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Dear Oprah, may we show you around?

Oprah’s in town! Oprah’s in town! And we’ve got a special tour of Toronto just for her. Will she come along with us?

Oprah Winfrey

Dear Oprah,

Welcome to Canada! We can’t tell you how excited we are to have you stop over in our great nation during your Oprah’s Lifeclass tour. It’s pretty clear how much we love you here, since you had to add a second show when your first sold out almost instantaneously. And thank you for bringing such inspirational people along with you, like Deepak Chopra, Tony Robbins and Iyanla Vanzant. You sure know how to spread the love!

We know you’re on a tight schedule, what with your tour and the fact that you’re Oprah and all, but we thought we might take it upon ourselves to help make your stay even more pleasant with a custom guided tour through the fine city of Toronto. We will lead you places that are in keeping with your specific interests (and your time constraints, of course). If you follow us, you may never want to leave this place!

We’ll start with the basics: books. The University of Toronto is home to an obscene number of libraries — 44 in total. We realize that to view all of these is a fool’s mission, especially with only a few hours, but we’d make sure to hit up some of the nicer ones, especially on the ivy-infested St. George campus. You can peruse our shelves to your heart’s content, and as you wander the aisles, you will have the dame of Canadian literature and resident Torontonian herself as your guide: Margaret Atwood. As you discuss the importance of the written word and compare notes on your favourite female authors, you won’t even notice the time pass. But pass it does, and it’s off to our next stop.

Now, we know you’re big on having a healthy perspective. And when it comes to perspective, there is no healthier one than from the CN Tower. Follow us up the very long escalator and onto the famous glass floor, where you will get as good a view of everything for miles — er, kilometres — as is possible without flying. And then, if you’re game, you can soak in even more of a view as you venture onto the outside edge of the CN Tower for the edgewalk. We’ll be watching from inside. Way inside.

The clock is ticking, but we can’t let you go without taking you to Evergreen Brick Works, which will feed your passion for environmental awareness — in more ways than one! After being shown around the beautiful premises and getting some info on how to live a more sustainable life, we’ll let you go wild at the famous farmers market, where you can get good, clean, local food. It’s a rural oasis in the middle of the city, and you’re going to love it.

We figure you’ll be starving at this point (and all those vegetables, though delicious, probably didn’t cut it), so we thought we might end things off at Bannock, a restaurant that specializes in Canadian cuisine. Perhaps some salt cod doughnuts to start, followed by the roast duck poutine pizza, with a canoe fireweed butter tart to finish things off? And look who just joined us! Your favourite Canadian do-gooder, Craig Kielburger! Go to town talking about saving children in need; we’ll just listen in awe as we pick at the poutine pizza. Oh my, Mayor Rob Ford has just walked in. Would you look at the time? Let’s go.

We hope you take us up on our offer. We’re sorry we can’t show you more that the city has to offer. Perhaps you’ll just have to come back again so we can continue the tour. So long, Oprah! Remember us!

Much love,

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