5 Things To See at Berczy Park

Hello and welcome to Weekend Coffee Share #27! I’m glad you’re here. Please come on in, help yourself to a cup of coffee, or tea, hot chocolate, or a cold drink at my coffee station and let’s chat.

It was a typical warm week of summer with showers mid-week. Toronto’s cycling network has new routes, some are permanent and some are temporary pilots. I’m excited about new cycling possibilities and nice places to see, such as Berczy Park.

Berczy Park.

Berczy Park is named after William Berczy. Born as Johann Albrecht Ulrich Moll in 1744 in Wallerstein, Germany, he later changed his name and studied at the Academy of Arts in Vienna, before sailing to the Americas in 1792. He was co-founder of York (now Toronto) in 1794 when John Graves Simcoe was Lieutenant-Governor of Upper Canada.

Here are 5 things to see at Berczy Park for your weekend.

1- Gooderham “Flatiron” Building: The red brick building in the Gothic Revival style was designed by architect David Roberts and built in 1892 for George Gooderham, the president of Gooderham and Worts Distillery.

Gooderham "Flatiron" Building.
Gooderham “Flatiron” Building, 1892.
Gooderham "Flatiron" Building plaque.
History plaque.
Gooderham "Flatiron" Building.
Gooderham “Flatiron” Building, 1892.

2- Flatiron Mural: Canadian artist Derek Besant created the Flatiron Mural on the rear wall of the “Flatiron” Building in 1980. It’s a beautiful optical illusion. Check out the amazing details and their ‘trompe l’oeil’ effects.

Flatiron Mural.
Flatiron Mural, 1980 by Derek Besant.

3- “Dog” Fountain: The park’s centrepiece is a two-tiered “Dog” Fountain with a unique and whimsical theme. 27 dog sculptures – and one cat – are situated around, in, and on the fountain, each spraying water from its mouth. A golden bone sits atop the fountain.

The fountain was turned off during the pandemic until June 11, 2021 when Ontario reopened. The flowing water is a welcoming sign that things might be returning to normal.

Dog Fountain at Berczy Park.
Dog Fountain, 2017 by architect Claude Cormier and Associates.

4- Jacob’s Ladder: Designed by Toronto artist Luis Jacob, the artwork encompasses two giant bronze hands, with a rope lattice suspended between the fingers, forming a whimsical string game. The rope lattice is to be installed. Once it’s in place, it’s perfect for climbing, swinging, or a backdrop for a play.

Jacob’s Ladder, 2018 by artist Luis Jacob.

5- The William Berczy Family sculpture: The sculpture was designed by artist Almuth Lutkenhaus-Lackey and is in the south-east corner of the park.

Berczy became a well-known Canadian painter, architect, surveyor and writer before dying en route to England in 1813. His older son, William Bent Berczy, was a Member of The Legislative Assembly of Upper Canada and a gifted painter. His younger son, Charles Albert Berczy, was the first president of the Consumers’ Gas Company from 1847 to 1856 and Postmaster of Toronto.

William Berczy Family sculpture.
William Berczy Family sculpture by artist Almuth Lutkenhaus-Lackey.

One more thing…The Garden in Berczy Park is lovely with a mix of plants, shrubs, trees and pretty flowers.

Happy weekend, everyone!

Linked with #LifeThisWeek, #PPAC4, #ThursdayDoors, #TreeSquares.

How was your week? I’d love to hear your comments.

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116 thoughts on “5 Things To See at Berczy Park

  1. Denyse Whelan Blogs July 9, 2021 / 8:08 am

    Ah Natalie, your post was a breath of fresh air, green and goodness returning to your life again. I am writing from the strongest lockdown situation we have had. There are over 5 million of us: from the city of Sydney and suburbs to the regional areas north, west and south. We live north and are under the lockdown. It has been extended from the initial 2 weeks to a date not named. Covid variant Delta is out there and apparently arrived with an air crew and given to a driver from Sydney as he ferried them to their quarters. It IS the nature of the virus we know but with fewer vaccines ready to be administered our country is not looking great right now. Blame games are happening. So, what to do? I have the “luxury” of not having to work as an older Australian receiving a pension, we are in a warm & cosy house (mid winter right now and temps are low!) and I have all I need to eat and drink…and distract myself with. We are fully vaxxed. Trouble is, not everyone is convinced about it. Sigh. Not meant to be a whinge. We are indeed grateful and your post reminds me of the sacrifices you all made to get to where you are now. Well done! Denyse

