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Where Should you go to Learn about the World Today?

Photo from the Nat Geo Series at Roy Thomson Hall

In the 80’s and 90’s people subscribed to National Geographic Magazine to learn about the world and all the places they wouldn’t necessarily travel on a regular basis. The magazine was smaller than traditional magazines and looks more like a book with glossy pictures. It featured a yellow border around the cover page and is primarily purchased by families with children.

National Geographic Magazine was usually a child’s first look at foreign places across the globe. It was also super exciting for children to browse through when it arrived in the mail each month.

Since I always found the magazine to be interesting and informative, earlier this year, one of my employees said I might be interested in a speakers series at Roy Thomson Hall called National Geographic Live.  Every few months, National Geographic Live has an event involving a speaker discussing a specific topic, somehow related to the world we live in. During the presentation, the speaker captivates the audience with stunning photos and video about the places they are speaking of, not to mention their personal experiences.

Roy Thomson Hall is an intimate theatre in the heart of Toronto that seats almost 3,000 guests. The theatre provides great acoustics, comfortable seating, and excellent service in all of their departments from the ushers, to the box office and the ticket takers.

Roy Thomson Hall is one of the few larger venues in Toronto that runs their own box office and they are always a pleasure to deal with.

For the National Geographic Live events, tickets aren’t necessarily expensive. The lower priced tickets start at $19.50 and if you buy in-person there is no service charge. These presentations are great for a nice afternoon or evening out.

The series is available Sunday afternoon or Monday and Tuesday evenings in January, March, and May 2017. This is a great way to hear some amazing stories, see sensational photography and learn about the world we live in.

National Geographic Live Speaker Series
416-872-4255
www.roythomson.com/natgeolive/

Roy Thompson Hall
416-593-4822
www.roythomson.com

 

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Top 5 Unique Gift Shops in Toronto

Toronto is a metropolis of great finds, and it’s with no doubt that we’ve all had to deal with shopping for that perfect gift for that special someone. Gift-giving involves the intricate process of really knowing someone well: You should know about their passions, preferences, and whether or not they would appreciate a certain type of gift from you. To make your life a bit easier, we’ve created our very own top 5 unique gift shops in Toronto!

1. Labour of Love: Located in the heart of Toronto’s historic Cabbagetown neighborhood, 223 Carlton Street, is Labour of Love. This shop’s gifts reflect its namesake, as there’s a wide variety of hand-crafted jewellery and lifestyle products, quality paper goods such as greeting cards, notebooks, and journals, and a unique assortment of kitschy pick-me-ups!

2. Kid Icarus: This shop located at 205 Augusta Avenue is the place to go for the best indie and contemporary gifts. This shop takes pride in their Canadian handmade goods and its own line of greeting cards and gift wrap! Finally, This shop is the home of quality gifts for the creative soul.

3. Outer LayerLocated at 577 Queen Street West is a shop that has cards and fridge magnets that are out of this world! When you step into this shop and ask, “This is really random, but do you have…,” chances are that this shop most certainly has it! With staff members who are dedicated in helping you find that perfect, personalized gift, Outer Layer is the place to go for fantastic advice and finds!

4. Easy Tiger GoodsFor well-made home décor items, paper and leather goods, and unisex apparel, visit 1447 Dundas Street West! This shop strives to connect item creators with customers by gathering a selection of goods that are made with love and integrity. Every item has a story, and you can begin your own when you step into this shop!

5. Gifts from the EarthWhether you need to bring a splash of beauty and colour into someone’s office, home, or garden, this shop located at both 346 Queen Street West and 320 Danforth Avenue is the place for you. From high-quality mineral specimens, to fossils, spiritual items, and jewellery made by local artists, the items in this shop will uplift anyone’s spirit!

 

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Top 5 Unique Dining Experiences in Toronto

What makes Toronto great is that tourists and Torontonians alike get to truly explore the city through its unique culinary concoctions. Since we all know that great food should always come with great memories, we present our top 5 unique dining experiences in Toronto!

