|City of Salmon Arm|
Salmon Arm and Shuswap Lake
|• Mayor||Nancy Cooper|
|• Governing Body||Salmon Arm City Council|
|• MP||Colin Mayes|
|• MLA||Greg Kyllo|
|• City||155.28 km2 (59.95 sq mi)|
|• Metro||165.57 km2 (63.93 sq mi)|
|Elevation||415 m (1,362 ft)|
|• Density||112.5/km2 (291/sq mi)|
|• Metro density||106.8/km2 (277/sq mi)|
|Time zone||Pacific Standard (PST) (UTC-8)|
|Postal code||V1E, V0E|
|Area code(s)||250, 778|
|Website||City of Salmon Arm|
Salmon Arm is a city in the Shuswap Country of the Southern Interior of the Canadian province of British Columbia that has a population of 17,464 (2011). It is on the shores of Shuswap Lake, where the Salmon River empties into the Salmon Arm reach of the Lake. It is a tourist town in the summer, with many beaches, as well as camping facilities and house boat rentals. Salmon Arm is home to the longest wooden wharf in North America. It is the location of the head offices of the Columbia-Shuswap Regional District. Salmon Arm became a city on May 15, 1905, and in 2005, its 100th birthday of incorporation was commemorated with a minted coin worth C$3 local value. Directly north of the city, across Shuswap Lake, lies Mount Bastion.
The largest employer in the Salmon Arm area is the forest industry and related businesses; however, due to economic conditions, the Federated Co-Op sawmill has been out of operation since 2008, although the co-located plywood production facility has generally remained operational. The city benefits from access to the mainline of the Canadian Pacific Railway, which passes through the city.
Tourism is also important to Salmon Arm, bringing many tourists from Vancouver, Calgary and Asia. Most tourists arrive during the summer season, either stopping en route to other holiday destinations, or to visit Shuswap Lake, often via rental houseboats and which has recreation residential communities and campgrounds all around its shores. Salmon Arm has several hotels, campsites and houseboat rental outlets.
Relative to its size, Salmon Arm has a wide variety of restaurants and cultural attractions. Public beaches at Sunnybrae and Canoe are often crowded during the summer.
Little is known about the history of Salmon Arm preceding the laying of the Canadian Pacific Railway in September, 1885. While miners and settlers looked for gold in the surrounding areas, the beaches of Salmon Arm lay virtually untouched. In 1890, five years after the railway was built, the residents of the town requested and obtained a post office. At the time, there was only a population of 28 residents. By the end of the 1890s, the town had grown to include many new buildings such as two general stores, a school, and a hotel. The population had also grown to include over 200 citizens.
By 1904, Salmon Arm had acquired a reputation for having an excellent fruit harvest. The local businessmen grew fruit as a main export, sending it to the larger, more populated towns that surrounded it. The displays for their crops could be located in stores in Kamloops and New Westminster, and the Hudson's Bay Company in Vancouver often featured an entire local Salmon Arm display.
In May 1905, a formal local government was started by the request of its citizens. The main concerns brought to the government centered on the building and repairing of roads.
Later on, in 1912, Salmon Arm upgraded its town status to an official city. They did this in part to receive funds from the provincial government to assist in road improvement, which was still a continued concern, and also to build a public water system. With the money they received, it didn't take long to fulfill their second project as Salmon Arm's first water system was official turned on in January 1914.
Electricity came to Salmon Arm in 1913, with the acquiring of its first diesel engine and in 1928 Salmon Arm became a part of the West Canadian Hydro-electric company grid.
On August 8, 1982, while Prime Minister Pierre Elliot Trudeau and his sons passed through Salmon Arm, they were confronted by three demonstrators protesting "high unemployment and the way the Prime Minister was handling the economy." Trudeau infamously gave the protesters the finger; his gesture was caught on a single television camera and immediately used by some as, "a vivid symbol for those who thought the Liberal prime minister arrogant and hostile to Western Canada."
However, to many Trudeau's response was seen as a commemorated joke. Only a month after the incident T-shirts, which depicted a characaturized Trudeau leaning out of a train with his middle finger raised, were being produced and sold to the citizens of Salmon Arm.
