What we’ve done, so far…
Since July 2012 Friends of Guild Park have hosted a series of volunteer-led walking tours at Guild Park attracting more than 1,100 visitors yearly. Our independent walking tours and those offered partnership with Heritage Toronto, Jane's Walk and DoorsOpenTO provide visitors with a unique historical, a cultural perspective of Guild Park each Spring and Summer. In 2016 our group received a special award of recognition from Mayor John Tory Mayor for the walking tours of Guild Park.
Twice a year we organize the Guild Park portion of the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup, a national campaign of the Vancouver Aquarium and World Wildlife Federation. Shoreline Clean Up occur each Spring and Fall but we encourage park enthusiasts to collect rubbish whenever they visit the park! Our group is also working closely with the City on identifying waste management solutions.
Our group initiated several annual Holiday events including the Spring Party for Guild Park, The Halloween Haunt and The Annual Christmas Tree Lighting and we also actively participate in Guild Alive With Culture Festival each summer. in 2015 we were proud to have Guild Park selected as one of 141 national Dutch Canadian Friendship Tulip Garden and planted 700 red and White Tulips to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the first gift of 100,000 Dutch tulips bulbs sent in 1945 to Canadians. In 2017 we continued the tradition of the bulb planting event with community members and look forward to seeing yellow Daffodils and blue Muscari celebrating the colours of the former City of Scarborough next Spring.
The Friends of Guild Park & Gardens have developed a strong partnership with Heritage Toronto receiving the Heritage Toronto Media Award, 2012 and Community Heritage Award, 2013. This year we were thrilled to hear our walking tours have been rated the second most popular in Toronto for 2016 and 2017. Our group continues to work closely with Heritage Toronto as we fundraise for the Guild of All Arts commemorative plaque which will be the first official recognition of the historical and cultural importance of Guild Park.
In 2017 our President John Mason was awarded the Scarborough-Guildwood Medal for Community Service by John McKay, MP and along with and our Treasurer Rose Mitchell-Spohn, recognized for their exceptional volunteer efforts in the Park by the City of Toronto, Parks Forestry and Recreation.
Our group has earned media coverage from CTV, Toronto Star, Global News, Scarborough Mirror, Snap'dScarborough. In partnership with other Guild Park Stakeholder Groups including the Guildwood Village Community Association, Guild Festival Theatre and the Guild Renaissance Group we advocate on behalf of and promote the legacy of the Guild Of All Arts, Rosa and Spencer Clark and the natural beauty of Guild Park and Gardens.
In May 2016 our groups worked together to create The Future Arts Programs and Facilities at Guild Park Report.
This report was shared widely with community members and the City of Toronto's Arts Services in support of returning arts programming to Guild Park. Our research and ideas figured prominently in the community engagement process and proposed plans for the Clark Centre for the Arts.
Our group continues to offer our insight and recommendations in support of Guild Park Trails Master Plan process, Guild Park Resource Group and ongoing stakeholder relationship development. If you are interested in becoming more involved with Friends of Guild Park & Gardens , sharing a story or volunteering at a specific event please send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org We'd love to hear from you!
Image: Arrivals and Departures by John Broere, Guild of All Arts 50th Anniversary, 1982