In law, an unincorporated area is a region of land, not governed by a local municipal corporation. Municipalities dissolve or disincorporate, which may happen if they become fiscally insolvent, services become the responsibility of a higher administration. Widespread unincorporated communities and areas are a distinguishing feature of the United States and Canada. In most other countries of the world, there are either no unincorporated areas at all, or these are rare. Unlike many other countries, Australia has only one level of local government beneath state and territorial governments. A local government area contains several towns and entire cities. Thus, aside from sparsely populated areas and a few other special cases all of Australia is part of an LGA. Unincorporated areas are in remote locations, cover vast areas or have small populations. Postal addresses in unincorporated areas, as in other parts of Australia use the suburb or locality names gazetted by the relevant state or territorial government.
Thus, there is any ambiguity regarding addresses in unincorporated areas. The Australian Capital Territory is in some sense an unincorporated area; the territorial government is directly responsible for matters carried out by local government. The far west and north of New South Wales constitutes the Unincorporated Far West Region, sparsely populated and warrants an elected council. A civil servant in the state capital manages such matters; the second unincorporated area of this state is Lord Howe Island. In the Northern Territory, 1.45% of the total area and 4.0% of the population are in unincorporated areas, including Unincorporated Top End Region, areas covered by the Darwin Rates Act—Nhulunbuy, Alyangula on Groote Eylandt in the northern region, Yulara in the southern region. In South Australia, 60% of the area is unincorporated and communities located within can receive municipal services provided by a state agency, the Outback Communities Authority. Victoria has 10 small unincorporated areas, which are either small islands directly administered by the state or ski resorts administered by state-appointed management boards.
Western Australia is exceptional in two respects. Firstly, the only remote area, unincorporated is the Abrolhos Islands, uninhabited and controlled by the WA Department of Fisheries. Secondly, the other unincorporated areas are A-class reserves either in, or close to, the Perth metropolitan area, namely Rottnest Island and Kings Park. In Canada, depending on the province, an unincorporated settlement is one that does not have a municipal council that governs over the settlement, it is but not always, part of a larger municipal government. This can range from small hamlets to large urbanized areas that are similar in size to towns and cities. For example, the urban service areas of Fort McMurray and Sherwood Park, of the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo and Strathcona County would be the fifth and sixth largest cities in Alberta if they were incorporated. In British Columbia, unincorporated settlements lie outside municipal boundaries and are administered directly by regional/county-level governments similar to the American system.
Unincorporated settlements with a population of between 100 and 1,000 residents may have the status of designated place in Canadian census data. In some provinces, large tracts of undeveloped wilderness or rural country are unorganized areas that fall directly under the provincial jurisdiction; some unincorporated settlements in such unorganized areas may have some types of municipal services provided to them by a quasi-governmental agency such as a local services board in Ontario. In New Brunswick where a significant population live in a Local Service District and services may come directly from the province; the entire area of the Czech Republic is divided into municipalities, with the only exception being 4 military areas. These are parts of the regions and do not form self-governing municipalities, but are rather governed by military offices, which are subordinate to the Ministry of Defense. † Brdy Military Area was abandoned by the Army in 2015 and converted into Landscape park, with its area being incorporated either into existing municipalities or municipalities newly established from the existing settlements.
