South River, Ontario

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South River
Village (single-tier)
Village of South River
Ottawa Avenue
Ottawa Avenue
South River is located in Ontario
South River
South River
Coordinates: 45°50.5′N 79°22.5′W / 45.8417°N 79.3750°W / 45.8417; -79.3750Coordinates: 45°50.5′N 79°22.5′W / 45.8417°N 79.3750°W / 45.8417; -79.3750
Country  Canada
Province  Ontario
District Parry Sound
Settled 1881
Incorporated 1907
Government
 • Type Village
 • Mayor Jim Coleman
 • Federal riding Parry Sound—Muskoka
 • Prov. riding Parry Sound—Muskoka
Area[1]
 • Land 4.04 km2 (1.56 sq mi)
Population (2011)[1]
 • Total 1,049
 • Density 259.5/km2 (672/sq mi)
Time zone EST (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
Postal Code P0A 1X0
Area code(s) 705 (386 exchange)
Website www.southriverontario.com

South River is a village on Highway 124 near Algonquin Park in the Almaguin Highlands region of Parry Sound District of Ontario, Canada. It is about halfway between North Bay[2] and Huntsville[3] or a 3.5-hour drive north from Toronto.[4] South River has access to the Algonquin Park for canoeists at Kawawaymog (Round Lake).[5] South River is also on the route to Mikisew Provincial Park on nearby Eagle Lake.

Transportation[edit]

The major form of transportation in South River is motorized vehicles. Highway 11 passes through the town. Highway 11 has been replaced by an extension of Highway 400, which passes west of the town, with an overpass over Eagle Lake Road. Construction for the bypass started in 2007 and was completed about 2011.[6]

South River is served by the South River-Sundridge District Airport, which is a small airport about three miles from the town.

The South River railway station was served by the Northlander six days per week until autumn 2012.

History[edit]

Logging in the area began in the 1860s, but it was not until 1881 when the first settlers, Robert Carter and his wife, arrived following the completion of the Grand Trunk Railroad. Within a few years, they opened a general store and the new community, located on the eponymous South River, had hotels, a bank, a butcher shop, and jeweller. The river itself provided the power for a sawmill and grist mill, while also being used for log driving. In 1907, the village separated from Machar Township and was incorporated, with W.J. Ard as first reeve.[7]

Local Industry and activities[edit]

A colourful local landmark is the Algonquin Motel, which uses painted cabins and rooms to attract visitors. The motel has been in operation for about seventy years.[8]

South River is the access point for another tourist attraction: dog sledding on the North Algonquin Dog Sled Trail. Park permits are required. Visitors can arrange a trip with Chocpaw Expeditions, which is based in South River.[9][10] Chocpaw Expeditions has been operating in South River for forty years.[11] Chocpaw runs dog-sledding expeditions, canoe trips, and hiking trips for young people who are trying to qualify for awards under the Duke of Edinburgh's Award program at Gold, Silver, and Bronze levels.[12] In 2014, Chocpaw Expeditions provided training, dogs, and equipment for a charity trek by officers of the Toronto Police force. They will sled 100 km through Algonquin Park to raise money for Victims Services.[13]

South River is also home to Voyager Quest Outfitting.[14] The Stewart Coughlin Riding Ranch provides horseback rides and riding instruction. A popular swimming spot is Eagle Lake Narrows, which is served by a general store that rents canoes.[15] The Hockey Opportunity Camp, for boys and girls from 7 - 16 years old, is also on Eagle Lake.[16]

The Swift Canoe and Kayak Factory has been in South River since 1989. It employs about twenty people.[17] In the summer, Swift canoes are for sale next to the Tourist Information centre.[18] There are many locations for freshwater fishing for smallmouth bass, whitefish, pickerel, rainbow trout, speckled trout, brook trout, lake trout, splake, ling perch and smelt.[19]

There is a golf course, the Eagle Lake Golf and Country Club, which after decades as a nine-hole course, started expanding.[20] It is currently a ten-hole course.[21]

The town has a public library.[22] Artists Doreen Wood and Sue Nugent live in South River. Artist Margaret Cunningham is in Eagle Lake. In town, Renée's Café brings live music and concerts to South River.[15]

Arts and crafts also attract tourism. One noticeable local enterprise is the studio of Groovy Glass Beads, where unique hand-made beads are made and sold. Ron Post makes handmade knives and sheaths. Other crafts are found at The Northern Crafter's Collective, Rustic Blessings, and the Bear Chair Company.[15]

