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Published: September 1st 2011
I lived in Edmonton for five years while I was an undergrad at the University of Alberta. I moved away when I graduated, and have only been back a few times since then, usually to attend weddings. This time was no different--I was in Edmonton for my youngest sister's wedding. I decided to allow a bit of extra time so I could revisit a few old haunts.
I had a hotel room with a view of the North Saskatchewan River to the east and downtown to the north. Because winter ended late, and spring was wet, the river was high and swollen. It was wonderful to be in Edmonton so soon after the summer solstice, when even after 11pm there was still some light left in the western sky. My view was obscured a bit on my last morning, when smoke from fires further north blew into Edmonton.
The main stop I wanted to make was at Louise McKinney Park and the Trans Canada Trail Pavilion there. One of my good friends died while we were in undergrad, and several of us put together money to have a memorial plaque for him placed in the pavilion. Because it was
being built as I was finishing up my degree, I hadn't seen it yet. On the way to the Trans Canada Trail Pavilion, I passed through the Chinese Garden and the Rose Garden. One of the most incredible thing about Edmonton is its parks--the river valley park system is the largest urban park system in North America.
If the smoke in the air hadn't been so heavy on my last day in Edmonton, I think I would have been looking for excuses to stay longer--it is a great city!
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