1. O.Noir: Test your heightened senses when you enter the pitch-black dining hall of this restaurant! Run by a team of visually-impaired wait staff, this restaurant gives its customers insight on what it’s like to be blind.

2. 360 Restaurant: Get a breathtaking view of the city when you dine from high above at the CN Tower, and enjoy some unforgettable cuisine by an award-winning team led by Chef de Cuisine John Morris and Food and Beverage Director Peter George.

3. Mysteriously Yours: A fan of dinner theatre, comedy, and murder mysteries? This restaurant consists of a hilariously fun and interactive performance that involves the audience members themselves! At the end of a performance, the audience gets a chance to solve a murder mystery and win prizes.

4. Rawlicious: From thirst-quenching watermelon salads, to beautifully made vegetable spring rolls, Rawlicious serves platters of super healthy and nutritious food. This restaurant has a clear conscience when it comes to eating – there is no wheat, meat, dairy, and refined sugar in anything that they serve their customers!

5. Medieval Times: Knights, horses, armor, weapons, and a castle. At Medieval Times, you don’t enjoy a mere dinner, but a feast while watching an epic battle of steel and steed! Be in awe as the stone walls of this 11th century castle come to life right before your eyes.

 

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OtterBox’s Phone Cases are Out-of-the-Box!

One of the reasons why I often hesitate to upgrade my mobile phone / devices is because I am quite hard on them, and frequently drop them.

That said, when I recently got my spiffy new Samsung Galazy S7, I knew that I needed to protect it from damages given the cost, and the importance of having a working device.

Soon, after receiving my new phone, my sister-in-law introduced me to a protective case made by a company known as OtterBox. OtterBox cases are shock and drop resistant, and when she showed me her phone covered with one of the cases, I immediately noticed the added weight to an otherwise sleek phone. In addition, the phone certainly didn’t look very attractive, but as my sister-in-law said, “neither does a phone with a cracked screen that is all scratched up”. By the end of the conversation, it was clear to me that this purchase was a no-brainer, and the case was well worth the price.

While I was originally going to order a case online, I decided to call my local Best Buy, who had the case in stock, and was willing to match the online price (kudos to Best Buy for going after sales aggressively). Half an hour later, with some help from the Best Buy staff, I had my phone in the case, and was ready to hit the road.

The quality of the case is truly fantastic, and while a bit challenging to put on the first time, it really does what it is meant to do… protect your device. Although, I would say that when I get dirt on my phone screen, it takes a while to clean it up. However, once you get the hang of it, it becomes much easier to clean.

I should also mention that since there are a lot of counterfeit products in the marketplace, I highly recommend spending an extra few dollars and buying it from either OtterBox’s official website or a reputable retailer.

While having a phone encased in something heavy and bulky takes away from its sleekness, it is nonetheless better than a broken phone. Fortunately, I haven’t dropped my new phone yet, however, if and when I do drop it, I know it will be very well protected.

OtterBox
855-688-7269
otterbox.com

 

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Say “Roger, Roger” to Rogers’ Excellent Customer Service

Similar to many other Canadians, I’ve been using Rogers for phone, internet, and cable services for countless years. While I’ve had complaints, I’ve also had good experiences when dealing with some of their great customer service representatives.

Recently, two of my special offers were coming to an end, and I reached out to a representative to see what could be done about the pricing. In addition to receiving help, the representative even went out of their way to assist me in obtaining a new phone, and once I received the new phone (a spiffy, new, Samsung Galaxy S7) the representative helped me figure out all the new features, apps, etc. Being a Blackberry user for the longest time, I really appreciated them making the transition to a new device go as smoothly as possible.

Based on my recent interactions, and how the representatives took care of me, I believe that Rogers is truly making significant improvements in their customer service. In almost all cases, they have been able to help me out and keep me as a satisfied customer.

In the end, despite the ever-evolving world of telecommunications, I think that Rogers will be able to keep up with the needs of their customers.

