Coffee Share #3 | The Princes’ Gates

Hello and welcome to Weekend Coffee Share #3! I’m glad you are here. Please come on in and help yourself to a cup of coffee, tea, or hot chocolate at my coffee station. I’m eager to share my news and photos with you.

1. Awesome Coffee Share Party #2

  • At closing time this past Sunday, Coffee Share party #2 had 30 participants, a new high! Several blogger friends accepted my direct invitations and joined the link up for the first time. Thank you, everyone, for coming.
  • I’m liking the diversity of the blogs that we have so far. I hope you enjoy the party. Please continue to link back or ping back, and leave a comment on my blog and the blogs you visit so we know you’ve dropped by.

2. Winter Cycling

The weather here was good this past week, cloudy with some sunny breaks and scattered flurries with no significant snow accumulation. I was happy to cycle outside to exercise most days. I choose quiet places to keep a safe distance from everyone else.

One example of a quiet public space is the Canadian National Exhibition grounds. The buildings in this huge area sit empty since all events have been cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. At normal times, they’d be filled with conference or exhibition organizers and attendees.

The main entrance to the Canadian National Exhibition (CNE) grounds is the Princes’ Gates.

3. The Princes’ Gates

The Princes' Gates central arch.
The Princes’ Gates central arch.

This entrance was built in 1927 to commemorate 60 years of Canadian Confederation. The stone and concrete gates were designed by the Toronto firm of Chapman and Oxley and are a fine example of monumental architecture in the Beaux-Arts mode.

The Princes' Gates.
The Princes’ Gates.

A Roman arch forms the centre gate and is flanked on each side by a colonnade of nine Ionic columns.  The nine columns represent the participating provinces of Confederation (Newfoundland joined Confederation in 1949). At each extremity of the Gates are curved pylons with fountains at their bases. 

The Winged Victory atop the central arch at the Princes' Gates.
The Winged Victory atop the central arch at the Princes’ Gates.

Sculptor Charles D. McKechnie created the statues. The Winged Victory atop the central arch is flanked by figures representing the CNE’s commitment to progress through industry, education, and the arts. In the lowered hand of the Winged Victory is a single maple leaf, a symbol of Canadian independence and autonomy.

Black iron gates and columns.
Black iron gates and columns.

The gates were opened officially on August 30, 1927 by Edward, Prince of Wales, and Prince George. They have been known ever since as the “Princes’ Gates“.

Piazza Princes' Gates.
Seating blocks at the Piazza Princes’ Gates.

In front of the Princes’ Gates is the Piazza Princes’ Gates designed by firms from Milano and Toronto. The landscape elements of this piazza celebrate the Princes’ Gates and the Canada-Italy connection. Ten long bands of Canadian granite interpret the original symbolism of the Gates’ columns into the surface of the piazza – each is engraved with the motto of a Canadian province.

Seating blocks at the end of the granite bands are marked with the name of the corresponding province or a territory. The blocks are crafted of twinned pieces of granite – representing Milano and Toronto – joined together by light. Piazza Princes’ Gates was officially opened on July 19, 2006.

I enjoyed cycling in the sunshine on a gorgeous winter day. The rest of my week went well. Your turn:

  1. How did your week go?
  2. What do you think of the Princes’ Gates design?
  3. Any fun plan for the weekend?

I’d love to hear your comments.

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114 thoughts on “Coffee Share #3 | The Princes’ Gates

  1. Deborah January 24, 2021 / 9:51 pm

    It’s so good you’re able to get about on your cycle and snow hasn’t been too problematic of late.

    I love how deserted everything is at the moment. Well, not here in Australia because in most places it’s ‘business as usual’ though there are some masks mandated in some places. But I see cities in lockdown and they’re like beautiful ghost-towns.

    Like

    • Natalie January 25, 2021 / 8:08 am

      Deb, It’s an excellent opportunity to visit local sights that are normally packed with people. After almost a year of social isolation and physical distancing, it’s almost startling for me to see photos of places packed with people in other countries, especially without masks.

