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					W   E   A   R   E   C   O   M   M   U   N   I   T   Y    P   E   O   P   L   E


                                                        SEPTEMBER 2008




               ON
            LOCATION
    Markham on the Silver Screen
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                                                                                                                      905.895.9870
                                                                                                                         340 Eagle Street, West
                                                                                                                              (Newmarket)
                   We are the established specialists in: Fabulous Period
                                Panelled Libraries & Dens,                                                                    Located in the “GO” plaza,
                   Inviting Bars, Home Offices, Entertainment Centres                                             at the corner of Davis Drive & Eagle Street West,
                                   and Home Theatres                                                                   opposite Upper Canada Mall, Newmarket
     Contents

                15              DEPARTMENTS
                                EDITOR’S NOTES 6

                              COMMUNITY CORNER 8

                                 UPCOMING
                             COMMUNITY EVENTS 10

                                       IN
                                       THE
                               NEIGHBOURHOOD           12



                                    FEATURES
                            Markham Civic Centre 15
                              The centrepiece of our
                            modern town may be one of
                               its best kept secrets.



21                                     Cover Story
                                     On Location...
                         Markham on the Silver Screen 21
                         Markham has been a popular location
                     for shooting scenes for a number of films and
                        televisions shows over the past few years.




                                            Main Street September 2008   5
      Editor’s Notes
                                                                                                                                             BRIDLE POST DENTAL
Labour Day weekend has always marked the unofficial
completion of summer as the kids hang their heads and
return to school and those whirlwind vacations wind their                                                                                                • Implants
way down. This year, the transition to fall may be even easier             Publisher / Editor-in-chief Mike Cox                                  • Crown & Bridge
as it almost seems that summer never really quite arrived.                                                                                            • Root Canals
                                                                                  Art Director Dave Beharrell
                                                                                                                                                 • Tooth Whitening
However short the season, we couldn’t help but notice the                              Production Director                                • Nitrous Oxide Sedation
transformation of Main Street Unionville to a Christmas                                     Ed Law
                                                                                                                                       • Preventative Gum Therapy
postcard for a few days this past May when the weather
                                                                                    Ad Creation Designers                                    • Digital Radiography
teased us with summer-like temperatures. It turns out the                         Dave Beharrell, Jacki Bowyer                                           & Imaging
street was being temporarily transformed to accommodate
                                                                                         Creative Director                              (70 to 90% Less X-Ray Exposure)
the filming of an upcoming made-for-television movie.
                                                                                           Keith Jasper                                • Patient Education Modules
Markham is a pretty popular spot for filming scenes in                                                                                                                              We welcome
television shows, movies and commercials and perhaps not                           Communications Director                                               • Bonding                new patients and
                                                                                       Sara Sterling                                                       • Veneers                emergencies.
surprising given the local heritage sites, beautiful homes and
other great locales. In this issue, contributor Sue Kanhai                                 Contributors
takes a look at some of the shows and films that were filmed                              Anthony Dayton                                  “A modern professional office with an old fashion family atmosphere.”
                                                                                            Sue Kanhai
right here in Markham. You might be surprised at the list.
                                                                                                                                          DR. GEORGIA VOUTSAS
Keeping with the entertainment theme, a local dog trainer                    Website: www.mainstreetnews.ca                               Family & Cosmetic Dentistry
by the name of Lucinda Glenny will be appearing on the                     Main Street Magazines are published by
                                                                                                                                          211-548 Carlton Road, Unionville (905) 477-7999
Discovery Channel in September as part of a documentary                      Main Street Unionville News Inc.
featuring a hand picked group of outstanding dog trainers                           Subscription Rates
and breeders. A Unionville resident, Lucinda has operated           Canada: $18.95 for 4 issues ($18.05 plus $0.90 GST)
the Canine Campus here in Markham for the past 7 years                     (outside of our free distribution area)
and it should be fun to one of ours on television. For more
                                                                                    Advertising Inquiries
details, take a look at the write up on page 12.                            Email: advertising@mainstreetnews.ca

