Beiseker, Alberta Canada

Discover Beiseker, Alberta: A Rich Blend of History, Culture, and Community

The Historical Roots of Beiseker, Alberta

Beiseker, a quaint village nestled in the Canadian province of Alberta, lies approximately 70 kilometres northeast of Calgary. As an outermost part of the Calgary Region, Beiseker is included within Calgary's Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) and is surrounded by the rural beauty of Rocky View County. Its closest neighbouring communities are Irricana, Kathyrn, and Acme.

The village's history is deeply rooted in agriculture, thanks to its location in a belt of rich black soil. Founded by the Calgary Colonization Company in 1908, Beiseker was developed as an agricultural service centre to promote settlement and demonstrate the grain-growing potential of the area. The village was named after Thomas Lincoln Beiseker, a partner and vice president of the company.

The village began to grow in 1910 with the completion of the branch line of the Canadian Pacific Railway. The first general store opened in the same year, housed in a large two-story building that also served as the school and dance hall. The Grand Trunk Pacific line, now owned by the Canadian National Railway, was constructed in 1912 to the east of the central business district. Telephone service arrived in 1912, followed by electricity in 1928.

Beiseker's favourable location, at the intersection of Highways 9, 72, and 806, and its equidistant location from Calgary and Drumheller, allowed it to emerge as a local service and trade centre for the surrounding rural agricultural area. The village achieved its status in 1921.

Infrastructure in Beiseker, Alberta

Beiseker Community School, part of the Rocky View Schools system, serves the village, offering education from kindergarten to grade 12. The village is also home to Baptist, Catholic, and Anglican congregations.

Beiseker's strategic location at the intersection of three provincial highways, coupled with its campground and motel, makes it a popular stop for campers and travellers heading to and from Saskatoon and Drumheller. The community is also served by a small airport, located five kilometres east of town along Alberta Highway 9.

Arts and Culture in Beiseker, Alberta

Beiseker has been a popular filming location for several award-winning films and television series. Locations in and around the village were featured in Ang Lee's Academy Award-winning film, "Brokeback Mountain". In 2016, Beiseker was selected as a filming location for the third season of FX Network's show "Fargo", and an episode of TBS's series "The Detour". The village also hosted the production for the Netflix series "Black Summer" in 2018, and on-location shooting for "Ghostbusters: Afterlife" in 2019. In 2023, Beiseker hosted productions of "Wind River: The Next Chapter" and the fifth season of the "Fargo" TV series.

Meet Squirt the Skunk: The Mascot of Beiseker, Alberta

In the early 1990s, the Village of Beiseker began promoting itself with the mascot, "Squirt the Skunk". This included promotional items such as pins and postcards. A 13 ft statue of "Squirt the Skunk" was erected in the campground near Highway 72, and a costume was made for the mascot to appear at village events.

Demographics of Beiseker, Alberta

According to the 2021 Census of Population conducted by Statistics Canada, the Village of Beiseker had a population of 754 living in 314 of its 333 total private dwellings, a change of -7.9% from its 2016 population of 819. With a land area of 2.85 km2, it had a population density of 264.6/km2 in 2021. In the 2016 Census of Population, the Village of Beiseker recorded a population of 819 living in 331 of its 338 total private dwellings, a 4.3% change from its 2011 population of 785. With the same land area, it had a population density of 287.4/km2 in 2016.