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Podcast for the local fix

Tired of the radio but still want local content? St. Albert's Rob LeLacheur started up a new podcast last year that is all about the interesting people of metro Edmonton. Dial up for your new local fix.

Home entertainment is the new boom economy and the rising popularity of podcasts surges upward daily.

One new local content source with a distinctly capital view of things joined the field slightly more than a year ago. If not the name then at least both the face and the voice behind are likely familiar to many members of the public, too. Rob LeLacheur was the publisher of Saint City News and the producer of EekFest, but that’s really just scratching the surface of his CV. The intrepid entrepreneur has worked in a range of different business sectors and now focuses primarily on Road 55, his content creation business.

“I'm a big believer in content marketing, that is ‘look at this’ rather than ‘look at me’,” he said, touting the audio podcast series with short video clips – trailers, if you will – that he uses to promote widely. “It gives me something to to push out on all the various channels: look at this. It's not a lot to do about me or my business but I'm always there.”

Generally speaking, one would call LeLacheur a man about town: the kind of guy who knows a lot of interesting people across a broad cross-section of the regional world. Look for interview subjects from the sports community, media, business, the arts and beyond, each of them with their own interesting stories and memories to share. It’s society and culture all under one banner branded with those three letters that started as the airport code for the Edmonton International Airport but have come to being used in reference to anything associated with the city and the capital region, especially with trendy connotations.

Since slightly more than a year ago, LeLacheur has hosted nearly 30 interviewees on the series, including such notable and diverse guests as Edmonton media encyclopedia Mack Male, Italian Centre president Teresa Spinelli, Dogs with Wings executive director Doreen Slessor, Sandra Marocco (vice president of Industry Partnerships and Chief Marketing Officer at NAIT), Bear DJ Pam Kirby, and even his dear old dad Rick LeLacheur, who many might remember as the former CEO of Economic Development Edmonton and ex-president of the Edmonton Eskimos (now the pres of the BC Lions).

His very first podcast interview featured Jacqueline Ohm, the director of Creative Mornings Edmonton, which was quickly followed up by Alex Archbold, owner of antique treasure store Curiosity Inc. and who LeLacheur described as Edmonton’s own Indiana Jones.

“I wanted to make sure that each one had a little bit different feel yet with the common thread of talking about the Edmonton region: of growing up in the region and some memories they have. We share some fun stories. We talk about some fun places that they love to eat and some small businesses that they wish more people knew about. It's interesting on that front,” he explained.

“There's that common connecting thread of ‘we're all in the Edmonton region together and everyone can better relate to the things that they're talking about.”

All of the episodes are recorded and filmed in the Werkstatt Studio in downtown Edmonton. The host said the series also does much to satisfy his own craving for interesting podcasts. He did a “hard switch” from being a radio listener to looking and listening beyond the traditional dial for new things to occupy his attention.

“I just started listening to them in my vehicle. I just really enjoyed it. I definitely became quite the consumer myself of podcasts and my company Road 55 ... we're in the business of creating content. This was an area that I wanted to explore more. I wanted to get an understanding beyond consuming it: how can we create this,” he continued.

“For me and my business, I wanted to get an understanding of the technical side of it: ‘Okay, what does it take to produce a podcast from recording and the deployment I’ll say in its most minimal state.' We're in the production business and we can add all kinds of production to it but I wanted to know what the baseline was.”

To listen to podcasts, you can start by visiting its website at or find them on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and Google.

Scott Hayes

About the Author: Scott Hayes

Scott Hayes joined the St. Albert Gazette in 2008. Scott writes about the arts, entertainment, movies, culture, community groups, and charities. He also writes general news, features, columns and profiles on people.
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