Edmonton radio host Rob Christie gets...
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Feb
21
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Edmonton radio host Rob Christie gets in the hot seat for charity
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A record player and a tape recorder sat beside each other in Rob Christie’s basement in a farmhouse near Montreal.

It was in the mid-1960s when Rob, then a teenager, played records and talked about them.

“It was my own radio station,” Rob said. “I knew back then I wanted to get into radio.”

He paused. And then softly laughed.

“People might find this funny, but I was really shy when I was young.”

Luckily, Rob’s mother Charlotte was an influence, suggesting he call the nearest radio station to see if he could lend a hand, and, more importantly, learn.

Rob did just that. He started running errands, learning about the business, which kick started his successful radio career in 1968.

Starting in Montreal he then moving west, to Calgary, where, at the age of 23, he became one of the youngest morning men in Canada.

Rob’s personality — and great sense of humour — has made impacts in the Edmonton radio market: first with 630 CHED and then with Power 92, when his morning show earned a gold medal at the International Radio Festival in New York.

Rob left Edmonton in 1994 and made stops in Toronto and Vancouver before returning to this city in 2005 to help launch Magic 99.3.

Since 2008 he has navigated the Capital 96.3 FM morning show and still answers his weekly 3:20 a.m. alarm.

But … what would have happened if Rob’s mother wasn’t there to give him the boost — camouflaged as a challenge — to follow his dream?

That’s the main reason he said yes to the Rotary Roast of Rob Christie March 8 at the Marriott River Cree. The event is organized by the Rotary Club of Edmonton with funds going to Boys & Girls Clubs Big Brothers Big Sisters of Edmonton & Area.

“There are families with young children in Edmonton that only have on parent,” Rob said. “The work Big Brothers and Big Sisters and the Boys and Girls Club do in providing an adult figure for support and provide good morals …”

Rob has formed friendships in the Edmonton media which started decades ago and are still going strong.

Several of those friends — Sun columnists Marty Forbes and Graham Hicks, Bruce Bowie and Bryan Hall of 630 CHED, Susan Reade and Sean Burke of 840 CFCW — will be roasting Rob.

“I think the key for any roast is to have people who actually know the person they’re roasting,” said Rob.

“So, if I was worried — not that I’m am, though — of the three of my roasters it would be Marty and Bruce, because I’ve known them the longest, and you never know what stories they have.

“And Bryan. Because nobody will know what Bryan will say next.”

It will be a fun night.

But it will also celebrate friendship and humour, and how the both are so important.

Tickets are $125 each, or a table for eight for $900.

For more information visit edmontonrotary.com/SitePage/rotary-roast



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