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Calgary /ˈkælɡəri, -ɡri/ is a city in the province of Alberta, Canada. It is situated on the Bow River in the south of the province, in an area of foothills and prairie, approximately 80 km (50 mi) east of the front ranges of the Canadian Rockies. The city is located in the grassland and parkland natural regions of Alberta. As of the 2011 census, the City of Calgary had a population of 1,096,833 and a metropolitan population of 1,214,839, making it the largest city in Alberta, and the third-largest municipality and fifth-largest metropolitan area in Canada.

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Located 294 km (183 mi) south of Edmonton, Statistics Canada defines the area between these cities as the "Calgary–Edmonton Corridor." Economic activity in Calgary is mostly centred on the petroleum industry and agriculture. In 1988, Calgary became the first Canadian city to host the Olympic Winter Games.

Calgary has ranked fairly high in some Mercer Quality of Living Surveys, from 25th place in 2006 to 32nd place for 2012. Calgary was also ranked as the world's cleanest city by Forbes Magazine in 2007. Mercer ranked Calgary as the world's top eco-city for 2010. More recently, the latest 2012 report from the Economist Intelligence Unit stated that Calgary was tied for fifth-best place, with Adelaide, to live in the world.

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The Calgary Stampede is an annual rodeo, exhibition and festival held every July in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. The ten-day event, which bills itself as "The Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth", attracts over one million visitors per year and features one of the world's largest rodeos, a parade, midway, stage shows, concerts, agricultural competitions, chuckwagon racing and First Nations exhibitions.


The event's roots are traced to 1886 when the Calgary and District Agricultural Society held its first fair. In 1912, American promoter Guy Weadick organized his first rodeo and festival, known as the Stampede. He returned to Calgary in 1919 to organize the Victory Stampede in honour of soldiers returning from World War I. Weadick's festival became an annual event in 1923 when it merged with the Calgary Industrial Exhibition to create the Calgary Exhibition and Stampede.

Calgary's national and international identity is tied to the event. It is known as the "Stampede City", carries the informal nickname of "Cowtown" and the local Canadian Football League team is called the Stampeders. The city takes on a party atmosphere during Stampede: office buildings and storefronts are painted in cowboy themes, residents don western wear and events held across the city include hundreds of pancake breakfasts and barbecues.


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John Glenn (born 1833 in County Mayo, Ireland) was the first documented European to settle in the Calgary, Alberta, Canada area. He settled there in 1873 with his wife Adelaide (née Belcourt), and built a small log cabin near the confluence of Fish Creek and the Bow River - in today's Fish Creek Provincial Park

Glenn sold his original farm and trading post to the government on August 1, 1879, thus their first property became Indian Supply Farm number 24. Once sold, the Glenn's moved up the creek to set up another farmstead - near the banks of Fish Creek, just east of Macleod Trail in what is now Midnapore, Calgary.

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Calgary skyline
Downtown Calgary, as seen from Crescent Heights bluff during sunset.

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