MUSKOKA - Rita Carrey aims to have an audience of innovators in tears, whether of laughter or sadness, at a national innovation conference in Minette on July 9.
She finds it funny that she, a radio broadcaster, is coming to Muskoka with engineers, scientists, surgeons, and nuclear physicists
Rita Carrey, Jim Carrey’s sister, and a radio broadcaster for 91.7FM in Hamilton, will be speaking at the Rosseau Muskoka for the 2012 Innovation Nation Conference and Robotics Competition, which features Canadian innovations used to help people.
She finds it funny that she, a radio broadcaster, is coming to Muskoka with engineers, scientists, surgeons, and nuclear physicists, she said.
“I’m going to blow their minds, really,” she said.
The conference on July 9-10 features student innovations from universities, colleges, and high schools across Canada as well as speeches from internationally acclaimed innovators. Speakers at the conference seek to inspire a better world with new ideas and innovative solutions.
“Our innovation was laughter,” said Carrey. “Everything they (the other speakers) do is to better man and hopefully make a better world, and laughter is the same thing,.”
Carrey grew up in Toronto and Burlington and has spent a lot of time in Muskoka hiking, backpacking, and at the resorts. She is a television and radio personality and is very involved in community work.
The Carrey’s did not grow up with a silver spoon in hand. For awhile they were homeless, living in a van by the river. Their mother suffered from depression, “yet sometimes when things were really rough she was the one who jumped up and said, ‘Hey, let’s do something about it,’” Carrey said.
“I actually am very grateful to her for it because I think it taught me a lot of patience and understanding and when the times are good to make sure you enjoy them,” she said.
Carrey is currently writing a book called Growing Up Carrey.
It’s all about growing up with sadness, said Carrey. There’s the tragedy, the sorrow, and the laughter.
“You have to have both to make good comedy, I think that’s why he’s (Jim) so funny,” she said.
Seven years ago, Carrey’s son was in an accident, allegedly killed because some trees on city property close to the road weren’t cut right, causing a truck to careen into her son’s vehicle. The accident caused a long legal battle.
“It’s been seven years since my son passed away and the road’s still the same,” she said, addressing a fundamental issue that it’s cheaper for cities to leave the roads the way they are and face any legal charges than it is to fix the roads.
Carrey will be talking about her family at the conference as well as performing some of the songs she wrote for her son.
“You’ll laugh and you’ll want to cry,” said Carrey.
Other speakers at the conference include Goldie Nejat, a robotics engineer who has done research on robotic aids that can help find victims in disaster scenarios, astronaut David Saint-Jaques, and Mickie Bhatia, a leader in human stem cell biology and applications, and Adam White, lead singer, songwriter, and composer of the Canadian rock group The Reason, among others.