Flin Flon (Manitoba riding)

Flin Flon

Flin Flon (pop. 5,594 in 2006 census) is a Canadian mining city and border city of Saskatchewan and Manitoba. The majority of the city is located within the province of Manitoba.



Flin Flon was founded in 1927 by Hudson Bay Mining and Smelting (HBM&S) to exploit the large copper and zinc ore resources in the region. In the 1920s HBM&S invested in a railway, mine, smelter, and 101 megawatt hydroelectric power plant at Island Falls, Saskatchewan. By 1928 the rail line reached the mine.

The town grew considerably during the 1930s as farmers, left impoverished by the Great Depression, abandoned their farms and came to work at the mines. The municipality was incorporated on January 1, 1933 and in 1970 the community reached city status. The city has continued to be a mining centre, with the development of several mines adding to its industrial base. With a scenic setting and a number of nearby lakes, Flin Flon has also become a moderately popular tourist destination.

Origin of the name

The town's name is taken from the lead character in a paperback novel, The Sunless City by J. E. Preston Muddock. A prospector named Tom Creighton found the book in the wilderness. The story is about a man named Josiah Flintabbatey Flonatin, who piloted a submarine through a bottomless lake. Upon passing through a hole lined with gold, he found a strange underground world.

When Tom Creighton discovered a rich vein of almost pure copper, he thought of the book and called it Flin Flon's mine, mercifully shortening the name. The town that sprung up around the mine adopted the name. Flin Flon shares with Tarzana, California, the distinction of being named after a character in a science fiction novel.

The character of "Flinty" is of such importance to the identity of the city that the local Chamber of Commerce commissioned the minting of a $3.00 coin, which was considered legal tender within the city during the year following its issue. A statue representing Flinty was designed by cartoonist Al Capp and is one of the points of interest of the city.

Marijuana production

Flin Flon gained international notoriety in 2002 when the Government of Canada awarded a four-year contract to a Saskatoon, Saskatchewan-based company for the production of medicinal marijuana. Medicinal marijuana is only available in Canada with a doctor's prescription. Canadian users of medicinal marijuana must agree to provide information to Health Canada for research purposes.

Prairie Plant Systems, based in Saskatoon, has used an inactive underground copper/zinc drift owned by the Hudson Bay Mining and Smelting Company to produce approximately 400 kilograms of medicinal marijuana annually. The entire operation is several hundred metres under Flin Flon for security and climate control reasons.

Since the original stock of marijuana seeds were obtained from Royal Canadian Mounted Police drug raids, there was some lack of consistency in the early crops of medicinal marijuana. After selective use of seeds from the first crop, subsequent generations have shown to have a more consistent quality.

Law and government


The government of Flin Flon is operated by an elected mayor and six elected city councillors. Upon election the serve terms of four years. As of the election on 25 October, 2006

The operations of the City of Flin Flon are administered by the City Council, who set the policies. City Council consists of a Mayor and 6 Councillors who are elected and serve a term of four years. The current council were elected on October 25th, 2006 and consists of the following members:

Flin Flon Manitoba City Council
Position Name
Mayor Tom Therien
Councillor George Fontaine
Councillor Bill Hanson
Councillor Cal Huntley
Councillor Karen MacKinnon
Councillor Colleen McKee
Councillor David Kennedy


Flin Flon is in the southwest corner of the provincial electoral district of the same name. It is the only urban centre within the district. The current Member of the Legislative Assembly is NDP Member Gerard Jennissen, who has held the office since 1995.


Flin Flon is in the federal riding of Churchill. The current Member of Parliament is Liberal Tina Keeper, who has held office since 2006.


Flin Flon straddles the provincial border of Manitoba and Saskatchewan, similar to the way Lloydminster does in Alberta and Saskatchewan. In the case of Flin Flon, the majority of the city is in Manitoba. The 2001 census reported 6,000 residents in the Manitoba portion and only 267 in the Saskatchewan part. Although the province of Saskatchewan is West of Manitoba, due to the zig-zagging nature of the Saskatchewan-Manitoba border, the Saskatchewan Flin Flon residents live south of the rest of the town, not West. By the time of the 2006 census, the population of the Saskatchewan portion of Flin Flon had declined to 242 residents, a 9.4% decrease.

