Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Podcast: The Town Where Friday the 13th is a Special

In Port Dover, Ontario Friday the 13ths are special.

It seems that this community on the shore of Lake Erie has become a meeting place for motorcylists – thousands. But it happens only on a Friday the 13th.

So, whenever the 13th falls on a Friday, whether it’s April or December, motorcycles of every type, make, and model will make their way to the welcoming streets of the bustling town.

In this Journey into Canada, we chat with Barbara Tanner-Billings of Port Dover about how this all came to be – and just what you might expect to see and experience if you should come to town on a Friday the 13th.


Thursday, April 15, 2010

Podcast: Lord Stanley - The Man Behind the Cup

One of the most important figures in Canadian history, Frederick Arthur Stanley’s most enduring legacy is not his term as the country’s sixth Governor General but the trophy cup that bears his name.

As the playoffs begin, we speak with author and hockey historian Kevin Shea about the man has name is associated with hockey champions. Shea is author of Lord Stanley: The Man Behind the Cup (Key Porter Books; First Edition edition (June 14, 2007)).

In this Journey into Hockey, we explore with Kevin Shea Lord Stanley’s political legacy — his diplomacy in dealing with the United States, his embrace of Canada’s West, and his nimble handling of domestic crises — fleshing out a man who was far more than just an avid sportsman.


Podcast: Lakeland – Journeys into the Soul of Canada

Lakeland (Greystone Books, 2009) is a journey of a discovery with a country. In the course of his travels, Allen Casey examined just what lakes mean to Canada.

Interestingly, while many volumes had been written about the Great Lakes, this is a rare book in that it explores Canada’s three million other lakes.

We speak with Allen Casey about the inspiration for his journey, what he found and how it changed him.


Saturday, April 3, 2010

Podcast: Uniting Canada through a Guitar - Six String Nation

64 pieces; 6 strings; 1 Canada; 1 guitar.

This is the story of Voyageur, the Six String Nation guitar, which was built from throughout Canada – it is comprised almost entirely of pieces of Canadian history. Pierre Trudeau’s canoe paddle is the tone bar, Paul henderson’s hockey stick is part of the pick guard; and the sacred Golden Spruce of Haida Gwaii froms the face. Even Maurice Richard’s first Stanley Cup ring adorns the ninth fret.

We speak with project organizor and author Jowi Taylor about Vaoyageur’s story – from concetion through construction through its debut in front of 80,000 people on Canada Day 2006.

As Jowi relates, the story continues to unfold today.


Podcast: Superior Region & Its People

In The Wolf’s Head - Writing Lake Superior (Cormorant Books, 2008) ,Peter Unwin has recorded the stories of the great Superior and the people who, over centuries, have determined to make it their home.

In this Journey into Canada, we speak with Unwin, who helps lay out the history of the lake and its lands.


Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Podcast: Canada’s Olympic Hockey History

Canada added a new and important page to its hockey and national history in the recently completed Vancouver Olympic Winter Games.

The men’s hockey team overtime final win for the gold against the U.S. is already a classic. The tournament was thrilling throughout. And, the women provided an equally inspiring level of skill and commitment. Their accomplishments are second to none.

These recently completed games are but the most recent chapter in a story that started close to a cenury ago.

Andrew Podnieks, author of more than 50 books on hockey, has chronicled the history of Canadian Olympic hockey in his book, Canada’s Olympic Hockey History, 1920-2010 (Fenn; 2009).

It’s a fascinating and diverse story. Canada’s Olympic hockey team has taken many twists and turns over the years.

In this Journey intio Hockey, we speak with Andrew Podnieks about his book and the history it chronicles.

As Canada celebrates the wins of 2010, the earlier contributions of the likes of William Hewitt, Father David Bauer, Dave King and Cassie Campbell should not be forgotten.

Broadcast: February 15 (Before Canada’s 2010 wins)


Thursday, February 25, 2010

On a rare night, Canada gathered to watch one game (Globe and Mail)

From The Globe and Mail:

By Stephen Brunt
The Globe and Mail
February 24, 2010

VANCOUVER - There aren't really that many hockey nights in Canada, at least not in the way we imagine them.