One other topic that has been of interest to us over the years                     Subscription Inquiries
has been the Markham Civic Centre. We are quite fortunate                    Email: subscribe@mainstreetnews.ca
to have this beautiful structure as a community centrepiece,
                                                                                      Telephone
for both governance and a functional, stunning piece of                 (905) 477-6558 Toll Free: 1-866-772-0006
architecture. As Anthony Dayton explains in his article, this
wonderful building, now 18 years old, is more than what                                      Facsimile
                                                                                          (416) 607-5828
meets the eye and may be one of our best-kept secrets. Along
with some of the interesting facts, Anthony provides some
stunning photographs of a civic centre that should be source             Copyright 2008 by Main Street Unionville News Inc.
of great pride.                                                             All rights reserved. Reproduction of any article,
                                                                          photograph, or artwork without written permission
As always, we would love to hear from you and you can                     of the publisher is strictly forbidden. The publisher
reach us by mail at the address on our masthead or by email              can assume no responsibility for unsolicited material.
at: editor@mainstreetnews.ca. Don’t forget to visit our
                                                                         Main Street Magazines are published 4 times a year by
website at: www.mainstreetnews.ca where you can download                      Main Street Unionville News Incorporated
recent issues, find a list of our advertisers with links to their                     with a mailing address of:
websites as well as a view some of the community events                    178 Main Street, Unionville, Ontario L3R 2G9
taking place over the next few weeks.                                    Main Street is an independent community publication
                                                                      designed to inform residents of issues and events of interest.
                                                                                  It is sent to 25,000 select households
                                                                                       in Markham and Unionville.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Main Street September 2008   7
               COMMUNITY
                                                              J   oin the 5th annual Markham 48 Studio Tour on Saturday
                                                                  September 20 and Sunday, September 21 from 10AM to
                                                              5PM. Visit with our artists and find that special one of a kind
                                 CORNER                       piece of art for yourself or someone on your shopping list.
                                                              A number of artists are participating at various locations
                                                              throughout Markham, Unionville and Stouffville. Admission

M        arkham Group of Artists is a talented group of 135
         artists, which recently celebrated its 25th
anniversary in Markham. MGA offers monthly
                                                              is free and a portion of all sales is donated to the Markham
                                                              Stouffville Hospital. For a free brochure and site map, contact
                                                              905-472-1774, email M48Studio@aol.com or visit
presentations and weekly workshops instructed by well-        www.markham48studiotour.com
known Ontario artists. The group meets on Wednesdays
(daytime) at the Markham Village Library from September
through May, starting on September 3rd, 2008. Our fall
schedule includes Members' Day presentations (once a
                                                              B    e part of Markham Theatre’s 2008 Gala Fundraising
                                                                   Evening and enjoy some spectacular entertainment
                                                              and silent auction fun! This year’s event features the
month, 10 am - 12:30 pm, included in our annual $55           fabulous Natalie MacMaster and her band. Your ticket
membership) and workshops Wednesdays, 10 am - 3 pm,           purchase enhances the future of the arts in our community
$25 per day for members). Quite a bargain, compared to        and the work of Markham Theatre. You will also have the
other art classes in the GTA! If interested in joining a      opportunity to bid on a range of wonderful silent auction
dynamic and talented group of artists, call Registrar Pat     items- all in support of arts programming. This event is
Wheeler          at    905-294-4438.          Click      on   always a sell-out so don’t miss out on this community             Lucinda Glenny - Breeding, Training and Competing
www.guidingstar.ca/MGA for more information. And don’t        fundraiser. Ticket prices range from regular seats at $75 to                 Over 25 years of experience
forget about MGA's Annual Fall Show, which is being held      prime seats at $85 and $95 box seats. For tickets, visit:                   Serving Markham, Unionville
                                                                                                                                             and surroundings areas
at the Markham Theatre for the Performing Arts from           www.markham.ca/Markham/Attractions/Theatre/boxoffice.htm
                                                                                                                                  (905) 477-8092 • www.caninecampus.ca
October 27th to November 22nd (show open 11AM - 6 PM          or call the box office at 905-305-SHOW (7469) or
Monday to Saturday and during performances).                  1-866-768-8801. MS                                                Featured on ‘Animal Planet’




8   Main Street September 2008                                                                                                                               Main Street September 2008   9
     SOME                         UPCOMING                       LOCAL               EVENTS
     DATE                     EVENT                                            WEBSITE

