Tugboat Theodore Too, the star of CBC’s iconic children’s television show, Theodore Tugboat, is set to make an appearance in Windsor, Amherstburg and Kingsville starting Labour Day Weekend between September 4 and 9.
The Theodore Tugboat website explains the origins of the famous tug; “It started with a bedtime story that Andrew Cochran, the creator of Theodore Tugboat, told his son. A story about the boats in the big harbour and how they interacted with everyone. Later, these bedtime stories became the inspiration and basis for the original television series, Theodore Tugboat.” The show ran for five seasons in the 1990’s.
Cochran, who lived in Nova Scotia, would also tell his son stories while they walked around Halifax Harbour, often personifying the tugboats and ships as if they were alive, so it was easier to explain what the vessels were doing to a child.
On the show, Big Harbour is based on Halifax Harbour. Theodore Tugboat is a kind and helpful, yet cheeky, and fussy tugboat and wears a signature red baseball cap. Theodore with his tugboat friends solve problems and conflicts that arise in the harbour and among each other. The show is a great way to teach children life lessons especially when it comes to being kind to one another, helping each other and resolving problems.
Beloved Theodore Tugboat became so popular that a life-size 65-foot tugboat working replica of the original TV character was built at Snyder’s Shipyard in Dayspring, Nova Scotia. Named Theodore TOO, the tug was launched on April 19, 2000, and officially certified on May 5, 2000. After spending two decades in Halifax and touring the eastern seaboard, mainly promoting Maritime Tourism, the tug was sold to new owners earlier this year and is now based in the Port of Hamilton on Lake Ontario.
Theodore TOO is on a tour of the Great Lakes this summer making stops at various cities and towns along the way. The tug and crew are on a mission to spread awareness and advocate for the marine industry and responsible water conservation and restoration strategies for our Great Lakes. The Great Lakes make up over 20% of the world’s fresh water.
In a press release the tugboat’s new owner, Blair McKeil, President and CEO, Breakwater Investments, announced a collaboration with one of the nation’s leading water education and conservation advocates, Swim Drink Fish. The collaboration will see Theodore TOO play a larger role in promoting several of the organization’s initiatives including its Great Lakes Guide.
“We must ensure access to clean water and promote employment in one of our nation’s most vital and skill-intensive sectors,” says McKeil. “We’re incredibly honoured to join Swim Drink Fish and lend support to its work with Indigenous leaders and sustainability thought leaders in their mission-critical work rallying Canadians around a clean water strategy built on the conservation, restoration and protection of our waterways and Great Lakes. Tug Boats have a big job on the water and Theodore TOO has an even bigger mandate now. We’re incredibly excited about the role he’ll play in promoting sustainability.”
“As guardians and stewards of 20 percent of the world’s fresh water, we have an enormous accountability to ensure it is swimmable, drinkable and fishable,” Mark Mattson, President, Swim Drink Fish. “Building connections with the water is a critical step in engaging us all as their guardians. Theodore loves the water as much as we do. He’s the perfect ambassador for our Great Lakes Guide which is focused on helping Canadians of all ages and backgrounds from urban cities to rural communities to get to the water’s edge. This collaboration is great news as we look to the 50th Anniversary of the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement and efforts to strengthen our environmental stewardship, while exciting young Canadians about opportunities the sector and the blue economy, grounded in sustainable oceans, will usher in.”
The public will enjoy talking with the crew about diverse and inclusive marine industry employment opportunities, and preserving and restoring clean, swimmable, drinkable and fishable water.
Theodore TOO recently stopped in Windsor at Lakeview Park Marina on Aug. 24 to fuel up before heading out to Mooretown and Sarnia as part of his Great Lakes Tour. The tug is circling back this way and is scheduled to make the following stops in Windsor Essex starting Labour Day Weekend:
Sept 4 to 6: Windsor, Dieppe Gardens
Sept 6 to 7: Amherstburg, Navy Yard Park
Sept 8: Kingsville, Kingsville Harbour
For more information follow Theodore Too on social media and at https://theodoretugboat.ca