Our Town Oshawa
What is Our Town and how did it begin?
In the fall of 2003, WNED was looking for an idea. The station wanted to more directly involve the public it serves throughout its large coverage area in Southern Ontario and Western New York. By adopting the concept of "day-in-the-life" picture books, which profile the people, places, and happenings of a specific town or area, an idea formed. Instead of using still pictures, video would become the medium. And instead of printed captions, the people who did the videotaping would become narrators.

With a documentary series in mind, WNED looked to the people of the featured communities to determine the content of each show. A town's people know what makes it tick; they know what makes it special. They experience their town as a home, all times of the day and all days of the year. It would be through their camera lenses that the WNED viewer could gain a sense of the place's character and culture.

Beginning in the town of Jamestown, New York, WNED turned the role of program producers over to the people, who volunteered their time and talent. We asked them to showcase their town in the ways they saw best fit. With the freedom of a video camera and plenty of enthusiasm, they were on their way. Roaming the streets, ducking into cafés, and listening to the high school band, viewers are treated to the many personalities, perspectives, and possibilities the town has to offer. Attending events and celebrations, the town's stories and secrets are unlocked before the viewer's eyes.

WNED has completed 18 programs including Niagara-on-the-Lake, Welland, Oakville, Niagara Falls, Kitchener-Waterloo, Markham, Brantford, Burlington and St. Catharines in Ontario and Jamestown, Lockport, East Aurora, Ellicottville, Kenmore/Tonawanda, Amherst, Dunkirk-Fredonia, Orchard Park and Clarence in New York.

WNED is happy to say that we've achieved our goal of involving the public in the station while experiencing community life through the camera lenses of its residents. As a wonderful bonus, we have made many new friends.

Production for the next program in this series, Our Town Oshawa is underway!
Situated in the Lake Ontario shoreline, approximately 60 kilometers east of Downtown Toronto, Oshawa is the largest municipality in Durham Region with a population of approximately 159, 000 residents. While many people around the region know Oshawa for its prominence in the automotive industry, it’s also transforming itself as an education and health sciences hub for Ontario. But for the people who live there, the cultural treasures and the quality of life are what make them proud to call Oshawa home. From the historic Parkwood Estate to the University of Ontario Institute of Technology, Oshawa offers some of the best kept secrets in the region. This program creates a special opportunity to bolster community pride, increase tourism, and help community members throughout the region to better understand their neighbors.

Using their own video cameras, community videographers tackle the question, "What is special about our community?" under the leadership of WNED professionals. The result is a unique picture of the heart and soul of a community. After community volunteers have completed capturing their video, the footage is brought back to WNED studios to be edited into the one-hour production that will be broadcast on WNED-TV in October 2019 to more than 1.3 million homes across Southern Ontario and Western New York.
Our Town Oshawa | Production Underway!
A one-hour video scrapbook of the people, places and happenings of Oshawa, Ontario as seen through the eyes of their residents.

20-25 area residents with their personal cameras. There are no restriction as to age or experience and no cost to participate; just a willingness to be part of the project.

Recruitment of volunteers will began in mid-April. The training sessions, shooting period and interviews will take place in June. The program will be broadcast in October 2019 on WNED-TV. A special premiere screening will be held in Oshawa in September or early October prior to the broadcast.

Volunteers to signed up for the production earlier this spring. Our call for volunteers drew an overwhelming response. In less than two-weeks we reached our maximum capacity and stated a waiting list!

In early June they attended pre-production organizational meetings and to brainstormed a list of subjects. They came up with about 100 different ideas and then voted on which topics should be featured in the final program. At the end of the meeting, volunteers each choose one of those topics and will spend the next two weeks capturing video of their topic. WNED-TV will return to Oshawa June 21st and 22nd to conduct interviews with each of the volunteers.

For more information email ourtown@wned.org.
Major funding for Our Town Oshawa comes from UNIFOR, with additional support from the City of Oshawa, Ontario Power Generation, the Regional Municipality of Durham,
and contributing sponsors Ontario Tech University and Trent University.
City of Oshawa
Ontario Power Generation
Durham Region
Ontario Tech University
Trent University