CFIC T.O.’s Saturnalia Party & Auction!!!

Great food, entertainment, Raffle & Auction (see below) to help raise funds for CFI Canada!!!

The celebration takes place from 7pm-11pm on SaturdayDecember 17th - the first night of Saturnalia! The venue is Fuse Restaurant, 366 Queen East @ Parliament.

*Advance sales only (cut-off December 15th, 12 noon)!!!:

$55 Members (proof required)

$65 Non-members

Buy a CFIC membership for $30 for Members price ($85 all-in).

Purchase tickets now at EVENTS page.

Price includes ample hors d’oeuvres (come hungry!) and an interactive, cabaret-style performance, featuring musical numbers, stand-up and satire (as well as a few surprises!) by Pearle Harbour (see below). Cash bar. Mulsum, the official Saturnalia beverage, will be available.

Seasonal sartorial garb is welcome; official Saturnalia colours are blue and gold.
Pearle Harbour is an all-American world-wartime gal, born on [information withheld]. During the war, she served as a stewardess aboard top-secret mission flights, including [information withheld], and even [information withheld]! Since crash-landing in Canada in late 2014, she has performed her acts at Theatre Passe Muraille, Videofag, Pressgang Storytelling, Clay & Paper Theatre, The Wrecking Ball, The Comedy Bar, and countless others.
Upcoming in 2017, catch Pearle Harbour at The Theatre Centre from April 10th-May 14th with The RISER Project! For all the nitty gritty details, follow her at facebook.


AUCTION ITEMS (email to submit a bid)

(item #1) Hot Docs Documentary Film Festival all-access pass ($349 value):

Taking place from April 27-May 7, 2017, The Hot Docs Film Festival is the largest and most prestigious documentary film festival in North America, and second in the world. It is truly one of the best things about Toronto; your Saturnalia Cicerone sees 50 films during the Festival each year, and takes in plenty more throughout the year at the Hot Docs Bloor Cinema, one of the few venues in the world dedicated exclusively to documentary programming. This pass gives the holder guaranteed tickets to all films, up to 15 minutes prior to the beginning of screenings.
(item #2) Planet in Focus Environmental Film Festival all-access pass ($130 value):
Taking place in October 2017, The Planet in Focus Environmental Film Festival is one of Toronto’s hidden cinematic gems. Extremely well-run, the Festival presents consistently high-calibre films, for which your Saturnalia Cicerone would need to go searching otherwise. The pass gives the holder guaranteed tickets to all films as well as to the opening and closing galas.
(item #3) InsideOut LGBTQ Film Festival Supporter Membership ($180 value):
Taking place from May 25-June 4, 2017, The InsideOut LGBTQ Film Festival is another of Toronto’s cultural gems. Your Saturnalia Cicerone comes for the films, but stays for the parties, which are the most fun of any film festival bashes she has ever attended. The Membership gives the holder all the benefits of an InsideOut Supporter, which include six tickets to Festival screenings, as well as special access and discounts to InsideOut programming throughout the year, including the Festival.
(item #4) My Night With Reg (Studio 180 Theatre /Mirvish) tickets ($160 value):
Studio 180 Theatre is a favourite of your Saturnalia Cicerone, and although she hasn’t yet seen this play, she is looking forward to it with great anticipation. It runs from February 10-26, 2017 at the Panasonic Theatre.
(item #5) Butcher (Why Not Theatre/Mirvish) tickets ($180 value):
Why Not Theatre is another favourite of your Saturnalia Cicerone. She saw this play at The Theatre Centre last year, and it was one of her picks of the year. It runs from March 25-April 9, 2017 at the Panasonic Theatre.
(item #6) Unholy (Nightwood Theatre/Buddies in Bad Times Theatre) tickets ($70 value):
Nightwood Theatre and Buddies in Bad Times Theatre are very close to your Saturnalia Cicerone’s heart. She saw the workshop production of Unholy last year, and can’t recommend it enough to theatre-lovers and those interested in the merits of secularism versus religion, especially as they affect women. It’s an absolute must-see, and runs from January 15-29, 2017 at Buddies.
(Item #7): Infinity (Volcano Theatre/Tarragon Theatre) tickets ($120 value):
Volcano Theatre and Tarragon Theatre produce some of the best theatre in town. Your Saturnalia Cicerone loved Infinity, and not just because its dialogue is liberally peppered with what her mother refers to as Kitchen Latin (her term for salty language). It’s a scientifically-informed play, and so much more! Infinity runs from January 4-29, 2017 at Tarragon.
(Item #8) Canada’s Top Ten Film Festival (Toronto International Film Festival – TIFF) pass ($70 value):

TIFF has really put Toronto on the map, culturally. For years, your Saturnalia Cicerone has seen 40-50 films at the Festival every September. TIFF also showcases the best of Canadian cinema at the Canada’s Top Ten Film Festival (CTTFF) every January. Canada produces incredible films, and the CTTFF is the most efficient way to take in the best of the bunch. The pass provides six tickets to CTTFF screenings, which take place from January 13-26, 2017 at the Lightbox.

