Manitoba facts every Manitoban knows

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Here are some outstanding facts every Manitoban knows and is proud of:

Manitoba’s founder: Louis Riel

Manitoba became the fifth province of Canada when Métis leader, Louis Riel, advocated for guarantees for their land, language, and political rights. His leadership inspired the creation of Manitoba. In 1869-1870, he headed the Métis National Committee which was consolidated into a provisional government. This provisional government would negotiate the Manitoba Act and lead to the creation of Manitoba as a province in 1870.

Provincial symbols

You may know that the bison is Manitoba’s provincial animal because you see it in the city government’s logo. But, Manitoba has several provincial animals. Another mammal emblem is the polar bear. The provincial bird is the Grey Owl, and the official fish is the pickerel or walleye.

Other provincial symbols include the provincial tree, which is the White Spruce, and the official flower, Prairie Crocus. Our official provincial motto is Gloriosus et liber, meaning glorious and free. You hear this as part of the eighth line of our national anthem, O Canada.

Want to see a complete list of Provincial symbols? Go to Official emblems of Manitoba.

It’s the land of lakes

Manitoba has more than 100,000 lakes! It is home to Lake Winnipeg, the fifth largest freshwater lake in Canada, and the world’s 10th largest lake in surface area. Because of its rich water resources, the province can harness vast hydroelectric power. Also, its lakes, rivers, streams, and marshes are home to various fish species for sport and commercial use.

Curling capital of the world

There are more curling clubs in Manitoba than in Ontario and Quebec combined!

Curling is a team sport played on ice. Two teams take turns sliding stones made of granite towards a target known as a “House”. It is an Olympic and Paralympic winter sport, and a fun activity a group of friends can get into this winter.

Talking about world titles, Winnipeg has also been hailed as the “Slurpee Capital of the World.” Winnipeggers drink an average of 400,000 cups of Slurpees a month! Slurpees, if you’re not familiar, are flavoured icy drinks sold by 7-11, the convenience store chain. Winnipeg has had this title for more than 20 consecutive years now.

Manitoba is a favourite movie location

Our province’s unique beauty and diverse landscapes have made it a favourite location for film productions. For example, Gimli, known for its waterfront, is where “The Icelandic Dream” and the “Saddest Music in the World” were shot. Manitoba’s prairies, forests, and lakes have also served as backdrops for “Shall We Dance” and “Heaven is a Traffic Jam on the 405”. Meanwhile, Winnipeg’s historic and modern architecture have been showcased in Oscar-winning movies like “Capote” and “The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford”.

We hold Socials

A social is a uniquely Manitoba-grown concept. It is a fundraising activity for a wedding or a community cause. To get into a social, you have to buy a ticket. The ticket is also an entry for a raffle which could be for prizes, or for a 50/50 draw. Just like most parties, it will have food and wine, except that you may have to pay for them (there’s also music and dancing and they’re for free!). Socials are a great way for the community to support other community members and at the same time, have fun.

Have you encountered anything else “uniquely Manitoban?” Let us know!

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