The Toronto Show!

Posted 3 years ago

With its unique skyline featuring steady flows of high-rise towers, and the piercing salute of the CN Tower, it’s no surprise that Toronto would bring its own eclectic class to The Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride. The history of this city is long, and much like the rolling skyline, it has its ups-and-downs - as we all do. But as this city and its host will show us, the two are inseparable - and with perseverance and support, you can make it through and enjoy the ride!

The buildings that line the streets of Toronto are formed of widely unique and contrasting styles, showing the growth and change of the city in-time. From the Romanesque Revival style of the Royal Ontario Museum to the Victorian-era Bay-and-gable houses that are wall-to-wall in old-Toronto, and the redeveloped downtown industrial sites - the city certainly is unique, with the ubiquitous presence of bygone eras. All these uniquely varying styles come together in celebration of this fine city - sounds a little like DGR, right? Eclectic styles of varying bikes, riding together through Toronto streets to celebrate funds-raised and to raise awareness of men’s health. The two go hand-in-hand, held tightly by our seasoned host, Mr Paul Dutra.

Paul has been hosting DGR in Toronto since 2015, taking over from the previous host after taking part in the first-ever year of The Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride - how brilliant - and much like the city of Toronto, Paul’s history has had a few ups-and-downs. Much like the eclectic mix of architecture celebrating the history of this fine city, what came after Paul’s struggles was an ability to celebrate being himself.

Paul experienced hardship through a separation with his partner. Switching jobs and starting therapy, among other things, Paul made it his mission to rebuild a home for his family, as a space of support, love, and care. A very similar mindset he has applied to hosting DGR! Anyone who has participated in Toronto would have felt Paul’s infectious love for the event, and for raising awareness for men’s health. While the challenges in running the ride have been manageable, Paul uses the event to share his story and to help anyone out there who might have felt the way he did. “I’ve had several thoughts of taking my own life, but I had to pull through and be an example for my three boys, and for others going through hard times.” Even in motivation for this blog, Paul proudly proclaimed that if his story can help anyone at all, even one person, then he would want to share it. I think that speaks to the man in better words than we could ever say.

Since nurturing the ride, Toronto has grown into an unstoppable force, surging along the path to making astounding impacts in support of men’s health, and continues to be a celebration of life. And now, where do we find Paul? Exactly where he wants to be… “It’s been a long road to recovery, that’s for sure. Seven years since my separation, I am finally feeling like a new man. It took a lot of learning, failing, humbling, patience, and knowledge - filtering of the right or wrong people in my life so I can start to see who I am becoming, and most of all, I’m enjoying being me.  It's been a hell of a ride!”

Thank you, Paul. Thank you for sharing your story, and for being you!

If you are a host, rider, or supporter of DGR and would like to share your story, we’d love to hear it. Please get in touch with us at

Photography by Dan Lim - the Moto Foto.

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