    Like

    • Natalie July 9, 2021 / 1:52 pm

      Denyse, I’m sorry to hear about the extended lockdown in Sydney. Having been in a long lockdown not long ago, I feel for you. It’s a real battle with this covid-19 virus and its variants. Stay safe and well.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Denyse Whelan Blogs July 14, 2021 / 2:53 am

        Thank you Natalie, you and your fellow Toronto peeps have done this all much more than we have. We now have lockdown extended for another 2 weeks.

        Thank you for linking up for LifeThisWeek. It’s always good to see you link up a post. Next week, the optional prompt is 29/51 Please. 19 July. I will be sharing a post about Head and Neck Cancer in the lead up to World Head & Neck Cancer Day 27.7.2021. Gotta keep the awareness happening! Take care, Denyse.

        Like

        • Natalie July 14, 2021 / 8:32 am

          Denyse, I’m sorry to hear about Sydney lockdown extension. Thank you for hosting LifeThisWeek. I hope to see you again at the upcoming #weekendcoffeeshare link-up.

          Like

  2. leannelc July 9, 2021 / 8:13 am

    Loved the statues and the cute pug dog fountain Natalie – there are so many interesting places you visit – we have nowhere near that variety where we are.

    Like

    • Natalie July 9, 2021 / 1:55 pm

      Leanne, I thought the dogs and cat at the fountain are very cute, too. Toronto has many interesting places to explore and some of them change for the better over time so I don’t think I’ll ever run out of things to do. Thank you for linking up with #weekendcoffeeshare.

      Like

  3. Maria July 9, 2021 / 8:38 am

    How lovely with some new bike routes ! That is exciting! I still have a lot left to explore when it comes to bike routes in my town. Have you seen Berczy Park prior to your ride there? Thank you for the coffee!

    Like

    • Natalie July 9, 2021 / 2:01 pm

      Maria, Yes, I’ve been to Berczy Park before this visit. A few years ago, the park was “refreshed” with the new Dog fountain (replaced an older and not as nice looking fountain), new pavings, new benches and the Jacob’s Ladder sculpture. It’s nice to see it again in the summer after the city is re-opened and the fountain was turned back on.

      Like

    • Natalie July 9, 2021 / 2:02 pm

      Thank you, Ruth, for stopping by. I greatly appreciate your visit.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Toonsarah July 9, 2021 / 9:06 am

    I didn’t realise that Toronto had its own Flatiron building! It’s lovely and that mural is amazingly effective. I love that the dog fountain includes one cat too 🙂

    Like

    • Natalie July 9, 2021 / 2:05 pm

      I think Berczy Park has great features for a small park. Looks like the cat is the boss 🙂

      Like

  5. Gary A Wilson July 9, 2021 / 9:39 am

    Thanks Natalie for another great reason to visit Toronto again.

    Like

    • Natalie July 9, 2021 / 2:05 pm

      Thank you, Gary, for stopping by. I greatly appreciate your visit.

      Like

  6. Astrid July 9, 2021 / 9:41 am

    I think I’d love all these things! I love the concept of optical illusions even though I’m no longer able to enjoy them myself due to being blind. The dog fountain also sounds fascinating.

    Like

    • Natalie July 9, 2021 / 2:08 pm

      Thank you, Astrid, for your comment. This park has nice features. In the summer, there are outdoor concerts or plays here.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Kirstin July 9, 2021 / 10:07 am

    Love those sculptures and the fountain…well, I love them all. When we were in Italy a few years ago there were a few hand sculptures that were fascinating.

    Like

    • Natalie July 9, 2021 / 2:11 pm

      Kirstin, I’m glad you like the artworks in this park. Italy is a beautiful country.

