Why No Kensington?

Wow, I’ve already had people asking “What? No Kensington Market this year?!?”

And the answer is: “No”

As many of you know, and many of you have participated, we have traditionally celebrated the Festival of Lights in Kensington Market.  (Not exclusively of course,  as long-time readers will know from this post originally written in the daybook on Dec 21, 2004)

Unfortunately, I’ve found the popularity of the event has caused the number of spectators to grow every year as the number of actual participants dwindles. It started making me sad more than joyous.  Last year I officially opted out – more details here. The plan was Allan Gardens, but since I was feeling under the weather we opted for a drum and a candle on our deck.

This year I had grandiose plans to organise something casual in St. James Park this year since my office is across the street. But unfortunately after Occupy Toronto’s night time drumming the neighbours and local businesses are quick to respond to the sounds of a drum in the park.  And not by grabbing a candle and taking back the night.  (I’m stating this rather dramatically more for effect than anything because I understand how impactful and negative Occupy Toronto was for many of the permanent residents in the neighbourhood and do not mean to make light of it!)   In fact, the Friends of St. James Park and local BIA are holding a lighting ceremony tomorrow night to turn on all the wonderful lights donated to make the park beautiful, and to celebrate the generous donations and amazing job Landscape Ontario did to restore the park itself!  But I digress!


No Kensington since I don’t want to feel like a dancing monkey for the cameras.

No St. James Park since I don’t want to stir up old troubles.

But chasing back the demons doesn’t require a crowd. And it doesn’t require a park.  It just requires a little light and a little noise and a lot of intent.

Perhaps next year I’ll invite people to join me again, but this year, just like my Dec 21st alone on the island, I’m taking my little light maker and my little noise maker and we are going out tonight when it’s dark to chase off a demon or two.  Probably in Allan Gardens, but maybe just up my street.

And if you want a little more of a giggle about how silly I can get, these will all give you a feel for Dec 21st, my favourite day of the year.

And here’s another oldie but a goodie –  Is That You Santie Claus?

Alexa Clark

Alexa is a digital marketer and author with over 20 years in digital & interactive communications in the food and tech industries. Alexa's CheapEats Restaurant Guides, for both Toronto & Ottawa, were Canadian best sellers. She is a recognized authority on social media and has been named one of Canada's 20 Leading Women in Social Media.

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