Provision of contextually appropriate opportunities for participation in recreation and leisure: A Case Study of Fort McMurray, Alberta

Authors: Leith Deacon*, University of Alberta, Trina Lamanes, University of Alberta
Topics: Resources
Keywords: recreation, resource-based communities, leisure, community
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/13/2018
Start / End Time: 5:20 PM / 7:00 PM
Room: Grand Ballroom B, Astor, 2nd Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


Canada has excelled in transforming its vast endowment of natural resources into world-leading resource industries. The natural resource sector is a significant component of the national, provincial, and territorial economies and contributes to high living standards for Canadians. The sector accounts for nearly 15 per cent of Canada’s nominal gross domestic product (GDP) and nearly 800,000 jobs. The potential for continued growth in the natural resources sector remains strong; there are currently over 600 major Canadian resource projects planned over the next 10 years representing over $650 billion in investments. This paper examines the unique challenges associated with providing appropriate opportunities for participation in recreation and leisure within a resource-based community (RBC) and the opportunities that exist for industry, municipal government, and volunteerism to become actively involved. Using Fort McMurray, Alberta, Canada as a case study, results are based on 25 semi-structured qualitative interviews that occurred between 2015-2016. Findings illustrate some of the challenges associated with the provision of opportunities for residents to develop a sense of community and place attachment and highlight the need for a flexible system of delivery that reflects the user population.

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