      Like

  8. BeckyB July 9, 2021 / 10:13 am

    oh what fabulous street art and sculpture, love cities that take this approach to public art. And yay for the #TreeSquare too!

    Like

    • Natalie July 9, 2021 / 2:12 pm

      Thank you, Becky, for hosting #TreeSquares. Have a great weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. dennyho July 9, 2021 / 10:33 am

    This park is rich with many beautiful features. Thank you for the tour.

    Like

    • Natalie July 9, 2021 / 2:13 pm

      I agree. Thank you, Denny, for your visit.

      Like

  10. Marsha July 9, 2021 / 10:51 am

    Hi Natalie, I’m linking my #TreeSquare tomorrow to your post. This would be a perfect post to link to Cee’s #PPAC post today, too. You can go back after the fact. It won’t be posted until 9:00 today. The park is adorable. I could spend many hours there, I think. The weather looks perfect, too. Have a wonderful week. 🙂 I’ll be back tomorrow to read links.

    Like

    • Natalie July 9, 2021 / 2:16 pm

      Thank you, Marsha, for the suggestion. I just linked up with Cee’s PPAC post today. This park has nice benches and tables and chairs to sit and relax. In the summer, there are also free concerts and plays. I look forward to your post.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Marsha July 9, 2021 / 5:30 pm

        That is lovely. I love the mural, too. Actually everything was lovely. That beautiful red brick building. It looks much better in color.

        Like

  11. Patricia Furstenberg July 9, 2021 / 11:49 am

    This is magnificent!
    I don’t know what to choose 🙂 The Flatiron building, its mural, the doggy fountain or the sculptures… 🙂

    Like

  12. Cee Neuner July 9, 2021 / 1:48 pm

    What marvelous public art you captured for this week. I love mural, looks 3D. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Natalie July 9, 2021 / 2:22 pm

      Thank you, Cee, for your comment. The Flatiron Mural is beautiful.

      Like

  13. smkelly8 July 9, 2021 / 4:12 pm

    The Toronto Board of Tourism really needs to hire you. Every week I find more reasons to return for a visit. Maybe after COVID.

    I like that narrow Flatiron building and the glorious mural. Have a good week!

    Like

    • Natalie July 9, 2021 / 5:23 pm

      I thought of volunteering to lead walks in Toronto before COVID-19. There are many nice places to explore in the city like Berczy Park and there is no admission fee to see them.

      Like

  14. Susanne July 9, 2021 / 6:02 pm

    Natalie, that Flatiron blew me away! What a cool shape, and then the mural too. But is this distillery still “alive”? I don’t get any clue when I do a search on it.

    Like

    • Natalie July 9, 2021 / 6:23 pm

      Susanne, The Gooderham & Worts Distillery merged with Hiram Walker & Sons Ltd. in 1926 and sold to Allied Lyons in 1987. The G&W Distillery facility in the Toronto was closed in the 1990s. The buildings were preserved and repurposed as an arts, entertainment and residential district that is called The Distillery District. In the present Distillery District, there are Spirit of York distillery (vodka & whisky), Izumi sake brewery and Mill Street beer brewery.

      Like

  15. Lydia C. Lee July 9, 2021 / 6:11 pm

    Look at me finally getting the right day to link up! Ha. That Flat Iron Mural is fantastic! I love it! As for the dog fountain, I thought there were something else at first glance! I think that says more about me and my eyesight than anything else! hehehe.

    Like

    • Natalie July 9, 2021 / 6:25 pm

      Right on, I’m glad that you link up and you like the Flatiron Mural 🙂

      Like

        • Natalie July 11, 2021 / 7:06 pm

          Thank you Lydia for stopping by. Google blocked me from accessing my Blogger account and your blog allows comments from Google registered users only so I’m unable to leave a comment. When I can log in to Blogger or if you change your blog settings to allow commenters with Name/ URL, I’ll leave a comment.

          Like

  16. Lizl Bennefeld July 9, 2021 / 6:44 pm

    Beautiful, all! Particularly taken with the family sculpture. Touching, the grouping and the feel of it. Your picture of the Flatiron building got me hunting on the Net for where I had see such a thing, years past in wanderings. Interesting, how the mind will call up a scene without a context.

