Ticket To Orillia Please

I think it’s pretty darn important that you include Orillia in your future travel plans.

Why would you not? It was the home of Gordon Lightfoot, Stephen Leacock, and Dino’s pool hall for goodness sakes.

In Bobby Orr’s new book “Orr, My Story”, he says his hockey school with Mike Walton was in the Muskokas. It wasn’t. It was just outside Orillia, which is below the Muskokas.

In fact, the only time he mentioned Orillia was when he said his former agent and ex-friend Alan Eagleson had a cottage near there.

It took Gordon Lightfoot about twenty years into his fame to say he was from Orillia and not Toronto.

Stephen Leacock changed the name from Orillia to Mariposa in his book “Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town”.

Dino’s pool hall burned down.

And my ongoing unofficial poll, which I’ve conducted for years, asks the question to old friends who now live in places not called Orillia. “Could you ever live in Orillia again?”, to which probably 98% say no.

I, on the other hand, could. And someday I think I might. I’ve dealt with my issues from when I was an older teen and into my 20s. I think.

See? It says on the pennant below that the Orr-Walton Camp was in Orillia, not Muskoka.

And about the Lightfoot thing, maybe it didn’t help that a guy I knew went in through an unlocked back door at a Lightfoot concert at Orillia’s Opera House and stole Gordon’s or one of the band member’s leather jacket.


Orillia pennant

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7 thoughts on “Ticket To Orillia Please”

  1. Nice shots of a by-gone era. Unfortunatly most small town-
    Ontarios went the way of a strip mall with little or no character. BUT Dennis, in Jan 2015 my daughter heads to glory land for some time at Georgian college . I’ll get her to snoop around a bit, and so will I when I visit her. Over the years I’ve had interesting chats after dropping a name or two. If you move to Orillia, I’d be a short drive [Chesley] away from a Habs fan.

  2. It is, Danno. The Rodney Dangerfield of cities. Even the rink’s going soon. But I’m glad my high school is now a field.

  3. Hope she loves it, Peter. And yes, when you’re there, explore it and let me know what you think. A short drive from Chesney. I like that.

  4. Hi Dennis
    Any idea what year the last picture was taken. If you look closely you can see the three furnaces of P & M. I remember Don Baker telling me someone tried to cook his Christmas turkey in one. He put it in for a few minutes ,it came out a piece of charcoal. needless to say they had been a little tipsy at the time

  5. Hi Brian. No, I don’t know what year that picture was taken. I think it’s impossible to find out. That’s a good story, and is Don Baker Kerry’s dad?

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