The other four Military Areas were reduced in size in 2015 too. The decisions on whether the settlements join existing municipalities or form new ones are decided in plebiscites. Since Germany has no administrative level comparable to the townships of other countries, the vast majority of the country, close to 99%, is organized in municipalities consisting of multiple settlements which are not considered to be unincorporated; because these settlements lack a council of their own, there is an Ortsvorsteher / Ortsvorsteherin appointed by the municipal council, except in the smallest villages. In 2000, the number of unincorporated areas in Germany, called gemeindefreie Gebiete or singular gemeindefreies Gebiet, was 295 with a total area of 4,890.33 km² and around 1.4% of its territory. However
Winnipeg Beach is a town in the Interlake Region, in the Canadian province of Manitoba. The town was founded in 1900 by Sir William Whyte and is located at the junction of Highway 9 and Highway 229 on the southwestern shore of Lake Winnipeg, about 56 kilometres north of Winnipeg, it is bordered by the Rural Municipality of Gimli, the Rural Municipality of St. Andrews, the Village of Dunnottar as well as Lake Winnipeg. Nearby towns are Ponemah and Matlock, Sandy Hook, as well as Teulon, Selkirk, its permanent population is 1,017. In 1900, the Canadian Pacific Railway purchased 13 hectares of undeveloped shoreline 65 kilometres north of Winnipeg on the southwestern shore of Lake Winnipeg and commenced construction of a resort town. In addition to the attraction of a three kilometre stretch of sandy beach, the CPR built and offered an array of accommodation and amusement facilities, including a prominent dance hall. In the early 1900s, ritzy hotels lined the main street of Winnipeg Beach. Piers and picnic grounds were constructed to accommodate the weekend masses that would travel to Winnipeg Beach from the nearby capital city.
By 1913, the summer retreat had become so popular that the CPR had 13 trains running the line between the beach and the City of Winnipeg. The famous Moonlight Special returned to the city at midnight every Saturday for fifty years; the round trip fare was only fifty cents. A boardwalk took strollers along the beach to the carnival cottages. A wooden roller coaster was one of the largest in the country at the time and carried hundreds of passengers on a busy day; the Pavilion housed a 1,300-square-metre dance floor, reputed to be the largest in Western Canada. The romance of Winnipeg Beach began to wane during the 1950s, although the beach itself still remained a popular destination, in 1964 the amusement park was permanently closed. Of the many recreation and railway related structures erected by the CPR at Winnipeg Beach, only the steel water tower survives, it was constructed in 1928 by the Vulcan Iron Works Ltd. of Winnipeg. Utilitarian in design and appearance, the 40-metre-high tower supported a 90,000-litre capacity tank and provided a source of pressurized water for the CPR steam locomotives and fire protection services for the resort's facilities.
Non-operational since the resort closed, the structure is the best example of only five surviving riveted-steel water towers in Manitoba. As in its heyday, the tower is a prominent visual landmark around the beach community. After the closure of the resort and amusement facilities at Winnipeg Beach, the Province of Manitoba attempted to revitalize the town by creating a recreation park in the 1960s, with various improvements to the beach and the parks lining it. A restaurant and lounge and several change-room structures were built, in addition to a large parking lot; the recreation park continues to be a popular destination for beachgoers. The Town has built a Skateboarding park, to stimulate the youth community; the Global Television Network TV series Falcon Beach was filmed in the town during the summers of 2005–2006. Several different residential summer camps, including Camp Massad of Manitoba, lie just north of the town; the town is governed by a five-member town council. Media related to Winnipeg Beach, Manitoba at Wikimedia Commons Town of Winnipeg Beach Map of Winnipeg Beach at Statcan
Steinbach is a city located about 58 km south-east of Winnipeg, Canada. According to the Canada 2016 Census, Steinbach has a population of 15,829, making it the third-largest city in Manitoba and the largest community in the Eastman region; the city is bordered by the Rural Municipality of Hanover, the Rural Municipality of La Broquerie. The name of "Steinbach" is translated from German as "Stony Brook" and was first settled by Plautdietsch-speaking Mennonites from the Russian Empire in 1874; the city continues to have a strong Mennonite influence today. Steinbach is found on the eastern edge of the Canadian Prairies, while Sandilands Provincial Forest is a short distance east of the city. Steinbach is an agricultural community; the city has many service and commercial businesses to serve the population. Steinbach is the third fastest-growing census agglomeration in Canada. Out of the top eight fastest-growing agglomerations, Steinbach is the only one located outside Alberta; the city had a population growth of 17 % between the 2016 census periods.
