Maple Ridge - British Columbia

Maple Ridge is BC's fifth oldest municipality. In the past 20 years, probably due to construction of new residential subdivisions, the population has been increasing.

Between the 1996 and 2001 censuses, Maple Ridge's population grew 12.5%. Today the population stands at around 73,000. People who want a more urban setting live in residential areas like Maple Ridge, and commute to Vancouver for work. Nearly two-thirds of Maple Ridge workers, commute to other areas, including Vancouver.

A famous feature in the city is a clock with a statue of a giant horse on top. The horse has hinged joints and several times a day it will begin slowly moving until it's standing on its hind legs. Then it will slowly return to a standing position. There is a legend surrounding this "beast," which basically tells that Mother Nature sent this "beast" to earth to punish mankind for their disrespect for the Valley of Golden Ears in Maple Ridge.

As a city known for its natural setting, city planners are constantly conscious of the impact any new developments or commercialization/industrialization will have on the surrounding environment. The city has a large agricultural industry, but the soil and climate are not suitable for traditional crops. Instead, $40 million dollars of the city's 2001 revenue actually came from berry crops, nurseries and horse breeding. The city even celebrates the Blueberry Festival in mid August.

Theatre goers have the Maple Ridge ACT (Arts Centre and theatre) located in the downtown core. This non-profit community centre offers live theatre, music, classes, workshops and various events, and the facility hosts the Maple Ridge Art Gallery.

There are also several famous people who were born in Maple Ridge. These faces include NHL players Andrew Ladd and Cam Neely, race car driver Greg Moore, and country singers Rick Tippe and Aaron Pritchett.

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