The Star published a story with curious interviews with several notable residents of Stratford, hometown of Justin Bieber in Canada. From the director of the NGO where Justin performed sports activities to the restaurant owner that liked to hang out, defended and told many interesting facts about the most famous Canadian in the world of music and certainly one of the most famous in history.
An guitar is autographed framed in glass, next to a poster of the movie, “Justin Bieber, Never Say Never“ , at the tourist office in town.
Every summer teenagers gather for Long & McQuade across the street and begin to be moved by the sight of the former teen pop star’s guitar out of reach on a shelf above the door.
Shirts in store windows along Main Street, St Ontario . estampam, “‘Why Bieber’ or ‘Not the Bieber’,” a reaction to the Shakespeare festival which was the main attraction and fame of the city, until Bieber appeared.
Bieber’s hometown of Stratford, Ontario, has basked in the glow of his prodigy, who jumped out of a hopeful teenager who did covers and Post on YouTube for one of the biggest names in the music world.
But the headlines about her adoring fans, his musical achievements, his work with the charity, your premiums have declined in recent times.
Instead, the notoriety.
Last month, there was a police raid in response to complaints of an ‘attack eggs‘ to a neighbor’s house; been arrested in Miami for allegedly driving under the influence and making ‘handle’, not to mention the assault charge in Toronto for allegedly hitting a limo driver.
Currently, the headlines scream about the controversies and fall of a teen superstar.But, in Stratford, it is not simply a common theme of showbiz.
The people there are tired and distrustful with the media attention and the damage this causes to Bieber, his family and his friends.
“What is your view?” Someone says, when asked about Bieber.
“This is a sensational story? If I’m not interested,” says another.
“I think it involves a bit of tiredness, together with the continuous news cycle that arise about it,” says Mayor Dan Mathieson .
There is a big concern here, from those who knew the boy before he became Bieber and those he is still just Justin. Justin And he is, after all, he is still just a kid.
He’s that kid who used to stir the YMCA on Downie St., with a broken skateboard in hand, looking for a screwdriver to fix it.
The boy who took his laptop to the cafeteria yelling at Northwestern Secondary School to show their online musical success and saying: “! Hey I have 500 hits!”
That boy, “somewhat imbecile”, restless in the restaurant Madelyn’s Diner with his mother or grandparents, going camping with the granddaughter of the owner.
He’s that kid who sang songs on the steps of the Avon Theatre for tourists coming to the city of 30,000 inhabitants in the summer and one who sang “his little heart out” on the karaoke machine in the youth center until he had to be placed out at 9:00 when closed.
“And he is still a child. Remember it,” says Mimi Price , executive director of theStratford-Perth Family YMCA .
“Justin grew up in the YMCA” says Price, “sports practiced here, was part of the youth center in the street. In 2010, he returned with a camera crew to film some scenes for his movie,” Never Say Never “released the following year. “
She has a tattered poster with photos of a young Justin singing karaoke. An autograph engraved on it has been touched by many young fans. “They often cry when I show the shirt autographed by him YMCA, yes, that Justin used here in this photo on our bulletin board.”
“We are 100 percent beside him,” says Price. “He’s one of ours, he is one of our children and we take care of our own.”
Price remembers having talked with the producers of the film concern with him, being there, being the center of attention, without even a band that comes with it, such as N’Sync or the Beatles - who shared the weight of fame.
The producer told her, “Do not worry, have good people watching the Justin” .
“After they left, I thought, ‘Yes, and everyone is looking for a paycheck,’” says Price.“Every community is concerned.’s concern and anger at the same time, it is a complicated set of emotions we are feeling, because … we want to make sure he is okay and how do we do this? “
Ritsma Martin , director of the old school Justin, Northwestern Secondary , says Justin was an average student who loved sports and music. Now a trio of photos of Justin is framed in the office.
“I think anyone at the time thought, ‘Oh my God, this kid is a musician,” he says.“Here’s a guy that most people saw little potential, but he had to leave and did anything when given the opportunity, he went out and conquered the world. “
A sign on the wall above Ritsma says, ‘Everything is possible’ under the name of Justin.
“Justin had his slips and falls,” says Ritsma. “Like most teenagers. But the issue is that most are not noticed by the world. “
“I see young men and women who make mistakes every day,” says Ritsma.“Obviously Justin is different, because it is already in the spotlight (International), he does go out in international news.”
But the school of about 1,150 students in northern city, Justin is seen as an example of overcoming, who traced their dreams, in the spirit of the motto Ritsma in overcoming barriers.
“We would be fools if we did not say, ‘Wow, look what one of the boys or girls who walked this corridor reached.’”
In Features Restaurant , a small restaurant on Ontario St. that is listed on a map of the Stratford Tourism as the favorite Justin for lunch, Jeff Clayton has already answered the questions of reporters from as far away as China.
Clayton was a companion of the mother of Justin room. It is a known 19 year old kid and I used to babysit him.
“He was always a kid who was causing a bit of turmoil” , says Clayton, adding that if he had a Lamborghini yellow, he would drive very fast too. “But he’s a good kid, though.”
“And the antics are not so different than what most young people in Stratford are in their teen years,” says Clayton.
“They’re just kids being kids” , he says. “He has to learn, as everyone else did.”
Some downtown stores Treasures such as Jackie Catania, created some T-shirts “To Bieber (Bieber On) or Not to Bieber (not the Bieber)” .
Stratford has been a tourist town that attracts a crowd of mostly older people to their world-renowned theater, which had Christopher Walken and Christopher Plummer onstage.
“Justin brought a younger dynamic” , says Catania. “We have supporters (For Bieber)” , she says. “Some people are ‘not the Bieber’ and some people are neutral.”
Across the Avon River there is a small hill with Madelyn’s Diner, which is decorated with children’s drawings on the walls, turquoise details and a busy grill where chefs prepare dishes from burgers Tear Jerker, breakfast Hearty Delight and Chicken Humungous.
The Madelyn’s Diner has been here for 29 years, until 2011 operated by Madelyn Carty.His daughter, Krista Moore , who is now commanding. Both women already know Justin and his family for years, when he came with her mother or grandparents when.
Moore sighs when sitting in a booth. She’s getting a lot of calls about Justin these days.Dinner is listed as “Bieber-iffic” map from the tourist center of Stratford.
“He is a real person to us,” says Moore. “When I see all this, I just think, ‘What did they do with him?”
She mentions a recent publication on Facebook by the father of one of Justin’s childhood friends. It was Kayla Baker , a 15-year-old, who spent the last days of life in a Toronto hospital just after Christmas last year. Justin was vacationing in Stratford and went to visit her. Kayla’s mother described the Waterloo Region Record as “very sweet”. Kayla died a few days later.
“That’s the part that people forget – he does a lot of good things, too,” says Moore.“He’s just a kid with too much money, too fast.”
Moore has just got off the phone with her mother.
“Your big problem is that he will die if someone can not talk to him and help him in any way, because he is just in a bad way. No amount of money is worth that.”
When she was asked what advice would you give to Justin, he was looking for some, she said, “Just for him to come home,” says Moore. Then she looks to the side and squeezes her cheeks. “I do not know why every time I say that, I feel like I’m gonna cry.”