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PROFILE: Daniel Carman, Over the Rainbow

Over the Rainbow is a staple of Yorkville history. It started in 1975, and even when you go back to the About section of your homepage, there’s a vintage photo of the shop then. What’s your take on the growth and change of this neighbourhood?

The area has evolved a lot from this boho, hippie, music-driven area—which was mainly visited by teenagers and young people—to this house of luxury. We’ve evolved with that, but we’ve managed to stay a little more grounded because we were one of the original Yorkville businesses. We don’t want to evolve TOO much whereby we become completely consumed by this luxurious lifestyle. At the same time, we’ve seen what the area has become, so we need to adapt in our own way without sacrificing who we are.

I believe evolution means we get better. Otherwise, it’s not really evolution; it’s just change. It’s important we maintain our roots to show people we come from somewhere. I respect that. Though I wasn’t there—I wasn’t born yet—I understand what those ideals are, and I try to maintain them as best as I can in an ever-changing environment.

 

What are the origins of the name Over the Rainbow? 

I think it was just the era. It was the 70s. I knew Joel, the founder, really liked the song. It was a catchy name. Obviously, the colours of the rainbow. We give Jujubes to people in the store because they’re all different colours. It was a way to attract people into the store—by having this vibrant, colourful name. Over the years, it became this household name based on the experiences that people had while shopping there.

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