The Quebec Municipality With A Name To Exclaim

Saint-Louis-du-Ha! Ha!: a voyager’s gasp and a toponymist’s delight. While driving in eastern Quebec near the south shore of the Saint Lawrence River, you might come across road signs directing you to a community whose name will make you exclaim or laugh – or both. The small community of Saint-Louis-du-Ha! Ha!, population of 1,318, was…

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Snapshots Of The Wood Chip Dreadnought

If you follow the starfish, you will find the photo opp, wood shop and bed and breakfast. Since 2008, New Brunswick’s highways have been peppered with colour-coded signs with distinct symbols that lead the curious to curated scenic drives. The Acadian Coastal Drive is represented by red signs with starfish icons, meant to represent the…

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A Brief History (And Sampling) Of Ketchup Chips

They leave your fingers as red as our maple leaf flag. Cover art by: Megan Hunt, an Inuk artist and animator based in Iqaluit, Nunavut. Find more of her work on Instagram: @mutecutes Just like their sweet and sour flavour powder’s propensity for staining fingertips, the precise origin of ketchup chips is a little messy.…

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Bunkers Of Canada, Then And Now

A history of fallout shelters – top secrets, amateur bus bunkers, criminal bids and escape rooms. When the Soviet Union tested its first atomic bomb in 1949, the tension could be felt throughout Canada. Since our northern airspace was considered the most convenient route for the Soviet Union to attack the United States, many defensive…

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The First Photo Taken In Canada Was A Tourist Selfie

Popular tourist attraction, Niagara Falls, was the subject of the oldest surviving photograph taken of Canada. It could be the image of a postcard. The 1840 daguerreotype taken by British industrial chemist Hugh Lee Pattinson on a trip to Niagara Falls is the oldest known photograph of Canada. However, in 1840, Canada did not yet…

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The First Sunglasses Were Not Made For Beaches

Inuit, Yup’ik and other Arctic-living Indigenous peoples have been handcrafting sunglasses for at least 2,000 years. /// Cover art by: Megan Hunt, Nunavut artist currently based in Iqaluit. Follow her on Instagram: @mutecutes /// They go by many names. “Ilgaak” in the Nunavut Kivalliq dialect, “iggaak” in the North Baffin dialect, “nikaugek” to Central Yup’ik…

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One Halifax Cathedral Has A Ghost Window

Does a deacon haunt the oldest remaining Protestant cathedral in Canada? While there have been many tall tales and spun yarns surrounding the tragic 1917 explosion of a munitions ship in Halifax, even some of the more farfetched stories have physical evidence to help back them up. One cathedral’s eerie window silhouette is a good…

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The “Bear Of Very Little Brain” Gets An Ontario Museum Exhibit This Spring

Oh Bother! This immersive Winnie-the-Pooh exhibit will only run at Toronto’s Royal Ontario Museum March through August 2020. Let your inner child out to play while learning about everyone’s favourite pot-bellied, honey-loving fictional bear. Starting March 7, the Royal Ontario Museum is hosting the only Canadian stop of an international touring exhibition focused on A.A.…

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One Of The Clearest Lakes In The World Was Made By A Meteorite 1.4 Million Years Ago

Pingualuit Crater and its pristine lake in Northern Quebec’s Ungava Peninsula is nearly a perfect circle. During a 1950 expedition, a Globe and Mail news correspondent called it the eighth wonder of the world. But for the native Inuit in the Northern Quebec or Nunavik region, it was traditionally known as “the Crystal Eye of…

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Where Do Poutines Come From?

A brief compendium of potatoes, gravy and cheese curds. These days you can find poutine at some of the finest restaurants all over the world. Even though it has been a significant francophone and Quebecois cultural dish since the late 1950s, finding the simple fast food dish outside of Canada or even the province of…

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