Victory Credit Union in purchase process

Weston’s 70 year-old Victory Credit Union has been purchased by another credit union (subject to regulatory approval). The merger will give Victory members access to another branch in downtown that will be capable of providing more banking services than those currently enjoyed.

Read all about it here.

 

160 Years of Weston CI

Since its opening in 1857, Weston Collegiate Institute has been home to some exceptional graduates. As October approaches, the school prepares to celebrate this momentous occasion. But, before we get into all the amazing things Weston’s Alumni Foundation have in store this year, we must reminisce on all the outstanding milestones Weston has had over the years.

Weston wasn’t always 4 floors of lockers, classrooms with hidden doors and a swimming pool that has all the other schools jealous. Weston was originally called The Weston County Grammar School and was built due to the signatures of 18 local citizens who endorsed its establishment.

Unfortunately, the original school would only be used up until 1875 due to a fire, and while no images are known to exist of the original school, the second one was based on the designs of the first and still holds the heart of the great students who attended it.

Eventually, the school was rebuilt and continued to be a home for all young people in the area to study. As years went by, the school continued to be prosperous and was celebrated throughout the community. However, with an increase in neighborhood population, in 1912 the cornerstone was laid for the expansion of the school. By 1913, the original one-room school had expanded to one with six classrooms, an office, a laboratory, gymnasium, and auditorium.

In 1949, possibly the most iconic changed happened to the school. Weston, whose mascot was previously called “The Knights”, was changed to “The Ironmen”; due to a newspaper article written about Weston’s exceptional and perseverant senior football team. To this day, Weston is known across the city and constantly defies odds with outstanding success. From our SHSM Tech genius’ to our Olympic worthy athletes, the Ironmen are without a doubt some of the most amazing students in the city.

However, the school wasn’t filled with joy and prosperity all the time. In January of 1979, the community and school was faced with a great tragedy. On an outdoor activity ski trip, the bus taking students up north crashed; causing the deaths of four students, and many others faced severe life-changing injuries. Later that year three other students died, from other causes, showing the community how fragile our lives are.

As years progressed, the school and community slowly recovered from these tragic losses and began to prosper once more. The alumni began creating awards and started projects including the ‘Weston Hall of Fame’ which is still one of the most iconic parts of the school. It is made up of pictures and documents of students throughout the years and celebrates their success.

To celebrate 160 years of memories, The Weston Alumni Foundation will be hosting a reunion party, as well as various other events for all grads, community members, and current students.

All Details are listed below

October 13th – Weston CI VS East York CI football game with an Alumni Run BBQ at 2pm

October 14th– Past & current staff Brunch 11am in Weston’s Cafeteria

Alumni Tea Room- 1pm 3pm Weston’s Staff Lounge

Alumni Pub Reunion 1-5pm Weston’s Cafeteria

Westons Current Address– 100 Pine Street

October 15th – Hockey Game at Weston Lions Arena at 12:45

A final thank you goes out to Jane Ross from the Alumni Foundation and the Weston Historical Society, for providing me with all the historical information mentioned in this article!


This article was sponsored by: Luisa Bada: Living in Weston and loving it. 

Backpack Giveaway

SoundCheck Youth Arts, a youth-led non-profit based in Toronto’s Weston and Mount Dennis neighbourhoods, is having a back-to-school backpack drive Aug. 31.

It is the first time the non-profit is doing it.

The event will happen between 4 and 7 p.m. at Weston Park Baptist Church, which is located at 1781 Weston Rd. near Lawrence Avenue West in Weston.

The organizers are giving away fully-stocked backpacks. There will also be a community barbecue.

However, the goods are first come first served.

Weston King Neighbourhood Centre needs tableware and volunteers.

Among other services, Weston King Neighbourhood Centre serves and helps people in the community who are coping with economic or social barriers. In this regard, WKNC provides housing support, harm reduction, hygiene wellness and counselling. Part of the WKNC vision is to have everyone (clients and community members) serve as a volunteer. Currently, they are looking for people to serve in the following roles:

  • Customer Service
  • Promotion and Marketing
  • Janitorial / Maintenance
  • Administrative Assistant
  • Cooks

WKNC provides clients with breakfast and lunch every day except Sundays and is looking for donations of plates, cups and cutlery.

Phone WKNC at (416) 572-0203 for more details.

Another idea for Weston / Mount Dennis

Like Weston and Mount Dennis, Parkdale was devastated by changing circumstances in the 1950s and 1960s. Recently, Parkdale has been gentrifying and residents have formed the Parkdale Neighbourhood Land Trust in order to have some control over the current boom in development.

Last month using fundraising and grants, the trust purchased land that had been denied building permits. The Trust had already received permission to garden on the 5000 square foot site. Ownership will mean that future gardening at that location is guaranteed.

More details here.

Weston – a (comparatively) long history.

Weston has some old structures. Not that old compared to those in Europe, Africa or Asia but for North America, we have quite a few of historical interest.

Strictly speaking, Weston’s oldest structure is the Carrying Place Trail. This was used by First Nations people and explorers between 1615 and 1793. A plaque was dedicated by the Weston Historical Society in 2013.

The Carrying Place Trail Plaque in 2013.

Weston’s next oldest structure is the 1856 CNR (formerly Grand Trunk) bridge that crosses the Humber to the west of Weston and St Phillips. It was recently widened to accommodate the UP Express but the original structure still stands.

The October 5th 1859 sod turning for the Toronto Grey and Bruce narrow-gauge railway by 19 year-old Prince Arthur, 3rd son of Queen Victoria. From: http://www.collectionscanada.gc.ca

The next oldest structure is the long neglected Plank Road Building at Weston and St Phillips. This structure at 2371 Weston was built in 1841 and   in recent years has stood abandoned. Someone obviously owns it and is paying (no doubt reduced) taxes on it.

The Plank Road Building at 2375 Weston Road. From: Google Maps

Weston Presbyterian Church on Cross Street in Weston has an interesting history dating from 1847. The current version dates from 1880.

Weston Presbyterian Church. From: Google.ca

St John the Evangelist Catholic Church was established in 1853.

Weston Collegiate Institute has been going since before Canada was a country (not in the same building!) and is Toronto’s second oldest high school.

Weston Lacrosse Team 1924. http://www.collectionscanada.gc.ca

Weston Village is filled with fine homes and mansions, many dating from around the turn of the 20th Century. Generations of families have enjoyed these homes and their history once revealed can be fascinating.

The City of Toronto has a web page outlining some useful areas of investigation if you are researching the history of your older home. Weston Historical Society may also be useful in this regard.

Readers are invited to share their discoveries.