Thursday, 10 January 2019
Location: Markham, Ontario, Canada
Address: 171 Town Centre Blvd
Date: Jan 2019
Super Dave Osborne was the greatest stuntman the world has ever known. Actually he was far better at making us laugh than he was at successfully completing a stunt. Super Dave was the creation of Bob Einstein and we have been laughing at the same joke for decades. What will go wrong with Super Dave's stunt today? Super Dave always starts out cheery and optimistic and then things go wrong and he ends up injured and censored. Bob Einstein died January 2nd, 2019 and we thought we would highlight the Toronto connection with his beloved character.
Super Dave was a regular on John Byner's comedy television program called Bizarre. It was during Bizarre that Super Dave filmed his memorable CN Tower stunt. Just one year after stuntman Dar Robertson jumped off the tower as Christopher Plummer's stunt double in the movie Highpoint, Super Dave prepared for his jump. Super Dave is standing outside at the top of the tower with announcer Mike Walden. Mike would be Super Dave's announcer throughout the Super One's career.
The stunt has to be called off due to high winds, but as Mike goes back inside the tower he hits Super Dave with the door. We see Super Dave flail as he falls from the tower. He lands in a parking lot that used to be just about where Ripley's Aquarium is today. To add insult to injury, the ambulance runs Super Dave over and drags him underneath the vehicle.
Bizarre was filmed at the Glen Warren Studios in Scarborough. The buildings are still there today as CTV Studios. The studios are located at number nine Channel Nine Court since 9 is the channel that the station broadcasts on. One of us has been inside the studios to watch a taping of a television show called Circus which aired in the early 1980s. In 1987 Super Dave was given his own show and it also filmed at CTV.
One of us was also lucky enough to see a taping of the Super Dave show when it moved to its new location at the Markham Theatre. The show was filmed in Markham, Ontario up until it ended in 1991. Each week there were specials guest performers along with a Super Dave stunt. Super Dave would attempt his stunt strapped in with genuine Saskatchewan seal skin bindings but things never worked out as he planned. We always knew something was going to happen when Super Dave attempted a stunt. We would have a good laugh.
If you still need a little more of the Super One while you are in Toronto then you need to visit Super Dave! Convenience at the corner of Coxwell and Gerrard. It has everything you expect from a convenience store. Lotto tickets, candy bars, milk, magazines and more. While you are there you can stand out front and give a big thumbs up with the words Super Dave up above your head. Higher up still, in comedy heaven, you will find the legendary Super Dave.
Map of Our World
CTV Toronto , Markham Theatre
CN Tower , Super Dave! Convenience
Post # 238
Saturday, 25 July 2015
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Address: 1 Blue Jays Way
Date: July 2015
We arrived at Union Station courtesy of a free ride on the TTC. Anyone with a ticket to any Pan Am event gets to ride the subways, buses and streetcars in Toronto for no additional charge on the day of their event. As we came up from the subway we could hear music and we were greeted by two dancers performing for the crowds as they headed towards the Opening Ceremonies.
The Pan Am Opening Ceremonies took place on the evening of July 10th, 2015. They were held in the Pan Am Dome (PAD) which outside of the games is normally called the Rogers Centre. We still prefer its original name of Sky Dome. As we headed towards the dome we walked right past the Pan Am Games Cauldron which would be set ablaze later that same evening. The cauldron is made of multi-coloured pieces of steel with symbols of the different sports cut into each piece.
We arrived early enough to be entertained by some CBC on-air personalities making small talk and we had a chance to participate in the PACHI shuffle. Let's fast forward about an hour to when the real show began.
The world famous Cirque du Soleil created a special performance for the Opening Ceremonies. It started with dancers dressed in traditional outfits from around the world and the electronic First Nation music of DJ Shub. DJ Shub is formerly of Canadian group A Tribe Called Red who will perform in Toronto as part of Panamania.
The show then switched gears as we were treated to a video performance of the torch relay as it headed towards Toronto. The gold medal winning 1996 Canadian men's relay team carried the torch past Toronto landmarks and then ended up on the Edgewalk at the top of the CN Tower. Sprinter Donovan Bailey appears to base jump from the top of the tower and then lands onto the roof of the Rogers Centre. A moment later he descends down onto the stage carrying the Pan Am Torch.