      Like

  2. Dr Sock January 25, 2021 / 2:20 pm

    Natalie, although I have visited Toronto a number of times, I haven’t been to the CNE grounds. It was interesting to learn about the Princes’ Gates.

    Jude

    Like

    • Natalie January 25, 2021 / 3:51 pm

      Jude, It’s a treat to visit the CNE grounds at this quiet time. Normally there would be cars in the parking lots and people in all the buildings, with international conferences or huge events booked year-round. In August, pre-pandemic, the CNE holds a three-week summer fair that attracts thousands of people. It usually ends with an air show over Lake Ontario and on Labour Day before school resumes.

      Like

  3. Rowena January 26, 2021 / 5:35 am

    Natalie, these gates are amazing and look so much older. Very spectacular.
    Hope you have a great week ahead.
    Best wishes,
    Rowena

    Like

    • Natalie January 26, 2021 / 7:56 am

      Rowena, I’m glad you like the Princes’ Gates. They’re almost 100 years young. I guess the sun, wind, rain, snow, etc. age them. Have a great week!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Rowena January 28, 2021 / 8:37 am

        Thanks very much, Natalie. I hope you have a great week too. It’s almost over now.
        Best wishes,
        Rowena

        Like

        • Natalie January 28, 2021 / 9:05 am

          Rowena, My week has been great. “See” you at the upcoming Weekend Coffee Share link-up!

          Liked by 1 person

          • Rowena January 29, 2021 / 9:13 am

            Yes, and I’ve even got a doors post in this week.

            Like

  4. Darlene January 26, 2021 / 9:02 am

    The Princes Gates are very impressive. Although I´ve been to Toronto,(mostly for business) I haven´t seen these. They look very European.

    Like

    • Natalie January 26, 2021 / 10:09 am

      Darlene, Business trips are usually time-bound and it’s normal to miss local sights. These gates are in Beaux-Arts style which originates from France. The Piazza is co-designed by a firm in Toronto and an Italian firm from Milano. I hope you consider joining the weekly Weekend Coffee Share link up.

      Like

  5. Denyse Whelan Blogs January 27, 2021 / 2:43 am

    I commented earlier via Weekend Coffee Share.

    Thank you for linking up this week for #lifethisweek. Great to see you and your blog here! Next week it’s about #sharingoursnaps and that’s an optional prompt. Join in each week for a friendly connection in a great community on-line. I am very grateful to you all. Denyse.

    Like

    • Natalie January 27, 2021 / 7:46 am

      Thank you, Denyse, for joining Weekend Coffee Share. I’ll see you at the upcoming blog party.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. restlessjo January 27, 2021 / 4:40 pm

    They’re impressive gates, right enough! 🙂 🙂 I sometimes struggle to understand how life can still be so busy in these strange times, but I’m pleased to report I’m not bored yet. Just a little irked at the confinement. Nothing new there!

    Like

    • Natalie January 27, 2021 / 4:53 pm

      Jo, You and I would not get bored ever 🙂 Fortunately, under the current lockdown here, I can still go outside to exercise or buy groceries. There is no curfew yet, no limit on how often or how long one can go outside.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. dawnkinster February 1, 2021 / 12:37 pm

    I can’t imagine cycling in winter! Even in the sun. I drove down to Alabama, 14 hours south of where I live in Michigan, for warmer weather and it’s only 38 degrees, F, and it’s rainy, windy and entirely miserable! Oh well, I’m not shoveling snow, so it’s all good!

    Like

    • Natalie February 1, 2021 / 1:40 pm

      Dawn, 14 hours is a long drive and too bad that the weather in Alabama wasn’t great for your trip. Over here, the daytime high temperatures in the first 3.5 weeks of January were near freezing point without snow or ice storm so cycling was do-able. I wear layers and get warmed up after a few minutes of pedaling. We had one snow storm and a few cold days last week. This week it’s back to normal winter temperatures again.

      Like

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