Larry Hurd can tell he’s back in his hometown of Leaside.
“People actually say hello to me on the street,” he says. “I’m just really glad to be back.”
People know him because of his history here.
“I wrote the hockey and baseball column in the old Leaside Advertiser in the early ‘70s and was the scorer and announcer in the booth at Talbot Park and the gondola at Leaside Gardens. Played goal for Leaside Kings as well.
“When I was in high school I became interested in film, eventually attending Seneca College to study film and radio,”
He is now owner of Manic Media.
Hurd returned last year with his daughter Morgan. After an almost 30-year absence, he finds Leaside much as he left it, friendly, pretty safe, dynamic and still like a small town even though in name it doesn’t officially exist.
“I remember the big fight around amalgamation in 1967 when Leaside was absorbed into the City of Toronto,” he recalls. “ But Leaside didn’t disappear. It just kept on going as one of Toronto’s many communities within a larger community.”
His Leaside roots go back several generations. Both sets of grandparents as well as his mom, dad, sister and brother all come from Leaside.
Larry’s parents both attended Leaside High School just as he did in the 1970s. His grandfather Joe Hurd had a butcher shop on Eglinton Ave. near Laird.
Where did you grow up?
“On Fleming Cres. I remember cutting through the neighbours’ yards to get to school at Leaside High.”
How do you spend your time now?
“With Manic Media I now help families preserve memories in the digital world as well as do full video/film production.”
Anything we’d recognize?
“I produced LHS The First 50 Years, a 60-minute documentary on DVD as well as the Entertainment Night at LHS’s 50th anniversary in 1995. My most recent project is a video for the Leaside Wildcats.”
What would you like see in the neighbourhood?
‘It would be great if the drainage problem at Talbot Park could be solved, but it has always been that way. One of our former neighbours, Sidney Radford, remembered the park before the high school was even built. He claimed there was quicksand there at one time!
“I also would love to revive the LHS alumni website, with more stories and content. There are so many interesting graduates that have gone there. It would be a good project for high school kids and some eager volunteers.”
Anyone interested email him.