“They were afraid of my dog paddle; I wasn’t very elegant,” said Canadian funny man Rick Mercer of the salmon he swam with in the Campbell River earlier this week.
The Rick Mercer Report crew filmed Mercer as he did the Destiny River Adventures’ raft and snorkel with the salmon tour on the Campbell River this past Tuesday.
The show, which airs on CBC, features political comedy as well as zany adventures all over the country.
Mercer said he plans to come back to Campbell River as he thoroughly enjoyed the trip.
“It was a great day at the office,” said Mercer. “Myself, and my camera man, and the director, we were just pinching ourselves we were so lucky to be there.”
All along the river people were waiting to catch a glimpse of the Canadian icon, and had posted signs reading things like “Welcome Rick,” and “We love you Rick.”
And although the famous Newfie said Campbell River and Newfoundland compare like “chalk and cheese” because they are so different, the small town vibes and friendliness were similar, and welcome.
“Everyone was sitting out on the dock as we floated down inviting me over for a beer – like if I’d stopped for a beer at every dock where they’d invited me over to have a beer, I wouldn’t be standing,” said Mercer. “They were certainly as friendly as Newfoundlanders and so that was tremendous.”
Destiny River Adventures owner Jim DeHart got to spend the six hours it took for filming in the company of the famous comedian, and said Mercer is even better in person than on the show.
“Funnier. Oh yeah, there was a lot of stuff going on that you can’t put on T.V.,” said DeHart with a smile.
BIA secretary/event co-ordinator Jan Tees, who had come up with the idea to invite Mercer to Campbell River, said she hopes Mercer will come back to try out some other activities, including taking a chain saw carving lesson. Mercer’s visit has inspired Tees to invite other celebrities to town.
“My daughter asked me, ‘now who are you going to invite to Campbell River next?’” said Tees.
The Rick Mercer Report returns on Tues. Sept. 13 at 8 p.m. on CBC. Visit www.rickmercer.com for updates on when the snorkeling adventure segment will air.