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Introduction

Edmontonmontage2.jpg

Edmonton (/ˈɛdməntən/ (About this soundlisten); Cree: ᐊᒥᐢᑲᐧᒋᐊᐧᐢᑲᐦᐃᑲᐣ; Blackfoot: Omahkoyis) is the capital city of the Canadian province of Alberta. Edmonton is on the North Saskatchewan River and is the centre of the Edmonton Metropolitan Region, which is surrounded by Alberta's central region. The city anchors the north end of what Statistics Canada defines as the "Calgary–Edmonton Corridor".

The city had a population of 932,546 in 2016, making it Alberta's second-largest city and Canada's fifth-largest municipality. Also in 2016, Edmonton had a metropolitan population of 1,321,426, making it the sixth-largest census metropolitan area (CMA) in Canada. Edmonton is North America's northernmost metropolitan area with a population over one million. A resident of Edmonton is known as an Edmontonian.

Edmonton's historic growth has been facilitated through the absorption of five adjacent urban municipalities (Strathcona, North Edmonton, West Edmonton, Beverly and Jasper Place) in addition to a series of annexations through 1982, and the annexation of 8,260 ha (82.6 km2) of land from Leduc County and the city of Beaumont on January 1, 2019. Known as the "Gateway to the North", the city is a staging point for large-scale oil sands projects occurring in northern Alberta and large-scale diamond mining operations in the Northwest Territories.

Edmonton is a cultural, governmental and educational centre. It hosts a year-round slate of festivals, reflected in the nickname "Canada's Festival City". It is home to North America's largest mall, West Edmonton Mall (the world's largest mall from 1981 until 2004), and Fort Edmonton Park, Canada's largest living history museum.

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The North Saskatchewan River valley parks system (also known as River Valley Parks; and Ribbon of Green) is a continuous collection of urban parks in the North Saskatchewan River valley of Edmonton, Alberta. Edmonton's river valley comprises over 20 major parks and attractions and forms the largest expanses of urban parkland in Canada. The public river valley parks provide a unique urban escape area with park styles ranging from fully serviced urban parks to campsite-like facilities with few amenities. At 7,400 hectares (18,000 acres) in size and 48 kilometres (30 mi) in length, the river valley parks system consists of 22 ravines, which have a combined total length of 103 kilometres (64 mi). It also includes 11 lakes. Most of the city has bike and walking trail connections. These trails are also part of the 235 kilometres (146 mi) Waskahegan walking trail. Several golf courses, both public and private, are also located in the river valley. The long summer daylight hours of this northern city provide for extended play well into the evening. Golf courses and the park system become a winter recreation area during this season. Cross-country skiing and skating are popular during the winter. Four downhill ski slopes are located in the river valley as well, two within the city and two immediately outside. The City of Edmonton has named five parks in its river valley parks system in honour of each of "The Famous Five".

The idea of uniting the parks of the river valley into one parks system dates back to the 1970s. In 1974, Alberta Premier Peter Lougheed announced the creation of the Capital City Recreation Park, consisting of a 14.5 kilometres (9.0 mi) stretch of parks from the Legislature grounds east to the Beverly Bridge at an estimated cost of $30–35 million. The River Valley Alliance is a grouping of municipal governments in the Edmonton region that have committed to expanding the River Valley Parks System outside of Edmonton's city limits. The plan calls for a 73 square kilometres (28 sq mi) zone to be called the Capital Region Valley Park stretched over 88 kilometres (55 mi). Running from Devon to Fort Saskatchewan. In January 2008, the City of Edmonton paid a record $7 million to buy a parcel of land to fill in a gap in the otherwise continuous chain of parks. The city further promised to spend $20 million of pedestrian bridges and trails, but said that the as yet unnamed park would be left in an undeveloped state.

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History

Parade celebrating anniversary of the Hudson's Bay Co., 1920.

Edmonton, like many places in North America had been inhabited for thousands of years by indigenous groups. First permanent settlement by Europeans is known to have started around 1795, when Fort Edmonton was officially founded around present day Fort Saskatchewan.

In the early 1800s, the fort was moved to near the current (Alberta) legislature site. The fort was big in the fur trade business. The first settlement outside of the fort was on "River lots", which actually now consist of neighbourhoods. In 1894, settlement began outside the fort and the Town of Edmonton was established. The town encompassed modern Boyle Street (the original downtown) and McCauley neighbourhoods.

In the 1900-1910 decade, the Hudson's Bay Company was granted a reserve on much of the Fort's land but in the decade it was eventually all sold off to Edmonton. Edmonton became a city in 1904 and shortly after, with a mere 5,000 people became Alberta's capital. With the new land west of Queens Avenue (modern 100 St) available to the city, the city grew tremendously, and Boyle Street was abandoned as the downtown for the new, current downtown.

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Selected biography

Fillion at the 2018 San Diego Comic-Con International
Nathan Fillion (/ˈfɪliən/; born March 27, 1971) is a Canadian-American actor and voice actor, best known for the leading roles of Captain Malcolm "Mal" Reynolds on Firefly and its film continuation Serenity, Richard Castle on Castle and John Nolan on The Rookie.

Fillion has acted in traditionally distributed films like Slither and Trucker, Internet-distributed films like Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog, television soap operas, sitcoms and theater. His voice is also featured in video games, such as the Bungie titles Halo 3, Halo 3: ODST, Halo: Reach, Destiny and Destiny 2, along with the 343 Industries video game Halo 5: Guardians.


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Edmonton Skyline NW 2017.jpg
Panorama of Edmonton's downtown skyline, taken by User:Thankyoubaby.


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