Maple Leaf Ballroom

REMINISCING – Back in the day St.Clair Ave West was a cool and working class neighborhood. A Mixture of new immigrants and old money (Wychwood Park). Long before the influx of the ‘Me’ crowd and the St Clair Street Car Right-a-way, The Clair hood was great with old movies theatres, Mom and Pop stores and restaurants and packed Churches.

The Thrift Store was called the ‘Maple Leaf Ballroom‘ and before that ‘The Christie Theatre‘, located at 665 St. Clair Avenue West, between Wychwood Avenue and Christie Street.

One day, many years ago, I noticed a line up outside the now renamed Maple Leaf Ball Room front door and ran all the way to Christie St. I inquired what was going on. Someone said it’s that new group from England playing in Canada for the first time. What’s the group name I inquired. “The Pretenders” they answered.

The Pretenders? I’ve heard of them on CFNY and they are playing in my ‘hood. Awesome! I’ll get a ticket, so I did, and that made 2 ‘brothers’ (albeit 2 Grenadians) attending the Pretenders concert at the former Maple Leaf Ballroom on St. Clair West.

How times have changed, now the MLB is gone, replaced by a Thrift Store and my long hair replaced by a short cut to match the hair on the top of my head!

I hope they don’t pave paradise and put up a condo.

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