Snowbanks left and right tower above me as I trudge up the sidewalk, from the houses across the street of Harold who goes to private school and Bobby who goes to Catholic school, past the house of Janice who goes to my school, and up the endless hill where a temple awaits. Not St. Margaret Mary Church to my right (where the meaningful temple is actually the toboggan hill behind the church) but the temple where my street, Fairbairn, meets Sunnyside on the left. This magical place houses gleaming fire engines, which already appear to me old fashioned, in the same way some inter-city Colonial Coach buses are old and some are contemporary.
Almost a hundred years ago, Brighton Beach in Ottawa South was touted as one of the best places for bathing in the city. This clipping is from The Ottawa Journal on June 17, 1921, where plans for the opening of the diving tower and accompanying party were revealed.
The fate of two institutions, which formed a core element for generations of families in Old Ottawa South, may be coming together. Not the two institutions themselves, but their remnants.
On Saturday, October 19, 2019 Trinity Anglican Church celebrated 140 years in Old Ottawa South. The ceremony recounted the church's history and highlights of the parish over the many years with story-telling, music, and reflection on both the past and future.
Longing for a cool place in these dog days of summer? A nearby swimming hole would be an ideal place to spend some time. In the past, the residents of Ottawa South had a wonderful spot, a beach at the end of Brighton Avenue, now a park with grass and trees, but formerly a haven for aquatic activities on the Rideau River.
In 1981 Charlotte Gobeil got a rare look inside the Monastère du Précieux Sang then located at 774 Echo Drive in Ottawa South. Her visit with a documentary crew to the Sisters Adorers of the Precious Blood captures a fascinating glimpse of these cloistered nuns. Ms. Gobeil was welcomed by this contemplative order to witness the women's daily life of devotion.
In some ways, not too much has changed in fifteen years—on the eve of a move away from Old Ottawa South, a resident recounts what he'll miss most about the neighbourhood in this article from the June 2004 OSCAR.
Ten things I love (and will miss) about Old Ottawa South — By Jim Watson
In this excerpt from the March 1990 OSCAR, June Kelly O'Byrne recounts memories of life on Sunnyside Avenue from the 1920s and beyond, with recollections of family and friends, and recalls the many local stores and businesses in the neighbourhood.
Ottawa South Memories by June Kelly O'Byrne
In 1920 my parents bought a little house on Sunnyside Ave. on a big lot which extended to Woodbine Place. Dad had just returned from the First World War and was fortunate to obtain employment as a Letter Carrier. His "route", as he called it, encompassed Echo Drive at the Precious Blood Convent to Cameron Ave. (Cowan's Ice House and Wilson's Lumber Yard), east to the Rideau River, including what is now known as Rideau Gardens. Some senior citizens may remember him, as he received many a "tip" at Christmas time from the residents of those streets.
For many years, the hill behind St. Margaret Mary Church was the meeting spot for intrepid tobogganers. The February 1983 OSCAR caught a snapshot of the fun.