The first season of Wind at my Back had some challenging locations to find and one of the most difficult was the tennis court in “Moonshine Struck”.
In the episode Moonshine struck, Honey (Cynthia Belliveau) is wooed by arrogant police constable Percy Ardley (Karl Pruner), which sparks a rivalry with Max Sutton (James Carroll) that spills onto the tennis court. Initially, I thought finding a tennis court would be a snap but that wasn’t the case.
Although there are many tennis courts around, very few are in a location suitable to mimic Northern Ontario during the 1930’s. I needed a tennis court that had a rustic feel to it that wasn’t surrounded by modern buildings and manicured lawns and gardens. I also needed one that was within reasonable driving distance from the towns of Orono and Bowmanville where we were already scheduled to film other scenes.
My first thought was to look for a private tennis court, so I started driving up and down streets and side roads searching. I found a few but none of them really fit the bill and time was growing very short. Just when I thought we were going to have to somehow build our own tennis court, I pulled into a campground not far from Orono and my search was over. Virtually right inside the main entrance, the first thing I saw was a perfectly dilapidated tennis court complete with chicken wire fence and tattered net.
I took lots of photos and showed them to the Director and Production Designer who were both ecstatic. The tennis court was absolutely perfect just the way it was and required very little modification from the construction and set dressing departments. Basically, what you see on the show is exactly what I saw when I first stumbled across it. That doesn’t happen very often, but it sure is nice when it does.