    Thank you!

    Like

    • Natalie July 9, 2021 / 7:46 pm

      Lizl, I’m glad you liked the art features at Berczy Park. You may have seen a similar building in New York City.

      Liked by 1 person

  17. Jill Weatherholt July 9, 2021 / 6:47 pm

    Thank you for the wonderful tour, Natalie! I think I need to put Toronto on my bucket list…so many gorgeous sights. Thanks for sharing. Enjoy your weekend!❤️

    Like

    • Natalie July 9, 2021 / 7:51 pm

      Jill, I’m glad you like Toronto through my lens. Thank you for reading my post. I greatly appreciate your kind words. Have a wonderful weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Erica/Erika July 9, 2021 / 9:56 pm

    It is wonderful how Toronto is always trying to improve. It is interesting how many people changed their names years ago. Your photos are always amazing, Natalie. You have a very creative eye. I think we saw the dog fountain a couple of years ago. All good here with many events over the next few months. Happy to see friends and family. Have a great weeken! Thank you for sharing a wonderful post, as always.

    Like

    • Natalie July 10, 2021 / 10:49 am

      Thank you, Erica/ Erika, for your compliments about my post and photos. I use my phone camera. Great to hear you’re doing well and enjoying time with friends and family. I hope you have good weather for all of your social gatherings. Have a wonderful weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  19. Retirement Reflections July 9, 2021 / 10:33 pm

    I absolutely love your tours of Toronto and surrounding area, Natalie. Your photograph of the Flatiron Mural is particularly stunning!

    Like

    • Natalie July 10, 2021 / 10:51 am

      Thank you, Donna, for your kind comments. I hope to entice you and our blog friends to come to Toronto for a visit 🙂

      Like

    • Natalie July 10, 2021 / 10:52 am

      That fountain is unique and fun, just right for a neighbourhood park.

      Like

  20. Jennifer Jones July 10, 2021 / 12:21 am

    Hi Natalie, there is so much that I love about this post. I love that your city seems to be a wonderful city for cyclists. I love the Flatiron building, and especially the mural. I love the dog fountain. It’s amazing. As usual your photos are fantastic #weekendcoffeeshare

    Like

    • Natalie July 10, 2021 / 11:05 am

      Hi Jennifer, I’m so glad you like this post and my photos. It takes time for Toronto’s cycling network to grow. I’m happy with the results so far. Have a great weekend!

      Like

  21. dprastka July 10, 2021 / 2:07 am

    Hi Natalie!
    You have such a beautiful city and I love the Flatiron building, such history and thank you for sharing. So amazing to learn how old it is and the mural is awesome on it too! The park you shared is beautiful with the animal fountain, such a fun place where you live!! 🤩 Thank you for the coffee today, and I’ll be joining in this weekend with my horsey and adventures post! Have a wonderful weekend! ❤️

    Like

    • Natalie July 10, 2021 / 11:06 am

      Thank you, Diana, for your kind comments. I look forward to reading your coffee share with your horses and adventures. Have a great weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  22. Moumita De Sarkar July 10, 2021 / 4:35 am

    That was a beautiful view of the Berczy park through your eyes, Natalie. And I am quite fascinated by the optical illusion on the Flatiron Mural. It’s unique and kudos to the creative genius Derek Besant. Hope you have a great weekend ahead:)

    Like

    • Natalie July 10, 2021 / 2:02 pm

      Thank you, Moumita. I’m glad you liked the Flatiron Mural. I think the artist did an amazing job working with such a big surface and turned it into a beautiful optical illusion. Have a wonderful weekend!

      Like

  23. SadiRose July 10, 2021 / 5:44 am

    I really need to get back to Toronto. So many beautiful things to see. The mural on the Flatiron building is amazing.

    Like

    • Natalie July 10, 2021 / 2:05 pm

      I’m glad you liked the Flatiron mural. I hope you re-visit Toronto one day. Have a wonderful weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  24. trentpmcd July 10, 2021 / 7:47 am

    Looks like a nice little park (and surroundings i.e flatiron building) with some interesting art. Also great to explore the hidden gems.

