The infamous Rideau Street McDonald’s in Ottawa will be closing its doors in the coming months, but its impact on Ottawans and tourists has not gone unnoticed with numerous tributes to the storied restaurant being posted online every day.
From recurring fights to the omnipresence of raccoons inside or outside of the restaurant, this specific McDonald’s never ran short on stories. Vice once reported locals called it the “worst McDonald’s in Canada.”
One moment that keeps making its way across social media is that time a fight broke out in the McDonald’s and a bystander pulled a raccoon from his jacket and showed it off to the people gathered around the brawl.
On Instagram, popular historical account canada.gov.ca—not affiliated with the Canadian government— posted a lengthy tribute to that McDonald’s location, retelling stories of countless police showing up to break up fights.
“The Rideau Street McDonald’s used to be open 24 hours/day, up until 2018. That year, the management and the police decided to have a meeting,” the tribute wrote. “The police noted that they were called to the location over 800 times that year lol. For those keeping track, that averages out to about 2.2 times/per day. So management were like hmmm yes we are calling you a lot, aren’t we. They reduced the hours to 6 am – 10 pm. In 2022, the cops were only called 150 times! Truly an improvement.”
On a longstanding Reddit thread, users flocked to the page to express their sadness.
“My first memory of you is when I was eight: my scoutmaster purchased ice cream for us there,” user CloneasaurusRex wrote. “We witnessed a man tornado kick another in the face when we were right outside. When my scoutmaster yelled at them to quit it, their buddy told us “Don’t get involved, it’s family”. Eight year old me was shocked, but reflecting back on it now, all I can think is ‘nah, that checks out’”
In that same Reddit thread, one user posted an older thread from 2019 where an ex-manager held an AMA session.
“In your time there as manager what was the most WTF thing to happen?” the top comment asked.
“We often lock the bathrooms at night – you would be ‘surprised’ to learn that people use them to do shady stuff. One night, not dissuaded by the locked doors, this guy and girl went the ‘dirty-divot’ (the nook right in front of the washrooms),” user 99RideauManager replied. “Via the security camera, we noticed some unusual behaviour (think, she had bent over to pick up a coin, but was taking way too long, and the gentleman behind her was trying to push her over with his pelvis). At that moment, some random tried to enter the locked bathroom. After no success at opening the door, and completely ignoring the friendly couple, started to poop right on the floor right next to them. At no point did either party acknowledge the other. All three finished at about the same time, and went their separate ways.”
The threads both recount several insane moments at that location and, despite the near-infinite stories of disaster, people still seem to be sad that the location is closing for good.