For more than 20 years, Wednesday night in Meaford has been “jam night” – more specifically “Jam night at Ted’s”. Drive up the old Range Road, now known as Valour Road, toward Irish Mountain, and as you crest the first of the heights, you’ll see an interesting, somewhat surreal, sight on your left. An old steel Quonset hut, spruced up with white siding and a green awning, sits in the midst of an oft-overflowing parking lot. In a small stand of trees in the middle of the lot, a chainsaw sculpture by Fran Bouwman depicts a young girl staring at the fairies inhabiting an old dead spruce. And if it’s Wednesday night, the sound of rockin’ live music spills out from the packed space inside, as the house band plays and the open mike is taken up by anyone else who wants to play.
Inside Ted’s Range Road Diner, curved, shellacked Aspenite covers the walls, the rustic environment contrasting with the incredibly wide-ranging menu arrayed on colourful chalkboards – offering everything from traditional fare to such delicacies as catfish, bison strip loin, elk chops, wild game stir-fry (elk, emu, venison, bison, musk ox, ostrich), and even alligator.
This one-of-a-kind Meaford attraction and tradition has been featured in national media – and both Ted and his diner have even made it to the “big” screen in an independent horror flick called