100 reasons to love Red Deer

Red Deer is a great city and I’m proud that I was born and raised here as we celebrate Red Deer’s centennial in 2013.

Red Deer is a great city and I’m proud that I was born and raised here as we celebrate Red Deer’s centennial in 2013.

There are considerably more than 100 reasons to celebrate Red Deer but I will shave the list down to 100 in order to stick with the centennial theme.

This great community is the sum of its parts and here are 100 random reasons why I believe that these people, places and entities (definitely not listed by order of importance) have helped make Red Deer a great place to live over the past 100 years:

(1) The Water Tower. (2) The bike paths. (3) Coronation Park. (4) The Cronquist House. (5) Great Chief Athletic Park. (6) The Red Deer Arena. (7) Gaetz United Church. (8) St. Luke’s Anglican Church. (9) St. Mary’s Church. (10) Knox Presbyterian Church.

(11) First Christian Reformed Church. (12) City Hall Park. (13) The old Eaton’s building. (14) The old Kresges building. (15) The Dawe family. (16) The Moore family. (17) The Swainson family. (18) The Northey family. (19) The Hazlett family. (20) The Bower family.

(21) The Puzey family. (22) The late Mayor Ed Barrett. (23) The Cenotaph. (24) The Old Court House. (25) The old Alpha plant. (26) The old Michener Hill Store. (27) The old Builder’s Hardware store. (28) Bower Ponds. (29) The Michener Center Administration Building. (30) The old train station

(31) The old train bridge. (32) Woodlea neighborhood. (33) Parkvale neighborhood. (34) Waskasoo neighborhood. (35) Sunnybrook Farm. (36) Michener Hill neighborhood. (37) College Park neighbourhood. (38) The Old Brewery Building. (39) McKenzie Park. (40) The late Dr. Bill Carter.

(41) The late CHCA TV station. (42) Grandview neighbourhood. (43) West Park neighbourhood. (44) Sunnybrook neighbourhood. (45) The late Cec Grove. (46) The late Kerry Wood. (47) The Pioneer Lodge. (48) The Scout Cabin. (49) Red Deer River. (50) Waskasoo Creek.

(51) Ross Street Hill — the original and genuine Michener Hill. (52) The Gaetz House. (53) Red Deer Armoury. (54) The Corner Store. (55) Ellis House. (56) The outdoor pool. (57) Kin Canyon. (58) The late Basil Dickey. (59) The old 2-11 Drive Inn. (60) The old Peacock Drive Inn.

(61) The old fairgrounds. (62) The late 850 CKRD am radio. (63) The old Tom’s House of Pizza in the Dominion Shopping Center. (64) The old Nick and Ted’s. (65) The old Lucky Dollar. (66) The old Red Deer Rustlers. (67) The old Red Deer Airport on Hwy 11A. (68) The old Parkland School on Hwy 11A. (69) The old Arrochar Road that ran by MacFarlane dairy farm. (70) The old McCullough farm.

(71) The old Gaetz Lake Bird Sanctuary. (72) The Larratt House. (73) The old No. 1 Fire Station. (74) The Professional Building. (75) The Willow Apartments. (76) The late Maurice Watt. (77) The late Bert Amer. (78) The late Happy Harper. (79) The late Don Drummond. (80) The late Kendall Dunkle.

(81) Heritage Ranch. (82) The old Red Deer Bottling plant. (83) Red Deer in summer. (84) Proximity to lakes. (85) Proximity to West Country. (86) The original Igniters car club. (87) The car culture. (88) The old Carling brewery building. (89) The old Elks club. (90) The old Holmes Drug Store building.

(91) Canyon Ski Hill. (92) The Faces or Hog’s Back canyon cliff. (94) The Downtown Co-op store. (95) Piper’s Mountain. (96) Red Deer volunteers. (97) The original Griffin band. (98) The original Gaetz Avenue Dance Band. (99) The old Junior Activities Building. (100) The Chalet.

There are many buildings that no longer exist that were a major part of Red Deer’s past. I concentrated on the ones that still exist in one form or another and range from original to a radically altered use as we hit 100 in this city.

I chose my selection of personal icons from my lifetime of experiences in Red Deer since my birth in the 1950s. Others’ impressions of Red Deer will vary according to their own unique experiences growing up in Red Deer.

Jim Sutherland is a local freelance columnist.

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