Winnipeg is a city that Canadians love to hate. It’s rare that you hear a kind word spoken about the place. When I told my brother-in-law, who was born and raised in Winnipeg, that I was heading off to visit Winnipeg in January he said REALLY? In January? Are you nuts? Maybe I am but I plan to discover the charms of the city and see what keeps the 730,000 residents from leaving.
Here are 28 fun, weird and interesting facts about Winnipeg.
Winnipeg is the capital of Manitoba – and the geographical center of North America. It was incorporated as a city in 1873.
There are 841,000 people living in Winnipeg as of 2023 with a growth rate of just under 1% a year.
The closest city to Winnipeg with a population of over a million is Minneapolis-Saint Paul, Minnesota – 700 kilometres away.
The city sits at the junction of the Red and Assiniboine Rivers – a place referred to as The Forks.
Temperatures in Winnipeg
The coldest temperature ever recorded in Winnipeg was -47.8°C (-54°F) in December 1879. For a long time Winnipeg was the coldest city in the world with a population of 600,000 or more. Ulan Batar in Mongolia has moved into first place. Winnipeg – because of its geography – is susceptible to polar highs which are in effect Arctic high pressure systems bringing in lots of cold air.
Winnipeg is covered in snow 132 days of the year.
Winnipeg averages 27 thunderstorms per year.
There is measurable sunshine on an average of 318 days of the year.
The hottest temperature ever recorded in Winnipeg was 42.2°C (108°F) on July 11, 1936.
Winnipeg has been called the Windy City but that is incorrect. It is the 12th windiest city in Canada. Hamilton is first.
Winnipeg has four major rivers – the Red, Assiniboine, La Salle and Seine. The city is extremely flat and is at risk for major flooding. In April and May of 1997 the biggest flood since 1826 occurred. Although the flood affected Winnipeg it was Grand Forks and East Grand Forks that were most affected.
The LONGEST skating rink in the world – that freezes naturally is found in Winnipeg – and not in Ottawa as was recently reported in Outside Magazine. The skating takes you along the Red and Assiniboine Rivers over a length of 8.5 kilometres.