Prairieisms

Words and Phrases used in the Canadian Praries which I had never heard growing up in Vancouver in the 1950s, ’60s and ’70s.

  • Sun Dogs – rainbow-like effects around the Sun on a cold winter day with a lot of ice crystals in the air, either as a full circle or symmetrical portions of a circle.
  • Slough – a small body of fresh water, typically not very deep.

Edmontonisms

  • Southside – parts of Edmonton that are South of the North Saskatchewan River.
  • Northside – parts of Edmonton that are North of the North Saskatchewan River.
  • Seventh Avenue – 107 Avenue, and so on for small numbered Avenues and Streets.
  • Jasper – Jasper Avenue, which is not named 101 Avenue because it curves North along the top of the River Bank before turning North and becoming 82 Street.
  • Whyte – Whyte Avenue, which retains its pre-Edmonton Strathcona name, though it is, technically, 82 Avenue.
  • LRT – Light Rail Transit, the high speed public transit system in Edmonton.
  • The Rat Hole – a tunnel to avoid a level rail crossing on 109 Street, running underneath the CNR railway tracks that used to run just North of 104 Avenue.
  • The Fifth Street Bridge – a 1960s era bridge to avoid a level rail crossing on 105 Street over the CNR railway tracks that used to run just North of 104 Avenue.
  • Hallsie – long-time Edmonton radio Sports announcer Bryan Hall, currently on CHED Radio.
  • Peony Garden – Fort Edmonton Park’s downsized re-creation of the 5-acre Silver Heights Peony Garden created in 1921 by Dr. James Brander, after whom the Brander Gardens neighbourhood was named.

Albertaisms

  • Public School – a Catholic school in any School District where the majority of taxpayers are Catholic; a non-religious school otherwise.
  • Separate Schools – a Catholic school in any School District where Catholics are a minority of the taxpayers; a Protestant school otherwise.
  • Matriculation – two ways to complete High School: Junior and Senior Matriculation.