Ponoka, Alberta

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Town of Ponoka
Ponoka is located in Alberta
Coordinates: 52°40′32″N 113°34′49″W / 52.67556°N 113.58028°W / 52.67556; -113.58028
Country  Canada
Province  Alberta
Region Central Alberta
Census division 8
Municipal district Ponoka County
 • Village October 19, 1900
 • Town October 15, 1904
 • Mayor Rick Bonnett
 • Governing body Ponoka Town Council
 • MP Blaine Calkins (Conservative)
 • MLA Ron Orr (Wildrose)
Area (2016)[3]
 • Land 17.33 km2 (6.69 sq mi)
Elevation[4] 807 m (2,648 ft)
Population (2016)[3]
 • Total 7,229
 • Density 417.1/km2 (1,080/sq mi)
Time zone MST (UTC−7)
 • Summer (DST) MDT (UTC−6)
Postal code span T4J
Area code(s) +1-403, +1-587
Highways Highway 2A
Highway 53
Waterway Battle River
Website Official website

Ponoka /pəˈnkə/ is a town in central Alberta, Canada. It is located at the junction of Highway 2A and Highway 53, 59 kilometres (37 mi) north of Red Deer and 95 kilometres (59 mi) south of Edmonton.

The name Ponoka is Blackfoot for "elk",[5] which is the animal depicted in the town flag. Ponoka County's municipal office is located in Ponoka.


Ponoka originated in 1891 as a waypoint for the railway from Edmonton to Calgary; the town was formally incorporated in 1904.[5]


In the 2016 Census of Population conducted by Statistics Canada, the Town of Ponoka recorded a population of 7,229 living in 3,010 of its 3,301 total private dwellings, a 6.7% change from its 2011 population of 6,778. With a land area of 17.33 km2 (6.69 sq mi), it had a population density of 417.1/km2 (1,080.4/sq mi) in 2016.[3]

In the 2011 Census, the Town of Ponoka had a population of 6,773 living in 2,785 of its 3,047 total dwellings, a 3% change from its 2006 population of 6,576. With a land area of 13.05 km2 (5.04 sq mi), it had a population density of 519.0/km2 (1,344.2/sq mi) in 2011.[6] In 2012, Statistics Canada adjusted Ponoka's 2011 population by an additional 5 people to 6,778 to reflect its 2011 annexation.[7]


Industries are agriculture (grain and cattle production) and oil and gas production.

Arts and culture[edit]

Ponoka is home to the Ponoka Stampede, a seven-day rodeo[8] held at the end of June or beginning of July, usually coinciding with the Canada Day long weekend. This annual event attracts rodeo competitors and fans, and features a midway and other activities.


The Wolf Creek Trail starts at the southern end of Ponoka near the Ponoka Community Golf Course and travels northwards along the Battle River for several kilometres. Informational signs are posted along the trail featuring descriptions of various local wild animals and historical facts. Several baseball diamonds, benches and picnic tables are also located along the trail.

Lions Centennial Park is a major park located along the west side of Highway 2A. It features a pond with a dock, several bathroom facilities, a stage, "The World's Largest Bucking Saddle Bronc and Rider",[9] the Centennial Time Capsule, several gazebos with picnic tables and the Fort Ostell Museum, as well as a splash park.

Notable people[edit]


Health care facilities in Ponoka include the Ponoka Hospital and Care Centre, the Centennial Centre for Mental Health and Brain Injury, the Northcott Care Centre, and the Rimoka Housing Facility. The Ponoka Hospital and Care Centre is responsible for general health care, while the Centennial Centre serves as a care and treatment facility for mental health and is known for its brain injury program (the Halvar Jonson Centre for Brain Injury). The Northcott Care Centre and Rimoka Housing Facility both care for the elderly, with the Northcott Care Centre focusing on care for handicapped individuals.


Fire service is provided by the Ponoka Volunteer Fire Department. Policing is the responsibility of the Ponoka Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) Detachment. General bylaw enforcement is undertaken by the town's special constable in collaboration with the RCMP.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Location and History Profile: Town of Ponoka" (PDF). Alberta Municipal Affairs. October 7, 2016. p. 492. Retrieved October 11, 2016. 
  2. ^ "Municipal Officials Search". Alberta Municipal Affairs. March 31, 2017. Retrieved April 2, 2017. 
  3. ^ a b c "Population and dwelling counts, for Canada, provinces and territories, and census subdivisions (municipalities), 2016 and 2011 censuses – 100% data (Alberta)". Statistics Canada. February 8, 2017. Retrieved February 8, 2017. 
  4. ^ "Alberta Private Sewage Systems 2009 Standard of Practice Handbook: Appendix A.3 Alberta Design Data (A.3.A. Alberta Climate Design Data by Town)" (PDF) (PDF). Safety Codes Council. January 2012. pp. 212–215 (PDF pages 226–229). Retrieved October 9, 2013. 
  5. ^ a b "History/heritage". Town of Ponoka, Alberta. 
  6. ^ "Population and dwelling counts, for Canada, provinces and territories, and census subdivisions (municipalities), 2011 and 2006 censuses (Alberta)". Statistics Canada. 2012-02-08. Retrieved 2012-02-08. 
  7. ^ "Interim List of Changes to Municipal Boundaries, Status, and Names From January 2, 2011 to January 1, 2012 (Table 1 - Changes to census subdivisions in alphabetical order by province and territory)" (XLSX). Statistics Canada. November 14, 2012. Retrieved December 3, 2012. 
  8. ^ The Ponoka Stampede
  9. ^ The Ponoka Statue
  10. ^ "Win Scholarships". The Lethbridge Herald. 22 June 1953. p. 10. Retrieved 1 January 2015. 
  11. ^ "Frank Butterfield". The Edmonton Journal. 14 July 2007. Retrieved 28 December 2014. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 52°41′N 113°34′W / 52.683°N 113.567°W / 52.683; -113.567 (Ponoka)