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Some history of Dufferin Grove Park.

Friends of Dufferin Grove Park: A Thumbnail History 1992 to 2004

See also Summer/Fall/Winter Story.

posted March 15, 2004

1992: Dufferin Mall's proposed expansion meets with hostility from the neighbourhood. Dufferin Mall offers $20,000 to the city for new playground equipment for Dufferin Grove Park, no strings attached. Parks Department calls a community consultation meeting but nobody comes. Mall manager David Hall calls Jutta Mason and asks her to consult neighbours. She calls around the neighbourhood for two days and asks people what they want for the park. Telephone consultation results: people ask for basketball court, adventure playground suitable for older kids, native species gardens, food in the park, more places to sit. Parks department calls community meeting at library. Well-attended meeting confirms this to-do list.

1993 - Big back yard founders
The sandpit

1993: June 15, sandpit is put into playground area, after "Friends of Dufferin Grove Park" is formed. July 5, mayor June Rowlands comes to open adventure playground. Summer drop-in activities, including enriched art program and our first cooking fires in "The Big Backyard." Late summer -- basketball court is built. That same summer the rink was rebuilt (scheduled previously). First children's garden is put in.

1994 -- February: official rink re-opening ceremony (on closing day). Summer -- second year of Big Backyard art activities. City funds film-maker Amnon Buchbinder to make 10-minute BBY movie. Second garden is put in with help from Latino gangsters.

Old-time park picture gallery

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One of the park's perennial borders, in 1913.


Park Maps

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Snapshots Over Time

posted February 27, 2007

Found Newspaper

The Dufferin Mall across the street from the park was the Dufferin Park Racetrack until 1956. A friend of Park Staff Mario Lourenco discovered these clippings from the Globe and Mail from 1953 while taking up some linoleum flooring in his house. One clipping is Appas Tappas' picks for the season opening horse race. The other is an advert for the races. The ad features the track's "Superb Cuisine" and "Excellent Service" full course meals from 75cents!! Today 75cents can still get you both excellent service and the superb cuisine of a mini-pizza at the Zamboni Cafe!

Click on the images for full size versions

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