The town of Creighton, Saskatchewan is immediately adjacent to Flin Flon's western city limits and its residents share many of Flin Flon's services.


Flin Flon Climatological Data
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Mean
Record high °C (°F) 10 (50) 10 (50) 15 (59) 27 (81) 33 (91) 35 (95) 35 (95) 34 (93) 30 (86) 24 (75) 18 (64) 8 (46)
Average high °C (°F) -17 (1) -11 (12) -3 (27) 7 (45) 15 (59) 20 (68) 23 (73) 22 (72) 14 (57) 6 (43) -5 (23) -14 (7) 5 (41)
Mean °C (°F) -21 (-7) -17 (1) -9 (16) 1 (34) 9 (48) 15 (59) 18 (64) 17 (63) 10 (50) 3 (37) -8 (18) -18 (-0) -0 (32)
Average low °C (°F) -26 (-15) -22 (-8) -16 (3) -5 (23) 3 (37) 9 (48) 13 (55) 11 (52) 5 (41) -1 (30) -12 (10) -23 (-9) -5 (23)
Record low °C (°F) -45 (-49) -46 (-51) -41 (-42) -31 (-24) -13 (9) -2 (28) 4 (39) -2 (28) -7 (19) -15 (5) -35 (-31) -44 (-47)
Precipitation and Sunshine Hours
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Total
Total mm (in) 18 (0.7) 13 (0.5) 19 (0.8) 28 (1.1) 41 (1.6) 67 (2.6) 77 (3.0) 67 (2.6) 57 (2.2) 38 (1.5) 25 (1.0) 22 (0.9) 471 (18.5)
Rainfall mm (in) 0 (0.0) 0 (0.0) 1 (0.0) 9 (0.4) 37 (1.5) 67 (2.6) 77 (3.0) 67 (2.6) 55 (2.2) 25 (1.0) 1 (0.0) 0 (0.0) 339 (13.4)
Snowfall cm (in) 20 (7.9) 15 (5.9) 19 (7.5) 20 (7.9) 4 (1.6) 0 (0.0) 0 (0.0) 0 (0.0) 2 (0.8) 13 (5.1) 25 (9.8) 24 (9.5) 141 (55.5)
Data recorded at Flin Flon Airport by Environment Canada Data spans 1971 to 2000.
Bright sunshine data is not available from any weather stations in Flin Flon.



Flin Flon is accessed by Manitoba Provincial Trunk Highway 10 and Saskatchewan Highway 167. There is regular Greyhound bus service to and from Flin Flon daily. The city also runs a public bus system within the city.


The city operates Flin Flon Airport (YFO), which is located southeast of the city. The airport has a single 1,524m asphalt runway, and has regular flights to and from Winnipeg through Calm Air and Bearskin Airlines.


The Hudson Bay Railway operates railway freight service on its railway line between The Pas and Flin Flon.


Main Employers

Flin Flon Manitoba Five Largest Employers
Company Service Number of Employees
Hudson Bay Mining & Smelting Mining 1,440
North of 53 Consumers Co-op Cooperative 75
Victoria Inn Hotel 57
MTF/Northern Freightway Ltd. Freight Trucking 37
Alexander's Auto Ranch Automotive Supplies and Service 30


The economy of Flin Flon is primarily based on copper and zinc mining, in particular Hudson Bay Mining & Smelting's Trout Lake Mine, Callinan Mine and 777 Mine. Although processing of any sulphide material (in this case zinc) usually emits large amounts of sulfur dioxide, the HBM&S plant uses a zinc pressure leaching process which greatly reduces emissions.



Flin Flon is the home of the Flin Flon Bombers of the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League and the birthplace of NHL great and Hall of Fame member Bobby Clarke.



The Reminder - Monday, Wednesday and Friday - Flin Flon's only newspaper.


Cottage North Magazine - local interest, local stories, and local people - published January, March, May, July, September, and November.

Northroots Magazine a bi-monthly (every two months) regional publication northroots.ca


AM Radio

  • CFAR 590 Plays a mix of everything.

FM Radio


CBWBT first went on the air in June, 1962. The station broadcast kine recordings sent to the transmitter from CBWT. On March 1, 1969 the province-wide microwave system replaced the kine recordings and Flin Flon has enjoyed live television since then.

See also


External links

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