Once all of the athletes were seated, it was time for Cirque du Soleil to take back the stage. Once again the music began as performers rose up on elevated platforms. Things started slowly as the athletes seats glowed through the darkness.
Then things picked up as a fire roared through the center of the stage and the Cirque performers danced and flipped through the flames. The show continued through various changes. There was always so much happening that we did not know where to look. Everywhere you did look there was someone swinging or spinning and contorting their body through this world of music and lights.
Soon it was time for the official Olympic and Pan Am Flags to arrive. As the announcer called out the names of the flag bearers, each one was a Canadian superstar.
- Loly Rico - Refugee Activist
- Fergie Jenkins - Baseball Hall of Fame
- Rick Hansen - Man in Motion
- Marnie McBean - Olympic Rower
- Yann Martel - Authour of Life of Pii
- Chantal Petitclerc - Paralympian
- Pinball Clemens - Toronto Argonauts
- Simon Whitfield - Triathlete
- Mark Messier - Hockey Hall of Fame
- Bobby Orr - Hockey Legend
- Catriona Le May Doan -Speed Skater
- Jewel Kats - Author
- Amanda Belzowski - Amanda's Lemonade Stand
- Gabrielle Schrimshaw - Aboriginal Professional Association
- Craig Kielberger - Humanitarian
After the last thank you and muchas gracias, the torch was taken from its resting place and the Canadian women's relay team from 1984 ran with the flame. They managed to find each other in the dark amongst the athletes and passed the flame along. Finally, Marita Payne Wiggins passed the flame to her son Andrew Wiggins who is a rising NBA star. Andrew ran with his torch half way up the stairs into the stands where he passed the flame to certified Canadian NBA star, Steve Nash. Steve ran up the stairs, exited the Rogers Centre and set the Pan Am Cauldron ablaze where it will burn for the duration of the games. Officially the games had begun.
To cap everything off, there was a fireworks display that also set the CN Tower ablaze. Unfortunately, as we were inside the Rogers Centre with the roof closed we had to marvel at it on the giant video screens. We had hoped the roof would be open, but with the Rogers Centre being nestled right against the tower we may have only seen a cloud of smoke as the ashes of the expended fireworks rained down upon us. We are hoping that this display is repeated at the closing ceremonies July 26th, 2015. So far it has been a great games for Canada and we look forward to the Parapan Am portion to begin in August.
Map of Our World
Rogers Centre (Pan Am Ceremonies Venue)
Post # 65
Monday, 15 June 2015
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Address: 440 Unwin Ave.
Date: Dec 2014
From several places around Toronto you can spot a rather large structure. No, this is not the city's famous CN Tower. Just in front of the Leslie Spit, the R. L. Hearn Generating Station sits relatively unobstructed. At 705 feet tall, it's chimney is the 3rd tallest in Canada That is over 64 stories high. It still has a long way to go to beat the Inco Superstack in Sudbury, Ontario which is over 1200 feet and is the second tallest chimney in the world. In case you were wondering a power station in Kazakhstan has the world's tallest chimney at just under 1400 feet.
The R. L. Hearn Generating Station was built to meet Toronto's power needs. It was named after Toronto engineer Richard Lankaster Hearn. The building was originally a coal powered station and eventually became a natural gas powered station up until it was finally closed in 1983. The huge chimney was built in the early 70s to try and reduce the smog output. Since its closure the location is occasionally used as a venue for events such as Luminato in June 2014 and 2015. Right next door, the much smaller Portlands Energy Centre (building with 2 small chimneys above) currently helps generate some of the power needed to keep Toronto going.
While the chimney has made its way into many of our photographs, we decided it was time to give the building a closer look. So we took a drive down to Toronto's Portlands. This area is also home to Cherry Beach, the Leslie Spit, Polson Pier and Pinewood Toronto Studios.
In 1983 the movie Strange Brew was released. The Hearn Generating Station was used as the Elsinore Brewery exterior in that film. Since the station also shut down in 1983, this would have saved them from countless Bob & Doug McKenzie fans showing up and claiming to have found a mouse in their beer.
Map of Our World
R. L. Hearn Generating Station
Post # 57