Just the name, Saskatoon sounds interesting, perhaps a great place to spend a weekend? It also rhymes with spittoon. I like their tourist website, which proclaims, “Where else can you paddleboard through the heart of the city?” The city is divided by the South Saskatchewan River. The province’s largest city offers a good deal of adventure and outdoor activities, including jogging, hiking, and biking, along with the traditional hunting and fishing.
Saskatoon is barely a quarter of a million people. It is named after the berry (sweet, violet, wild) of the same name. and is Cree in origin. As you can guess, the economy is primarily agricultural, with mining second. Surprisingly, Saskatoon does not have an NHL team, but a Western Hockey League team, the Saskatoon Blades.
What to do here, other than say Saskatoon or Saskatchewan repeatedly? My choice would be the Saskatoon Farmer’s Market, followed by lunch at the Berry Barn, known not only for warm berry pie, but the best cabbage rolls in all of Canada. Had it been winter, a drive through Enchanted Park might have been fun, with 75 animated light displays. Or the rather unique Ukrainian Museum here, as the Ukrainians brought their agricultural expertise to the area.
It is the wrong time of year to go dog sledding. And I feel like it constitutes animal cruelty. But with over a thousand lakes and rivers, perhaps fishing would be a better option? On the other hand, it is nicknamed the “Paris of the Prairie.” Don’t ask me why. (Because of all the bridges).
I plan to look for Sailor Dan, really Dan Hicks, without the hot licks. He traverses 8th Street to Broadway and back, trying to sell his original Sailor Dan paintings. And when I get hungry? There are more Tim Horton’s here per capita than anywhere in Canada. Or I may opt for a pierogi, since Baba’s Homestyle Pierogis is the only drive through pierogi joint in Canada.
Only in Saskatoon would you find a distillery named Lucky Bastard. They offer free tours and tastings, including whiskey, Knock on Wood Amber Rum, gin, and Saskatoon Liqueur.
Anyone famous from Saskatoon? How about hockey player Gordie Howe, NBC’s Keith Morrison, SJ Sharks color commentator Drew Remenda, the rest are hockey players nobody in California would ever know.
I am not sure I will be back!