     Sept. 1- Dec 31          United Way Campaign                              www.uwyr.on.ca

     September 6              The Markham Guild of Village Crafts Open House   www.guidingstar.ca/MGVC

     Sept. 11-Nov. 9          Contemporary Portraiture Exhibit                 www.markham.ca                   • New Patients & Emergencies Welcome
                              Varley Gallery                                                                             • Whiten Your Smile
                                                                                                                        • Replace Missing Teeth
     September 27             Markham Theatre Fundraising
                              Gala with Natatlie MacMaster                     www.markham.ca                       with Bridgework and Implants
                                                                                                                     • Improve Your Oral Health
     September 17-20 Markham Little Theatre presents                           www.markhamlittletheatre.com
                                                                                                                        • Convenient Location
                     “Waiting for the Parade”
                                                                                                              Dr. Paul Salvo & Dr. Sharon Walden
     September 27,28 Applefest at Markham Museum                               www.markhammuseum.ca

     October 2-5              Markham Fall Fair                                www.markhamfair.ca                        113 Main St. N., Markham Village
                                                                                                                            (N.E. Corner of Main & Robinson)
     October 7                Markhaven Heroes Challenge                       www.heroeschallenge.com

     October 24-26            Haunted Halloween at the Markham Museum          www.markhammuseum.ca

     November 2               Angus Glen Half Marathon 10K and 5K Run/Walk www.angusglenhalfmarathon.com
                              in support of Markham Stouffville Hospital

     November 19-22           Markham Little Theatre presents “Hay Fever”      www.markhamlittletheatre.com




                                                                                      Visit
                                                                                   our website!
                                                                                   www.mainstreetnews.ca
                                                                                         Past Issues
                                                                                       Coming Events
                                                                                     Links to Advertisers



10   Main Street September 2008                                                                                                        Main Street September 2008   11
Local Dog Trainer
on Animal Planet!
Tucked away inconspicuously in the                                                       Many in this particular category possess
middle of a modest industrial unit just                                                  traits that can present a real training
north of Highway 7 on Laidlaw Avenue,                                                    challenge. They can be more insecure,
Canine Campus is a hubbub of dog                                                         barky       and     sometimes        skittish,
activity. During the day it takes the form                                               characteristics that can be unwittingly
of a doggie day care centre, replete with                                                exacerbated by owners unaware of how
chaotic companionship and four-legged                                                    their own actions influence their pets.
fun for a few otherwise lonely dogs. In                                                  Smaller dogs also seem to be more popular
the evening, it transforms into an                                                       these days, conveniently sized for busy
enchanting centre of higher learning for a                                               urban life. The trend to smaller dogs may
more aspiring group of canines.                                                          also find an influence in their popularity as
                                                                                         fashion accessories by a number of
The master teacher and owner of the                                                      celebrities. Either way, these are not always
establishment is Unionville resident,                                                    the best motives for obtaining a dog and
Lucinda Glenny. For her, training dogs                                                   certainly don’t lend themselves to the ideal
has been a life-long passion and                                                         relationship. Lucinda has the skill and
something she has been involved in for                                                   patience to help owners of these supposed
more than 27 years. A few years ago she                                                  ‘untrainables’ transform them into
left a successful career in marketing to                                                 dependable, well-mannered companions.
                                                Lucinda puts tv star Sonic through his paces
start Canine Campus and turn that
passion into a full-time endeavour.                                                          Lucinda’s reputation was such that when
Despite the challenges of running a small business on a                   the Discovery Channel went looking for a few trainers in
shoestring and the cut in salary experienced by many taking               Canada to follow and film for an upcoming documentary on
this kind of plunge, it is clear she relishes the opportunity to          Animal Planet, she was a natural choice. Flattered and
make use of her special talent for understanding dogs and                 somewhat unbelieving initially at being considered for this
perhaps more important, their owners.                                     kind of attention, it quickly turned into quite an intensive
                                                                          exercise of film shoots for many hours over several days.       Environmental Factor service
As a child, Lucinda had the good fortune to have the company              Being a documentary, they followed Lucinda as she prepared      providers take all the guess work
of a number of animals. Her parents bred German Shepard                   her own young Chihuahua, ‘Sonic’, for an obedience show.
dogs and whether it was horses, dogs or cats, a healthy rivalry           Following on the many years of award winning success she        out of maintaining your lawn
developed with her siblings to have the best-trained pets. Even           had with her older standard size Poodle, ‘Kudos’, her goal      without chemical pesticides.
at a young age, she seemed to have an innate ability to                   was to demonstrate that a smaller dog could perform just as
communicate with animals and in particular, the dogs. Over                admirably in a show of this kind. Cameras followed her all
her many years of training dogs as a hobby, she gained a
reputation for success and having a particularly calming
                                                                          the way to the big performance. And you’ll just have to tune
                                                                          in with Lucinda to see how it turns out! The documentary,
                                                                                                                                                                                nwaL ciin
                                                                                                                                                                                nwaL c n




