Do you want to visit Canada? The city of Saskatoon in Saskatchewan should be on your list of cities to visit. Saskatoon is a city located in Saskatchewan, Canada. It runs along the South Saskatchewan River, and is a very diverse community. The city is filled with many different ethnic backgrounds, which makes it an interesting place to live or visit.
The Saskatchewan city of Saskatoon is a melting pot of different cultures. The city of Saskatoon is also known as "the city of bridges", it lies on the banks of the South Saskatchewan River and has wide, tree-lined streets amid vast parks and green spaces.
Saskatoon has become a vibrant, young city full of great places and food. Home to expatriates, foreign workers and international students from around the world. The city is named after mis-sask-quah-toomina, the Cree Indian name for the local Saskatoon berry – a sweet, violet coloured berry that grows wild.
Below, we reveal 10 fun facts about this great Canadian city.
Saskatoon is a city of festivals. From the PotashCorp Wintershines Festival featuring international ice carvers, to festivals such as the Saskatoon Blues Festival, the Fringe Festival, the Jazz Festival, Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan and the Children’s Festival.
When you visit Canada or migrate and settle in Saskatoon, festivals will be your thing. Festival season in Saskatoon is the season to eat, drink, and be merry. Sounds a bit like christmas but that's what festival season in Saskatoon feels like. With plenty of food and drink, so much for that summer body eh?
For example, if you are a beer and wine enthusiast then Top of the Hoops. Top of the Hoops is Saskatoons largest festival featuring over 200 different liquor samples. So, grab your drinking buddy and always remember moderation is the key.
2. The Meewasin Valley Trail
Listed by Readers Digest as one of the top 10 greatest hikes in Canada. It extends for 60 kilometres along the east and west banks of the South Saskatchewan River. You can also cycle the trail.
The Meewasin Valley offers a variety of activities throughout the year, from nature walks to educational afternoons with a take-home craft. A stroll along the South Saskatchewan river bank will reveal many of the Meewasin Valley scenic spots located within walking distance from anywhere Downtown.
3. Saskatoon has Canada’s only Perogy Drive Thru
Prairie people love their perogies, which are a staple of any Saskatchewan diet. These delicious dumplings can be filled with sauerkraut, mushrooms, or berries but, by far the favourite filling, is potatoes and cheese. You can grab some of these tasty treats as takeout at the drive-thru window of one enterprising Saskatoon restaurant, Baba’s Homestyle Perogies. Baba’s menu also includes cabbage rolls, borscht and smokies.
4. The World's largest snowball fight was held in Saskatoon
Every winter, it snows in Saskatoon. The landscape turns white and, though the sun still shines, it can get very cold at times. However, this doesn’t stop the local people from going outside and having fun. Hockey is big in Saskatoon, the city where Gordie Howe (‘Mr. Hockey’) himself grew up. Indoor and outdoor rinks can be found throughout the city during the winter.
There are also miles of cross-country ski trails to enjoy. In 2016, the largest snowball fight ever took place in Diefenbaker Park in Saskatoon with 7,681 people getting in on the action. So, don’t let some snow stop you from getting some exercise and enjoyment — the locals certainly don’t!
On Monday, February 1, 2016 the people of Saskatoon showed up to Victoria Park in full force to make sure that the city became home to a World Record; more than 8,200 people came to claim the world's largest snowball fight title, according to the Guiness Book World of records.
Guinness World Records also recognized the world record for the largest snowball measures 10.04 m (32.94 ft) in circumference and was rolled by students from ASME Michigan Technological University (USA), in Houghton, Michigan, USA, on 29 March 2013. The diameter of the snowball measures 3.20 m (10.45 ft) and its height reaches 3.28 m (9.28 ft). Quite the feat.
5. A thriving Music Scene
Saskatoon is a city that supports its singers, songwriters, and musicians. Hard-core rocker Reignwolf (aka Jordan Cook) is the latest Saskatoon musician to capture the attention of a national and even international audience. He follows the likes of Joni Mitchell, The Northern Pikes, The Sheepdogs, One Bad Son and The Deep Dark Woods. Many of these artists got their start playing in such local bars as Buds on Broadway, Louis’ Pub, and Amigos Cantina. Stop by any of these establishments and listen to the city’s up-and-coming musical talent.
6. Saskatoon is one the sunniest cities in Canada
As the city’s slogan states, ‘Saskatoon Shines’! Whatever the season, whether the ground is cloaked in snowy white or graced with green grass, the sky overhead is likely to be filled with sunshine. The city’s residents enjoy an average 2,381 hours of sunshine every year, a fact which undoubtedly contributes to their sunny dispositions! If you are looking for a place to soak up the sun, visit one of the city’s 198 parks or drive out to the beach at nearby Pike Lake Provincial Park.
There is a good chance the next time you are putting mustard on your hot dog or hamburger, it came from Saskatchewan.
Although mustard production didn’t start in Saskatchewan until the 1950’s, it has grown to account for about 75 percent of production in Canada, which in 2010 was just over 150,000 tonnes, tops in the world.
8. Lots of Lakes
While most of Canada may not think water and Prairies go together, residents of Saskatchewan and those who have visited the province know otherwise. The province is home to roughly 100,000 lakes, more than enough to satisfy water and fishing enthusiasts alike.
One of the most unique lakes in the world is located in Saskatchewan – Manitou Lake, southeast of Saskatoon. The briny water of the lake possesses natural therapeutic skin and body care properties only found in a few other places – plus it offers impossible-to-sink buoyancy.
The second largest lake – Reindeer Lake – is also the deepest, reaching 710 feet at Deep Bay, which was created by a meteorite some 140 million years ago.
Saskatchewan lakes are also a fishing paradise, with anglers having caught three world record fish:
- a 25.1 pound burbot caught on Lake Diefenbaker in 2010 (all tackle world record);
- a 48 pound rainbow trout caught on Lake Diefenbaker in 2009 (all tackle world record); and
- an 18.3 pound walleye caught on Tobin Lake in 2005 (world ice fishing record).
What do Paris and Saskatoon have in common? Bridges.
Saskatoon is not known as the city of bridges for nothing. Saskatoon is Canada’s “city of bridges,” thanks to the seven bridges that span the city, all of which cross the South Saskatchewan River. In total, the city boasts seven bridges, 47 overpasses, 21 pedestrian crossings, and 19.2 kilometres of sound-proof walls.
Turns out these bridges played a key role in the development of Saskatoon, as well as the province of Saskatchewan, in general. The bridges and overpasses act as hubs and as major transportation passages across the province and, ultimately, across the country.
In particular, check out University Bridge, which is beautiful in any day any season.
10. Coldest Bicycle ride on the planet
When you visit Canada you will realise that we’re a country that likes to have fun, no matter what time of year or what the weather is like outside. So, one of the most interesting facts about Saskatoon is that the city hosts an annual Ice Cycle. The event occurs each year in February and it’s dubbed the coldest bicycle ride on the planet. This means only the heartiest of cyclists brave the cold to enjoy an hour-long ride in the blustery, bone-chilling winter weather that sweeps across the Prairies. Afterwards, participants get plenty of chili and warm drinks to thaw out their core. This might just be one of the world’s greatest showings of physical fortitude on two wheels!