(Item #9) Medea (Opera Atelier/Tafelmusik) tix ($258 value):

Toronto’s Opera Atelier and Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra are the envy of the world! Your Saturnalia Cicerone never misses a performance. The winning bidder will receive a pair of tickets to Charpentier’s Medea (the original nasty woman!), on either April 25 or 26, 2017 at the Elgin.

(Item #10) Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) 4-tix package ($78 value):
The Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) is Toronto’s premier art museum. Its collection includes more than 80,000 works spanning the first century to the present day. The gallery has 45K square metres of physical space, making it one of the largest galleries in North America. Your Saturnalia Cicerone has been a member for ages, and you can find her there on a regular basis. Plan an outing for 4 with family and friends in 2017!
(email to submit a bid)
RAFFLE ITEMS (on the night of the event)

(item #1) Saturnalia starter kit/goodies basket (special wreath, mulsum, candle, treats) – $150 value

Carefully curated by your Saturnalia Cicerone, the basket features festive, Saturnalia-themed items to enhance the holidays. The candle, lovingly poured into a blue-and-gold-rimmed porcelain teacup and saucer set by Toronto’s own La Vela Bella (, will bring light and warmth to cold, dark Saturnalia nights, until the lengthening of the day after the winter solstice.


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Dr. Ben Goldacre was in Toronto, Sunday May 15th

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On Sunday May 15, from 2:30pm to 3:30pm, Dr. Goldacre gave a lively and informative talk and signed copies of his books. This event was held at the Tranzac Club, 292 Brunswick Ave (just south of Bloor; 3 blocks west of Spadina)

Ben is a best-selling author, broadcaster, campaigner, medical doctor and academic who specialises in unpicking the misuse of science and statistics by journalists, politicians, quacks, drug companies, and more.

Bad Science his 1st book, has sold over 500,000 copies to date, is published in 18 countries, and reached number one in the UK non-fiction bestseller charts.

Bad Pharma his 2nd book covers bad behaviour in the pharmaceutical industry andmedicine more broadly. It is a top ten UK best seller.

View more at his website or his Twitter page.

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Winter Solstice Fundraising Dinner at CFIC T.O.

CFIC Winter Solstice Celebration 2015

On December 21st, 2015 we had our annual CFIC Winter Solstice Celebration to celebrate a secular holiday season. We had dinner at the Crimson Lounge followed by an evening of magic and comedy with Magic Tonight. James Alan’s Magic Tonight ( is a weekly show downtown which features a wide variety of special guests which proves magic really is for grownups. The show is highly interactive and very entertaining.

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Raheel Raza presented Honor Diaries

On Saturday, Nov. 28th from 7:30pm to 9:00pm at our head office on Eglinton, we had a unique opportunity to hear a compelling and dynamic activist, Raheel Raza, present to our CFI Canada community, the important documentary film Honor Diaries. Q & A followed the screening.

Raheel is the president of The Council for Muslims Facing Tomorrow and an outspoken fighter of women’s rights abuses which include forced and underage marriage, honour killings and genital mutilation. They are occurring in Muslim countries and in Canada. The film features Raheel and other women’s rights activists (including producer Ayaan Hirsi Ali) as they engage in dialogue about gender inequality. Honor Diaries is the first film to break the silence on honor violence against women.
This was a paid event. Admission for CFIC members was $10. For non-members it was $15.

Richard Carrier at CFIC T.O. Oct. 23rd

Philosopher, historian, Atheist activist and blogger Richard Carrier, Ph.D. visited Toronto for three days. We had a pub night on the Wednesday, Richard kicked-off the very first counter-apologetics meeting on the Thursday, and his stay culminated in the Friday night speaking event on Oct. 23rd at OISE on the Historicity of Jesus.

He re-examined the question of whether Jesus existed as a historical person and presented compelling reasons to suspect the daring assumption that he did not.

We sold out of his book Proving History: Bayes’s Theorem and the Quest for the Historical Jesus ($20 CFIC members; $25 for non-members).

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