In 1972, the analogue television signal in Fort McMurray lasted a few hours a day. It’s one of the curiosities that Roseann Davidson remembers best about her first six-month stay here, a reminder of how remote things were. Back then she made great friends in Fort McMurray, many of whom she kept in touch with after moving away with her family, to live in Saskatoon and Calgary.
When Roseann and her family returned to Fort McMurray in 2001, the place had grown and modernized, but the quality of community stayed the same. Neighbours offered to help with things. At the grocery store and on the street, people – strangers even – smiled and said hello. 13 years later, the spirit of the place still hasn’t changed. That small town vibe where neighbours help neighbours, strangers smile and wave at one another, and great friends are made for life remains firmly intact.