I've always been an admirer of old stone country churches. The former Eversley Presbyterian Church (now a real estate office) on Dufferin Street is a favourite of mine. I always thought it was the magnificent cut-stone walls of the church that I admired so. While I still have that appreciation, I have grown to think that it is the windows that finally make the whole presentation complete and perfect. Classic, but simple in design, this church's Gothic arched lancet windows, with curved muntin bars, painted white, are a stark but vibrant contrast to the rugged texture and tones of the ancient cut-stone walls. The several windows, with their rows of descending and elongating, diamond-shaped, cut-glass pieces should be the exclamation marks at the end of any sentence that I could ever write to describe this modest, one-time place of worship.
Here are two paintings by an artist I had never heard of until recently. His name is Moma Markovich (1902-1977). He was born in Serbia and graduated from art school in Paris. During the Second World War, he escaped a Nazi work camp in Austria. He arrived in Canada in 1951 and continued to work as an artist, but was hired by what was then the Ontario Department of Highways as a draftsman. Markovich created almost 200 works in his career and after he retired he created a series of 55 more for the Ministry of Natural Resources. Although much of his work reflected Ontario's transportation infrastructure, other works offered a journey in place and time. They travel back to Ontario's infrastructure beginnings of plank and corduroy roads serving ox carts and horse teams. The painting above is titled 'Carrying Place ~ Humber River', but where on the Humber is not really known. I choose to think that in the painting above, the distant horizon is the King Ridge, now known as the Oak Ridges Moraine. The painting below could represent several locations of pioneer river crossings, perhaps even the Humber. More than 100 Markovich paintings have been saved, cleaned, conserved, re-framed, digitized and preserved for future generations to enjoy. An exhibit of his work, titled 'Footpaths to Freeways' was presented last fall at the John B. Aird Gallery in Toronto. The collection is to be found now in the Government of Ontario Art Collection, at the Ontario Archives. Markovich's work can readily be likened to the work of acclaimed Canadian artist C. W. Jefferys (1869-1951). See Jeffery's 'Lloydtown Rebellion' at bottom, right.
My wife and I have visited the Toronto Wildlife Centre, a couple of times, with wild critters in distress. We've also made cash donations in the past and another one just this past week. We'll probably make another one later this year. I can't stress enough how wonderfully the 'TWC' approaches the concern and care for wildlife in distress. This is absolutely the first and best place to go with a wild creature that needs emergency care. I'm not suggesting that someone should avoid going to a local vet, especially if the case is a real emergency. To get a good idea of what these folks are are all about, I suggest checking out their website. They accept sick and injured wild animals from a huge area, at their facility on the grounds of the old Downsview Airport. Their address is 60 Carl Hall Rd., North York, just off Keele Street. See them online at www.torontowildlifecentre.com
The three views of Laskay seen in these photos and painting show, more or less, the same scene. They show the 6th Concession of King Township as it heads north, down toward the East Humber River, across the bridge and up the other side of the hamlet, towards the King Road and beyond that to the hamlet of Strange.
Above is a print of an A.J. Casson painting of the 6th Concession of King, heading down into the East Humber River valley at Laskay, which the artist painted in 1932. This print is one of 880 original copies. Copies are still available, I believe, at www. art country canada.com.
Photo by Barry Wallace
The scene above is a recently shot photograph depicting the same scene as at top.
Just a day after a Lamborghini Aventador showed up at the new King Auto Spa, on Keele Street, King City, (see previous blog), a new Nissan GT-R showed up. These high-performance cars start at just over $150,000 and have 565 h.p. But this one has 1,000 h.p., wide, wide tires and modified fenders to cover them. The owner of this Nissan GT-R is also the owner of the Lamborghini mentioned yesterday.
