In 1977, Pierre Trudeau was dancing to the tunes of the No. 1 album, Rumours by Fleetwood Mac, the Blue Jays thrashed Chicago in their very first game, and audiences laughed as Woody Allen chased a lobster in Annie Hall, the Academy Award winner for Best Picture.
It’s also the year the first New in Homes section appeared in the Toronto Star, right.
Nobody seems to be able to remember who the first editor was, but notable journalists Denis Greyhurst, Pat Brennan, Ellen Moorhouse and Rick Orchard helmed the section through years of change in the development — and the newspaper — world.
Back then, most new homes were detached and in the suburbs; today, condos have overtaken new home sales, both in the city and the 905 regions, according to a recent report by RealNet Canada.
So, here at the Star we’re celebrating 35 Years of New in Homes with special new features and a surprise or two. You’ll have to keep checking back here find out what they are . . . but you won’t be disappointed.
Over the next 35 weeks, in Saturday’s New in Homes section there will be profiles of Industry Innovators who have helped change the Greater Toronto Area over the past 35 years. It’s a long list, but I’m going to endeavour to boil it down to 35.
The first profile — of Hugh Heron, below at Traditions in Milton, of the Heron Group of Companies — can be found at yourhome.ca.
I’d love to have your feedback on what you think makes a great community, what you love about your home and your neighbourhood, and what a new home means to you. We will post the best online at www.yourhome.ca — and perhaps even print a few in the paper. Just send them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Oh, and in case your curious, here’s what was happening in 1977 — it’s the year I graduated high school, by the way (oops, I think I just gave away my age).
Canadian Prime Minister: Pierre E. Trudeau
U.S. President: Jimmy Carter
British Prime Minister: James Callaghan
Nobel Peace Prize awarded to Amnesty International
Road signs go metric in Canada.
Jan. 21: President Carter pardons U.S. Vietnam war draft evaders.
Feb. 10: Eaton Centre opens in Toronto.
April 7: The Toronto Blue Jays defeat the Chicago White Sox 11-5 in Toronto in the franchise’s first game.
July 22: Deng Xiaoping, purged Chinese leader, restored to power as Gang of Four is expelled from Communist Party.
Aug. 14: 24-year-old postal employee David Berkowitz is arrested and charged with being the “Son of Sam,” the serial killer who terrorized New York City for more than a year.
Aug. 16: Elvis Presley dies, age 42.
Sept. 8: Torontonian Cindy Nicholas becomes the first woman to complete a return crossing of the English Channel
Sept. 12: South African activist Steve Biko dies in police custody.
Sept. 21: Nuclear-proliferation pact, curbing spread of nuclear weapons, is signed by 15 countries, including U.S. and U.S.S.R.
The Montreal Canadiens defeat the Boston Bruins to win the Stanley Cup.
The New York Yankees defeat the Los Angeles Dodgers in the World Series.
The Oakland Raiders defeat the Minnesota Vikings in the Super Bowl.
Billboard No. 1 album: Rumours by Fleetwood Mac
Billboard No. 1 pop single: “You Light Up My Life” by Debby Boone
Annie Hall (1977) wins Academy Award for Best Picture.
Other popular movies: Star Wars, Julia, Saturday Night Fever, The Goodbye Girl, Smokey and the Bandit, A Star is Born, The Spy Who Loved Me
Roots becomes the biggest mini-series of all time.
After seven years on the air, The Mary Tyler Moore Show ends.
Other popular shows: Laverne and Shirley, Happy Days, Three’s Company, Charlie’s Angels and 60 Minutes.
Top-selling books: Oliver’s Story by Erich Segal, The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough, Silmarillion by J. R. R. Tolkein (and Christopher Tolkien)
PEOPLE BORN IN 1977
Michael Fassbender, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Liv Tyler, Orlando Bloom, Kanye West, Jarome Iginla, Shakira, Tom Brady
Compiled by Astrid Lange / Toronto Star Library
SOURCES: Canadian Encyclopedia; Infoplease; The Timetables of History; Billboard; IMDB