Rogers Communications
1-855-381-7834
rogers.com

 

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Links Road Animal and Bird Clinic Excels in Pet and Family Care

Several years ago, my wife, daughter, and I adopted a rabbit, Hopper, who had previously lived at my daughter’s daycare. We used to take care of Hopper during the summer months and the holiday season, so when the daycare staff changed and the rabbit was no longer receiving the attention he deserved, we welcomed the adoption.

With our newfound responsibility of being pet owners, we wanted to take Hopper to an animal clinic for regular check ups, however, it wasn’t easy to find a clinic for small animals. Eventually, we discovered the Links Road Animal and Bird Clinic with its friendly, helpful, and accommodating staff. In addition to the great service, the clinic was also reasonably priced.

When we first adopted Hopper, we knew that he was already an older rabbit, and over the past few weeks, he seemed to be experiencing some health issues, so my wife took him to the clinic. The vet took one look at him and informed my wife that he was not doing well. He had clearly lost a lot of weight, and by completing a quick exam, the vet could tell that Hopper was experiencing kidney failure. Sadly, the vet’s recommendation was to put Hopper to sleep, to avoid any unnecessary pain or suffering.

My wife was obviously shocked and saddened by this news, and immediately called me to figure out what to do. Although the clinic was near its closing hours, the staff members did not rush my wife, and instead suggested that my daughter and myself come over, so that everyone could say a final good-bye to the family pet.

It was a very upsetting time, and the staff members not only took good care of Hopper, but took care of us as well. They were very patient with us as we had a final cuddle and bid farewell, and even gave me a treat that we knew Hopper enjoyed, so that we could at least send him off on as sweet a note as possible.

The staff members at Links Road Animal and Bird Clinic were very compassionate and made a bad situation as easy to deal with as possible. I would like to thank them for all of their help, support, and care over the years.

Hopper, you will be sorely missed.

Links Road Animal and Bird Clinic
41 The Links Road
Toronto, ON M2P 1T7
416-223-1165
thelinksroadanimalclinic.com

 

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Top 5 Toronto Staycation Ideas

This week, we present to you another one of our “Top Lists”! Have you ever wanted to get away for the weekend, but find that a vacation would be too time-consuming and require a lot of planning? If you find yourself stuck in Toronto this weekend, then this list will help you make the best of it! Here is our pick of Toronto’s top 5 staycation ideas:

1. Book a Hotel: Check your friends or family into a hotel of choice for a few nights. When you arrive at the hotel, unpack and spend your day in the pool, enjoy some spa treatments, and try some fine wine while dining at the hotel’s restaurant. We highly recommend the One King West Hotel, the Fairmont Royal York Hotel, and the Thompson Hotel!

2. Take a Culinary Tour: Book a tour with The Culinary Adventure Company to experience Toronto’s culinary and historical diversity. Meet with chefs, artisan food producers, butchers, and bakers on a Food Tour, enjoy a seven-course gourmet picnic and a tour of vineyards on a Culinary Adventure, or take a class on how to make cheese! Whatever you choose to do, you will have a delicious staycation experience.

3. Go to the Beach: You can spend your weekend relaxing, catching some sun, playing volleyball, biking, and even rollerblading at Bluffer’s Park Beach! Due to its proximity to the Scarborough Bluffs, you and your family or date can end the weekend with a beautiful view. A visit to the Toronto Island beaches will be just as delightful and safe, as Toronto has high beach water quality standards.

4. Visit a Water Park: Put a splash of fun in your weekend by visiting a water park such as Kidstown! While children can enjoy features such as the tipping bucket, slide, splash pad, and wading pool, adults can have a picnic on the grassy area. Did you know that Kidstown is also free of cost? Another great water park to visit is the one at the Great Wolf Lodge. Make sure to check out their newest Wolf Tail ride!

5. Explore a Historical Site: If you love history and culture, then Black Creek Pioneer Village is a great place to immerse yourself in the customs, lifestyles, and surroundings of early Toronto residents. This month, you would not only get to explore the pioneer brewery, but also participate in The Battle of Black Creek – a revolutionary war re-enactment! In addition, the village offers many fun activities for children. Casa Loma is also a great place to visit if you are curious about Gothic Revival architecture!

 

 

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