    Like

    • Natalie July 10, 2021 / 2:13 pm

      Berczy Park has several nice features in a not-so-big area. It’s a gem for sure.

      Liked by 1 person

  25. Antoinette Truglio Martin July 10, 2021 / 9:15 am

    What a lovely tour. I especially like the flatiron building. Thanks a bunch.

    Like

    • Natalie July 10, 2021 / 2:14 pm

      Thank you, Antoinette, for your kind comment. I’m glad you like the Flatiron building.

      Like

  26. Jackie July 10, 2021 / 10:03 am

    I pass by often on the way to the market. That mural was one of my first ever murals to see. It is a reflection of the Perkins (now Winner’s) building across the street.

    Like

    • Natalie July 10, 2021 / 2:18 pm

      The Flatiron Mural reflects the Perkins beautifully. I took photos of the buildings across the street but didn’t include them in this post.

      Like

  27. Julie July 10, 2021 / 10:26 am

    The dog fountain looks so much fun! When you said “dog” fountain I thought at first a fountain for dogs to play in for some reason haha.

    Like

    • Natalie July 10, 2021 / 2:23 pm

      Dogs (and sometimes humans) do want to jump into the “Dog” fountain and play 🙂

      Like

  28. Jo July 10, 2021 / 6:01 pm

    I adore both the design and the mural on the Flatiron Building and continue to be enthralled by the number (and quality) of public spaces you have in Toronto. Enjoy your weekend.

    Like

    • Natalie July 10, 2021 / 6:45 pm

      Jo, I’m glad you like both the building and the mural. I feel fortunate that Toronto has many nice parks with thoughtful designs. Have a great weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  29. Deborah Drucker July 10, 2021 / 7:08 pm

    The flat iron building is so cool. I wonder what inspired architects to design a building in that shape. I know there are similarly shaped buildings in New York City and San Francisco. Nice photos as usual.

    Like

    • Natalie July 10, 2021 / 7:24 pm

      I’m glad you like the Flatiron building. The architect succeeded in designing a unique building for his high-profile client and it became a historic landmark in Toronto.

      Liked by 1 person

  30. Sanch @ Sanch Writes July 10, 2021 / 7:34 pm

    Oh, this looks so lovely! Love the dog fountain and absolutely love, love, love the Flatiron mural! How amazing is that?! The building too, is incredible! Thanks for the tour again this weekend, Natalie! I hope you have a lovely week ahead

    Like

    • Natalie July 10, 2021 / 7:43 pm

      Sanch, Your cat would love the one cat at the fountain to show who’s the boss to the 27 dogs 🙂 I’m glad you like the Flatiron building and the mural. Berczy Park is a nice space to chill. It has benches, tables and chairs and a small stage for outdoor concerts or plays in the summer. Have a great week ahead! Thank you for linking with #weekendcoffeeshare.

      Like

  31. csuhpat1 July 10, 2021 / 11:16 pm

    Such a beautiful park. I would love to spend a bunch of time there. So very cool. Thanks for hosting and I hope that you have a wonderful week.

    Like

    • Natalie July 11, 2021 / 8:13 am

      Yes, Berczy Park is a nice place to chill out. In the summer there are free outdoor concerts or plays in the park. Have a great weekend!

      Like

  32. Forestwood July 11, 2021 / 12:01 am

    The flatiron building is amazing. I can’t stop looking at it wondering how they fit everything in. And then the mural! It has that depth of a 3d mural. Thanks for shaing.

    Like

    • Natalie July 11, 2021 / 8:17 am

      The building was designed for the President of the biggest distillery in the 19th century. The mural is beautiful IRL. It makes the viewers look more than once. I like the faux brick details in the mural.

      Liked by 1 person

  33. Forestwood July 11, 2021 / 12:02 am

    *sharing – I meant sharing. Sorry for the typo. Fingers type faster than the brain!

    Like

    • Natalie July 11, 2021 / 5:22 pm

      I know, right? Glad you like them.

      Like

    • Natalie July 11, 2021 / 5:23 pm

      Thank you, Pam, for your comment. I greatly appreciate it.

