An Alberta Adventure with Ford

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An Alberta Adventure with Ford

June 7, 2017

Did you that Ford is Canada’s longest established automaker?  This year Canada will celebrate 150 years and Ford Canada will celebrate 113.  That is a lot of amazing history between Ford and our amazing country.

Here are just a few highlights from the impressive Ford Canada history:

  • 1904 – Ford is established and the first Model C is build at a cost of $1100
  • 1906 – Canadian-made Fords were exported to Australia
  • 1916 – The First Ford rolls off the assembly line in Toronto
  • 1923 – The Windsor Engine plant opens
  • 1925 – The Model T is the first automobile to complete a cross-country road trip from Halifax to Vancouver
  • 1953 – The first passenger car rolls off the line at the Oakville Assembly Complex
  • 1960 – Construction begins on Ford of Canada headquarters in Oakville
  • 1964 – The Ford Mustang is introduced; it has been Canada’s favourite sports car since 1985
  • 1966 – F-Series Truck is No.1 in Canada, the beginning of a 51-year track record
  • 1976 – 10-millionth Ford is built in Canada
  • 1980 – Terry Fox starts is cross country run in St. John’s and a Ford Econoline van carries his supplies
  • 1981 – Essex Engine Plant Opens
  • 2004 – Ford Celebrates 100 years in Canada
  • 2015 – Global Ford Edge rolls off the assembly line in Oakville

A few interesting Facts:

  • The Oakville Assembly Complex builds the Ford Edge which is shipped to more than 100 countries around the world.  They also build the Ford Flex, Lincoln MKX and the Lincoln MKT
  • The Window Engine & Essex Engine plants build engines for the Mustang and F-Series Truck
  • There are more than 400 Ford-Lincoln dealerships from coast to coast!

On June 3, our family left the house in the morning in our 2017 Ford Explorer and came home at bedtime.  We had such an amazing time exploring Alberta’s countryside and seeing some unique things along the way.  Here was our itinerary:

9am – leave the house and head to 4 year old’s soccer game; not exactly part of the Ford Adventure, but still a fun part of the day.  Carter scored 5 goals!

10:30am – after a quick pit stop at the house to leave the cleats behind, we headed to our first stop, the Enjoy Centre.  If you haven’t been to the Enjoy Centre before, you definitely need to go! It is a unique multi-use facility featuring a greenhouse, spa, café, & restaurant, whole foods, deli, bakery, and more.  Lois and her husband, Ted Hole, ran a successful market garden business from their farm which they, along with their sons Bill and Jim, incorporated as Hole’s Greenhouses & Gardens Ltd. in 1979. It remained one of Western Canada’s largest retail greenhouse stores until it closed in early 2011 when the Hole family moved the operation to their new site on the edge of Lois Hole Centennial Provincial Park, and opened the Enjoy Centre.  It is a beautiful place to wander through all year long or enjoy their patio’s and outdoor shrub and tree areas in the summertime.  They have a state of the art greenhouse area that always houses the seasonal flowers.  Hundreds of poinsettias around Christmas, hanging baskets in summer and beyond.  They catch rain water on the roof of this LEED built building and hydrate the flowers that way.  There is a photo below of me in front of the greenhouse. It is a really amazing place.  The restaurant is fabulous as well.  We had a quick bite in the Cafe before wandering around for a while.  We even bought some fresh herbs to add to our garden, including Strawberry Mint (perfect for some summertime Mojitos!) which Carter is pictured holding below.  He loved the smell of it!

12:30pm – we piled back into the Explorer and headed North to Smoky Lake; Alberta’s Pumpkin Capital.  It is a quiet and quaint little Alberta town that is also known as BirthdayTownAlberta.  Visitors can plan a fun excursion to Smoky Lake on their birthday and be rewarded with lots of free activities and birthday presents all over town…all day!  The park that has the giant pumpkins also has an old train station, platform and rail car.  We spent a few hours there having some snacks, enjoying the sunshine, climbing on the pumpkins, looking at the rail car and tossing our Canadian frisbee that was included in our Ford back pack.  Next, we headed for a shake at Betsy’s Burger Shack and got back into the car.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2:30pm – we started to head back towards home with a stop at Prairie Gardens in Bon Accord, AB.  I don’t know why we haven’t ever been to Prairie Gardens before.  Our kids LOVED it and didn’t want to leave.  I had to carry our youngest (age 2) out of there as he was completely unwilling to leave the baby goats!  There is so much to see and do.  The little animals walking around was definitely the highlight for the kids.  They had activities everywhere you looked; hula hoops, pedal cars, lawn bowling, little houses to go in (one that was even ‘haunted!’) sand castle building, fire pits, jumping games, ring toss and more.  It would be an amazing place for a birthday party or family reunion type of event.  Fun for the whole family!  They were just setting up for an event when we were leaving.

6:00pm – we pulled up to Buco Pizzeria in St. Albert.  We happened to park right next to an antique Ford!  The kids enjoyed taking a look at it.  We had a great dinner and then took 3 sleepy little ones homes to bed.  We arrived home around 7:45 and put all 3 straight to bed.  It was a long day of driving filled with so much fun!

 

Thank you to Ford for encouraging us to explore more of Alberta.  We loved discovering new places and things to to with our kids!  Looking forward to the next adventure!  If you want to look back at all of our photos, follow our day on instagram at @mommyconnectionsinc or twitter at @mommyconnection.  To follow along with nearly 50 Canadian bloggers Ford Adventures across our great country, follow the hashtag #GoFurther150.  There have been some really great memories across Canada captured in various Ford vehicles.  Happy summer!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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