                                                                                                                                                                              agrO
                                                                                                                                                                              ag O

                                                                                                                                                                                       eraC
influence on dogs, particularly show dogs. It was something               entitled ‘Breeder of the Pack’, airs on the digital Animal
she always loved and over time she came to the realization that           Planet channel (animalplanet.ca), beginning September 2.
her success she might also have an out of the ordinary aptitude           Check your local listings for the exact time and I’m told                                           eerF-edicitseP
for working with man’s (and woman’s) best friend.                         there may be a free preview of this channel for those of                                             deetnarauG
                                                                          you who may not subscribe. It’s a great opportunity to
One of her specialities over the years has been working with              catch one of your neighbours working a little of her magic
                                                                                                                                                                                               moc.rotcaflatnemnorivne.www
smaller dog breeds and ones deemed to be ‘high anxiety’.                  on the small screen. MS
12   Main Street September 2008                                                                                                                                                                              Main Street September 2008   13
              MARKHAM
GOOD DOCTOR




                                  CIVIC CENTRE



              By Anthony Dayton



              P
                     aid your Markham property taxes lately? In      On the other hand, maybe you were married in the
                     person? Maybe shelled out some $$$ for a        unique wedding chapel, small and intimate, that
                     parking ticket courtesy of the good folks of    seems to float on the reflecting pond behind the
              Markham Enforcement? How about having gone             Civic Centre, where as many as ten weddings might
              through the hassle and expense of obtaining a          take place on Sundays; or maybe you had lunch in
              building permit for the new backyard deck? Yes?        Merlyn’s café looking through the ceiling-to-floor
              Then your recollection of the Markham Civic            glass windows; in nicer weather you might have
              Centre might be that of a functional, one storey       taken Merlyn’s food outside to relax on the
              government building with several convenient            promenade overlooking the pond watching the
              entrances arranged according to what town you          ducks and geese trolling for your food.
              reside in: And likely, given that most people are
              less than happily disposed to parting with their       Next time that you drive east along H.W. 7
              hard earned cash, your associations of the Civic       approaching Warden, look left and notice the two
              Centre might be less than, shall we say, charitable.   storied structure with a balustrade of round,
              But this would clearly indicate that you hurried in,   concrete columns, large expanses of glass and
              quickly did your business and then rushed out,         unique, pink rotunda supported on columns that
              never stopping long enough to sit on a bench in        rise from a reflecting pool: The one that looks like
              the tranquil garden or spend a moment in front of      a luxo-hotel or corporate headquarters.
              the eternal flame, or stroll under the arbor, all
              located adjacent to the round rotunda-like             “What?” you ask. “That’s our Markham Civic




                                                                                                                               M
                                                                                                                               M
              structure of the Great Hall.                           Centre?” Except for joggers and people whose

                                                                                                  Main Street September 2008   15
CIVIC CENTRE
                                                          course have their own offices, and there are meeting     24/7.” On the east side, where the ground slopes        says that this has helped the Civic Centre to divert
                                                          rooms available, but as Millar says, “There are few      down to the pond, land is leased to a private day       as much as 80% of its weekly waste. He points to a
                                                          closed doors here.” He adds, “You learn to talk          care centre, its equipment bright and beckoning for     space near one of the Centre’s loading bays where a
                                                          quietly and to be aware of the people around you.”       the children of Markham residents as well as            14 cubic yard container (think small swimming
                                                          Perhaps an open concept is conducive to more             workers at the Civic Centre. Other for-profit           pool) once was filled weekly. In its place, there are
                                                          transparent government, or at the very least it          organizations can rent the Civic Centre facilities,     now as few as ten of the currently ubiquitous, 80
                                                          might be good for cutting down on office gossip.         says Millar, with the money going into general          gallon containers on wheels that line the streets of

