'd like to achieve before you hit a certain birthday? Share with us!

New Musical Additions at TPL

June 8, 2015 | Charlene Lee | Comments (0)

Toronto Public Library's music collection is always growing, including what you can find at a branch near you. Below are albums that were recently added to our collection by artists that are taking part in this summer's music festival circuit. By the time you read this our CD collection will already have grown; keep an eye out for New CDs on our website!


Above and BeyondFull length electronic albums are few and far between, but not for U.K. dance duo Above & Beyond. We Are All We Need is their fourth studio album, and brings some pop-friendly trance to TPL. The tracks are ambient and layered, but still maintain that driving beat characteristic to trance music. Catch Above & Beyond this summer at Veld.  



BronchoJust Enough Hip to Be Woman is Oklahoma trio Broncho's sophomore release. Combining punk and garage rock, Broncho's second album brings lots of giddiness and punch. Check it out for fun anthems and introspective ballads. Broncho can be seen this summer at music and arts festival WayHome.



Broods - EverygreenNew Zealand sibling duo Broods bring some much needed synth-electropop to our catalogue! Their debut album Evergreen (following the release of their self-titled EP) is lush, dark, and dreamy. Even with sparse instrumentation, it still accomplishes depths and layers. Broods can be seen this summer at WayHome



Clean BanditNew Eyes is the debut album from U.K. group Clean Bandit. The album marries classical, pop, and electronic in dreamy tracks with the right amount of push. This is best exemplified in "Mozart's House", a fun track with parts of Mozart's "String Quartet No. 21" soaring above an infectious beat, cleverly layered with rap from Love Ssega. Check out Clean Bandit on Toronto Island at Bestival



JamiexxIn Colour is Jamie xx's first full-length solo album. Incorporating genres from trip-hop to house, to dubstep, to R&B, it's a masterpiece not to be missed. Jamie xx (of The xx) brings us an anthemic and simultaneously intimate record. In Colour is an ode to the dance culture of decades past. The album wanders through hypnotic, spacey, and sometimes quiet tracks. Although seemingly low-key, In Colour is personal and engaging. Catch Jamie xx at Bestival

Stay tuned for more new additions to TPL! Did you know the Toronto Public Library can be your one-stop destination for discovering local artists? Check out TPL's Local Music Collection and keep an eye out for upcoming Make Some Noise events.

New Year's at Noon

December 30, 2014 | Soheli | Comments (3)

Remember when you were younger and weren't able to stay up until midnight to ring in the new year? Maybe your parents wouldn't let your bedtime slide that far, or maybe you just couldn't keep your eyes open, no matter how hard you tried.

If you've got little ones just begging to stay up late this New Year's Eve, we've got the perfect solution: why not celebrate a little early when the clock strikes 12...PM?

  cute dog wearing a New Year's tiara

New Year’s Beagle courtesy of Cutie Pie Company on a CC license.

Gather the kids in your life and join us for a craft session where we'll create party hats and noisemakers and share stories and songs. We can't bring out the bubbly, but you can bring a snack or juice box to toast to the (almost) new year as we count down! There's no need to register; just drop by.

New Year's at Noon
December 31, 2014
11 AM - 12 PM
Cedarbrae Branch, 416-396-8850

I’d love to say we came up with this great idea, but the librarians over at the Fort York Branch shared their plans for a midday celebration with us. If you’re in that area on December 31st, be sure to check out their new year's event for children!

If you can’t make it out with the kids that day, here are some children’s stories to read together instead:

New Year's Eve Thieves
New Year’s Eve Thieves
by Ron Roy

Who Stole New Year's Eve?
Who Stole New Year’s Eve?
by Martha Freeman

Happy New Year Mallory!
Happy New Year, Mallory!
by Laura Friedman

Just in Time for New Year's!
Just in Time for New Year’s!
by Karen Gray Ruelle

Shante Keys and the New Year's Peas
 Keys and the New Year’s Peas by Gail Piernas-Davenport


Wherever you are when the countdown begins – whether cozy in your bed or celebrating with loved ones – have a safe night.

Happy 2015!

Find Volunteering Resources Online.

December 20, 2014 | Soheli | Comments (0)

We get asked about volunteering opportunities all the time. It can be a little overwhelming trying to navigate all the options and find the best fit for you.

Confused student looking at notebook.
Photo courtesy of CollegeDegrees360 on a CC license.

If you're a teen between 14 and 19 looking to volunteer, you're not alone. With the highschool volunteering requirement, many youth are looking to rack up their 40 hours as efficiently as possible.

Although the library has a number of volunteer positions, there are many, many organizations and agencies looking for volunteers all across Toronto. There are even some ways to still squeeze in some volunteering this holiday season!

On Monday January 19, at 6 PM, come and join us for a session exploring all the ways to discover volunteering opportunities online. We will look at the different ways you can search for positions, how to contact various organizations, and figure out what best works for you. Also, a volunteer from SickKids Hospital will come and talk about what she does in her role and how she got there. Give us a call to register or to find out more: 416-396-8850.


Everything you can imagine is real: Young Voices at Cedarbrae

December 17, 2014 | Soheli | Comments (0)

You may have noticed a new art display at the Cedarbrae Branch if you've walked in recently...

Young Voices Display near check out computers.

We're the lucky branch that will be displaying the Young Voices art exhibit for the month of December. 

These panels highlight some of the artwork that was submitted by Toronto teens to Young Voices, the library's magazine of written and visual art.

