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Found 8 results

  1. World poutine-eating contest to be held in Toronto. Yes, that's right. T.O. By Andy Blatchford (CP) – 20 minutes ago MONTREAL — One of Quebec's cultural symbols has been called everything from disgusting, to heart-attack inducing, to delectable. But can the increasingly popular Quebecois dish known as poutine -that messy mix of french fries, sauce and cheese curds -now be considered a gooey source of Canada-wide pride? When a gang of professional "eaters" from the United States and a handful of Canadian amateurs battle for the world poutine-eating championship, it won't go down in Montreal, Quebec City, or anywhere else in la belle province. It will be held in, of all places, Toronto. And due to provincial contest rules, Quebecers hoping to eat their way to the title won't be allowed to even take part. No longer seen as just working-class grub from small-town Quebec, poutine now has fans across Canada and beyond. The concoction has been integrated into haute cuisine and has secured niches under the bright lights of the Big Apple and Los Angeles. "I think it shows that poutine has become a national meal," Charles-Alexandre Theoret, author of the 2007 book "Maudite poutine!" ("Damned poutine!") said of the upcoming all-you-can-eat showdown on May 22 at BMO Field in Toronto. "It was once a Quebec meal, but now it's everywhere." A dozen stars of Major League Eating, a circuit best known for its stomach-turning, rapid-fire hot dog eating contests, will have 10 minutes to wolf down as much poutine as they can. "You must use a fork, so there's going to be certainly some skill involved," said Mike Antolini, a spokesman for the International Federation of Competitive Eating. "It's going to test their capacity, but also their hand speed and technique." The champ wins a modest sum of $750 and bragging rights. Antolini said organizers considered poutine-serving joints in Montreal to serve the fare, but eventually chose Smoke's Poutinerie, a Toronto-based chain. "I know that Montreal maybe feels like poutine is theirs, but we are going to be crowning a champion in Canada, and I think that's the most important thing because poutine certainly is Canadian first and foremost," he said. Of course, that hasn't always been the case. For years, the towns of Warwick and Drummondville have duelled over the true birthplace of poutine, but one thing has never been questioned: it's from Quebec. Warwick claims the dish was invented by local restaurant owner Fernand LaChance in 1957, while Drummondville insists that restaurateur Jean-Paul Roy blended the first poutine in 1964. To help cement its claim, Drummondville started holding an annual poutine festival in 2008. Regardless of its exact origins, poutine has long had a complicated bond with Quebecers, many of whom have looked down their noses at what some have called a culinary abomination. "It's a love-hate relationship, there are younger generations who feel fine with it, and almost make it a cool icon," said Theoret, whose book takes a historical look at poutine. "But older generations didn't grow (up) with it and think that it's low class, low life. They're really ashamed about it." For the poutine-eating contest, three Canadians will be selected through a sweepstakes to join the race. In an ironic twist, Quebec laws don't allow its residents to apply. "I don't argue with lawyers," said Smoke's Poutinerie owner Ryan Smolkin, who has five restaurants and one mobile kitchen in his growing poutine empire. All of them are in Toronto, but he's expanding to other parts of Ontario and plans to eventually open up shops across the country and around the world. The Ottawa native imports cheese curds from Quebec's Eastern Townships and tops his poutines with authentic chicken-based sauce. But he said he's never tried to pretend he's a Quebecer. "I know where the roots are, I know what it's all about and I'm trying to maintain that heritage for sure, and the Quebec influence," said Smolkin, who opened his first restaurant 15 months ago. "I respect and want to take that heritage and culture into my brand and help spread that across the world." With poutine's popularity spreading in the United States, he wanted to make sure the dish was "Canadianized" before an American restaurant tried to claim it. "It's been too isolated to Quebec," he said. "Nobody's just tried to take it big outside Quebec, so I'm trying to do that."
  2. Excess wind energy to be stored underground for future use Posted Oct 5th 2007 8:57PM by Darren Murph Filed under: Misc. Gadgets We've seen some fairly impressive uses of wind power, but a group in Iowa is looking to actually capture and preserve excess wind energy for use when demand peaks. At the Iowa Stored Energy Park, a number of local utilities is "building a system that will steer surplus electricity generated by a nearby wind farm to a big air compressor," which will be held deep below the ground for future use. The project is being backed by the Energy Department, but more than a hundred municipal utilities in surrounding states are shelling out $200 million to construct the 268-megawatt system. As it stands, Iowa's compressed air energy storage (CAES) installation will be the first of its kind when it's completed in 2011, but there's already work being done in Texas to build a similar unit.
  3. (Courtesy of The Montreal Gazette) So sad. Why can't they target people from Ontario?!