South River has a successful dog-sled racer in Rene Marchildon. He was the 2011 winner of the 250-mile Irving Woodlands Can Am Crown International Sled Dog Race in Fort Kent, Maine. The 2011 race was completed by only six teams in dangerous blizzard conditions. Marchildon broke trail for the others, gaining their respect. He came second in this race in 2005. In 2007, he won a middle-distance race, the Willard Jalbert Memorial Can Am Crown 60-Mile Race.[23][24] Marchildon has been racing competitively since 1999. He breeds his own dogs.[25]

Demographics[edit]

[26]

Historical populations
Year Pop. ±%
1991 1,141 —    
1996 1,098 −3.8%
2001 1,040 −5.3%
2006 1,069 +2.8%
2011 1,049 −1.9%

Private dwellings occupied by usual residents: 461 (total dwellings: 507)

Mother tongue:[27]

  • English as first language: 95.3%
  • French as first language: 1.4%
  • English and French as first language: 0%
  • Other as first language: 3.3%

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Statistics Canada 2011 Census - South River Census Profile
  2. ^ "Driving Directions: North Bay, ON, to South River, ON". Google maps. Retrieved 2014-02-01.  "ON-11 S: 40 min."
  3. ^ "Driving Directions: Huntsville, ON, to South River, ON". Google maps. Retrieved 2014-02-01.  "ON-11 N: 45 min."
  4. ^ "Driving Directions: Toronto, ON, to South River, ON". Google maps. Retrieved 2014-02-01.  "ON-400 N and ON-11 N: 284 km, 3 hours 0 min. ON-400 N, Trans-Canada Hwy and ON-124 E: 315 km, 3 hours 29 min"
  5. ^ "Kawawaymog (Round) Lake Access Point (#1)". The Friends of Algonquin Park. Retrieved 2014-01-31. 
  6. ^ "The King's Highway 11". Ontario Highways. Retrieved 2014-01-31. 
  7. ^ Doug Mackey. "About us/History". Village of South River. Retrieved 2010-08-23. 
  8. ^ "Algonquin Motel: About Us". Algonquin Motel. Retrieved 2014-01-31. 
  9. ^ "Dog Sledding in Algonquin Park". The Friends of Algonquin Park. Retrieved 2014-01-31. 
  10. ^ "Ontario Dog Sledding Tours". Retrieved 2014-01-31. 
  11. ^ Reid, Paul J. "About Chocpaw". Chocpaw Expeditions. Retrieved 2014-01-31. 
  12. ^ "Dogsledding trips - Chocpaw Expeditions, South River, Ontario". The Duke of Edinburgh's Award - Canada. Retrieved 2014-02-01. 
  13. ^ Doucette, Ken (2014-01-25). "Dog sledding for a good cause". The Toronto Sun. Retrieved 2014-01-31. 
  14. ^ "Voyager Quest Outfitting: Getting Here". Voyager Quest Outfitting. Retrieved 2014-01-31. 
  15. ^ a b c "Almaguin Highlands Arts Directory". Almaguin Highlands Arts Council. Retrieved 2014-01-31. 
  16. ^ "About HOC". Hockey Opportunity Camp. Retrieved 2014-02-01. 
  17. ^ "South River canoe maker dips into training fund". Northern Ontario Business. 2013-07-05. Retrieved 2014-01-31. 
  18. ^ "Swift South River: Gateway to North West Algonquin Park". Swift Canoe & Kayak. 2013-11-17. Retrieved 2014-01-31. 
  19. ^ "South River: Fishing". Village of South River. 2008. Retrieved 2014-02-01. 
  20. ^ Stewart, Nick (2007-04-10). "South River course takes first step towards 18 holes this summer with June unveiling". Northern Ontario Business. Retrieved 2014-01-31. 
  21. ^ "Welcome to Eagle Lake Golf Course". Eagle Lake Golf and Country Club. 2013-10-13. Retrieved 2014-01-31. 
  22. ^ "South River - Machar Union Public Library". South River - Machar Union Public Library. Retrieved 2014-01-31. 
  23. ^ Bayly, Julia (2011-03-07). "Marchildon wins one of closest, toughest Can Am Crown sled dog races". Bangor Daily News. Retrieved 2014-01-31. 
  24. ^ Bayly, Julia (2011-03-09). "Last nine miles the toughest for top Can Am finishers". Bangor Daily News. Retrieved 2014-01-31. 
  25. ^ "Super Dogs: Rene Marchildon". Mushing: the Magazine of Dog-Powered Adventure. 2009-07-01. Retrieved 2014-01-31. 
  26. ^ Statistics Canada: 1996, 2001, 2006, 2011 census
  27. ^ "2006 Community Profile". 

External links[edit]