What are some facts about the city of Saskatoon, Canada?


Quick Answer

Saskatoon is a center of commerce and education on the prairies in the Canadian province of Saskatchewan. It has more sunlight per year than any other Canadian city. Saskatoon became a city in 1906, though the first settlement there was in 1882.

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Full Answer

The name comes from a berry that grows there. One of its nicknames is "POW City" for its potash, oil and wheat. The city is also called "Bridge City" because it has eight bridges crossing the South Saskatchewan River, which divides the city into east and west sides. The Canadian rock band The Tragically Hip gave it the name "Paris of the Prairies."

Various First Nations aboriginal tribes, such as the Cree, roamed the area for 8,000 years. A group of Temperance Colonization Society activists from Ontario were the first Europeans to settle in the area. They took the train to Moose Jaw and then trekked the last 160 miles in horse-drawn carts to establish an alcohol-free agriculture colony there.

Saskatoon is now a hub for transportation by highway, rail and water across Canada. Major businesses include PotashCorp, the largest producer of potash in the world; Cameco, the largest publicly-traded uranium company; Innovation Place, a science park of close to 150 science and technology companies; and the University of Saskatchewan.

The downtown Broadway district has breweries and restaurants on both sides of the river. Jazz, folk and theater festivals take place there in summer. Local attractions include the Western Development Museum, which covers the history of Saskatchewan; Wanuskewin Heritage Park, a historic site that teaches about Northern Plains Indian culture; and the Beaver Creek Conservation Area, which teaches about the prairie habitat.

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