The city has gained national recognition as an immigration destination of Canada and a model for immigrant integration in the country. The land in southeast Manitoba upon which Steinbach sits, was the traditional lands of the nomadic Ojibway-speaking Anishinabe people, they used their lands for hunting and trapping. The Anishinabe knew no borders at the time and their land ranged both north and south of the US–Canada border, both east and west of the Red River. On 3 August 1871 the Anishinabe people signed Treaty 1 and moved onto reserves such as the Brokenhead Indian Reserve and Roseau River Anishinabe First Nation Reserve. Shortly thereafter the government began staking out the land for the East Reserve. Steinbach was founded in 1874 by Plautdietsch-speaking Russian Mennonites. Many of Steinbach's 18 original settler families came directly from the Borosenko colony in Imperial Russia, now Ukraine, they took the name "Steinbach" from the village. At the time they left for Canada, Borosenko was just ten years old, an off-shoot of the larger Molotschna colony.
However, Russia was not their ancestral homeland. Originating in the Netherlands, the ancestors of Steinbach's Mennonite settlers lived in Prussia before their time in Ukraine. Within the settlement of Molotschna were a group of people following the Kleine Gemeinde, known for practise of the New Testament teachings of non-resistance, community of sharing and the publication of the first inspirational books; this group was a small minority in Molotschna but its farmers were known as the best in the community. In 1873, Mennonites from Russia became dissatisfied with increasing Russification and the removal of their military exemption, sent delegates to Canada to investigate and negotiate terms of immigration. Many of the delegates decided to move their people to Kansas, the more conservative groups, such as the Kleine Gemeinde, were persuaded to settle in Canada because the Canadian government was more generous in their guarantees of religious freedom. In 1873 a Privilegium was signed, a year Mennonites started to arrive in the region.
The document guaranteed, among other things, military exemption, freedom of religion, private schools, land, known as the East Reserve. Two Mennonite groups settled in the Bergthalers and Kleine Gemeinde. Most of Steinbach's settlers were from Kleine Gemeinde families, who arrived late in the summer of 1874; when they arrived, they found that much of the better land in the reserve had been settled a few months earlier by the Bergthaler and earlier Kleine Gemeinde families. The earlier settlers had come to realize the area suffered from excessive moisture and settled upon much of the higher lands and gravel ridges. So Steinbach's earliest Mennonite settlers settled in the northeast corner of the East Reserve; the 20 homesteads were laid out on the northeast side of present-day Main Street along the Steinbach Creek. Contrary to the preferences of the Canadian government, the early settlers of Steinbach, like other Mennonite villages, organized the village in long narrow strips known as Wirtschafts.
Most of the settlers were farmers, but in a somewhat urban setting, who lived, to some degree and shared a common pasture at the end of the village. They started a school in the first year, in the following year of 1875 built a school and teacherage. A few years the first and original windmill in the town was built in 1877 by Abraham S. Friesen. In 1877, Lord Dufferin toured Manitoba's new Mennonite settlements and stopped just west of Steinbach where he could see "half a dozen villages" in the distance. A crowd of 1000 people greeted his arrival. In 1881, John Holdeman visited the area and many locals from the Kleine Gemeinde joined his new church, Church of God in Christ, Mennonite; this was the first of many schisms and revivals in Steinbach and the town would be known for having dozens of churches, many of them different variations of Mennonite, a dynamic that has shaped the city's character. After a period of eight years, in 1882, Mayor Gerhard Giesbrecht said that the village had grown to 28 families with a population of 128.
In 1910, the linear settlement village design, or Wirtschaft, for the community ended. Prior to this time, the settlers of Steinbach lived in long narrow strips along the Steinbach Creek. Following the
Thompson is the largest city in the Northern Region of Manitoba and is situated along the Burntwood River, 761 kilometers north of Winnipeg. Founded in 1956 as a mining town, Thompson now serves as the "Hub of the North", providing goods and services to the surrounding communities. Thompson's trade area is larger than New Mexico yet contains just over 50,000 residents, with many of the smaller communities accessible only by air or winter road. Despite Thompson's isolated location in the heart of Canada's boreal forest, Thompson is directly connected to Winnipeg via paved highway and the Thompson Airport. Thompson has modern amenities and a large retail scene, including half a dozen shopping malls and several large chain stores. Thompson's natural and undisturbed surroundings makes it a popular community with outdoor enthusiasts: the largest marina in Manitoba is located just 38 km south in Paint Lake Provincial Park, hundreds of kilometers of snowmobile trails are maintained by the Thompson Trailbreakers, the lack of light pollution and Thompson's northern latitude allows for occasional viewing of the Northern Lights.
