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Saturday Brew: Chaos in Court, Milk Feud Not Over, TTC Customer Service Proposal, Weekend Subway Closure, Family Day Info

Photo: "28/365 - Feb 2 - Into The Light" by SasiShan, member of the blogTO Flickr pool.

What's happening in the GTA (and sometimes beyond):

Dairy farmer, Michael Schmidt, may have won the first round of his fight to continue his raw milk co-operative, but he'll now have to return to court. The Ontario government is appealing a Jan. 21 ruling that Schmidt's cow-share program doesn't break any laws regarding the sale of unpasteurized milk. Though it seems to be a pretty specific issue, the precedence set with this ruling could likely apply to loads of cases in which an individual believes his free choice is being unfairly denied by the government. If I remember correctly, Gore Vidal wrote about a similar issue some time ago...

Chaos ensued after a sentencing hearing in Newmarket yesterday. Trevor Middleton, 26, of Sutton was sentenced to two years less a day in jail for a racist attack on Asian anglers, which some refer to as "nip tipping." The judge cited Middleton's lack of criminal record prior to the incident in handing out the sentence. But his leniency incited one of the victims, Ruohang Liu, so much that he had to be removed in handcuffs. Given that the attack was an obvious hate crime and left his friend, Shayne Berwick, in a wheel chair, I can understand his frustration.

The TTC's initial customer service plans will be discussed on Wednesday, and in anticipation of that, a report has been released outlining some of the proposed changes. Notable ideas are adding TTC ambassadors (does that mean someone tasked with customer service?) at busier stations, video screens with detailed information about delays, increasing notification efforts on Twitter and Facebook, and the utilization of "secret shoppers" to provide service feedback.

And, on the subject of the the TTC, be sure to note that there's an early subway closure tonight and tomorrow due to scheduled track repairs. Starting at midnight, subways will not be running between Bloor/Yonge and St. Andrew Station (although the rest of the line should operate as usual). Shuttle buses will fill in for the subway. So, if you've never experienced a ride on the Blue Night as it makes its late, boozy run up and down Yonge, now's your chance! The closure will also be in effect February 20 and 21.

And, given that Family Day is just around the corner, here's a reminder of what's opened and closed.


  • Federal government offices
  • Eaton Centre, Pacific Mall, Vaughan Mills, Woodbine Centre
  • Ontario Science Centre
  • AGO
  • Some supermarkets
  • Museums
  • Most ice rinks and arenas
  • TTC operates on holiday schedule
  • GO Transit operates on Saturday schedule

  • Banks
  • Schools
  • Municipal government buildings
  • Public libraries
  • LCBO and Beer Store locations
  • Toronto Stock Exchange

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