Sunday, March 7, 2010

Making a Trinity Reach Sign

In the hopes of drawing attention to the strange happenings in our house, we built a sign to be placed in the front yard. It is our intention that this will draw more people into our home to help us with projects, or give us much needed advice. We discovered last year that simply having a front yard vegetable garden provides an allure for neighbors to become engaged. Franka, among other nonnas, provided ample evidence of this. It would also be nice to entice participation from other young people operating their own vegetable gardens around Little Italy.

The sign is made from the stump of a tree, that I salvaged from Christie and St. Clair. Two men from Toronto Hydro were dismantling the tree. When I asked if I could have the large stump of wood, and told them I would transport it by bike, they laughed. When I returned with my bad-ass bike trailer they were eager to help, and interested in the trailers design. The stump sat in my room for over a year without any purpose, until we decided it would be a clever place to stencil Trinity Reach Farm.

When developing a name for this project, we wanted something that would reflect our place in Toronto. Our original thought was to title it after the street we live on, Crawford Street Farm, but we thought this lacked creativity. The name Crawford Street Farm would also disregarded the dozens of other backyard gardens situated along Crawford. Since these projects are a throwback to a time when people produced their own food in their urban dwellings, we thought it would be interesting to research Old Toronto, and see what existed in our location. Perhaps there was an old farm or some other sort of food producer in this area that the project could be named after? What we discovered was that Garrison Creek ran directly through our neighborhood. Immediately below our house is a portion of the creek called Trinity Reach. Running from Harbord St. to Queen St., Trinity Reach connects Dewson Stream to Denison Creek. Evidence of Garrison Creek exists all across the neighborhood. Shaw Street has slowly sinking houses that appear to be gradually disappearing into the buried creek. The creeks valleys are also still to be found in Christie Pits, Bickford Park, and Trinity Bellwoods. Despite the worry that Trinity Reach would make us sound like an outreach organization, it reflects where we are situated in Toronto, and refers to the history of the city, and so the name stuck.

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