Entries in Ontario (4)


Canadian Dad Builds Homemade "Wipeout" Obstacle Course for Kids

ABC/MIKE WEAVER(BROOKLIN, Ontario) -- One Canadian man might just take the cake for coolest dad in the whole world.

Mike "Crazy Legs" Conley last month built his very own 90-foot-long Wipeout style obstacle course on the street in front of his house for all the kids in their Brooklin, Ontario, neighborhood.

"They were surprised at the final display of it," Conley said. "I had been building it for a couple months. They knew it was obviously coming. They'd walk out the door and see the whole thing stretching from one neighbor's driveway to the next neighbor."

A former contestant of the popular game show himself, Conley, 34, said the experience was one of the greatest of his life and wanted his kids to be able to experience it firsthand. He got the idea to create the video of the obstacle course being constructed after shooting his audition tape for Wipeout, which featured his kids, Hailie, 13, Ty, 7, and Luke, 5, navigating their backyard mini-Wipeout obstacles Conley had created to land a spot on a show.

"I was on Wipeout Canada," Conley said. "That was an awesome experience. That was the total initial reason for the first video. We always try to find cool things to do outside in the summer."

His children were only 11, 5 and 3 at the time the first video was shot, and now, two years later, they've become viral sensations with the video recently surpassing 10 million views on YouTube.

"We made it to impress the producers, and then it took off virally," Conley said. "I just thought, 'If this got so many views, imagine if I designed an actual course?'"

The setup process took about three and half hours to construct. "I'm like the least handy person in the whole world, so it was about two months in advance to make sure everything was built and we had all the materials," he said.

And it was materials galore, indeed. If you're feeling spontaneous enough to try this at home, the list includes 12 air mattresses, 14 inflatable loungers, one circular pool (8-foot-by-8-foot), six inflatable pools (10-foot-by-6-foot), eight pool noodles, 6,000 gallons of water, 1,200 square feet of banner vinyl, eight boxing gloves, six rock-wall holds, 112 feet of lumber, 16 bales of straw, eight buckets, 298 wood screws, four big red exercise balls, one slip and slide, 12 cans of spray paint, one 12-foot cardboard tube, one overhead sign, 12 logo decals, six pounds of mud, three Contour Roam video cameras, 12 volunteers, and, last but most importantly, 25 amazing kids.

Conley wouldn't reveal how much the project cost him, but made sure to note, "Let's just say the costs far exceeded my initial $300 budget, but it was worth every penny."

And from the look on their faces, the kids would seem to agree. When Conley's children first opened the door the morning of the big reveal, he said, "They screamed. They were so excited. Our youngest ran straight into the house to put on his bathing suit. He wanted to be the first to run through it."

Naturally, that was music to Conley's ears. But not just because he was proud of his elaborate set up. It was more because he's always looking for ways to keep his children active and playing outdoors.

"We're a pretty active family," he said. "The requests we get from our kids are daily, hourly to play video games, watch TV and be on the computer. While we try to keep it as educational as possible, we try to keep them active."

"A lot of it comes down to being creative, trying to compete with the video games out there. Appreciate your kids' imagination and keep them active. Find ways they can be creative outside without even realizing they're working out. For me, it's just about enjoying your children and having them enjoy their childhood and being involved and engaged. That's really what it's all about."


Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Niagara Gorge Death As Cop Chased Teen for Probation Violation

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NIAGARA FALLS, Ontario) -- A teenager who plummeted to his death at Niagara Gorge was fleeing a police officer over a probation violation, according to an official at the group home where the teen lived.

Ryan Dube, 18, and a friend left the Nightlight Youth Services home late Tuesday afternoon on foot, said JoAnne Turner, executive director of the Boys & Girls Club of Niagara.

The teen was stopped by a police cruiser while walking down the street, she said.

"He was approached because he was on probation. It is our understanding he had some breaches and they were going to take him into the police station," she said.

Dube briefly spoke with the officer before he "bolted left," prompting the officer to run after him, Turner said.

The chase wove down to River Road, where a waist-high stone wall protects onlookers from the drop off to the gorge, according to the Special Investigations Unit in Ontario, which is probing the incident.

Turner said witnesses did not report a physical altercation between Dube and the unidentified police officer.

"He was attempting to elude the officer and in that effort he just jumped over the short wall, likely thinking there was going to be ground under his feet. The officer just followed behind," she said.

Dube was pronounced dead after his fall, while the officer suffered a broken femur and was airlifted to Hamilton General Hospital.

Dube had lived at Nightlight on and off since 2011, where he was described as "well-liked, good natured and respectful."

"He did have his issues such as making our 11 p.m. curfew, but he was moving forward and trying to seek employment and move into independent living," Turner said.

Dube did not list his parents as his emergency contacts, she said. It was unclear if they had been notified.

An autopsy is being performed Wednesday on the teen's body.

The Special Investigations Unit declined to go into specifics about the incident during its investigation.

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Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Parts of Air Canada Jet Engine Fall on Ontario Neighborhood

Norm Betts/Bloomberg News(TORONTO) -- An Air Canada jet flying from Toronto to Narita, Japan, was forced to turn around shortly after takeoff and make an emergency landing Monday afternoon after one of its two engines suddenly shut down, and pieces of the plane fell on a suburban neighborhood below.

Flight 001, a Boeing 777 with 318 passengers and 16 crew members on board, took off from Toronto’s Pearson International Airport at 2:10 p.m.

Air Canada spokesman Peter Fitzgerald told ABC News that shortly after take-off, the engine shut down and it appeared that pieces of the engine fell off the plane, crashing into neighboring suburbs.

Fitzgerald could not confirm what exactly fell from the plane, but told ABC News that ”the engine did not fall off.  It broke.”

The metal parts smashed through windshields of parked cars in Mississauga, Ontario, leaving their owners stunned.  Peel Regional Police reportedly received calls of minor property damage, but no injuries were reported.

According to passengers, the captain declared an emergency in the air.  With just one of two engines still running, the jet returned and landed safety at Pearson International Airport shortly before 4 p.m.

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Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Unidentified Man Survives Niagara Falls Plunge

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NIAGRA FALLS, Ontario) -- A man who climbed over a retaining wall and leaped into the Horseshoe Falls in Ontario, Canada, earlier Monday is at an area hospital with life-threatening injuries, according to news reports.

Witnesses -- many of  whom were out celebrating Victoria Day, a Canadian holiday -- told the Niagara Parks Police Service that they saw the man, believed to be in his 40s, climb high above the Canadian side of the falls and jump.

He later appeared in the lower Niagara River basin near the Journey Behind the Falls observation deck.

“He went over the falls and survived,” parks police Sgt. Chris Gallagher told the Niagara Falls Review. “He did this of his own accord.”

The man reportedly was found by park police before he collapsed. He was lifted out of the falls by a crane and then taken to a Hamilton-area hospital with life-threatening injuries.

The Niagara Falls Review said the unidentified man’s leap was the fourth time a person had survived a jump over the falls without a barrel.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio