Downtown Toronto Pipe Club

September 10th, 2016 by Eric

Annual BBQ at Parks Workshop

June 3rd, 2016 by Eric

2016 Season Opener

Normally we have our Season Opener in May, but as I look at the extended forecast with its low of 10C I can’t help but think that the following month will be a little more welcoming.

So — with that I hereby announce the Official Season Opener on Friday, June 3rd. Once again our good friend Giovanni will be hosting us in his backyard (Dundas and Dupont). Bring your pipes, tobaccos and favourite beverages for a night of smoking, drinking and conviviality!

May 4th, 2016 by Eric

Chicago 2016 Show Report

For those of you who aren’t familiar with the “pipe show scene”, the Chicago one (actually in St. Charles, IL) is the largest of them all, and is the only one that has a significant international presence. If you want to the see some of the “Great Danes” such as Nanna and Lars Ivarsson, this is the one to go to. (And if you want to buy one of their pipes, you should have several thousands of dollars handy.) The flip side of that coin is that it is also the busiest and “business-iest” of all the shows. As a case in point: even though the show is Saturday and Sunday, when we arrived on Thursday afternoon, Ernie Markle had already sold half of his pipes. If you’re a collector or have a serious case of PAD, you need to get there early because many of the vendors and pipemakers have been selling pipes out of their rooms and smoking tent since Tuesday and at the Friday “pre-show”; wait until Saturday morning when the show formally begins and you’ll see tables already with “Sold Out” signs and empty tables. But that’s Chicago.

Michael Parks, Jack and I traveled down by car together and met 6 other DTPC members of past and present. For a pipe-maker like Parks, this show is about work and connections. He brought down about 15 pipes, but 12 of those were commissions that he was bringing down to give to his customers. He’ll end up spending much of the show meeting with them and building on those connections. That invariably brings more work. And since this is a big industry event, it’s also an opportunity to pick up additional briar blocks and acrylic rods – and possibly even look at what the competition is up to.

For me, the show is definitely about the people. As much as I love pipes, the reason I started a pipe club is to meet and hear from other pipe smokers. So even though I spent hours walking the show floor, I felt happiest when having a chance to hang out with old friends and make new ones. (Listening to veterans Fred Hanna and Tad Gage swap stories and razz each other was a particular highlight.) The more shows I go to, the more I’m also drawn to the pipe carvers that I’ve begun to develop personal connections with and my collection has begun to reflect that.

To cap off my show report, I’ve included a few pictures. (Our DTPC logo was so popular we probably could have sold t-shirts at the show!)

October 9th, 2015 by Eric

October Smoker

Our season closer will be hosted in the cozy backyard of DTPC regular and pipe-maker Giovanni!

September 16th, 2015 by Eric

September Smoker

We’ll be moving this meeting out east to The Beach, where the manager of the new Brigham & MORE store has kindly offered up his back patio for our September meeting!

September 14th, 2015 by Eric

2nd Annual BBQ Recap

Despite the fact that the temperature dropped nearly 25 degrees in only a few days (not to mention the wind and rain), nearly 40 people showed up for a most excellent day filled with pipe smoking activities! Thanks to our generous sponsors, everyone walked away with a least a tin of tobacco or a pipe.

Evan, Gio and Mike were a real hit as they gave an informal and very interactive workshop on the craft and art of pipe making.

We had 7 really excellent and interesting entries to our “Canadian” contest, and Nick ended the slow-smoke contest with his 35 minute win. (A certain DTPC prez. fizzled out in less than half that time. For shame.)

Thanks to everyone who came out — it was a pleasure to host the event and see everyone! It was especially rewarding partnering again with the Lakeshore Smokestacks and Mike Parks who worked hard on logistics and garnering such amazing support from the sponsors!

September 12th, 2015 by Eric

2015 Fall BBQ with Michael Parks

Once again we are congregating at the workshop of reknowned Canadian pipemaker Michael Parks for our annual BBQ. This event is jointly hosted by the DTPC and Lakeshore Smokestacks clubs, but people from far-and-wide are welcome (nay, encourgaged) to join us!

