At the south end of town near the community college, a shabby collection of decrepit buildings cluster in a small greenspace. If it weren't for the sign, you might guess this was a long-since abandoned settlement -- and in some ways, it is. The buildings date from 1900 to 1940, some of them moved here for this purpose, and are plucked from Fort McMurray's rough-and-tumble early pioneer days. Fort McMurray Heritage Park certainly lacks the amenity surfeit of, say, its namesake in Calgary, but it's an interesting, if brief, diversion into some of the local history and characters that committed themselves to this distant northern outpost before there was any kind of economic imperative to be here. As you stand in the old Hill family house, a cramped wood-frame structure, try to imagine the chill of -50°F (-46°C) outside and you'll have a taste of determination at its most extreme.
- © Frommer's 2013
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