This week’s show opened close to home — and far away:  Midweek’s Reanna Julien spoke with locals originally from Syria about the strain of waiting for news from family following the previous week’s horrific earthquake, and she found out from them what they’re doing here in Ottawa to try and help.

host nearly hidden behind mic arms, iPads, cables and other tech

Host Emily Vaz almost seems to merge as one with the technology…

Reporter Emily Vaz, one of this week’s hosts, then took us into the tortured history of the McDonald’s restaurant at the downtown end of Rideau Street that’s been pared down to just a take-out window and is now set to close entirely in April because of the chaotic behaviour and violence that have plagued it for years.

Cate Newman spoke with a representative of the Glebe Community Association about their campaign to educate the public about the damage done by idling car engines, even during what may seem like a short wait. They plan to use balloons to visually represent the quantity of harmful fumes pumped into the air unnecessarily during short waits outside schools or other places where we make brief stops.

Midweek’s Annie Doane picked up the same theme in a conversation with a leading climate scientist who predicted back in 2005 that the Rideau Canal skateway’s future was on thin ice due to warming winters — a forecast that this year seems to be coming true.

The Canal may be facing a date with destiny, but other dates this week were of a more romantic kind as Valentine’s Day rolled by. Devon Tredinnick, our other host this week, spoke with an organizer of events for folks interested in meeting potential special someones in person, instead of swiping through profile after profile online.

The relationship between the Canadian women’s soccer team and their sports governing powers has been on the rocks lately, and Midweek’s Reanna Julien brought us the reflections of Leanne Dietrich, a high school athletics director and soccer coach in Waterloo, on how the current dispute about equity between the male and female national teams filters down through all levels of the sport, including to the young players she works with.

Host holding up script page at mic

…while co-host Devon Tredinnick practises the next story’s intro script: “DEE-trik … DEE-trik … DEE-trik…”

Some Ottawa city councillors are calling on the city to hire more bylaw officers to enforce rules in city parks that require dogs to be on a leash, so Emily Vaz got tips from the founder of a local pet-sitting service about how folks with dogs can enjoy being out with their companion without aggravating or endangering their neighbours.

Local musicians have finally slipped the leash put on them by the prolonged pandemic restrictions on public performances, so Annie Doane checked in with the singer known as frown line to find out how this community is working together to recapture the camaraderie and collaboration they’d long enjoyed.

And also back after the pandemic pause is the National Capital Region’s Winterlude — the full-scale, in-person experience once again … or at least, as much of that as is possible without the Canal skateway … and with thawing ice sculptures … and slush.

Oh well. As Midweek’s Bobby Eros found out, there are still beavertails and other fun to be had, if you keep the right attitude.