|Climate data for Salmon Arm|
|Record high °C (°F)||14.5
|Average high °C (°F)||−0.7
|Daily mean °C (°F)||−3.7
|Average low °C (°F)||−6.6
|Record low °C (°F)||−31.5
|Precipitation mm (inches)||67.4
|Rainfall mm (inches)||11.2
|Snowfall cm (inches)||56.2
|Avg. precipitation days (≥ 0.2 mm)||12.6||8.2||10.9||11.7||13.2||13||10||7.7||8.5||12.8||15.7||13.7||138|
|Avg. rainy days (≥ 0.2 mm)||2.5||3.6||9.4||11.7||13.2||13||10||7.7||8.5||12.7||11||2.4||105.5|
|Avg. snowy days (≥ 0.2 cm)||10.9||5.2||2.5||0.3||0||0||0||0||0||0.4||6.1||11.9||37.1|
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||30||67.6||138.6||189.6||226.4||225||284.8||267.8||217||103||31.2||21.2||1,802.3|
|Percent possible sunshine||11.4||23.9||37.7||45.8||47.2||45.7||57.5||59.5||57.1||30.9||11.5||8.5||36.4|
|Sources: Statistics Canada|
|Canada 2006 Census||Population||% of Total Population|
|Visible minority group
|Other visible minority||0||0%|
|Mixed visible minority||0||0%|
|Total visible minority population||185||1.2%|
|Total Aboriginal population||765||4.9%|
Public schools in Salmon Arm are part of School District 83 North Okanagan-Shuswap; within the city limits, there are currently five (5) elementary schools (kindergarten to Grade 7), one (1) middle school (Grades 6 to 8), and a secondary school with two (2) campuses. Several elementary schools outside the city limits, including one (1) combined elementary/middle school feed into the middle school and secondary school in Salmon Arm. The current division of education grades between the different categories of schools began in 2007; prior to 2007, elementary schools within the city limits offered kindergarten to Grade 7, followed by two junior high schools with Grades 8 to 10, and a single senior secondary school with Grades 11 and 12. School District 83 also has its administrative offices (located in the town centre) and maintenance complex (located in the community's main industrial park) in Salmon Arm.
Salmon Arm has a campus of Okanagan College that offers many programs in a wide range of fields.
Notable academics with ties to Salmon Arm include David Lethbridge and Mike Worobey, winner of the Nora and Ted Sterling Prize in Support of Controversy for 2009 from Simon Fraser University
The summer months is when the city experiences it largest fluctuation of population with people on holidays coming to visit the city and surrounding area. During every third weekend of August the annual Salmon Arm Roots and Blues festival draws large crowds of festival goers with an international roster of performers. The Festival emerged from the Shuswap Coffee House movement of the 1970s and 80's, which by 1991 had coalesced into the non profit Salmon Arm Folk Music Society, the Festival's founding body. From its grassroots beginnings, Roots & Blues has grown into the largest and most musically diverse festival in the British Columbian interior. In July 2011 there was the first annual Sturgis North Motor Cycle Rally, which is a sister project of Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in South Dakota. Even though the city of Salmon Arm had mixed feelings for the event, 35,000 people attended. There is also the annual Shuswap International Writers' Festival.
Salmon Arm is home to a multiplex movie theatre (Salmar Grand) and a single screen theatre for movies and live stage performances (Salmar Classic); both are owned and operated by a non-profit community organization, the Salmar Community Association. Additionally, a community theatre society hosts plays and other live stage performances (Shuswap Theatre) in a building across the street from the Salmar Grand multiplex.
The RJ Haney Heritage Park & Museum is Salmon Arm's main museum, and celebrates the history of the region. The museum often offers a dinner theatre program during the summer months, with the theatre component offering plays based on local history.
Salmon Arm is home to a branch of Okanagan Regional Library (ORL), which is currently located in Piccadilly Mall.
The Salmon Arm public art gallery is the Shuswap Art Gallery, housed in a historic building owned by the city. The building was originally a post office, and later housed the Salmon Arm branch of Okanagan Regional Library for many years.
Notable performers with Salmon Arm connections include local blues group the Salmon Armenians.
Sports and recreation
Large crowds of tourists and locals are drawn to the beaches at Sunnybrae, Canoe, and elsewhere on Shuswap Lake during the summer. The city has many large hotels, as well as berths for a number of houseboats.
The community offers a number of recreational facilities and sports leagues. There are fields for soccer/rugby/football, fields for baseball/softball, as well as five-pin bowling lanes (J Lanes), several golf courses and many seasonal recreational businesses. The proximity of the Shuswap Lake has also resulted in a growing interest in rowing and paddling sports, particularly dragon boat racing.
The Salmon Arm Silverbacks hockey team, in the BCHL, plays at Shaw Centre (formerly the Sunwave Centre). The publicly owned twin ice rink facility is named in relation to the facility's community sponsor, Shaw Cable (which purchased the local, independent cable service provider SunCountry Cablevision in June 2011; SunCountry had branded its highspeed cable Internet service as Sunwave.net, and had sponsored the ice rink facility under the name Sunwave Centre). Co-located in the same area with the Shaw Centre are the city's recreation centre (with pool, racquet courts, weight facility and auditorium/gymnasium), curling rink, lawn bowling facility, horseshoe pitch, and the Salmon Arm campus of Okanagan College. The city's previous indoor ice arena, Memorial Arena, has been re-purposed as an indoor field sports facility, and is heavily used by such sports as soccer, rugby, and archery. Memorial Arena, with sponsorship from the Salmon Arm Savings & Credit Union has been re-branded as the SASCU Memorial Recreation Centre, while the main recreation centre is similarly sponsored and branded the SASCU Recreation Centre.
