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Red Deer’s stereotypes rise again in satirical website story

The Beaverton takes aim at Alberta’s third largest city
One of Red Deer’s cultural events: Celebrating Canada Day at the outdoor stage at Bower Ponds. (Advocate file photo.)

Wow, that’s a new one: Red Deer is being roasted as a mediocre, red-neck city by a satirical website.

The Beaverton, which aspires to be Canada’s version of The Onion, is running a gag story with the headline “Red Deer, the Boston Pizza of cities” that describes Red Deer as a purgatory with strip malls.

“Red Deer is… fine... You could do worse than stop by. But if you make it your go-to destination, something in your life has gone horribly awry,” the article reads.

Red Deerians are lampooned in the story as having a penchant for driving Mad Max-like trucks and threatening the prime minister.

The article also dumps on Red Deer Polytechnic, the quality of hockey games at the Centrium and the Westerner Days Fair — and unleashes an array of negative stereotypes against this city, from racism to criminality.

Some Red Deerians laughed along with the story on social media.

“OMG this article is so accurate,” said one poster, while another noted that The Beaverton really missed the boat: “Not a single mention of our iconic water tower?”

But all the stereotypes did not tickle the funny bone of Rene Rondeau, executive-director of Tourism Red Deer.

He called the story “a bunch of noise” that raises false negatives about a city in which one out of 10 people work in the tourism industry.

“We have to make some good noise” to counter the cliches, he added, noting Red Deer has great local food, breweries and culture. “We’re tired of the black eye the city is given…”

Besides the ample parks, trails, restaurants and shopping opportunities, one of the Red Deer area’s newest tourism attractions is the Canyon Coaster ride at the Canyon Ski Resort, said Rondeau.

“Maybe we should invite them to come and have a look…. We know we are pretty amazing.”

According to Wikipedia, The Beaverton is a mostly online Canadian satirical publication based in Toronto, Montreal and Whitehorse.