JordonCooper Rotating Header Image

I hate Saskatoon

While in Winnipeg, we went to the Olive Garden.  I am not a big fan of the Olive Garden but it’s fare is passable and as I was getting ready to order, another table sat down and started to bad mouth Saskatoon, our weather, our culture, and the fact that there is nothing to do in Saskatoon.

Granted there isn’t an Olive Garden here and there isn’t anything to compare to The Forks but c’mon, the Olive Garden is over rated and I’ll take dinner at Alexander’s any day of the week.  Maybe they were just upset with their breadsticks.

Back to hating on Saskatoon.  How does anyone in Winnipeg complain about Saskatoon weather.  Yes it gets cold here but Winnipeg had to install miles of tunnels and covered skywalks just to avoid the cold during the winter and hide from the mosquitos in the summer.  Somehow Winnipeg has managed to make it worse by creating the world’s worst wind tunnel.  While entering the Winnipeg Convention Centre, the temperature probably dropped another ten degrees Celsius as the wind was brought downward and forced through their sheltered driveway.  Brilliant.  Of course the reason why I was so cold is that I had to park in Portage la Prairie because Winnipeg has almost no available downtown parking.  This was verified by the Winnipeg Parking Authority website which tried to assure me that Winnipeg has lots of parking.  Right, which is why you have a parking authority and a website which says there is lots of parking. 

While I don’t mind the fact that someone could love Winnipeg, the hatred on Saskatoon was a little over the top.  Sure we don’t have  an NHL team or anything but the Winnipeg Jets thought Phoenix would be a better option and look how that has turned out for them.  They do have a CFL team in the Winnipeg Blue Bombers but in my seven days in Winnipeg, I never saw a single Blue Bomber shirt, jacket, or even a hat while several times people came up to me an shook my hand for wearing my Rider green (I did get one death threat while walking down Portage from a carload of guys in a rusted out 1991 Chevy Caprice).

Now Winnipeg has built a gorgeous downtown stadium which is both cutting edge but too small for a NHL team at around 14,000 seats.  This move seems to be based on the idea of torturing Winnipeg Jets fans forever and it seems to work as they all know that a) they have a cutting edge stadium b) it’s too small for a NHL team.  Of course they did avoid the mistake that Saskatoon made in that we built our stadium on the outskirts of North Battleford.  Not our best move.  We’ll call that  one a wash.

The lack of culture gets me a little bit as well.  I’d refute that but I am too busy enjoying the Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan, the SaskTel Jazz Festival, the Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra, the Mendel Art Gallery, the Persephone Theatre, Fringe Festival, or even heading down to the Roxy or Broadway Theatres.  Winnipeg has it’s cultural richness as well but Saskatoon is not a barren cultural wasteland either.

Yes our downtown architecture is largely bland and uninteresting but there are signs of even that changing.  We have our weaknesses but I’ll take Saskatoon any day.  I like walking outside.

Update: While it was mind numbingly cold in Winnipeg, I did get out with my camera(s) and take some photos of Winnipeg, The Forks, and St. Boniface Cathedral.  The architecture of Saskatoon just doesn’t compare with the architecture of Winnipeg.

8 Comments

  1. Al Neufeld says:

    Hey Jordon, I grew up in Saskatoon and have traveled to Winter-Peg many times and it is one of the few Canadian cities I absolutely HATE!! It is a concrete jungle, rather ugly, downtown is a convoluted mess, it has the bloody Blue Bombers, and its city colors are BROWN!!. That point alone should tell you something about it right there.

    Obviously those people need to come to Saskatoon more.

    1. All, that’s funny. I don’t really hate Winnipeg and I think we will take a family vacation there in 2012 (it’s Calgary and Banff this summer). I love the architecture of the downtown and the exchange district but the parking and one way streets are a mess. It seems like their downtown is in a need of reboot.

      Now I also love their heated bus terminals, real time updates on transit routes and the ballpark downtown.

      That being said, my favorite airport in the world is Saskatoon because I know I am home now.

  2. Oh, it’s on! (wink)

    Seriously though, Winnipegers tend to talk about Saskatoon like Canadians talk about Americans- a desperate attempt to bolster our sometimes all too apparent inferiority complex. Which is silly, because Winnipeg (and Canada) have much to be proud of (as you pointed out).

    For the lack of Bombers-ware & the handshaking, there is an amazingly lowly Roughrider fan base here in Winnipeg. Imagine being in ancient Rome, thrown to the lions in the coliseum, then seeing that your not the only schlub being cornered by the cats. You’d hug them too!

    Great post, by the way.

    1. Mike Hunt says:

      I lived in Saskatoon and now Winnipeg. I have to say that I much prefer Winnipeg, it’s a real city, not a Calgary wannabee city like Saskatoon. The crash will arrive soon in Saskatoon with overly inflated real estate prices. I never hear people in Winnipeg even speak of Saskatoon, I presume it is a complete insignificunt subject.

  3. Jacob says:

    I was born and raised in Saskatoon and resided there for 31 years. I have lived in Winnipeg for the past 20 years. On moving to Winnipeg I realized fairly soon that people in Winnipeg appear to be more friendly than Saskatoon, when driving in Winnipeg they usually allow one to change lanes when signalling as oppsoed to Saskatoon where they will speed up in ordr to cut a person off tha has intentions of changing lanes, this jsut being one example.

    Since the so called boom in Saskatoon, which is based completely on credit and inflated real estate, I have been back many times, Saskatoon people seem to have an overly inflated ego and attempt to impress that they are the new Calgary, they have a very long way to go.

    I enjoy Winnipeg, it’s people and culture, yes it is dangerous in area’s that one in Saskatoon would have no concept of, but most of the homicides here are far from innocent. I notice that Saskatoon seems to boast about their crime rate in order to make the city appear much larger than it actually is.

  4. Mennorite says:

    Al indicates in his comments that he has been in Winnipeg numerous times or Winter-peg as termed via his non-infinite wisdom. I also lived in saskatoon for many years and would never go back. Just for info I do not find it colder in Winnipeg than Saskatoon whatsoever. Do Saskatoonians think that their climate will soon facilitate growing palm trees, oh no it must be the Chinook winds coming from Blackstrap mountain (garbage heap).

    I also disagree with Jamie, I don’t find that people talk about Saskatoon at all, it’s a complete non-significant city, it’s small and make attempts to base population ratio using a geographical area that includes P.A. Battleford and every other town within 200 kilometres, I do find Saskatoon a nice looking city though.

    I do envy the football fans in Sask. they have the best fans in the CFL even when the Riders are doing crappy, the facs are still behind them, the fans in Winniepg could learn a thing or two from Sask. on maintaining support for the Bombers.

  5. Yaker says:

    Saskatoon eats shit

  6. Pilka says:

    Hey Jordan, I bet you are eating shit with your post that Winnipeg doesn’t have an NHL team now. Seriously Saskatoon is a hole of a city, small and people that live there still think it’s a temperance colony, nice angle parking downtown though, makes me think of a town the size of Wakaw Saskatoon has a small minded mentality with overly inflated pretentious egos.

Leave a Reply