Sunday, August 6, 2023

Found: Ancient Disc Plow

 Hiking through the forest in Muskoka, we came upon this very old farm implement, I believe it's a disk plow. Nearby was the remnant of a wire fence, probably to section off the field. How long ago was this area farmed? 50, 75 years ago? More? Was it machine or, horse powered? I can imagine it being used again, some day.

Saturday, October 1, 2022

Canada's Single Use Plastic Ban

 To reduce waste at the 2022 Festival, and to prepare for the Federal single-use plastic ban, we partnered with Dream Zero (, a Canadian company that rents reusable dishware for public events and food businesses.

The two main goals of our program were to reduce waste from being produced in the first place; and second, to divert any produced waste from going to the landfill. Under our Waste Reduction Program vendors served food on reusable dishware, and visitors returned their used plates, cutlery and cups at Eco Stations throughout the Festival. At each Eco Station, volunteer Green Team Ambassadors helped visitors sort their waste into the appropriate stream (recycling, compost and landfill).

With 18 vendors in participation, we achieved an estimated 65-75% decrease in waste. We hope that the methods and lessons learned from our Waste Reduction Project inspires other event managers to make waste-reducing changes.

Thursday, July 14, 2022

Garlic in the Classroom: You've Come A Long Way since 1928!

 Toronto Garlic Festival has created the Ontario Garlic in the Classroom lesson plan. Starting with Autumn planting this versatile guide takes students on the garlic growing journey through the school year. It incorporates modules in Math, Science, Humanities and Language Arts and is suitable for grades 3-5 but is easily adapted for other grades. Garlic is a forgiving plant offering great rewards.

Created with help from teacher/farmer Shawn Stevens, the Ontario Garlic in the Classroom Student Lesson Plan will engage your students on many levels:

• It brings them closer to the soil

• It helps them gain a better understanding of where food comes from

• It gives them an opportunity to participate in a team activity

• It helps them understand their connection to other cultures through garlic

• It channels their new-found interest in Ontario garlic into an interest in cooking and diet

Ontario Garlic in the Classroom Student Guide and Teacher’s Guide are available to download for free on Toronto Star’s Classroom Connection.

This Garlic Growing handbook is a step forward from 1928, when a meeting of the trustees and teachers for a school near Sudbury debated whether students who smelled of garlic could be admitted to class. The question of whether or not we could send pupils home if they ate garlic, arose. It was decided that we could."