The Thompson area was first inhabited by nomadic Paleo-Indian hunters around 6000 BC, sometime after the collapse of the Laurentide Ice Sheet. For a 10-year period beginning in 1946, Inco Limited explored northern Manitoba for nickel deposits. Thompson, named after Inco's chairman at the time, Dr. John F. Thompson, was founded following the December 3, 1956 agreement between the Government of Manitoba and Inco Limited. On March 25, 1961, Inco formally opened the first integrated nickel mining-smelting-refining plant in the Western Hemisphere and the second largest nickel-producing operation in the world. Thompson was incorporated as a town in 1967 on Canada's Centennial Anniversary; the community was planned for a population of 8000, but Thompson grew to 19,001 residents by the 1971 Census. Major layoffs at Inco Limited in 1971 and 1977 led to Thompson's population declining to 14,288 by the 1981 Census. Thompson's rapid boom and bust was attributed to changes in the nickel market. After the Soviet Union gained access to the world nickel market in 1970, world supply of nickel exceeded world demand.
In 1977, when nickel prices declined a fifth mine was put on care and maintenance and an additional 650 Inco employees in Thompson were laid off. As Inco's workforce dwindled from over 4000 in the 1970s to around 850 in 2018, the economic driver of Thompson shifted to providing goods and services to the surrounding communities, earning Thompson the nickname, "The Hub of the North". Thompson covers an area of 20.79 square kilometers and is located on the Precambrian Canadian Shield. The city is bordered on the west and north by the Burntwood River. Thompson is located on the border of plant hardiness zones 1a and 1b, making outdoor commercial agriculture impossible; the dominant coniferous species are white spruce, black spruce, jack pine and balsam fir. White birch is the most common deciduous species. Hundreds of ravens, known locally as "Thompson Turkeys", reside in Thompson year-round. Many bird species visit Thompson and area in the summer to breed, such as herring gulls, bald eagles, golden eagles, sandhill cranes, common terns.
Beavers are ubiquitous with a few residing in the city limits. Red foxes can be found in Thompson. Black bears, less wolves, are spotted on the fringes of town. Moose and herds of boreal woodland caribou can occasionally be seen near Thompson. Seen predators outside of Thompson include the marten, the wolverine, the lynx. Thompson is marked with long cold winters and short warm summers. Monthly means range from −23.9 °C in January to 16.2 °C in July, the annual mean is −2.9 °C. A majority of the annual precipitation of 509 millimetres falls from June to September. Snowfall totals 187 centimetres per year, falling from October to May; the Thompson Regional Community Centre contains two indoor skating rinks, a large 6-sheet curling rink called the Burntwood Curling Club, a gymnasium, exercise facilities, a walking track. Spirit Way is a 2 km walking and biking pathway with 16 points of interest that highlight T
Portage la Prairie
Portage la Prairie is a small city in the Central Plains Region of Manitoba, Canada. As of 2016, the population was 13,304 and the land area of the city was 24.68 square kilometres. Portage la Prairie is 75 kilometres west of Winnipeg, along the Trans-Canada Highway, sits on the Assiniboine River, which flooded the town persistently until a diversion channel north to Lake Manitoba was built to divert the flood waters; the city is surrounded by the Rural Municipality of Portage la Prairie. According to Environment Canada, Portage la Prairie has the most sunny days during the warm months in Canada, it is the administrative headquarters of the Dakota Tipi First Nations reserve. The area was first inhabited by First Nations peoples, long before European settlers began to arrive prior to 1850. In September 1738, after the fur trade had extended into Western Canada. Pierre Gaultier de Varennes, sieur de La Vérendrye built Fort La Reine north of the Assiniboine River to serve as a fur trading post, provide the explorers with a "home" operating base, from which they would explore other parts of central Manitoba and western North America.
