Quidi Vidi, St. John’s

Quidi Vidi was known for once being a historic fishing village. It was active after World War II for the construction of Pepperrell Air Force Base. Field work near Quidi Vidi Lake began on October 15, 1940. During April and May, 1941 the Newfoundland Base Contractors’ personnel began arriving, and construction was taken over by their organization.

The neighbourhood is named for both Quidi Vidi Lake (where the Royal St. John’s Regatta is held the first Wednesday in August, weather permitting) and Quidi Vidi Harbour – known locally as “The Gut”. Located in Quidi Vidi is the Quidi Vidi Battery Provincial Historic Site, which had significance as a battery during the War of 1812. The village is also home to Newfoundland’s largest microbrewery, the Quidi Vidi Brewing Company. It has many different types of plants and animals. There are numerous scenic places to visit.

In 1930, Varick Frissell filmed most of The Viking (named for a sealing ship) in Quidi Vidi. For realistic footage, Frissell then took his crew to the Grand Banks and Labrador to collect exciting action sequences. The film debuted at the Nickel Theatre at St. John’s on March 5, 1931, where Frissell decided that his movie needed more real scenes from the Labrador ice floes. Within days, Frissell with his crew had joined the SS Viking for its annual seal hunt. The ship got trapped in ice near the Horse Islands. On March 15, Frissell and 26 others were killed when an explosion on the Viking set off a fire and the ship sank.[1] Some of the survivors made the over-ice trek to the Horse Islands, while some were rescued by other vessels dispatched to the area.

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