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Celebrate Canada 150 with these weird things ‘Made in Canada’

Next weekend is Canada’s 150th birthday!!

Sure, you can celebrate by having friends over for a barbecue, or hitting Parliament Hill to watch the fireworks. But, why not go the extra mile by enjoying some of these totally weird things only a Canadian could invent:

Retractable beer carton handle: It used to be difficult to lug a 12-pack over to a friend’s house, that is until Steve Pasjack invented a retractable handle! The invention was dubbed the “Scarborough Suitcase” and is still used by Steam Whistle Brewery.

Caesars: This deliciously red drink made of vodka, tomato juice, clam juice, and Worcestershire sauce sounds disgusting, but it’s actually full of wonderful summer goodness. It was invented in Calgary and is usually served with a salt-rimmed cup, lime, and a stick of celery.

Milk bags: Seriously, the next time you meet someone who isn’t from Canada (or even Ontario), mention milk bags. It will totally freak them out. In most other countries, you get milk in a bottle or a box — that’s it!

Butter tarts: You are welcome world! Within a beautiful pastry shell is a gooey, maple-sugary center, topped with pecans, raisins, or other fun flavours. These delectable treats have a special place in the hearts of all Canadians, so much so that Ontario even has a festival dedicated to the dessert.

Nanaimo bars: Continuing on the sweets trend — did you know Nanaimo bars were named after the city in British Columbia? There is literally nothing like this beautiful melding of chocolate, butter icing, and coconut/wafer. Just don’t eat too many or the sugar rush may cause nausea.

Poutine: Ok, this one is obvious, but it had to be included in this list. Many countries have tried to replicate this great French invention, but any real poutine lover knows there is only one place to get it — Quebec!

Walkie Talkie: This wonderfully fun piece of technology was invented during the Second World War by a Canadian inventor named Donald Hings. It was originally called a “packset” and designed for bush air pilots to help them communicate in remote areas of the country.

Egg carton: A journalist from British Columbia named Joseph Coyle after he became frustrated that all his eggs were breaking in transport. It was patented in both the U.S. and Canada in 1918-19.

Basketball: This is another favourite claim of Canadians, so much so that it is one of the more popular heritage moments advertised on television. The game was invented by a physical education teacher who was working in the U.S. at the time. Dr. James Naismith was challenged to create a game that could be played indoors during the winter — and with the two-week deadline, basketball was what he came up with!

Wonderbra: Invented by a Canadian corset company, the Wonderbra was first released in 1939. The company expanded their brand, creating the first strapless bra in the 1940s and Canada’s first push-up bra in the 1960s. Canadian women really were ahead of their time.

Peanut Butter: A Montrealer was the first person to invent our favourite spreadable snack. It was originally created as a centre for candy, but luckily Mr. Marcellus Gilmore Edson patented the process of milling roasted peanuts, making him the official inventor of this delicious product.

Trivial Pursuit: To all those who love trivia night — be thankful that photo editor Chris Haney and sports journalist Scott Abbott got bored of playing Scrabble. It only took a few hours to come up with the concept, but it took a few years for them to hammer out all the details and find business partners willing to invest in this wonderful game. So brush up on your trivia knowledge Canada, as this is the perfect game to play come July 1st.

Did we miss anything? List your favourite Canadian inventions in the comments below!

Canadian women are taking home all the Olympic medals

Women are dominating at the Olympics in Rio, having won eight medals so far. The Canadian men have yet to take home a medal at all (although Canada is rooting for you!). Five medals were achieved in swimming, one medal in synchronized diving, one medal in lightweight double skulls, and the women’s rugby team took home a bronze. Clearly, Canadian female athletes are a force to be reckoned with and the best part is that the Games aren’t over with. There are still a number of key opportunities for even more Canadian women to bring home medals.

Here is the rundown.