                                                          The similarities between the Markham Civic Centre
                                                          and Roy Thompson Hall show their family heritage
                                                          including Erikson’s signature use of poured concrete
                                                          roughened to bring the aggregate to the surface,
                                                          giving it a jewel-like sparkle and colour; other
                                                          similarities include the round columns stretching
                                                          along the promenade; the reflecting pond and
                                                          finally, the large expanse of glass facing south,
                                                          which, as Millar explains, provides for solar
                                                          efficiency as well as the park-like view.

                                                          Erikson’s website encapsulates his architectural
                                                          philosophy. “Architecture,” he writes, “is the art of
                                                          composing spaces in response to existing
                                                          environmental and urbanistic conditions to answer
                                                          a client's needs.” So what are the needs of the
                                                          client? For that matter, who is the client? A modern
                                                          civic centre might be nothing more than a building
                                                          to house elected elite and to which citizens are
                                                          summoned for the afore-mentioned taxes.
commute takes them along the path that border the
grounds, the Civic Centre seem to be one of               But Markham’s Civic Centre seems to follow the
Markham’s best kept secrets. As part of your civic        tradition of the old town hall – a meeting place for
education, then, it’s time to get better acquainted       the residents who really should be the reasons for its
with the seat of your municipal government. Your          existence. That might not be the case everywhere,
tour guide is Brian Millar, Civic Centre                  but as Millar proudly points out, it is integrated       revenue coffers. The Centre has also been the           Toronto. This enormous reduction, Millar
Coordinator. As the person in charge of building          into the structure and philosophy at Markham. He         setting of a Hollywood movie which turned the           emphasizes, occurs every week. “If we ask residents
operations from, as he says, “day one,” few know          points to the ‘amphitheatre’ alongside the north         council chambers into the U.S. Senate, and more         to do things,” he says, “then we have to do them
the place better.                                         east edge of the pool where several teens, likely        recently to a company filming a Mars Bar                ourselves.”
                                                          from Unionville’s summer school program, are             commercial.
 “Day one” being in 1990, the centre is now 18            passing time. This is space for concerts and             This philosophy of belonging to the community is        Another responsibility that the Centre must accept
years old. Millar explains that it was the result of a    community celebrations in nice weather. Cultural         also reflected in the prevalent social consciousness    is the protection of Markham residents on
design contest awarded to architect Arthur Erikson,       celebrations at the Civic Centre, he recalls, have       of the civic centre. Markham, for example, has been     municipal property, and Markham’s Civic Centre
making it cousin to Roy Thompson Hall which               included the Chinese New Y ear and Pakistani             a leader in the environmental movement these past       goes about this efficiently and unobtrusively.
Erikson also designed along with many other               celebration day. On a non-cultural level, each year      few years, especially in diverting waste. “There’s no   Adjacent to one of the entrances is one of its
landmark buildings. Take a substantial piece of           there is a perennial plant sale run by non-profit        attitude of ‘Do as I say, not as I do,’ here,” Millar   recessed showcases with several glass shelves
farmland, add 165,000 yards or so of poured               organizations.                                           says. He is clearly proud that the Centre “leads by     displaying Markham artifacts. If you happen to look
concrete and 2, 000, 000 gallons of water into a                                                                   example,” explaining that its current greening          through the glass of this particular case, however,
man-made depression about three feet deep and             The Great Hall and lower atrium remain open to           project – dividing garbage into the now fairly          you might want to refrain from any, let’s call them
viola, you have a civic centre. Well, actually, there’s   the public after the Civic Centre has closed for         standard three bins: recycling, composting and          non-hygienic practices, because there’s a small
a little more involved. The Civic Centre is also          official business, even on weekends and as late as       garbage has now been advanced to the next level by      office on the other side of the wall, and the mirror
home to 400 staff who work in an open space               9:30 p.m. on weekdays. “The pond area, of course,”       replacing the garbage receptacle with a miniature       on the back of the cabinet is actually one way glass.




