Accidental Parkland: Documentary Screening & Panel Discussion
7:00PM - 11:00 Electric Perfume on Google Maps. Link opens in a seperate tab or window. • 805 Danforth Ave, Toronto More Info
Accidental Parkland is a documentary project on the changing nature and sustained value of Toronto’s urban waterways, both the waterfront and ravines.
Toronto’s most distinctive physical attribute is also one of its least appreciated: its 44,000-acre ravine system. That’s thirty times the size of Central Park in New York that is distributed throughout the region, interconnecting the entire Greater Toronto Area from the Oak Ridges Moraine to Lake Ontario. Many people don’t even realize that we all are linked by these indented spaces and the water that flows through them. Development over the last century and a half has engineered, and sometimes buried, the ravines and watercourses out of our sight and minds.
We want that to change.
As is often the case in Toronto and Canada most of us don’t realize just how unique and advanced our city is in a global context. When it comes to urban green space and its protection, Toronto is a bit of a marvel. We have, partially by accident, avoided the pitfalls and missteps that many other contemporary cities blundered into when it came to caring for local waterways and preserving natural spaces in the urban context. People come from around the world to see how the Toronto region preserves and manages its watersheds. With this documentary, we want even more people to know about this bounty and burden.
Toronto and the surrounding region also has some stunningly beautiful landscape and topography that we’ve filmed for this documentary. We hope viewing it will change the way people think about the nature of this place.
Post Screening Panelists
Dr. Claire Oswald: Scientist, Educator and Urban Water Expert
Dr. Claire Oswald is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Geography and Environmental Studies at Ryerson University in Toronto, ON. Dr. Oswald is a broadly-trained physical geographer with research interests in catchment hydrology, biogeochemistry, pollutant (e.g. mercury, chloride) fate and transport, and dissolved organic matter quantity and quality. These interests span both natural and human-dominated landscapes, from the Boreal forests of northwestern Ontario to constructed wetlands in the Alberta Oil Sands Region to urban and urbanizing watersheds in south-central Ontario. Dr. Oswald holds a PhD (2011) in Physical Geography from the University of Toronto, an M.Sc (2002) in Physical Geography from McMaster University and a B.Sc (1999) in Physics from McMaster University.
Todd Irvine: Arborist and Educator
Todd Irvine is an arborist with Bruce Tree Experts where he specializes in the care and preservation of mature trees. He also co-teaches a masters-level ecology course at the University of Toronto, Faculty of Landscape Architecture, and leads training workshops for landscape professionals. He holds masters degrees in both Forest Conservation and Sociology. He completed an arboriculture apprenticeship at Humber College, and has been an International Society of Arboriculture certified arborist for nearly 20 years. Todd worked for 5 years as the communications coordinator with LEAF (Local Enhancement and Appreciation of Forests), where he co-created and led the popular Toronto Tree Tours. Todd is a co-founder and contributing editor of the award-winning urban affairs magazine Spacing. His writing on trees and ecology has appeared in the Toronto Star, Globe and Mail and Canadian Geographic and he has been a frequent guest expert on media programmes such as CBC Radio’s Metro Morning.
Shawn Micallef: Author, Educator and Ravine Walker
Shawn Micallef, the host/narrator of Accidental Parkland, is a Toronto Star columnist, co-owner and an editor of the Jane Jacobs Prize winning Spacing magazine, co-founder of the mobile phone public space documentary project [murmur], and instructor at the University of Toronto. He is the author of Stroll: Psychogeographic Walking Tours of Toronto, and The Trouble with Brunch: Work, Class, and the Pursuit of Leisure. He was a Massey College Canadian Journalism Fellow in 2011-2012 and was the Toronto Public Library’s non-fiction writer in residence in 2013.
Dan Berman: Director and Producer
Dan Berman has worked for twenty years in the film and television industries in Canada. This includes corporate strategy work at Astral Television, and as a business and content Analyst for the Feature Film Unit at Telefilm Canada. As a graduate of the Canadian Film Centre’s interactive media program, much of Dan’s creative work has involved writing and producing narrative material online. Dan has also written, directed and produced a BravoFact short film Ride of The Yoga Valkyries. Dan continues to read and evaluate feature film scripts for Telefilm and The Harold Greenberg Fund, and has been moving his scripted portfolio toward writing for series television. Accidental Parkland, a documentary on Toronto’s ravines and waterways, is his first produced non-fiction project.
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