On September 8th, 2005, a small group of close friends of Jeff's and some members of the Toronto Psychogeography Society go together for a night of fountain immersion and photography. Liz claims to have coined the term "fountaineering" this night, and I suggest that everyone just lets her have that. The walk began by the CNE grounds.

Nadia wrote a blog entry about this excursion, which you can view here.
Laura also wrote one for the Toronto Psychogeography Society, which you can view here.


This fountain is among some small trees and gardens if you take a right from the horse palace area. Everyone was talking about going in it, but then some started wandering off and losing interest, so I went in and stood on the spout-like part in the middle which was deeper than I expected. I was a little cold and quickly got out. Pete and Laura both got in and hung out for a while and others took pictures.
Afterwards we noticed that there was a dead rat in a pipe in the fountain. It wasn't exactly encouraging, but this isn't generally typical of fountains. Here's a beautiful picture of the offending creature taken by Nadia.


This is a shot of Dylan enjoying this volcano-style fountain. He got right in and acted as if it were his personal throne. And hey, it was clearly designed to be used by human buttocks.
I liked this fountain. My first impression of it was that it would look awesome on a windy day.

Before we did this fountain, by the way, we went to a huge one in a central location in the CNE grounds. It was very pretty and well-lit, and I eventually went in it to see what was under the "wall" created by the overflowing water. I know that Jason got a picture, but not while I was in it. I believe Sean did.


Same fountain (obviously). Dylan is joined by Laura.


Two people had the foresight to bring towels, which they graciously shared with the group. I was not one of them.
Pete is preparing for the next picture in this shot.


And what a shot it is.
I never claimed to be a skilled photographer.


After checking out the volcano fountain, we discussed our next move around a much less impressive one. Jason spent a lot of effort to take a nice picture of both, which you can see here.


The Toronto Film Festival was happening during this walk, and we happened upon the gala premier of the movie "Water" at the Liberty Grand.


People were hanging out around this place in tuxedoes and fancy dresses, and I walked up, soaking wet, wearing jeans and a denim jacket. Tell me, who do you think was more prepared for "Water"?


We walked around the building and were stopped by a very serious security guard... briefly.
Then we checked out this turbine for some reason. Some people from the premier were there, and one put out his cigarette on the wooden deck around it. He then asked if Liz could put out the smouldering hazard using her water bottle.
I observed that the theme of the night was most definitely "water".


This was a small fountain between the turbine and the next fountain, which is much cooler and larger. Nobody went in this one.


This is it... the fountain labelled "Grand CNE Fountain" on the Urban Oases Tribute Canada page.
I didn't realize at the time, but Jeff went in this one as well. It's the third one down on the original Urban Oases page for Canada. More fountainous indeed!


Another shot from when I was still walking around to the front of this wonderful behemoth. This demonstrates another phase of the fancy color changes.


I asked Liz to take a few pictures while I pranced around on the island within the fountain. There is a big platform with a built-in bench on this fountain, and a large statue of an angel standing on top of North America. This fountain is a monument to peace there, I suppose.
It's hard to know where everyone is in this picture. For a while, Sean, Jason and Dylan were behind the statue. One of Nadia's pictures shows them there -- probably my favorite picture from this night.


Another picture of the same fountain. I can't really identify where everyone is in this picture, either. This one is very blurry. You'll notice that the underwater lights went out during this picture. The color changes were gradual but frequent. It was really spectacular.


Left to Right: Kyle, Jason's head, Laura, Dylan, Sean, Nadia, Pete


Hard to see, but the lights were awesome in this picture.


A more distant shot of this fountain and the garden in front of it. I guess this was as we were leaving.


This is the fountain that Andrea went in on the Urban Oases Tribute page for Canada. I didn't want to tell Andrea when she submitted her picture, but we made fun of this fountain when we saw it because it was so lame compared to the last two. All of the jets seemed so lazily aimed at the middle, and two were barely shooting at all. At least she got her picture during the day.


This picture shows the sign that indicates that this is LAKEWATER, and therefore extremely dangerous to touch.
You can see Dylan standing on the other side, where we noticed a manhole cover partly obscured by woodchips that led to a well-lit chamber that we could view through the holes in the manhole cover. It probably led to a tunnel with controls for the fountains -- strangely, nobody cared to try investigating.


These are the wet cubes by Roy Thompson Hall. They aren't actually this gross looking.
This is immediately beside the Flame Fountain and Cup Fountain (parts 1 and 2) on Jeff's Urban Oases page for Canada. They are the fifth, sixth and seventh ones down on the page.


Some of the fountaineers had already left by this point, and the rest of us called it quits shortly after. I stepped up on the semi-circular bar and pressed my hands to the cube to make a bit of a splash, too. Sean took some pictures of that.
The Cup Fountain (part 1 only) is pictured here.


That wraps it up for September 8th.

Back to the Main Page

Please send your comments and fountain pictures/experiences to Kyle.