Share your comments and stories

(Updated May 16, 2011 with two links to posts that have been since written.)

There are a few things that I’m interested in doing some further research on for future blog posts. If you can help answer any of the questions below, please leave a comment or send an e-mail to theviewfromseven@gmail.com. (Or, if you know someone who might be able to share their insights, please share this blog post with them.)

Three Winnipeg TV outlets celebrate their Golden Anniversaries this year. CBWFT, Winnipeg’s local French-language TV station, will celebrate its 50th anniversary on April 24. CTV affiliate CKY-TV will also celebrate its 50th anniversary of its Nov. 12, 1960 debut as CJAY-TV. This year will also be both a Golden and Coral/Jade anniversary for Global affiliate CKND-TV — the 50th anniversary of its sign-on as border station KCND in Pembina, N.D. on Nov. 7, 1960 and the 35th anniversary of KCND’s becoming the first and only TV station to move across an international border to become CKND in Winnipeg on Aug. 31, 1975.

  • What were your favourite shows on these stations?
  • Were you among the young people in Winnipeg who used to check out the racy late night movies on the French station in the ’80s?
  • Are you still a fan of Bob Swartz’s Archie and His Friends and Funtown, Chiller Thriller Theater or Gordon McLendon’s strange on-air editorials after all these years?  Do you still groan at the thought of CKND’s Jackpot (a quirky ’80s game show where someone would pop up and yell “Jackpot!”) or CKY’s Debate (a weekly debating contest between teams from different local high schools, the only entertaining part being that these teenagers were generally nervous wrecks)? Dare I even go off-topic and mention 13 MTN’s early disasters? Share your memories!
  • How were these stations as places to work in the ’60s and ’70s? What was the atmosphere like? How would you describe the working conditions?
  • Had Canwest not bought out KCND, would the station have survived? What might have its post-1975 history been like?

Fly the Golden Jets! Transair — Winnipeg’s Hometown Airline. It’s been about 30 years since Transair‘s gold-coloured fleet of Boeing 737s and Fokker F28s disappeared from the ramp at Winnipeg Airport. Founded in 1947 as Central Northern Airways and renamed Transair in 1956, the Winnipeg-based airline was a vital lifeline to many northern communities and carried many Winnipeggers to destinations in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Ontario until its merger with Calgary-based Pacific Western Airlines was completed in late 1979. It also had a Boeing 707 that it used for charters to Europe and Hawaii — which, according to one source, Transair managers conveniently managed to get out of town at times to keep it out of the hands of creditors.

Transair was also known as the first significant airline in Canada to hire a female pilot, and as the employer of a very young Peter Mansbridge, who worked at Transair’s Churchill station before going on to bigger and better things.

  • How was Transair for service — was it a good airline or a poor one? What memories do you have as a passenger?
  • How was the working atmosphere at Transair, particularly in light of the company’s struggle to survive in the ’70s?
  • How could Transair have survived or done better, if it could have done these things at all? What were its strengths and weaknesses?
  • How did the Transair-PWA merger go from an employee’s point of view?

Nude swimming at a City of Winnipeg pool in the ’80s? I heard by word of mouth that a City of Winnipeg public swimming pool was caught with its trunks down by a local newspaper in the ’80s when an intrepid reporter learned about a staff member’s by-invitation-only after-hours nude swimming club. I couldn’t find any written record of this story, but if it’s true, it would be worthy of an encore performance. Does anyone know any additional details?

Still the Troubled Y? In April 2008, Winnipeg’s Downtown YM-YWCA at 301 Vaughan St. was the subject of an unflattering article in the Winnipeg Free Press, which discussed the recreational facility’s problems with pepper spray attacks, drug deals, gang activity, vandalism and customer complaints about an indifferent management. Other member complaints that didn’t make the Free Press would also concern a lack of cleanliness, patrons asking others for sexual favours, and inattentive lifeguards. Having lost members to other Y branches, to a new fitness centre at the U of W and to the new Cindy Klassen Rec Centre, and about to face new competition from two new fitness centres in downtown Winnipeg — a GoodLife fitness centre scheduled to open at Portage and Main in April and the Sport for Life Centre preparing to open  in the East Exchange — can the Downtown Y survive?

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About theviewfromseven
A lone wolf and a bit of a contrarian who sometimes has something to share.

5 Responses to Share your comments and stories

  1. Ron says:

    There’s only one hope of stanching the bleeding at the Y: detach it from Portage Place. Unfortunately, there’s probably some ridiculous contract that keeps the Y from boarding up the PP entrance.

  2. cherenkov says:

    The Y seems to do brisk business — they are very busy at noon and after work, and pretty steady in the mid-afternoon. they regularly upgrade their equipment and recently renovated much of the gym. It’s not always the cleanest place, but the lighting is good, the equipment is good, it’s accessable and affordable. I’ve never had any problem with gangs, drugs, sexual deviants, etc., although my locker was broken into twice many years ago when I used the little locker room on the third floor, but no problems in the main locker room.

    I broke up a fight between two girls once out side the Y in the hallway to PP. One of them had a glass bottle that broke, creating a dangerous situation that I had to put an end to.

  3. Jason says:

    Wasn’t Jackpot a national game show out of Global TV? I guess that was part of a typical daytime lineup on CKND…

  4. theviewfromseven says:

    Might have been. That was many years ago now.

    My enduring memory of it was a junior high classmate suddenly springing out of his chair during class and yelling “Jackpot!” at the top of his lungs (and the teacher’s reprimand that followed).

  5. sherryl puchlik says:

    i applied to be a stewardess for transair, but got married instead. searching through papers I found that I have shares in transair! I wonder how I could go about checking to see if they are even valid today. who knows, maybe I’m a millionaire! if anyone knows how I could investigate, I’d appreciate any information.

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