Episode 42 – Icons of Ritchie

We’re back with another historical walking tour of Edmonton’s Ritchie neighbourhood, presented by the Ritchie Community League. In this bonus episode, we explore the history of meatpacking, German immigration, and iconic local species in the neighbourhood.

A group of people casually chatting in a park under a tree
Our tour group chatting in the park

This episode was recorded in September 2018, and guest hosted by Oumar Salifou. Pictures for this episode by Trevor Chow-Fraser.

Barb Bolstad was curious to know more about where the Gainers Meatpacking plant was located and how/where the meat was sent. Michael Gourlie, an archivist at the Provincial Archives of Alberta, joined us to shed a little light on the ups and downs of meatpacking in the neighbourhood.

An inside look at the plant from the Glenbow Archives.

Dan Knauss approached us, knowing that Ritchie has a large-ish German population. Dan was curious what drove German immigrants to Alberta, Edmonton, and Ritchie. We took the tour group over to K & K Foodliner and got a surprise tour of the store from Kevin Krause, the current owner and grandson of the original founders.

Three people walk across the grass in a park
Dan Knauss (centre) was curious about German immigration to the area
Oumar speaks to the crowd outside K & K Foodliner on Whyte Avenue
Oumar speaks to the crowd outside K & K Foodliner on Whyte Avenue

Finally, Stefanie Drozda asked us what Edmonton’s natural history icons would be. Could we pick a mammal, a bird, and a plant that captured the spirit of Edmontonians? Dale Gienow from WildNorth joined us to brainstorm (you’ll remember Dale from our Most Edmonton Species gameshow episode).

Stefanie Drozda asked this iconic species question.
Stefanie Drozda asked this iconic species question.
Dale Gienow from WildNorth was kind enough to share some thoughts on iconic local species with us
Dale Gienow from WildNorth was kind enough to share some thoughts on iconic local species with us

Shout-outs in this episode to Taproot Edmonton and the SkirtsAfire Festival.

Further reading:

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