These talented young artists were selected by a small group that looked for high-quality original work that would be representative of and relevant to Toronto's diverse youth. Although only visual art is displayed in this exhibit, there are many more selections of prose and poetry in the Young Voices magazine. You can pick up a copy in your local branch, or check out an online copy of Young Voices right here on our website.

We are currently looking for submissions for the 2015 edition of Young Voices.
If you (or a talented teen you know!) are interested, be sure to check out the submission requirements and submit online. You can also print out a PDF submission form, if you'd prefer, and then simply attach it to your piece and deliver it to a staff member at your local branch.

The deadline for Young Voices 2015 is Tuesday April 7, 2015 so start thinking about your potential selection now! Remember, as Pablo Picasso said:  "Everything you can imagine is real."

For inspiration, check out some examples of different styles from all over the world:

Pablo Picasso  Vincent Van Gogh  Frida Kahlo  Trespass: A history of uncommissioned urban art  Chalo! India 

Scarborough Repair Cafe: a HUGE success!

November 17, 2014 | Soheli | Comments (1)

As you may remember from one of my last posts, we recently hosted Repair Cafe Toronto at the Cedarbrae Branch.

From 12 - 4 on Saturday, October 18, our already bustling library turned into an amazing hub of activity. It began with Repair Cafe volunteers transforming our space with colourful signage, then a spread of all kinds of tools, from tiny beading accessories to heavy duty pliers.

Repair Cafe at the Cedarbrae Branch
Photo courtesy of Repair Cafe Toronto

We had just under a hundred people come from all over Toronto to have their broken items looked at. Some of the things I noticed included a coffee maker, computer and car speaker. In addition to fixing small appliances, there were also tables for clothing repair and even book binding and paper repairs! The bookbinding table also doubled as a fun spot for kids trying out origami patterns and other simple paper crafts. Kids and adults alike were also invited to take a look at some of our bright book and DVD displays about recycling and repair that can be easily done. 

The volunteers worked hard to get most items up and running again. Nearby, those with repaired items could pose for a photo, proudly holding up a cute "Fixed!" sign to celebrate their participation at Scarborough's first Repair Cafe. The 'Fixed!" sign did face a little mishap of its own...

Photo courtesy of @RepairCafeTO on Twitter

As with all of Repair Cafe's events, this event was a success because of the combined efforts of both the volunteer Fixers and the interested partipants who came to learn. We had a great time seeing people working together, excitedly learning about how things work.

If you missed this Repair Cafe, not to worry: you can catch another one on Saturday November 22 from 10 AM to 2 PM at Skills For Change. This is going to be the last Repair Cafe for the year, so be sure to gather your items and head over this coming weekend!

A big thank to you all the kind folks over at Repair Cafe Toronto and, of course, all the library users who joined us to make this an amazing event last month!

Mend Over Matter: Repair Cafe heads to Scarborough!

October 11, 2014 | Soheli | Comments (2)

They say if it ain't broke, don't fix it. But if it is? You head to the Repair Cafe! We will be hosting the Repair Cafe right here at the Cedarbrae Branch on Saturday October 18, starting at 12 Noon until 4 PM.

Repair Cafe Toronto is a not-for-profit organization founded by a small group of Torontonians who enthusiastically support the repair movement first started by the Repair Cafe Foundation in Amsterdam.

Reduce, Reuse and Recycle.
Image from

Repair Cafe's mission is simple: reduce waste and make old things new again - all while teaching, learning and enjoying the art of the fix!

Think of the kinds of things you might have sitting around in your own home that may have fallen into disrepair. Are these items really broken beyond saving? Repair Cafe volunteer fixers can help you find out. These fixers work with a variety of things, from small appliances to clothing and books. As they put it,

"Repair Café teaches people to see their possessions in a new light. And, once again, to appreciate their value. Repair Café helps change people’s mindset. This is essential to kindle people’s enthusiasm for a sustainable society."

A recent article from University of Toronto's student newspaperThe Varsity, notes that "The Repair Café not only offered the opportunity to learn new skills but also the chance to connect with skilled people."

Repair Cafe Fixers
image courtesy of Repair Cafe Toronto

Whether you're interested in being a volunteer fixer yourself, just watching others repair items, or have something of your own you might want to try to get working again, be sure to drop by this event.

This Repair Cafe session requires no registration ahead - just bring an item that you'd like to get fixed and we'll help you get started! We're looking forward to a fun event with a wide variety of things to get fixed and skilled people to help you fix them.

For more information about the event on Saturday, October 18 (12-4 PM), give us a call at the Cedarbrae Branch at 416-396-8850.

Hope to see you there!

Open Mic Night @ Cedarbrae Branch

October 9, 2014 | Soheli | Comments (0)

Calling all spoken word artists, poets and word performers: are you ready to shine?

Image courtesy of flickr user Grant on a CC license.

Join us for our first Open Mic Night tonight, October 9, 2014, beginning at 7 PM.

Our Artist in the Library, Dwayne Morgan, will be hosting this event and helping you get on stage and presenting to others. Dwayne is a well-known poet, performer and speaker who will be working with youth on all kinds projects this Fall and Winter on a one-on-one basis as well as organizing open mic nights like this.

Whether you've got a few performances under your belt, or are brand new to the scene, be sure to come by and see and share the talent Scarborough has to offer!

Registration is not required for this event and youth (13-19) are all welcome to attend.

Need more info? Give us a call at the Cedarbrae Branch: 416-396-8850. 

Welcome! This blog is written by the Cedarbrae Library staff and we want it to become a place where you can find out what's going on in the branch and in the community. But not just that - we plan to write about all things we might find interesting.