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      M
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      M
environment. Councilors and senior management of          says Millar, “is open for picnics or just a stroll       bin less than half the size of the other two. Millar    Michael, who heads the security and ‘hangs out’
16   Main Street September 2008                                                                                                                                                                          Main Street September 2008   17
CIVIC CENTRE
here when he isn’t making his rounds, has a clear      One of the arguments in opposition to the use of           Belonging to, and protecting, the community doesn’t             nor blocking the view. Millar adds that there are also
view as you peer into the cabinet. Could be            surveillance cameras in both retail and public places is   mean that the Centre doesn’t occasionally come under            orange lights in the pond and high pitched sound devices
embarrassing!                                          that they are invasive yet largely ineffective in          criticism ranging from the serious to the human                 both benign to geese, yet effective in managing them.
                                                       preventing crime, detractors claiming that its screen      interest. Millar points to the ducks and geese fanning
But more interesting to Michael than your possible     resolution is so poor as to make a positive ID all but     out across the pond. “At one point early on,” he                “People like geese,” says Millar, “so controlling their
indiscretion is a large                                                               impossible. They really     recalls, “we must have had upwards of 1500 to 2000              numbers was a tough sell.” He recalls a woman who
plasma screen and a                                                                   should ask Michael for      of them. They overran the Centre, polluting the                 called one spring day to say that she lived across from
control panel that lets                                                               a peek at his plasma        water, fouling its drains and making the paths and              the pond, and that she had expected – on the strength of
him       watch     the                                                               display. People entering    patio alongside the restaurant unwalkable. We knew              seeing a large number of goslings the previous summer –
Centre’s        various                                                               the centre or walking       we had to do something, and so we came up with Plan             to see an increase in the population, but that in fact
corridors,     parking                                                                along its corridors, or     A, buying three inflatable alligators and anchoring             there seemed to be fewer geese than before. She
lots, meeting rooms                                                                   even out in the parking     them to the bottom of the pond in hopes of scaring              demanded to know what had become of them. Millar
and so on. Even more                                                                  lot were tack sharp, and    the geese.”                                                     recalls that he invited her up to the Centre for a visit and
remarkable is that in                                                                 when Michael zoomed
true, Big Brother                                                                     to close in from a wide
style, he can also see                                                                angle view of the Great
what’s happening in                                                                   Hall,     the    images
the many Markham                                                                      captured on screen were
facilities          and                                                               crystal    clear    with
community centres.                                                                    enough resolution to
Such           cameras                                                                show the proverbial five
regularly spark debate about balancing public safety   o’clock shadow. Mature readers who recall watching
with privacy. The issue is resolved here: Protection   Allen Funt’s old TV show might remember its tag line,
of the taxpayer and the taxpayer’s investments is      “Smile, You’re on Candid Camera.” This is sound
paramount.                                             advice at the Civic Centre.




                                                                                                                  Millar admits that the staff had severely underestimating       that “Once we explained the situation, she understood
                                                                                                                  the intelligence of their fowl population. “After an initial    and was satisfied with the way we had handled the
                                                                                                                  hesitation,” he recalls, “the geese realized that the ‘gators   problem.” And now there are just enough geese to enjoy
                                                                                                                  weren’t moving and they proceeded to attack and destroy         without being pestered.
                                                                                                                  them.” At that point, the expression “silly goose,”
                                                                                                                  seemed more fitting for the staff than the geese.               The next time that you have business at the Civic
                                                                                                                                                                                  Centre, take a moment to walk around the Great Hall
                                                                                                                  Clearly it was time for Plan B: This time, the Centre           and the grounds. Go for a picnic or maybe an evening
                                                                                                                  called the Wildlife Conservation Authority who                  stroll around the reflecting pool. Visit the quiet garden
                                                                                                                  suggested the installation of barriers along the concrete       and spend a minute in front of the eternal flame. This is
                                                                                                                  walkway. Millar points out the steel poles and wires that       where your money goes and in fairness to all of the
                                                                                                                  effectively keep the geese from hounding people for food        people who work there, the Markham Civic Centre
                                                                                                                  and leaving their ‘poop’, while neither harming the geese       seems to be money well spent: It’s yours to enjoy. MS
18   Main Street September 2008                                                                                                                                                                                     Main Street September 2008   19
                                                                      ON LOCATION
                                                                       Markham on the Silver Screen
                                                                        By Sue Kanhai


