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Introduction


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Canada /ˈkænədə/ is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west and northward into the Arctic Ocean. It is the world's second largest country by total area. Canada's common border with the United States to the south and northwest is the longest in the world.

The land that is now Canada was inhabited for millennia by various groups of Aboriginal peoples. Beginning in the late 15th century, British and French expeditions explored, and later settled, along the Atlantic coast. France ceded nearly all of its colonies in North America in 1763 after the Seven Years' War. In 1867, with the union of three British North American colonies through Confederation, Canada was formed as a federal dominion of four provinces. This began an accretion of provinces and territories and a process of increasing autonomy from the United Kingdom. This widening autonomy was highlighted by the Statute of Westminster of 1931 and culminated in the Canada Act of 1982, which severed the vestiges of legal dependence on the British parliament.

Canada is a federation that is governed as a parliamentary democracy and a constitutional monarchy with Queen Elizabeth II as its head of state. It is a bilingual nation with both English and French as official languages at the federal level. One of the world's highly developed countries, Canada has a diversified economy that is reliant upon its abundant natural resources and upon trade—particularly with the United States, with which Canada has had a long and complex relationship. It is a member of the G7, G-20, NATO, OECD, WTO, Commonwealth, Francophonie, OAS, APEC, and UN.

Coat of Arms of Canada (1957).jpg More about...Canada, its history and inhabitants

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Calgary Hitmen
The Calgary Hitmen are a Major Junior ice hockey team based in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. The Hitmen play in the Western Hockey League (WHL). They play their home games at the Pengrowth Saddledome. Their name is derived from local-born professional wrestler Bret "The Hitman" Hart, a founding patron. Established in 1994, the team has been owned by the Calgary Flames hockey club since 1997. They are the third WHL team to represent Calgary, preceded by the Centennials and Wranglers.

The Hitmen have twice finished with the best record in the WHL, and have qualified for the playoffs every season since 1998. In 1999, they became the first Calgary team to win the President's Cup as league champions, and the first to represent Calgary in the Memorial Cup since the Calgary Canadians won the national junior title in 1926. The Hitmen hold numerous WHL attendance records, and in 2004–05 became the first team in the Canadian Hockey League to average 10,000 fans per game. Twenty-one former Hitmen players have gone on to play in the National Hockey League.

Graham James left his position as coach and general manager of the Swift Current Broncos to found the Hitmen in 1994. James organized a group of eighteen investors in the club, including star National Hockey League players Theoren Fleury and Joe Sakic along with Bret Hart, famous for his exploits in the World Wrestling Federation. The Calgary Flames, who had just assumed control of the Olympic Saddledome (now Pengrowth Saddledome) and were looking to fill extra dates in the building, were receptive to the new team.

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Celine Dion
Celine Dion (born March 30, 1968) is a Canadian pop singer and occasional songwriter. Born to a large, impoverished family in Charlemagne, Quebec, Dion became a young star in Francophone Canada after her manager and future husband, René Angélil, mortgaged his home to finance her first record. She later gained recognition in parts of Europe and Asia after she won both the 1982 Yamaha World Popular Song Festival and the 1988 Eurovision Song Contest.

In 1990, Dion made her English language debut with the album Unison, published by Epic Records. During the 1990s, under the guidance of her husband, she achieved worldwide fame and success with several English and French records, and ended the decade as one of the most successful artists in pop music. After releasing over twenty-five albums during the 1980s and 1990s, Dion announced in 1999 that she was taking a break from entertainment in order to start a family and to focus on her husband/manager, who had been diagnosed with throat cancer. She returned to the music scene in 2002 with a more mature, exclusively adult contemporary, sound, but her album sales suffered a decline, and she signed a lucrative four-year contract to perform nightly in a five-star theatrical show at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace, Las Vegas.

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Lilium philadelphicum


Lilium philadelphicum, also known as the wood lily, Philadelphia lily, prairie lily or western red lily, is a perennial species of lily native to North America. A variant of the species, the western red lily (L. philadelphicum andinum) was designated Saskatchewan's floral emblem in 1941. In Saskatchewan, the flower is protected under the Provincial Emblems and Honours Act, meaning it cannot be picked, uprooted or destroyed in any way..

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Panorama of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

A panorama of Edmonton Skyline
Credit: Tkyle (Steven Mackaay)

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