East Love: An evening celebrating resilience in support of Red Door Shelter

East Love

UPDATE, FEB. 27: Event tickets are now sold out. 

Each year, March 8 is an opportunity to celebrate the contributions of women and galvanize our efforts in achieving gender equality — across the country, around the world and right here in our neighbourhood. 

This year, on International Women's Day, the east end community is coming together for East Love, an event themed on resiliency in support of Red Door Family Shelter. Located in Leslieville, the Red Door is a local provider of emergency shelter and critical support services to families in need. 

Presented by Torq Ride and MOVE fitness club, East Love will take place at the Broadview Hotel's Lincoln Hall with an evening of cocktails and canapes, storytelling, entertainment and, of course, dancing.  

"East Love gives us a chance to gather for fun and do some good as a community," says event organizer Julie Mitchell, who also runs the east end's Torq Ride and Parcel. "This connects us and fosters a sense of identity for the neighbourhood."

An assembled lineup of four keynote speakers — Phyllis Pascal, Cheryl Torrance, Lilian Motta and Rachel Noonan — will be sharing stories of struggle and strength through individual experiences. 

"We wanted to hear from a range of speakers with different personal stories of adversity and growth," Mitchell says. "We all struggle in different ways and being open about our experiences and backgrounds connects us to each other.  The stories are compelling, touching and inspiring. The common thread is that they are all about resilience. The specific speakers came to us organically — these are are neighbours, colleagues, friends."

Things will get underway at 7:30 p.m. with a kick off of cocktails and canapes, including an oyster bar courtesy of G'are de l'Est. At 8:30, the panel will share their stories and individual experiences. George Chaker, one of the many friendly faces leading classes at Torq, will take over DJ duties at 9:30 to get the dance floor pumping. 

Advance tickets for East Love are on sale now for $50. Another $60 gets you a goodie bag loaded with swag, products and services from the deep relationships with community partners. Each bag is valued at over $200, and you'll also be entered to win one of five ultra-exclusive gift bags valued at $1,000. A limited number of premium tickets are available for $150 that include a pre-event workout, plus a manicure, blowout or make-up application at BSIDE Beauty, and a premium kit to go with it. There will also be special-run merchandise for sale. Best part — all proceeds go to Red Door Shelter. 

"Nearly every business we approached wanted to help get involved. We had customers and businesses contacting us to ask how they could be involved. It was not a hard sell. Red Door Shelter is embraced whole-heartedly by families and businesses on the east side."

Check out eastlove.ca to find out more about the event and buy your tickets to be part of this incredible benefit event that will bring the force of the community together.