In 1851, Archdeacon William Cochrane of the Anglican Church, John McLean, as well as other ambitious settlers, were among the first to purchase the first land in the area from the local Aboriginals, around what is now Crescent Lake. A school was soon built as settlers poured in from the east, followed by a church, numerous local businesses as the community began to form; the fertile soils of the Portage la Prairie area were discovered in the 1850s, giving birth to the future agriculturally based economy of the village. A local government was formed in 1857, by the 1860s, there were sixty homes in the community; the 1870s was a decade of rapid growth, as many more settlers moved to Portage, establishing farms and opening new businesses. By this time, the village had an operating flour mill, a local newspaper, a community fair. From the 1870s to the 1880s, the community increased in population by 10 times. Freight and supplies were transported by oxcart and steamboat until the arrival of the Canadian Pacific Railway in 1881, the year Portage was incorporated as a town.
Thomas Collins was the first mayor of Portage la Prairie. In 1907, Portage was incorporated as a city, from that point on, managed to keep a gradual rate of growth and development, serving as a regional hub for agriculture, retail and transportation in central Manitoba. During World War II, the Royal Canadian Air Force constructed Canadian Forces Base Portage la Prairie in support of the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan; the station was controlled by the RCAF but used naval personnel as high-frequency direction finding operators. The station's priority was German U-boat traffic; this site and CFB Rivers located at Rivers, Manitoba helped to increase the fix accuracy immensely. Commercial cultivation of industrial cannabis was banned in Canada in 1938, but in 1928 1,640 acres of industrial hemp was grown in Canada, with 1,200 acres of that being in Portage la Prairie; the name of the city is derived from the French word portage, which means to carry a canoe overland between waterways. In this case the "portage" was over la prairie.
The city became a major transportation centre due to its proximity to the river, the location of the main lines of the country's national railways passing through the community. The CPR and Canadian National Railways intersect in Portage; this has made Portage la Prairie one of the most ideal places for railway aficionados to view trains. The Trans-Canada Highway, a major national transportation route, runs past the city and provides the community with business if highway travellers decide to make a trek into Portage. Since the land is fertile, with soils abundant in nutrients, Portage la Prairie is a major agricultural centre in Manitoba, in Canada; the rural area surrounding the community is undoubtedly a breadbasket in Canada, having some of the best soils in the country for producing a wide array of vegetables, berries and lentils. The city is known for its mature urban forest. A collection of some of the largest cottonwood trees in Canada line the west end of the main street known as Saskatchewan Avenue, along with many other varieties, are present throughout the city.
It is the home of former Prime Minister of Canada Arthur Meighen. According to Environment Canada, Portage la Prairie has the most sunny days during the warm months in Canada. Portage has a humid continental climate with cold, dry winters; the highest temperature recorded in Portage La Prairie was 41.1 °C on 11 July 1936. The coldest temperature recorded was −44.0 °C on 2 February 1996. According to the 2016 Census, Portage la Prairie was home to 13,304 people, a 2.4% increase from the prior census in 2011. The land area of Portage la Prairie is 24.68 km2
Winnipeg is the capital and largest city of the province of Manitoba in Canada. Centred on the confluence of the Red and Assiniboine rivers, it is near the longitudinal centre of North America 110 kilometres north of the Canada–United States border; the city is named after the nearby Lake Winnipeg. The region was a trading centre for aboriginal peoples long before the arrival of Europeans. French traders built the first fort on the site in 1738. A settlement was founded by the Selkirk settlers of the Red River Colony in 1812, the nucleus of, incorporated as the City of Winnipeg in 1873; as of 2011, Winnipeg is the seventh most populated municipality in Canada. Being far inland, the local climate is seasonal by Canadian standards with average January lows of around −21 °C and average July highs of 26 °C. Known as the "Gateway to the West", Winnipeg is a railway and transportation hub with a diversified economy; this multicultural city hosts numerous annual festivals, including the Festival du Voyageur, the Winnipeg Folk Festival, the Jazz Winnipeg Festival, the Winnipeg Fringe Theatre Festival, Folklorama.
