Fort St John: The Energetic City

Fort St. JohnLocated in the northeastern part of British Columbia is a small city that is known for its natural resources of oil, natural gas, forestry and agriculture and a generally young, energetic and enthusiastic populace. The City of Fort St. John is known throughout Canada as the "The Energetic City."

This small city of about 17,000 people is a member municipality of the Peace River Regional District. The city has a land area of about 22 km² (8 mi²), the largest city in the northeastern British Columbia. Fort St. John is actually on a plateau above the Peace River Valley and is 73 kilometers (45.5 miles) northwest of Dawson Creek and 387 kilometers (240 miles) southeast of Fort Nelson.

It was the early pioneers that built Fort St. John. It began as a trading post in 1794 and is now considered as the oldest European-established settlement in present-day British Columbia. The construction of the Alaska Highway in 1942 and the discovery of high-grade oil in 1951 created the city as British Columbia’s Oil and Gas Capital.

From the trading posts of old to being the main transportation hub and oil capital of present day British Columbia, the city of Fort St. John has evolved into a great place to live, work, raise a family and retire. It is a place people can enjoy the low unemployment rate, affordable house prices, stable economy and lots of recreational activities like hiking, fishing, hunting and golf, downhill and cross-country skiing, snowmobiling, skating, curling and ice fishing.

If you happen to be in the city, some places that you need to see are the North Peace Museum, the North Peace Recreation Centre which is a multi-purpose facility that is mainly used for figure skating, hockey, and public skating, and the North Peace Cultural Centre where you could find the public library, Peace Gallery North, and a 413-seat live theatre.

You can also get to enjoy fresh farm produce during local farmers’ market fair. Homegrown tomatoes, bison steaks and fresh apple pies are just a few of the delicacies that you can get to sample during the Saturday market days. The farmers’ market is open May through December at the North Peace Arena.

Some of the yearly activities include the annual Great Canadian Welding Competition which is held in August. The welding competition features artists creating statures based on a given theme. And in January, there’s the High on Ice Winter Carnival which is also a yearly affair.

The city hold the distinction of hosting the BC Winter Games in 1984 as well as the Northern BC Winter Games five times, first was in 1975, then 1976, 1994, 2000, and lastly this year.


Leave a Reply