Salmon Arm lies on the Trans-Canada Highway approximately halfway between Vancouver and Calgary. It is also at the top of Highway 97, which leads to Vernon and Kelowna. The economy benefits from through traffic; many brand-name hotels and restaurants have opened in the past few decades.
Salmon Arm Airport mainly serves general aviation aircraft, though scheduled service to Vancouver and Calgary was available by Northern Hawk Aviation until it ceased operations.
Salmon Arm is well served by Greyhound Bus Lines for travel to other cities in the region, province and across Canada.
Wildfire Damage 1998
In 1998, an area of 13,500 acres (34 km² or just over 5000 hectares) immediately southwest of Salmon Arm was burnt to the extent of deforestation by a wildfire started by lightning. The fire came down from the Fly Hills in the west and embers carried by the wind jumped the valley and ignited Mount Ida. Flames raced down both sides of the valley, threatening many homes. An emergency evacuation was executed as the fire hotfooted it closer. Remarkably, just as the fire reached the valley floor, a sudden change of wind direction forced the fire back on itself, extinguishing it. The fire came so close that trees in many backyards were singed and barn paint was peeled.
The media reported "20 homes and 15 barns" were destroyed during the firestorm in the Silver Creek area to the south of Salmon Arm, which also produced Canada's largest civil evacuation up to that date when the "5,000-hectare forest fire that forced the removal of 7,000 residents of Salmon Arm was being blown toward the town."
Salmon Arm's sister city is Inashiki, Ibaraki, Japan (Formerly Azuma, Ibaraki, Japan, until its recent amalgamation into Inashiki). There is a pavilion near McGuire Lake in honour of the friendship between Japan and Salmon Arm.
- Gail Anderson-Dargatz, author.
- Calvin Ayre - billionaire, graduated from high school in Salmon Arm.
- E.V. Gordon, a well-known medieval philologist and colleague of J.R.R. Tolkien, was born in Salmon Arm in 1896.
- Rick Say is a 3-time Olympic and National Record holding swimmer.
- Dave Scatchard is a former NHL player.
- Greg Sczebel is a two-time Juno Award-winning independent singer/songwriter.
- Bev Smith was a member and coach of the Canadian national women's basketball team. She was inducted into the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame in 2004.
- Richard Underhill, Toronto jazz saxophonist, 2003 Juno Award winner.
Salmon Arm in popular culture
- The Punch-Out!! character Bear Hugger resides in Salmon Arm. Additionally, he even has an attack of the same name.
- Population and dwelling counts, for Canada, provinces and territories, and population centres, 2011 and 2006 censuses: British Columbia. Statistics Canada. Retrieved March 17, 2013
- Salmon Arm BC's website
- Marshall, Denis. "Salmon Arm... A short history". Retrieved 16 February 2013.
- "Trudeau Salute on Shirts". Tri City Herald. 10 September 1982. Retrieved 11 February 2013.
- "One Finger Salute Crude to Ont. Film Review Bd.". The Canadian Press. 7 February 2009. Retrieved 11 February 2013.
- "Calculation Information for 1981 to 2010 Canadian Normals Data". Environment Canada. Retrieved July 9, 2013.
- "British Columbia – Municipal Census Populations (1921–2011)". BC Stats. Retrieved May 9, 2013.
- "Community Profiles from the 2006 Census, Statistics Canada - Census Subdivision". 2.statcan.gc.ca. 2010-12-06. Retrieved 2013-04-13.
- "Aboriginal Peoples - Data table". 2.statcan.ca. 2010-10-06. Retrieved 2013-04-13.
- University of Arizona faculty bio page
- Salmon Arm Observer news article, September 29, 2009, p. A4
- Sterling Prize website; after 2009, reference can be found on the annual recipients page
- Salmon Arm Roots and Blues Festival
- Sturgis North's website
- Salmar Theatres/Salmar Community Association website
- Salmon Arm Observer, December 1, 2009 news article on Salmar Community Association plans for theatres
- Shuswap Theatre website
- R.J. Haney Heritage Village & Museum website
- Okanagan Regional Library website
- SAGA Public Art Gallery website
- Salmon Armenians website
- Shuswap Association for Rowing and Paddling website
- Shuswap Transit System
- [John Colebourn, Staff Reporter. The Province. Vancouver, B.C.: Nov 5, 1998. pg. A.29]
- [Camille Bains. The Vancouver Sun. Vancouver, B.C.: Aug 11, 1998. pg. A.1.FRO]
- Salmon Arm Observer news article, July 28, 2009
- MY EZ Rock (local radio station)
- Voice of the Shuswap (community radio station)
- Shuswap Tourism
- Lakeshore News newspaper
- Salmon Arm Observer newspaper
- Friday AM newspaper
- Salmon Arm Museum ( R.J. Haney Heritage Park & Museum)
- Salmon Arm Silverbacks BCHL Hockey Team
- SalmonArm.com / ShuswapNews.com