One country, gathered ‘round a game; perhaps it was true every week way back in the mists of time, in the one or two channel world, television on Saturday night as the national hearth, a place where friends and families came together, the way they came together to worship other gods the following morning.

But that world long ago was blown to smithereens, and now we live in a time of vast and near infinite choice; when you can watch anything from anywhere anytime, on your television, your computer, on your phone, and when nothing is really special there is not much reason to assemble anywhere anytime.

Except on rare nights like this, except for a game like this, when you want company, when it feels so much better to be with your tribe.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Passing: John Babcock, Last Canadian World War I Veteran (NY Times)

From The New York Times:

Published: February 24, 2010

He joined the Canadian Army at 15 and ultimately became the symbol of an embattled generation.

More than 600,000 Canadians served in World War I, and the Canadians’ capture of the Germans’ Vimy Ridge outpost in France in April 1917 is considered a milestone in forging Canada’s national identity.

Mr. Babcock died Thursday at his home in Spokane, Wash. He was 109.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Podcast: Expo Rail

Operated by the Canaidan Railroad Historical Association and using the brand name ExpoRail, this museum near Montreal maintains the largest collection of railway equipment in Canada with over 140 pieces of rolling stock. There are also over 250,000 objects and documents from Canada’s railway history in the collection which is maintained in an archives on the property.

The museum operates a heritage line around the grounds as well as a heritage railway which pulls a small passenger train on a former freight spur to Montee des Bouleaux. The streetcar operates daily during the spring, summer and fall while the railway operates every Sunday during the same period.

In this Conversation, we speak with speak with Josee Vallerand about Expo Rail, and a unique exhibition which helps chronicle the important role the rails have played in Quebec and Canada.


Podcast: The Canada Cup of Table Top Hockey

The Vancouver Winter Olympics are grabbing most of the headlines these days (and rightfully so). The hockey competitions there are expected to be lively in both the men’s and women’s divisions.

But there is another major sporting event taking place in Canada over the coming days. It is the Canada Cup of Table Top Hockey – bringing together top players of the game from Canada, the U.S. and the world. It will be taking place in Ottawa, starting this February and finishing in April.

We speak with John Cooke of the Canadian Table Top Hockey Association about the upcoming Canada Cup – who plays and what’s it all about.


Saturday, February 13, 2010

"We Are More" (Vancouver Sun)

From The Vancouver Sun:

Transcript of opening ceremony poem by Shane Koyczan.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Let the Games begin (Globe and Mail)

From The Globe and Mail:

After seven years, after billions of dollars, Canada's Olympic dreams take shape tonight in the flicker of a flame and the roar of a crowd in Vancouver's cavernous BC Place.

The lighting of the Olympic cauldron is the start of the 21st Winter Olympics and the beginning of a 17-day odyssey for Vancouver, British Columbia and the country, which will change them all.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Le Petit Train du Nord (Montreal Gazette)

Le Petit Train du Nord (Montreal Gazette)

From The Montreal Gazette:

By David Johnston
The Gazette
January 14, 2010

It was in the late 1930s that skiing in the Laurentians, alpine as well as cross-country, went mainstream. Even though most people didn’t own a car at the time, the famous Le Petit Train du Nord brought 111,000 tourists up to the Laurentians from Montreal in the winter of 1937-38, 10 times the 11,000 the train carried in the winter of 1927-28.

It's story is told at the Laurentian Ski Museum in St. Sauveur, Quebec.

posted by eric model | 11:47 AM

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Saturday, January 9, 2010

Montreal Expos, Forgotten by Many, Are Reuniting in Cooperstown (NY Times)

From The New York Times:

Published: January 7, 2010

This week’s election of Andre Dawson to the Hall of Fame is further evidence of the continuing influence of Canada’s first major league team.

Podcast: A History of Beer in Canada

Nicholas Pashley joins us to speak about his fascinating book, “Cheers!: An Intemperate History of Beer in Canada” ( Harpercollins Canada - 2009)

It’s everything the title implies and much more.

Access to this podcast is available @