This beauty showed up in King City this week at the King Auto Spa, on Keele Street South in the village, which until recently was Ken McQuarrie's Clearview Motors. King Auto Spa is one of three different businesses operating from the site now. I'm not sure what model or year it is, but it looked brand new and was catching the eye of many a motorist, as they passed by the location. It's probably worth $1/2 million, for which you get around 700hp+ and it can move along at the top end at about 355 kph. Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go and buy my Lotto Max ticket for next Friday.
Arizona in the winter and Vancouver Island in the summer are to be the new homes for longtime King Township residents Gordon and Judy Craig. The two have been well-known and dedicated volunteers in King for many years. Both are well known for their years of community service to the village of Schomberg. Judy is also known particularly for her dedication and determination towards the establishment and development of Arts Society King. Gordon is especially well known for his years of service and leadership to Cold Creek Conservation Area Stewardship Committee and the King Township Library Board. The couple received over 100 well-wishers, including King Mayor Steve Pellegrini, at the King Heritage and Cultural Centre on Wednesday, March 22. I had the pleasure of knowing and volunteering with Judy and Gordon for a number of years and can say that they gave new meaning to boosterism in all their King Township endeavours.
Here's the the latest addition to a collection of old vehicles and implements (including an airplane) that are to be found on a property on the north side of the 15th Sideroad, west of Bathurst Street. It is a John Deere Model A General Purpose tractor. John Deere began making this tractor in 1934. It featured a 3-wheel (actually 4 wheels) tricycle design, to improve maneuverability and reduce the efforts of steering between market garden plants. Eight versions of the John Deere Model A GP tractor were built during the twenty years of its production, between 63 and 83 years ago. Notice in particular the narrow, multi-spoked rear tires.
Nigel Hussey, a Cold Creek Executive Committee member, was busy for four hours this past Sunday, showing 'Syrupfest' attendees, adults and children, how to make maple syrup. Nearby, a volunteer was serving partially frozen maple syrup on a stick that was a big hit with adults and especially the children. Below are the heavy horses, and one of their handlers, that were providing dozens and dozens of rides for the hundreds of folks and kids. The horses, Bailey (on the right) and her daughter, Chase (on the left) were gentle giants, as every kid going for a ride just had to pat the horses' noses.
One of the big highlights of the day for the kids and their parents, was a reptile collection of snakes and turtles (including a Snapping Turtle) from a herpetological preserve in Orillia. It was a hands-on experience that the kids loved and there were hundreds of pictures taken of the interaction by parents. The snakes in these photos were Corn Snakes (with the orange bands) and a very big black Rat Snake. One of the Corn Snakes tried to tie itself into a bow (see below), much to everyone's amusement.
This lad from Aurora, who was completely taken with the snakes, just had to have a snake when asked by a face-painter what he wanted her to paint. His younger brother also then had to have a snake painted on his face also. While the snakes were a big hit at the Visitors Centre, the Education Centre was packed as every person in attendance had a plateful of pancakes, maple syrup and three strips of bacon. All in all, pretty darned good for just $10 per vehicle!
The status of 12,800 Keele Street, the original site of the Watson Potato Chip factory, is currently described by the Township of King Councillor Cleve Mortellitti as moving through the normal process but GO Train railway issues and King Township issues with Keele Street access and egress have yet to be resolved. He also told me that this proposal could be ultimately resolved by the end of the year. The proposal, as posted on a sign on the property, calls for 60 stacked condominium townhouse units in three 3-storey buildings plus 270 square metres (2,700 sq. ft.) of commercial space.
Meanwhile across the street, and a wee bit south, the old Clearview Motors property, recently sold, has a sign (see bottom photo) which states that a site plan development application has been submitted for 48 stacked townhomes (at a density of 109 units per hectare) and measuring four storeys high. The proposal is shortly to be presented to anyone interested, at a public meeting arranged by the developer, not the Township of King. Again Councillor Mortellitti commented to me that from what he knows of the proposal, it fails to measure up on many counts and that the process will be long and drawn-out. Overall, it seems nothing is imminent.