15 reasons to love Canada

With the northernmost point in the continental United States situated in Angle, Minn., many in our state feel a special kinship to Canada. Minnesota and Canada share a lot more than just a border, such as beautiful landscapes, a lot of lakes and a love for hockey. We fit right in, even down to sharing the niceness stereotype. Like Canadians, Minnesotans aren’t afraid of a little cold weather. We enjoy a good board game and an even better doughnut. As Canada marked its 150th anniversary in towns, cities and at backyard barbecues nationwide, we wanted to wish our neighbors to the north a happy 150th Canada Day with 15 reasons why Minnesotans love Canada.

 

POUTINE: The dish originated in Quebec in the 1950s and is made with French fries and cheese curds topped with light brown gravy.

THE OBJECTIVELY ATTRACTIVE RYANS: Canadian actors Ryan Reynolds and Ryan Gosling aren’t just award-winning stars with pretty faces, even if some can’t tell them apart.

TUQUES (OR TOQUES): Canadians adopted this French term — originally for a brimless hat — to describe knit or winter hats. We like it because it’s a more fun name for a winter hat, which is important when you have to wear winter hats almost every month of the year.

JUSTIN TRUDEAU: We just wanted to take a moment to appreciate Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s appearance, er, ability to explain quantum computing. Nothing political here. Carry on.

COLD WEATHER: When people from other U.S. states complain about the cold, we just roll our eyes. We appreciate having neighbors who know what real winter weather is like.

HOCKEY: A Canadian invented hockey, a sport that has become a rite of passage for generations of Minnesotans.

DRAKE: Aubrey Drake Graham, better known as Drake, released his debut album in 2009 and his been a star in the U.S. and around the world ever since.

TIM HORTONS: The iconic Canadian coffee and doughnut shop opened its first location in 1964 and expanded to the U.S. in 1981. Tim Hortons even sold a special poutine doughnut on Canada Day.

CELINE DION: Dion remains the bestselling Canadian artist of all time. With five Grammy Awards and several No. 1 hits, her most recognizable song is “My Heart Will Go On” from the movie “Titanic.”

POLAR BEARS: An estimated 60 to 80 percent of the wild polar bear population lives in Canada, making the country the best place to see the bears in the wild.

RUSH: Rush is arguably the most popular band to come out of the prog rock movement and remains a favorite of generations of adolescent nerds.

PEANUT BUTTER: While the earliest reference to peanut butter goes way back to the ancient Incas and the Aztecs, Canadian Marcellus Gilmore Edson first patented peanut butter in 1884. We are happy to share a border with the country that created the best thing to go on sliced bread.

THE METRIC SYSTEM: The U.S. is one of just three countries that have not adopted the metric system. Although Canadians did not invent the widely used measurement system, it’s good to have Canada nearby to remind us that most places use meters for everything, not just sporting events.

Trivial Pursuit: The board game was created by two Canadian journalists when they found pieces of their Scrabble game missing and decided to create their own game.

MARGARET ATWOOD: The 77-year-old writer, businesswoman and activist has written many notable works, including “The Handmaid’s Tale,” recently adapted into a TV series. She also invented a remote writing technology.

See the complete list at strib.mn/canada150

Sady Swanson