Town of Cardston
Population: 3585 (2016)
Located 45 minutes southwest of Lethbridge on Highway 5 and within sight of Montana and Waterton Lakes National Park, the Town of Cardston straddles the Lee Creek valley and serves as a shopping and tourist hub for southwest Alberta. The primary industries in Cardston are business and community service, retail and wholesale, construction, and public administration.
Horse-powered wagon trains carried devout Mormon pioneers from Utah to southwestern Alberta where, in the 1890s, they established large cattle ranches, laid out new towns, erected churches and most spectacularly a landmark temple. Today, Cardston is the unrivaled centre of Mormon life in Canada. Three-quarters of Town residents belong to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Social life revolves around commitment to family life, team sports, alcohol abstinence, and an attachment to horses, wagons, and Western equestrian culture. The legacy of the community’s roots can be seen in a claim to fame - the Remington Carriage Museum – North America’s largest collection of horse-drawn wagons and carriages.
Canada's only rodeo school is located in Cardston. Cardston’s status as the country's pre-eminent location of wagon teaming, coachmanship, rodeo, range riding, and thoroughbred racing contributes to the local economy, and is shaping new generations of equestrian enthusiasts.
- A statue of Fay Wray commemorates the locally born actress who co-starred with a mechanical gorilla and the Empire State Building in the 1933 film King Kong.
- A statue of locally born, world-renown jockey George Woolf and his most famous mount Sea Biscuit grace the grounds of the Remington Carriage Museum.
- Cardston Alberta Temple completed in 1923 was the first Mormon temple outside of the United States.
- Cardston's streets are unusually wide, calculated so that a team and wagon could easily reverse direction without backing up. That same road width remains today's municipal standard even for new streets.