Thursday, June 20, 2013 | Categories: Episodes |
Seventies Summer Picnic Hippy Fun (CBC Image Library)
Summer, just the word makes you want to loosen your bowtie, kick off your shoes, break out the shorts and take it easy. Maybe crack a cold one. It's the same way at CBC Radio. Summer is a time to play a little more music, try out some new shows and look forward to a vacation. On Rewind today we'll bring you archival tape of the stories of summer: summer camp, summer food, the summer of dust in the Prairies in the 1930s, and the pleasures of taking to the road.
You can listen to the program right here!
Our first piece is a reflection on the real start of summer. According to the calendar, this year the summer solstice is June 21st. That's tomorrow. But according to Dennis Trudeau, the summer solstice should be smack dab in the middle of the season, rather than at the beginning of it.
The next piece is from 1955. The program was CBC Wednesday Night, an arts and entertainment program of music, readings and drama. On this occasion, as the show prepared for a summer season, narrator J. Frank Willis delivered an eloquent soliloquy to open the show.
Of course summer can be a dangerous time too. At least that was the message behind one public service announcement that ran on CBC Radio in 1955.
Looking back even further to the 1930s, summer on the Prairies could be fearful. Writer James Gray told David Lennick about his memories of a road trip he took as a young reporter.
What would summer be without summer camp? Canoe trips, pillow fights, camp fires, singing songs, telling ghost stories- they're all part of the camp experience. In a piece we aired from 1968, interviewer Ed Reid talks to a group of kids who are getting ready to head home after a memorable time at camp.
Time for food. Picnics, BBQs, watermelon, ice cream cones, and lots of seasonal fresh fruit. But eels for a summer feast? Why not? That's what James Bannerman learned in 1958.
After that, we couldn't resist airing one more piece from James Bannerman. James Bannerman was a regular on CBC Radio and people would tune in just to hear his introductions and stories. We aired a piece he did about salads in 1957.
And then there is the requisite summer car trip- pile the kids and the dog in the car, pack the cooler, fill up the tank and off you go. In 1957, Bill McNeil talked to the resident advice guy, Peter Whittall on the program Assignment. On this occasion, how to plan the perfect road trip.
The last piece on today's Rewind is about a road trip of a different kind. The year was 1971 and a program called Rule and Revolution was on the air on CBC Radio. The show was hosted by Barbara Frum and its mandate was, and we quote, to show how the rules and structures of our society affect some individuals and how some individuals respond; also to provide an avenue for airing grievances by the listening public.
You might be asking: what could that possibly have to do with summer? Well, on this occasion, in June 1971, the program looked forward to a summer of young people taking to the road hitchhiking. One note as we look back more than 40 years later, all the hitchhikers featured in this piece are young men. The fact that there are no young women mentioned is not remarked upon or noted in any way. From the summer of 1971 here's Rule and Revolution.
From 1971, a piece called On the Road Again from the program Rule and Revolution. When's the last time you saw a hitchhiker? Have you ever picked one up? Do you have stories of hitchhiking, perhaps when you were younger? If so, we'd love to hear from you. You can leave them right here on our website, or you can email us at Rewind at cbc.ca.
Thanks for listening!