What Is Windsor Ontario All About??
and Things To Do
and People !!!
The Interesting Geography
Windsor is the most southern city in Canada, so it has very mild Winters compared to the rest of Canada.
Unfortunately, the southern location means that Windsor is a long way from some other parts of Canada. It takes 4 hours to drive to Toronto, or 35 hours to drive to Vernon. John and Cathey have driven those trip many times, and LOVE it. There are lots of interesting and beautiful things to see in Canada. (Did you know that pelicans regularly fly to Saskatchewan?!)
Windsor is right on the Detroit River, so it's part of the area known as the Great Lakes Region. There are five Great Lakes. Four of them, Superior, Huron, Erie and Ontario are shared by Canada and the United States. The fifth one, Lake Michigan, lies entirely in the U.S.
By the way, the Great Lakes really are Great. For comparison, Lake Okanagan is about 4 kilometers wide by 90 kilometers long (from Penticton to O'Keefe Ranch). Lake Erie is at least 85 times bigger. It's 80 kilometers wide by 390 kilometers long. And Erie's not the biggest one. Lake Superior is so big that it holds more water in it than Lake Okanagan plus all the other 4 Great Lakes together.
If you want to know more about the Great Lakes, TV Ontario made a really good documentary called Great Lakes Untamed - Source To Sea. It's about one hour long but it's really interesting.
The Windsor riverfront is a long beautiful park, with fountains, sculptures, festival plazas, and views of downtown Detroit in the United States.
If you are interested, there are quite a few Youtube videos made by people enjoying the Windsor waterfront, including this one.
Windsorites sometimes get to see the ships, called freighters, that move huge amounts of bulk materials like wheat, rice, iron ore, gravel, or even road salt. Most of the freighters stay in the Great Lakes region but some of them came all the way from the Atlantic Ocean.
Sometimes even cruise ships come along, taking people on long visits of the Great Lakes cities.
Windsor is across the river from Detroit, United States.
632,000 people live in Detroit. Vancouver has 662,000. Windsor has 229,000. Vernon has 45,000. Kelowna has about 200,000.
FUN FACT !!
Everyone knows that Canada is north of the United States, right? Well MOSTLY that's true, but when you're in Windsor you're actually SOUTH of Detroit!
As you can also see in the map above, Windsor is not far from Point Pelee National Park.
Some cool things about Point Pelee National Park....
It is the smallest national park in Canada.
Some of the animals and plants in the park do not live anywhere else in Canada.
The park is the most southern place in Canada that you can drive to without taking a boat.
It extends so far south into Lake Erie that it is important for birds, bats and Monarch butterflies who travel each year from their Winter homes in Mexico to their Summer hangouts in northern Canada. At certain times of the year, trees in the park can be filled with the black and orange colours of Monarch butterflies. Many people around Windsor help the Monarchs by having milkweed plants in their gardens, because milkweed is the only plant that Monarchs will eat or will lay their eggs on to make newborns.
That's enough about Windsor's geography. Because it's time to talk about...
The Interesting Things To Do in Windsor
Wed. Aug. 16: Live Jazz in Willistead Park from 6-9pm
Fri. Aug. 18: A classic car parade from 5-8pm on Pillette Road near Cathey & John.
Sat. Aug. 19
AM: Downtown Farmer's Market
PM: Cathey's Birthday!!
The Waterfront - Take a bike or walk, but check it out.
See the houses, schools and neighbourhoods where Simpson family used to live.
Adventure Bay water park.
Kayak or canoe outing on River Canard.
Take a drive to check out the old bridge, and the new bridge, and maybe get a peek of the JW Westcott in action.
Jackson Park and the new splashpad.
Visit Fort Malden.
Other great foods. Windsor has it all... Thai, Italian, Greek, Chinese, Turkish, Lebanese, etc, etc, etc.
Most Important: Hang Out at Cathey & John's. They have music, books, food, free wifi, and Really nice people.
The Interesting History of Windsor
Some other interesting history of Windsor:
Wars - 200 years ago, the Windsor area was the location of war fighting. Today, we have have museums with pictures, descriptions and artifacts from the war times. There is even a wartime cannon displayed on the Windsor waterfront as a memorial. Whenever a new building project happens, we take great care to investigate the land to look for artifacts.
Railways - For more than 100 years, people (and trains!) crossed the river using ferries. Unfortunately the ferries stopped running once the the bridge and the tunnel were built, and all the railway tracks and rail machinery have been removed from the waterfront and replaced with beautiful parkland. There is still one ferry dock remaining, to show visitors what they used to look like. The railway history of Windsor is important to our family, because Grandma Peg's parents moved to Windsor in the first place because her Dad worked on the railway and took a job transfer here.
Cars - For more than 100 years, and still today, cars have been built in Windsor. Chrysler minivans are still made in Windsor, including John and Cathey's van. The Windsor museums have a lot of information of the auto history in Windsor, and there are many statues and markers around the city to honour the history.
Here's the cannon left after the wars of the 1800's.
Here is a ferry docked on the waterfront, unloading railway cars from Detroit.
The Interesting People of Windsor