Needles on the floor, emergency calls and mass brawls involving raccoons! It’s closing time at the world’s worst McDonald’s where a litany of late-night fights have sparked more than 800 calls to cops in one year alone
- Hundreds gathered in Ottowa to mark the closure of the legendary Rideau McDonald’s, which opened in 1985
- It became widely recognized after a viral brawl in 2013 involving a raccoon
- READ MORE: Iconic McDonald’s with one of the last remaining single-arch designs from the 1960s announces it is closing
Hundreds gathered in Canada’s capital last weekend to both celebrate and mourn the closure of one of the most notorious McDonald’s in the world.
The Rideau McDonald’s Farewell March brought people from across Ottawa together to commemorate the end of an era.
It is notorious for hosting a litany of late-night fights between drunkards frequenting the nearby bars, and police have complained that thousands of incidents have been reported at the location.
In 2013, it gained global recognition after a viral video captured the moment a mass brawl broke out during which a man pulled out a raccoon from underneath his shirt.
Constant fights and unruly guests triggered more than 800 calls to police in 2018 alone, leading the outlet to drop its 24-hour schedule, but Ottawa police reported that they still received more than 150 calls last year.
Hundreds gathered in Canada’s capital to both celebrate and mourn the closure of perhaps the most notorious McDonald’s in the world
The Rideau McDonald’s in Ottawa is notorious for hosting a litany of late night fights between drunkards frequenting the nearby bars
‘Other than Parliament Hill, I would say it’s our largest landmark,’ Keith de Silvia-Legault, a University of Ottawa student who organized the march, told CTV. ‘Every good story deserves a good ending.’
Ottawans that attended the march were sporting different costumes – some dressed as Ronald McDonald – and waving signs reading ‘Farwell, Adieu’.
One included Ian Reid, who said: ‘We’re gathering here today not to protest it closing but to remember all the good memories and raise money for a great cause.’
The parade was raising money for local charities, Operation Come Home and Voice Found, which help homeless and vulnerable youth, as well as survivors of human trafficking and child sexual abuse.
Reid was dressed as a raccoon and held a framed portrait of a raccoon. ‘He was involved in a brawl here many years ago,’ he told CTV.
But not everyone was sad to see the McDonald’s go.
‘The past three, four years of COVID, it’s just turned it into complete trash,’ Ottawa resident Hayley Gleiser told CBC.
‘I was here about a week and a half ago,’ said Jack Graham. ‘And I just felt I was slipping, so I looked [at my shoe] and there’s a needle.’
In the viral video a man could be seen taking a raccoon out from his jacket during a brawl in the restaurant
Keith de Silvia-Legault, a University of Ottawa student who organized the march, told CTV: ‘Other than Parliament Hill, I would say it’s our largest landmark’
The restaurant has also become a safe place for people to seek refuge in cold Ottawa weather.
Mike Evraire has often relied on McDonald’s for cheap meals between those he receives from the city’s emergency shelters. ‘It’s devastating to some people,’ he said.
Peter Crosthwaite, who owns the building on Rideau Street, told CTV that the franchise owner decided not to renew the lease.
‘They’ve been a great tenant. People don’t appreciate how good of a community member McDonald’s has been,’ said Crosthwaite.
‘They’re going to be missed by the market, especially for people looking for an affordable bite to eat,’ he added.
The video that put Rideau Street McDonald’s on the map starts with a group of men brawling inside the restaurant, surrounded by other customers.
They trade vicious blows with each other, and as more join the fight, one man is seen pulling out a raccoon and appears to brandish the animal as a weapon.
He can be seen holding the raccoon as he shoves two others who are fighting beside him.
The group was raising money for local charities that help homeless and vulnerable youth, as well as survivors of human trafficking and child sexual abuse
The owner of the building on Rideau Street said that the franchise’s owner had decided not to renew the lease
That was not an isolated event. Video from 2018 shows a group of three men beating each other with ‘Wet Floor’ signs during a 1am fight.
The video, dubbed ‘Legendary Rideau McDonalds,’ shows the men violently slinging the signs at each other as customers yell at them to stop while some cheer them on.
The men also trade punches and kicks, before one of them picks a sign back up and smacks another on the head then walks away.
That fight was one of more than 800 that year that ultimately triggered then-Ottawa Police Chief Charles Bordeleau to send a letter to Canada’s McDonald’s leadership about the ‘ongoing criminal activity and social disorder.’
Another incident, from 2016, involved a man cursing at staff who were yelling at him to get out. He took off his shirt and warned the employees not to touch him.
A recorded incident from 2016 showed a woman screaming for her bag as a group of staffers tried to direct her out of the restaurant
A 2018 fight featured a group of men beating each other with wet floor signs
Another video from that year shows a woman who appears disorientated yelling at staffers for her bag as they try to keep her away.
Despite the fights and unruly customers, Crosthwaite suggested earlier in the year that the decision to close was a result of dipping revenue and not because of the regular chaos.
‘The city tore up Rideau Street and put the subway in. Then they re-tore it to enhance it, put curbing in,’ Crosthwaite told CTW.
‘The freedom rallies and we had COVID, all these things are upheavals that can’t make it easy for a steady, reliable operation.’
McDonald’s Canada did not immediately respond to DailyMail.com’s request for comment.
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