                                  E        arly one morning this spring while driving down
                                           Main Street Unionville I did a double take. A man
                                           was carefully wrapping what appeared to be holiday
                                  garland around the posts of one of the storefronts. It was barely
                                                                                                      of contact. They consider all requests first and must give
                                                                                                      clearance. Unionville Director of Culture, Tracy MacKinnon,
                                                                                                      says, “People find it exciting that Unionville transforms into a
                                                                                                      movie set.” They can come watch and see firsthand how
                                  8 am on a warm and sunny May morning and the shiny foil             movies, tv shows, and commercials are made. “It adds a real
                                  garland seemed an incongruous detail, to say the least.             cachet to the Town.” Over the years, she recalls, several Disney
                                                                                                      movies and CBC miniseries have been shot here. About 10
                                  A few hours later the entire middle section of the street had       years ago a big Geena Davis production, The Long Kiss
                                  been transformed into a full-on Christmas wonderland. For           Goodnight, came to town.
                                  three days, giant candy canes flanked the light standards,
                                  decorated trees sparkled in the sunshine, and planters              Over at the Markham Museum, a couple of music videos have
                                  overflowed with festive greenery. A life-sized Santa figure stood   been shot. The log cabin seems to be popular with musicians
                                  sentry in a doorway. A group of elves milled about, waiting for     and the train station with independent filmmakers, including
                                  direction. My five-year-old son immediately got serious about       several students from York University. In the past three years,
                                  his Christmas list.                                                 Hayden Christensen shot a scene that was set in a theme park.
                                                                                                      The museum’s refurbished antique carousel was used in a
                                  Toronto residents are long accustomed to the sight of movie         dream sequence, the shoot lasting about a week. While they
                                  crews on their streets, trailers and cameras signalling some        may be seeing fewer large-scale productions lately, says Visitor
                                  mysterious and exciting production in the works. They’re used       Service Representative Sandra Norris, Museum staff always
                                  to spotting familiar city hotspots in their favourite movies and    does their best to accommodate the smaller independents.
                                  tv shows – Toronto doubling as Boston, New York,
                                  Washington, or Chicago – and reading about the comings and          The Markham Fairgrounds, a popular multi-use venue
                                  goings of visiting celebrities in the newspapers or on the web.     throughout the year, have seen quite a few commercial
                                  According to the Canadian Film & Television Production              productions but fewer feature films. A few years back the
                                  Association, Toronto has a workforce of 48,000 direct and           movie The Blues Brothers shot for several weeks at the
                                  indirect full-time jobs in the Ontario film and television          fairgrounds. Actor and comedian Bob Einstein, perhaps better
                                  industry. The city is regarded as the film and television centre    known as Super Dave Osborne, also used to do his tv show
                                  of Canada.                                                          there years ago. General Manager
                                                                                                      Dan O’Brien reports a decrease in requests for shoots recently,
                                  Little wonder then that given Markham’s proximity to the            which he believes is a result of the Canadian dollar achieving
                                  city-centre the industry would have a foothold here too. In the     parity with its U.S. counterpart. Commercial shoots keep
                                  past three decades several U.S. and Canadian productions have       them busiest.
                                  been shot right here.
                                                                                                      In June 1987, CBS tv movie Secret Passions brought several tv
                                  Chitra Jayakrishnan, Communications Clerk at the Town of            stars to Unionville, clad in 17th-century period costumes to
                                  Markham, says that as far as locations go, “Main Street             boot. Included were Susan Lucci, John James, Tim Matheson,
                                  Unionville is always popular.” Others include Allstate Parkway,     Inga Swenson, Jeff Conaway, Susan Ruttan, Woody
                                  and several private residences and properties around town.          Harrelson, and Barbara Billingsley.
                                  Last year, the Town received between 30 and 35 film permit
                                  applications, up slightly from an average of 30 in years past.      In 2000, before Gilmore Girls had a set of its own, Unionville




