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Historical destination in our own backyard

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Danny Schur, local playwright and composer, teamed up with Canada’s History to tell Canadians about the wonders of St. Boniface.

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Danny Schur, local playwright and composer, teamed up with Canada’s History to tell Canadians about the wonders of St. Boniface. Photo Store

A local playwright and composer has teamed up with Canada’s History to tell Canadians about the wonders of St. Boniface.

Danny Schur, a Riverview resident and successful composer and producer of original musicals such as The Bridge and Strike!, was asked by Canada’s History to pick his favourite historical area in Canada. He said St. Boniface has always amazed him.

"You can walk around St. Boniface and I always say you can feel the ghosts of the 1820s to ’50s," said Schur.

On Oct. 1, Schur joined Canada’s History in launching its "Destinations" web page, where prominent Canadians have shared their favourite historical locations. Some include the Rideau Canal in Ottawa, suggested by author Charlotte Gray, St. John’s, N.L., suggested by actor Tom Jackson, and Sainte-Marie among the Hurons, suggested by former Governor General Adrienne Clarkson.

"We are urging people to have a national staycation," said Mark Reid, editor in chief of Canada’s History Magazine. "At the same time that we Canadians are jetting off to everywhere else, tens of thousands of people are coming right here to Canada and right here to Winnipeg. Why? Because they know something we forget."

Schur chose St. Boniface because of the history, and he constantly learns new things about the area and the history in it.

"There’s the grave of Louis Riel, how many people actually know that it’s right there in front of the cathedral?" said Schur. "The St. Boniface museum is the oldest building in Winnipeg, you go in there and it was built in 1844."

The website includes an interactive map plotting all the historical locations that people can visit. Reid emphasizes that the site is not just for historians or authors.

"This is really a tool," said Reid. "It’s a tool for anyone who is just planning a vacation…  there’s something for everyone when you go to these history sites. We created this literally for people to use as a tool."

For more information and to see the site, visit www.canadashistory.ca/destinations

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