Schedule

  • 10am – Event kick off! Coffee will be served; Swap & Sell; Best Canadian Collection, Carver and Shape Contest begins
  • 11:50am – Opening Remarks, Thank Yous and Kick-off of Workshop
  • Noon – Pipe Making Presentation with Michael Parks, Giovanni Placentile and Evan Wiseman
  • 1pm – Catered Lunch
  • 2pm – Best Canadian Contest Close and Prizes Awarded, Raffle Results Awarded
  • 3pm – Slow Smoke Competition
  • 4pm – Event Close

Please see our event page details for more information!

(Note that none of these activities are mandatory. You may also choose to relax, chat, and smoke.)

Sponsors

This event (and the various prizes that will be available) is due in large part to the generosity of our sponsors:

Tickets

There is a charge of $10 that will support the cost of the lunch and a raffle ticket. You can pay your tickets online or at the door. (If you pay at the door but don’t register online, there is a small risk of us not having enough food for you. Registering and paying your tickets online is preferred as it helps us to plan this aspect of the event.)

(We will provide refunds for cancellations made 24 hours prior to the start of the BBQ.)
September 3rd, 2015 by Eric

2015 Fall BBQ* with Michael Parks: Did we mention you should go?

We’re nearly a week away!!

With that extended introduction out of the way, we proceed immediately to business-at-hand:

Rides
Given we are the “downtown” pipe club we should have figured many of you don’t have cars. (Why? Don’t need ’em. Am I right?) So we are helpfully offering a shuttle service** from the Oshawa*** Go Station to the event. If you need a ride, please email info@torontopipeclub.ca to let us know so we can plan appropriately. You would be expected to aim to arrive at the station for 9:30am.

Tickets
We have added the option to purchase tickets at the door for 10 bucks****.
 This for those of you too lazy and/or paranoid to pay online. You can select this “pay at the door” option when you “purchase” your tickets. (You can even just show up without telling us, but we reserve the right to put you at the end of the food line. It just wouldn’t be fair to the people who spent the six seconds to click on the link above and enter their name and email.*****)

Details
In case you have forgotten: the event is Saturday, September 12th, runs from 10am until 4pm, and is jointly hosted by the DTPC and Lakeshore Smokestacks.

There is a litany of events, contests and sponsors. If you are attending (or planning to), please take a look at our special page. No, really. Look at our special page!

* There will be no actual “BBQ” food. But at least one (rusty) grill will be on display for good measure.
** Service provided by whoever among us draws the short straw.
*** I think they make cars there.
**** That’s right. Save an 30 cents by buying in advance! No. Thank you.
***** We love you anyway.

August 12th, 2015 by Eric

August Smoker

TB-Map

We will be meeting in the middle of Trinity-Bellwoods Park – a very large, very busy, and well-lit urban park – it will be so full of people that we don’t stand out in the slightest. The arrow in the picture points to the general location that we will be setting up our (metaphorical) tent: Once you find the giant crayons sticking in the ground you know you are in the right area; just look for the pipe smokers. (More specifically – the ones smoking pipe tobacco.) If we’re very lucky we may even be able to grab a nearby picnic table.

You are strongly encouraged to bring a lawn chair or two. (This is what I will be doing.) I will bring some snacks, but you are asked to provide your own refreshments. On that note: TB park has been renowned for its tolerance of casual imbibing in the park.

July 15th, 2015 by Eric

July Smoker

TB-Map

We will be meeting in the middle of Trinity-Bellwoods Park – a very large, very busy, and well-lit urban park – it will be so full of people that we don’t stand out in the slightest. The arrow in the picture points to the general location that we will be setting up our (metaphorical) tent: Once you find the giant crayons sticking in the ground you know you are in the right area; just look for the pipe smokers. (More specifically – the ones smoking pipe tobacco.) If we’re very lucky we may even be able to grab a nearby picnic table.

You are strongly encouraged to bring a lawn chair or two. (This is what I will be doing.) I will bring some snacks, but you are asked to provide your own refreshments. On that note: TB park has been renowned for its tolerance of casual imbibing in the park. However, in the last year there were general complaints so the police have shown an increased presence so please be discrete depending on your choice of beverage.