Winnipeg was the first Canadian host of the Pan American Games. It is home to several professional sports franchises, including the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, the Winnipeg Jets, Manitoba Moose, Valour FC, the Winnipeg Goldeyes. Winnipeg lies at the confluence of the Assiniboine and the Red River of the North, a location now known as "The Forks"; this point was at the crossroads of canoe routes travelled by First Nations before European contact. Winnipeg is named after nearby Lake Winnipeg. Evidence provided by archaeology, rock art and oral history indicates that native peoples used the area in prehistoric times for camping, hunting, tool making, trading and, farther north, for agriculture. Estimates of the date of first settlement in this area range from 11,500 years ago for a site southwest of the present city to 6,000 years ago at The Forks. In 1805, Canadian colonists observed First Nations peoples engaged in farming activity along the Red River; the practice expanded, driven by the demand by traders for provisions.
The rivers provided an extensive transportation network linking northern First Peoples with those to the south along the Missouri and Mississippi rivers. The Ojibwe made some of the first maps on birch bark, which helped fur traders navigate the waterways of the area. Sieur de La Vérendrye built the first fur trading post on the site in 1738, called Fort Rouge. French trading continued at this site for several decades before the arrival of the British Hudson's Bay Company after France ceded the territory following its defeat in the Seven Years' War. Many French men who were trappers married First Nations women, they developed as an ethnicity known as the Métis because of sharing a traditional culture. Lord Selkirk was involved with the first permanent settlement, the purchase of land from the Hudson's Bay Company, a survey of river lots in the early 19th century; the North West Company built Fort Gibraltar in 1809, the Hudson's Bay Company built Fort Douglas in 1812, both in the area of present-day Winnipeg.
The two companies competed fiercely over trade. The Métis and Lord Selkirk's settlers fought at the Battle of Seven Oaks in 1816. In 1821, the Hudson's Bay and North West Companies merged. Fort Gibraltar was renamed Fort Garry in 1822 and became the leading post in the region for the Hudson's Bay Company. A flood destroyed the fort in 1826 and it was not rebuilt until 1835. A rebuilt section of the fort, consisting of the front gate and a section of the wall, is near the modern-day corner of Main Street and Broadway Avenue in downtown Winnipeg. In 1869–70, present-day Winnipeg was the site of the Red River Rebellion, a conflict between the local provisional government of Métis, led by Louis Riel, newcomers from eastern Canada. General Garnet Wolseley was sent to put down the uprising; the Manitoba Act of 1870 made Manitoba the fifth province of the three-year-old Canadian Confederation. Treaty 1, which encompassed the city and much of the surrounding area, was signed on 3 August 1871 by representatives of the Crown and local Indigenous groups, comprising the Brokenhead Ojibway, Long Plain, Roseau River Anishinabe, Sandy Bay and Swan Lake communities.
On 8 November 1873, Winnipeg was incorporated with the Selkirk settlement as its nucleus. Métis legislator and interpreter James McKay named the city. Winnipeg's mandate was to govern and provide municipal services to citizens attracted to trade expansion between Upper Fort Garry / Lower Fort Garry and Saint Paul, Minnesota. Winnipeg developed after the coming of the Canadian Pacific Railway in 1881; the railway divided the North End, which housed Eastern Europeans, from the richer Anglo-Saxon southern part of the city. It contributed to a demographic shift beginning shortly after Confederation that saw the francophone population decrease from a majority to a small minority group; this shift resulted in Premier Thomas Greenway controversially ending legislative bilingualism and removing funding for French Catholic Schools in 1890. By 1911, Winnipeg was Canada's third-largest city. However, the city faced financial difficulty when the Panama Canal opened in 1914; the canal reduced reliance on Canada's rail system for international trade.
Altona is a town in southern Manitoba about 100 km south-west of Winnipeg and 133 km north of Grand Forks, North Dakota. The population at the 2011 Census was 4,123 residents. Altona was founded in 1876 by Plautdietsch-speaking Mennonites from the Russian Empire, it is surrounded by the Rural Municipality of Rhineland. Much of the surrounding area is devoted to farming and agriculture-based business. Plautdietsch-speaking Mennonites from Russia began settling in Manitoba from 1874 through 1880 after signing a Privilegium with the Canadian government; the settlers were located in the Mennonite Reserve. This area, east of the Red River and south of the Seine River, became known as the East Reserve when another block of land west of the Red River, known as the West Reserve was granted for Mennonite settlement in 1876, which included the land to become Altona; the first settlement at Altona was made in 1880, by Bergthal Mennonites from the East Reserve nearby. A southern spur of the Canadian Pacific Railway went through the Altona village area in 1882.