  4. Gun registry favoured only by Quebecers: poll Last Updated: Wednesday, November 11, 2009 | 4:06 PM ET CBC News A poll suggests Quebecers are alone in wanting to save the long-gun registry, with most Canadians outside the province appearing content to abolish it. The findings in the latest survey by The Canadian Press/Harris-Decima come a week after the House of Commons gave approval in principle to a private member's bill aimed at killing the controversial registry. In Quebec, a majority of respondents say they're opposed to abolishing the registry, which was created after 14 women were killed at École Polytechnique in Montreal in 1989. Fifty-six per cent of Quebecers polled said they oppose abolishing the registry, in contrast to the majority of people questioned in Atlantic Canada, British Columbia, Alberta and Manitoba-Saskatchewan, who support cancelling the registry. Residents in Ontario who participated in the poll were split on the issue, according to Harris-Decima's results. Quebecers also held distinctive views about the registry's role in public security, with more than half of respondents believing it has helped fight and prevent crime. That's about 19 per cent more respondents than the national average of the other provinces. The poll comes as the debate over the long-gun registry slowly inches forward in the House of Commons. Last week a key vote was held on a private member's bill that would wipe out the registry. Conservative MP Candice Hoeppner tabled the bill on the contentious registry. The Bloc Québécois caucus voted against it, while 12 NDP and eight Liberal MPs backed the Conservative caucus in voting for the bill. On the same day as the vote, Quebec's legislature, the national assembly, unanimously adopted a motion reiterating Quebecers' reliance and belief in the registry. The Conservative government has wanted to abolish the registry on the basis that it is expensive and inefficient. The Harris-Decima poll surveyed about 1,000 Canadians by telephone between Nov. 5 and 8. The poll's margin of error is 3.1 per cent, 19 times out of 20.
  5. "Alice in Lark Land" http://www.oldcarbrochures.com/static/NA/Studebaker/1962_Studebaker/1962-Alice%20in%20Lark%20Land/dirindex.html I especially like "when you get a flat, pull over to the side of the road, put on fresh lipstick, get out, wave and look helpless and feminine" (p. 15) (I like this one since it is so true ) I also like "when driving on an expressway, use distractions like the radio" For context, it seems to have been a booklet supplied with the Studebaker Lark for '62. It was a popular car with ladies as the car was small, and also Studebakers had a feature that held the brake for you on a hill, so that starting the car off from a stop on a grade was a trivial operation, which made them attractive to feeble drivers.
  6. A facelift for St. Jacques? Tue, 2008-09-02 16:04. Shuyee Lee St. Jacques Street in NDG is known mainly for car dealerships, auto repair shops, seedy motels, vacant lots and empty storefronts. But the borough wants to give it a facelift and attract more residents and stores. It's proposing a bylaw that would bar new body shops, gas stations and other industrial business from opening up and rezone the area as mostly residential with room for restaurants, boutiques, grocery stores and similar "user-friendly" businesses. They're focussing on the stretch between Madison and Decarie. The existing industrial businesses would be allowed to stay. A public consultation is being held tonight at 6pm at 5151 Côte-Sainte-Catherine.
  7. Michael Phelps, the billion dollar man? "In the heat and intensity of this event it may seem that his earning power is limitless, but you have to pull back and look at someone like Tiger Woods who has performed at a top level for years and years in front of the world," he said. "The Olympics is only held once every four years. After a year to so Americans forget about the Olympics and move to stars they see more. Kids want someone else on their Weetabix box." THE PHELPS PHENOMENON Phelps is already the epitome of the modern American corporate Olympian with the Phelps Machine in full swing before he topped the record nine gold tally held by Spitz and Carl Lewis, Finnish runner Paavo Nurmi and Soviet gymnast Larysa Latynina. Portnoy said Phelps's youth and composure under pressure made him a marketer's dream. The only blotch on his record was an arrest for drinking and driving in 2004 for which he apologized. "In the short term, he is a gold mine because he represents everything that is pure, young, strong and visionary about America. We haven't had anyone of this significance since Mark Spitz," said Portnoy. "Guaranteed there will be marketers wanting a piece of him that make no sense and it will interesting to see how his handlers cope with this and if they get greedy because the Olympics has a narrow avenue of marketability." Phelps, who became a professional swimmer at 16 and a millionaire by 18, has sponsors, agents, lawyers, accountants, charities, his own website in English and Chinese, and even his own logo with a wave-like blue M and red P over his name. An Octagon spokesman said his sponsors were credit card company Visa Inc., Speedo, watch maker Omega, AT&T Wireless, energy food company PowerBar. Kellogg's, Rosetta Stone, and PureSport. He declined to say what they paid Phelps. Within seconds of Phelps's snapping up his 10th gold medal, Visa released a special edition television commercial commemorating his title as the most decorated Olympian. "You need to be out there early and establish your affiliation with the property, Michael Phelps," said Michael Lynch, head of global sponsorship management at Visa whose relationship with Phelps dates back to 2002. "His performance here will benefit us as it will add to the visibility we will get through this affiliation ... and his earning ability will increase, there's no question of that." http://www.reuters.com/article/newsOne/idUSPEK5905620080814?pageNumber=3&virtualBrandChannel=