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Hamiota is an unincorporated urban community in the Hamiota Municipality within the Canadian province of Manitoba that held town status prior to January 1, 2015. It is located on Provincial Trunk Highway 21 (PTH 21) midway between the Trans-Canada Highway and the Yellowhead Highway.
First known as Hamilton, for Thomas Hamilton, one of the first settlers. Changed to avoid confusion with Hamilton, Ontario. New name contracted from Hamilton with the Sioux word ota, "much".
Hamiota is known for its local sports teams, arts and culture community, and quality health care. Hamiota was the home of Dr. John E. Hudson ("Dr. Ed": 1917–2003), a member of the Order of Canada (2001) and recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Golden Anniversary Medal (2003). Dr. Hudson led Hamiota District Health Center to become the model rural health care facility in Manitoba. A memorial statue of Dr. Hudson was erected near the hospital in 2004. MP Inky Mark was a good friend of Dr. Hudson, and was the main force behind the statue project. With local support from the former town and the former Rural Municipality of Hamiota, the project was completed. The community offers arts/cultural opportunities through the new Heritage Arts Center. Mid-West Arts Council — formally known as the Royal Bank Building, the Heritage Arts Center was constructed as the Union Bank in 1905. Now occupied by the Mid-West Arts Council, the building provides a space for exhibiting of art, serving as the only exhibition space within the district.
Hamiota Pioneer Club Museum features artifacts relating to the settlement and development of the district, including a taxidermy display, the former McConnell railway station and their most recent addition — Oakner Church.
Notable associated individuals
Hamiota is the birthplace of former Scottish rugby player Grahame Budge and hockey player Dallas Smith who played with the Boston Bruins. It was the birthplace of John Marks who played with the Chicago Blackhawks and coached in the ECHL league where he has been inducted into the Hall of Fame.
The agriculture, healthcare and education sectors are the major employers within the area. Within the last four years, the region has seen growth in the agriculture sector. Over 100 new jobs have been created in Hamiota and area in the last three to four years with many of these in the expanding livestock sector. This growth can be attributed to Kim McConnell (C.M.), the founder and former CEO of AdFarm, who was also named a member of the Order of Canada.
Education and health
Hamiota District Health Care Centre embraced the "community health care concept in the early 1970s. The educational system in Hamiota has remained above provincial averages in provincial exams.
The Pope National Wildlife Reserve was used as a water storage area for the railway during the age of steam locomotives, these parcels of land were returned to the federal government with the advent of the diesel engine. The area was designated as a national wildlife reserve in 1972. It is one of the few federally-owned parcels of land remaining in Manitoba, and is an important water source for the wetlands and marshes located downstream.
The Pitlockery Trail takes walkers east of Hamiota to view the marsh life and enjoy the sounds of the bird population. Spring brings warblers, blackbirds and ducks; many stay to raise their young for the summer, only to migrate south in the fall season. Chickadees keep watch over the frozen marsh during winter, awaiting the return of spring. The trail is located along the former railway line.
The Chumah Trail allows outdoor enthusiasts west of Hamiota to enjoy the prairie grasslands and native vegetation. A viewing platform for birds has been constructed at the end of the trail branching off to the north. With more tree and bush cover, this trail is better situated for cross country skiing in the winter and is groomed regularly. The trail is located along the former railway line.
Hamiota Municipal Park was established in 1967 as part of Canada's centennial celebrations. It is home to seven ball diamonds, an outdoor equestrian arena, horse and cattle barns, soccer pitch, beach volleyball, children's playground, 28 site serviced campground, Hamiota Municipal Museum and the Hamiota Aquatic Centre. Located next to the Hamiota & District Sports Complex and the Hamiota Golf Course, the park is the host for sports.
Hamiota Golf Club is a public nine-hole grass green facility. The licensed clubhouse has a food concession, lounge area, and an outdoor patio area.
Hamiota Aquatic Center has change rooms and showers.