      Like

  34. jazzytower July 11, 2021 / 2:57 pm

    Looks like a fun place to visit. Nice captures.

    Pat

    Like

    • Natalie July 11, 2021 / 5:24 pm

      Thank you, Pat, for your comment. I greatly appreciate it.

      Like

  35. msomerville2014 July 11, 2021 / 6:33 pm

    Jumping in late, to read a little and see what is new. Was going to try to add a post early this afternoon, but my computer wasn’t cooperating. It seemed we both needed a nap. Hubby still recovering from surgery so much of my time is well spent these days, helping him and fetching and carrying, etc. I enjoyed this post as i always do, wonderful pictures, inviting places. I liked the painting on the building, the pictures of the Flat Iron Building, the family sculpture, the history, all of it, and the whimsy, as well. Blessings for the week! michele

    Like

    • Natalie July 11, 2021 / 7:11 pm

      It’s great to hear from you, Michele. I hope your husband’s recovery is going well and you’re doing well, too. Nursing is hard work. I’m glad you enjoyed my post and photos. Thank you for stopping by. Have a great week ahead!

      Liked by 1 person

  36. Debbie July 11, 2021 / 7:41 pm

    I am drawn to that Flatiron building, it is amazing and the mural as well. There are some clever people about with those sculptures of the hands and family. A lovely visit Natalie! #lifethisweek

    Like

    • Natalie July 12, 2021 / 8:14 am

      Thank you, Debbie, for your comment. I’m glad you like the Flatiron building and mural. I like how various forms of art (mural, sculptures, architecture) are available at Berczy Park.

      Liked by 1 person

  37. Min Write of the Middle July 11, 2021 / 8:21 pm

    Wow – I’m constantly amazed at the beautiful parks and buildings and landscapes around where you live Natalie! That Flatiron building is like nothing I’ve seen before and that mural is so much fun! I adore the dog fountain so much! Love the sculptures and flowers – just beautiful. Wishing you a wonderful week ahead. xo

    Like

    • Natalie July 12, 2021 / 8:16 am

      Thank you, MIn, for your comment. I’m glad you like the art features at Berczy Park. I thought you’d adore the dog fountain since you love cats and dogs 🙂 Have a great week ahead!

      Like

  38. Vanessa July 12, 2021 / 1:49 am

    I’ve got to say, I do fine Brisbane’s architecture a bit … lacking! Especially when I see photos like this.

    Like

    • Natalie July 12, 2021 / 8:19 am

      Thank you, Vanessa, for your comment. Toronto is a strong supporter of the arts and preservation of historic buildings.

      Like

  39. Ally Bean July 12, 2021 / 8:37 am

    I like your photo of the flatiron building. They always amaze me with their architecture. The Jacob’s Ladder hands are interesting, I get the reference, but they’re also kind of scary. Very large 😳

    Like

    • Natalie July 12, 2021 / 9:24 am

      Jacob’s Ladder is the latest and modern art addition to Berczy Park. It’s my least favourite of the five art features. I saw the pilot installation of the rope lattice and understood why the hands must be big and strong. Children and maybe some adults are going to play on the rope.

      Liked by 1 person

  40. Sammie @ The Annoyed Thyroid July 13, 2021 / 3:33 am

    Thank you for the virtual tour – it’s the closest I’m going to get to travelling and sightseeing for the moment! Toronto is summer is absolutely glorious!

    Like

    • Natalie July 13, 2021 / 8:30 am

      Thank you, Sammie, for stopping by. Blogging lets us go places without leaving home.

      Like

  41. Rowena July 13, 2021 / 2:24 pm

    Hi Natalie. It was great to catch up for another week and the idea of bike riding around Toronto and checking out those sculptures is very appealing from a Sydney lock down perspective and it’s also Winter and I’m enjoying hibernation.
    Take care and have a great week.
    Best wishes,
    Rowena

    Like

    • Natalie July 13, 2021 / 3:30 pm

      Thank you, Rowena, for stopping by. I read about Sydney lockdown and think of you and other bloggers who live in or around Sydney. I hope the lockdown ends soon without further extension. Stay safe and well. Have a great week!

      Like

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