Do Me A Solid: Good Karma for 2012

Start 2012 off with some good karma. Here are a few great ways to give back to some very important causes. 

First up is the Dance to Conquer Cancer, hosted by the Princess Margaret Hospital Foundation on Sunday, February 12. This groovy event is hosted by fitness fanatic
Richard Simmons, disco queen Gloria Gaynor and So You Think You Can Dance Canada’s Blake McGrath so you know the dance party is for serious.

If you raise a minimum of $500, you can dance alongside these all-stars during the four-hour dance-a-thon, while helping support high priority cancer research. If you’re shy about busting out your disco shoes, you can still enjoy dinner and Gloria Gaynor’s performance later that evening. 

This is all happening at the Paramount Conference and Event Centre, and you can register to participate or purchase tickets at


Dare Campaign, hosted by the Stephen Lewis Foundation

Curious about how you can help the fight against HIV/AIDS in Africa? Easy. Just think of an interesting dare for yourself, set a fundraising goal, create a profile online and get started. Some options include an individual dare, like performing a night of solo stand-up comedy (or figure skate, like Strombo did); a group dare like organizing five people to participate in a marathon; or dare to dine where you invite your friends over for a homemade dinner in return for a donation.

All funds raised will support the grassroots organizations turning the tide of the HIV/AIDS pandemic in Africa. For more information on the Dare Campaign, please visit the site. For Dare inspirations, check out this video (one guy rode an Ostrich around Toronto for a day!)

Twitter: @StephenLewisFDN

Adopt an Animal, hosted by the World Wildlife Foundation

Symbolically adopt a species at risk including the giant panda, jaguar, orangutan, Emperor penguin, walrus, grey wolf and many more to help protect them from further harm. In return, receive a personalized adoption certificate, a high-quality plush stuffed animal, recycled gift bag and details on the work your gift will go towards. 

All funds raised will support the WWF’s conservation efforts. For more information on how you can adopt an animal, please visit

Twitter: @WWFCanada

There are lots of resolutions about being healthier, but let’s all make a resolution to give back whenever we can this year. 

Media, Darling: Linda Lewis

Since 2006, Linda Lewis has been at the helm of Canada’s magazine dedicated to celebrating women over 40. More dares to portray women in midlife with candour and confidence. Launched in Canada in March 2007, More has been nominated 17 times at the National Magazine Awards. 

After receiving a master’s degree in magazine journalism, Lewis began her career as a freelance writer for publications such as Toronto Life, Saturday Night, Chatelaine and Canadian Business. She went on to work as executive editor of enRoute magazine and, in 1998, was appointed editor-in-chief of Today’s Parent.

An active volunteer, Lewis is a board member of the National Magazine Awards Foundation and co-founder of the Cervical Cancer Research Fund at the Princess Margaret Hospital Foundation. Last, but certainly not least, Lewis is the mother of two teenagers.

Twitter: @More_ca

How can someone grab your attention with a pitch?
Clear, concise and occasionally clever writing helps (the fewer exclamation marks the better). But first — read, read and read More some more. The more you understand our magazine, the more you’ll be able to see what makes sense for our audience (smart, accomplished women in their 40s and 50s), and hone the pitch appropriately.

What do you find useful when dealing with public relations professionals?

A sense of humour (just kidding!).

What is the biggest mistake PR professionals make?

Imagine a butcher pitching his wares to a vegetarian restaurant. That happens in this business all the time when PR peeps don’t customize their sale. Latest example? Yesterday, I got a pitch for a cowl-necked nursing sweater. Yes, women over 40 do have babies, but I don’t see More as the target market for that product. We also get pitched on items that aren’t even available in Canada!

My pet peeve

PR peeps who act like they’re in the secret service. I get the need to protect celebs, wear headsets, etc., but it can be over the top in Toronto.

Any other thoughts you’d like to add?

My 16-year-old daughter is contemplating going into PR. I have taken her to a few events so she has seen the business in action. Let me know if she’s crazy.   🙂

Fashion-able: Bridal Trends

With two brides-to-be on the fourth floor, we’re counting down the days until the 10th annual Wedding Show, taking place at the Carlu from Friday, January 14 to Sunday, January 16. Unlike typical trade variety wedding shows, this boutique style show highlights ONLY the classiest and most original vendors in the city (selected by a jury, no less!). Founder and creative director of the show, Catherine Lash, has been in the biz for more than 15 years, having worked as a wedding photographer before launching The Wedding Show. 
The wide spread of vendors highlight the upcoming trends for 2011. One such vendor is Henkaa, creator of the convertible bridesmaid dress. The dress is one-size-fits-all (really!) and can be worn countless ways. Perfect for all the different shapes and sizes your bridesmaids come in.
The elaborate sweet table is a huge trend of weddings in 2011. Bobbette and Belle have gorgeous alternatives to the traditional wedding cake, with their gorgeous and tasty macaron towers. 
The show will also feature an elaborate art installation called The Crane Chandelier Project to celebrate its “tin” anniversary. The project is made from more than 11,000 origami cranes that were made, signed and donated by engaged and newlywed couples from around the world.
For each crane donated, The Wedding Co. will give 50 cents to The Princess Margaret Hospital Foundation (for a donation totalling $6,500). Cranes includes the name of the couple, their wedding date and their location. 
Join Lash on opening night at 6:30 p.m. for a champagne and cake toast and the unveiling of The Crane Chandelier projects.
Tickets are available for $20 at the door or online at
See you there!