Jeunes Citoyens / Young Citizens

Samantha Nepean, Ontario

Fair address: Ottawa Regional Fair

Project: The Contributions of Small Rural Communities to Bytown (Ottawa) and Beyond

When one looks at the history of Ottawa, there might be a tendency to dismiss the many little towns that exist in the peripheral area. This project explores what some of these small pockets of communities have given to the greater Ottawa identity. And these lessons can be applied to rural/urban divides throughout Canada.

What was the most interesting thing you learned about your topic?

The small rural pockets supplied Ottawa with its produce, dairy and meat, via stagecoach, and railways. Today, some of those railway tracks have been replaced with bike paths, but as one starts to explore what was, compared to what is, we start to realize that Ottawa is not a metropolitan area with different degrees of sameness. There is a rich history of diversity and uniqueness.

What important lessons have you learned that you want to share with other Canadians?

All of the different cultural groups within the rural areas I researched have contributed to the greater Ottawa identity by bringing their skills, experiences and perspectives. The stories of rural people have a tendency to be repeated nationwide. Ottawa is a microcosm in that sense. And as we celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary, that is a point we want to remember!

How would you compare your life today to the lives of those studied in your project?

My project spans a long period, beginning with Confederation, so there have been many technological changes. I think today we "feel" that we live busy lives. Between school, and extracurricular activities and our social lives, we allow ourselves to be stressed out. But while we complain about being busy, we should take some time to remember how intensive the labour was in the past. For example, today we have refrigerators. It seems overwhelming to imagine cutting and trying to preserve river ice to do the same job!

  • Dana

    Great presentation; great information; great effort; and you look so happy taking controls of the plane! Very cool!
    06/07/2017 9:31:01 PM

  • Tanya

    Very ambitious!
    06/07/2017 9:28:50 PM

  • Avah (your roommate)

    Wonderful project! good luck, and I can see a lot of research has been done!
    04/07/2017 4:15:52 PM

  • Adra

    very informative like that you went to so may locations
    29/06/2017 9:14:50 AM

  • wendy

    19/06/2017 11:38:01 AM

  • Vathsala Amuthan

    Well done Samantha!. This was really very well researched and quite interesting topic. So proud of you. Best of luck!
    17/06/2017 3:00:40 PM

  • Karen Reilly

    Well done Samantha! You have represented your community very well. so proud of you. from your family in Victoria BC
    15/06/2017 5:37:44 PM

  • J van Beek

    Well done Samantha! Very proud to have such talent representing our school and our city. Best of luck!
    13/06/2017 6:45:55 AM

  • Antonia Bos

    Very well thought out, with excellent presentation. Where others resent having to reduce their speed limit while driving through small towns, you saw the hidden story that rings true to most of us. It is the unexpected gem of story that stays with us long after hearing it.
    13/06/2017 2:32:51 AM

  • Lori Lalonde

    Well should be proud of this Samantha. Good luck!
    12/06/2017 2:23:28 PM

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Project partially funded by the Government of Canada through the Department of Canadian Heritage.
  • Canadian Heritage / Patrimoine Canadien
  • Government of Canada
  • HBC: Hudson's Bay Company
  • ecentricarts inc.