Car on the ferry crossing the Athabasca River, c. 1925. Athabasca Archives AA00743
The beautiful expanse of Athabasca riverfront we enjoy in the Town of Athabasca was once industrial land used as a steamboat landing, scow- and boat-building yard, and a landing for the ice road, cage and ferry across the river before the bridge was built in 1952. Athabasca Heritage Society was formed in 1998 to lobby for redevelopment of the landing and to raise funds to purchase property to protect a portion of the riverfront from commercial development. This anchored the parkland and recreational spaces we enjoy today. A few of the many occasions enjoyed on the riverfront over the years include Magnificent River Rats Festivals, outdoor plays and live music, and the Trans Canada Relay celebration in 2000. Amenities include the Riverfront Stage, the Lions Club Playground, the Rotary Club's outdoor exercise equipment, the J. E. Evans Skateboard Park, as well as benches, picnic tables and washrooms. Major contributors to riverfront rehabilitation include the Athabasca Lions Club, the Athabasca Rotary Club, the Town of Athabasca and many private donors.
Map artwork created by Darcy Zelman
Athabasca Heritage Society and the Town of Athabasca maintain heritage signs on the Athabasca riverfront and in the downtown core. The original heritage signs project was facilitated by the Athabasca District Chamber of Commerce to enhance public access to tourism in Athabasca. The first signs were researched and designed by a Landing Trail Intermediate School class as part of a Government of Canada Job Core Program grant. Major contributors to the heritage sign project include the Alberta Government, Northwest Fabricators, Athabasca University, the Town of Athabasca and Science Outreach.
© Athabasca Heritage Society. Athabasca Archives photographs are used with permission.