It’s funky, chock-a-block with retro-hippie shops, restaurants and residents, and Osborne Village, one of Winnipeg’s oldest neighbourhoods, has been named Canada’s greatest by the Canadian Institute of Planners.
Long a favoured hangout for locals, “the Village” draws plenty of tourists to one-of-a-kind stores selling everything from local crafts to well-aged, renewed clothing, and restaurants serving food from sushi to schmoo torte (a Manitoba layered cake made with whipped cream, nuts and caramel).
The Institute’s second annual contest to “recognize the special places that Canadians love most” also chose Cape Forchu Lightstation in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, known as the Beacon to Canada, as “Canada’s Public Place.” Operated by a non-profit society, the lighthouse is the focal point for all sorts of local events, including Dumping Day, the first day of lobster season in autumn, when fishers “dump” their traps.
Queen Street in Fredericton, New Brunswick is “Canada’s Great Street,” thanks to its rich mix of heritage buildings, studded with major art galleries and other cultural institutions, and running through the riverside Historic Garrison District.
The planners chose their winners from a list narrowed down by public voting. The Village’s showcase shopping and dining street, Osborne Street, scored the People’s Choice Award for Great Street, the People’s Choice Great Neighbourhood was the Victorian haven of Woodfield, in London, Ontario, and the People’s Choice Great Public Space was the urban, “mini-Algonquin Park” of the South March Highlands in Ottawa, Ontario.
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