A separate town-site named Altona, had its start in the 1895 when the Canadian Pacific Railroad was extended to that point, with the village area known as Old Altona. While Altona had a population large enough to support incorporation by the late 1920s, it took until 1946 for the community to be incorporated as a village, its population at that time was 1065 residents. In 1956, population growth to 1698 residents prompted the village council to apply to the provincial government to change the status to town; this change became official on 24 October 1956. The 2011 Canadian Census reported that Altona had a population of 4,088, a 10.2 per cent increase since 2006. Not given the town's Mennonite founders, of 3,990 respondents, 1,415 listed their mother tongue as German, though this may include Plautdietsch; the median age of the population reported. Altona was the site of the Rhineland Consumers Co-operative, the Altona Co-op Service, the Altona Credit Union and Co-op Vegetable Oils; these co-operative enterprises were a effective local response to the devastating impact of the Great Depression on local farmers' incomes.
Jake Siemens played an important role in their development, the growth of the co-operative movement in southern Manitoba. Bunge Limited now operates the oil-seed crushing plant in Altona, after buying the assets from Canamera Foods. Altona is home to Friesens Corporation, which started off as a small confectionery store opened by David W. Friesen in 1907 and now employs hundreds of people, it is the primary printer of yearbooks in North America, as well as printing in commercial consumer books, specializing in full colour art and educational books. The town is the headquarters for Golden West Broadcasting; the first Mennonite Central Committee self-help centre in Canada was founded in Altona in 1972. Staffed by volunteers, MCC Thrift stores now contribute about $4M annually to MCC projects; the store has been expanded numerous times, is still volunteer-run. The proceeds raised all go to MCC charitable projects. Altona, Manitoba is known as "The Sunflower Capital of Canada", is host to the annual Sunflower Festival, which began in 1965.
The Sunflower Festival has a Sunflower festival pageant where they crown a queen every year, who wins a trip to Australia. The festival includes a small midway, quilt show, baseball tournament, stage show, street dance to name a few. In 2008, the Town of Altona opened an Art Gallery and Sculpture Garden, displaying many different styles of artwork. Altona's sister city is Emerald, Australia; every year a Sunflower Festival is held in which a young woman in the community is crowned the Sunflower Queen and gets a flight to Emerald for free to participate in the Sunflower Festival held there. The community is home to the largest replica of a famous painting by Vincent van Gogh, it was named'The largest painting on an easel by The Guinness Book of World Records in 1998. It was the first of three works in the Big Easel Project by local artist Cameron Cross, based on the painting Sunflowers; the base stands at 76'6" and the canvas was made by laminating together 24 sheets of 3/4" plywood and splattering it with 17 gallons of paint to create the picture.
The Trans Canada Trail goes through Altona, heading south to Gretna and west to Rosengart through Buffalo Creek Nature Park. Oakview Golf & Country Club is located 9.5 km south of Altona. Altona Municipal Airport is about 2.8 km southwest of the town. Manitoba Highway 30 is the main north-south route, it begins in Gretna, passes on the east border of Altona to Rosenfeld. Manitoba Provincial Road 201 is the main east-west route. In the late 1990s the town, in partnership with various businesses and volunteers, embarked on an ambitious plan to improve recreation facilities. In 2000, the Altona Aquatic Centre opened to rave reviews, a trails system was started, in 2003 the Millennium Exhibition Centre opened; this 75,000 square-foot facility features an ice arena, curling arena, banquet hall, meeting rooms, running track, concessions and community spaces. Since other recreation facilities have been added such as a triples tennis court, a large playground, most in 2013 a $250,000 skate park, a second full size baseball diamond set to open in 2014 - to be known as Access Field.
Altona is the located in, home to the head office of, the Border Land School District. W. C. Miller Collegiate is the high school in the town. Other schools within Altona are École Elmwood School, École West Park School, an