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                                  For shoots on Main Street, the Unionville BIA is the first point    stood in for fictional Connecticut town Stars Hollow, a
20   Main Street September 2008                                                                                                           Main Street September 2008   21
LOCATION
close-knit small town filled with eccentric characters. In the         from April 2005 to March 2006, resulting in direct spending
opening sequence of the pilot episode, main character Lorelai          of $196 million to the province.
Gilmore (played by actress Lauren Graham) walks down Main
Street and enters Luke’s diner – here played by 156 Main Street,       Ontario is a favourable place to shoot for several reasons. The
the building that currently houses Paris Fashions. Main Street         province offers a remarkable array of diverse locations, a variety
was also used in a few more shots during the show’s first season       of weather conditions, a favourable economic environment, a
before filming moved to a Warner Bros. set in California, where        wealth of technical and creative people, and state-of-the-art
it would stay until the show ended 7 seasons later.                    production facilities, equipment, and studios. Our many small
                                                                       and mid-sized towns often resemble the American Mid-west
In October 2007, actors Jude Law and Forest Whitaker filmed            or New England, providing ready small-town USA and period
a futuristic adventure thriller at Angus Glen Golf Club.               looks. That temperatures can vary widely from region to
Universal Pictures’ Repossession Mambo, based on a novel by            region is another bonus: a Mid-western winter scene is as
Eric Garcia, is due out in 2009. Part of the movie was shot on         possible as a sunny day set in southern California.
beautiful Harper Hill Road, in a house that served as main
character Jude Law’s home. Some scenes were also shot from             The OMDC offers a location database to help the scouting
the third hole of the south golf course. Chantal Headrick,             process along. Many sites in Markham have listings in the
director of marketing and public relations for Angus Glen, said        database, including the Markham Museum and Markham
at the time, “In my recognition, this is one of the bigger             Fairgrounds, together with a host of other, smaller locales that
movies shot here.”                                                     might not immediately spring to mind.

Citizens and businesses enthusiastically embrace the film              It turns out the Christmas set that adorned Main Street
industry and there’s no question that it’s good for business.          Unionville back in May will appear in an upcoming CTV
According to the Ontario Media Development Corporation,                movie. For more chances to spot Markham and Unionville on
18 projects were shot in Toronto and throughout Ontario                the big and small screens, stay tuned. MS

     MOVIES AND TV SHOWS AT LEAST PARTIALLY SHOT IN MARKHAM AND UNIONVILLE:
     Point of No Return (1976) – sci-fi thriller
     The Littlest Hobo (1979) – tv series – adventure, drama, family
     Funeral Home (1980) – horror
     Pitchmen (1985) – documentary
     Rock ‘n’ Roll Nightmare (1987) – horror
     Secret Passions (1987) – suspense
     Hot Paint (1988) – comedy
     The Broken Cord (1992) – drama
     The Cutting Edge (1992) – comedy, drama, romance, sport
     PCU (1994) – comedy
     In the Mouth of Madness (1995) – fantasy, horror, thriller, mystery
     The Long Kiss Goodnight (1996) – action, thriller, drama
     Moonshine Highway (1996) – action, drama, thriller                                Paris Fashions in Unionville became...
     Red-Blooded American Girl II (1997) – thriller
     Blues Brothers 2000 (1998) – action, comedy, musical
     Amplifier (1999) – short, sci-fi, thriller
     Gilmore Girls (2000) – tv series – drama, family, comedy
     Ginger Snaps (2000) – drama, horror, thriller
     The Scream Team (2002) – comedy, family, fantasy, horror
     Earth to Mouth (2003) – documentary, short
     Taken (2003) – drama, sci-fi
     Toy Mountain Christmas Special (2005) – tv - family, news
     Yesteryears (2005) – drama, short
     Molly: An American Girl on the Home Front (2006) – drama, family
     Love… and Other Reasons to Panic (2007) – comedy, romance
     Souvenirs from Asia (2007) – short, comedy
                                                                                       ...Luke’s Diner in The Gilmour Girls.
     A Life Less Gone (2008) – drama
     Repossession Mambo (2009) – sci-fi, thriller

22   Main Street September 2008

				
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