Winners:

Canadian women came out strong in swimming, but there is one woman that is proving to be one of the next great Canadian athletes. Penny Oleksiak,16, won Canada’s first gold medal this year and is bringing a total of four medals home so far from these Olympics. She tied with U.S swimmer, Simone Manuel for gold in the women’s 100m freestyle swim, making her the first Canadian female swimmer to win gold since 1984 in Los Angeles. Oleksiak also obtained silver in the women’s 100m Butterfly and led the women’s 4x100m freestyle relay team to a bronze.  Oleksiak is from Toronto, and was joined on the podium by teammates Katherine Savard of Montreal, Brittany MacLean of Mississauga, and Taylor Ruck of Kelowna. Kylie Masse, 20, from LaSalle also won a bronze medal in women’s 100m backstroke.

Diving in a not-so-green pool on Tuesday, two Canadian divers took home a bronze medal. Hailing from Laval, Meaghan Benfeito, 27, and Roseline Filon, 29, won bronze at women’s synchronized 10m platform. The pair also won bronze at the 2012 London Olympics. They have been diving together for 11 years, and cited their friendship as a part of the reason for their success. Both women demonstrated Canadian pride upon winning their medal, and their humble appreciation for each other reflected the respect and vitality of the Canadian athletic spirit.

Women’s rugby wowed Canadian Olympic fans.. The sevens team took home bronze, beating Great Britain in the final match 33-10 and following New Zealand for Silver and Australia for gold. Canada’s women’s rugby team has dominated the summer Olympics, taking home a medal in every sevens event since its inception. Captain Jen Kish, 27, of Ottawa led her team to victory, along with other strong players Karen Paquin, 29, from Quebec City, Ghislaine Landry, 28, from Toornto, Bianca Farella, 24, of Montreal and Kelly Russell,29, from Bolton who all scored in the final game.

Women also came out on top in rowing, with two Canadian women taking home silver in women’s lightweight double sculls. Both hailing from Victoria, Lindsay Jennerich, 34, from Victoria and Patricia Obee, 24, showed off their impressive abilities to finish quickly. Coming into the 1000 metre mark, it looked as if they weren’t in for a metal, but entering the final 500m they pushed forward into second place.

More to come:

Trampoline Gold-medalist Rosie MacLennan.
Trampoline Gold-medalist Rosie MacLennan.
  1. Rosie MacLennan, Trampoline

The women domination of the Rio Olympics is not expected to slow down either, with more female athletes potentially winning medals over the next 10 days. Trampoline gold-medalist Rosie MacLennan, 27, hailing from Toronto was the only Canadian to obtain a gold in London, and there is a high expectation that another medal is in her future. MacLennan also dominated at the Pan American games in 2011 and 2015, and has won at the world championships. She was the flag-bearer for Canada at the Rio Olympics and big things are expected of her in today’s women’s trampoline event.

Women's soccer team captain, Christine Sinclair.
Women’s soccer team captain, Christine Sinclair.
  1. Christine Sinclair, Soccer

The women’s soccer team recently beat Australia in the tournament and has garnered a change to play for a medal.  Quarter-finals against France is on Friday, August 12 at 6 p.m. Soccer star and captain of the national team Christine Sinclair, 33, from Burnaby is hopefully leading the women’s team to another medal. Sinclair is an Olympic bronze medalist and has competed in three Olympics. Sinclair has scored in both of Canada’s victories so far in Rio and fans are avidly watching which moves she pulls next in the quarter-finals.

Golfer, Brooke Henderson.
Golfer, Brooke Henderson.
  1. Brooke Henderson, Golf

The Canadian professional golfer on the LPGA tour, Brooke Henderson, 18, from Smiths Falls has been dubbed the one to watch at the Olympics this year. Henderson is one of the best female golfers in the world and has been a professional since she was 14. She won the 2016 KPMG Women’s PGA Championship, which made her the first Canadian woman to win a golf major since 1968. The sport was removed from the Olympic roster in 1904, and this is the first time golfers have had a chance to compete on this international stage since. Henderson will compete on August 17, and will hopefully bring home another gold medal for Canadian golf in the Olympics.

Basketball guard, Kia Nurse.
Basketball guard, Kia Nurse.
  1. Kia Nurse, Basketball

The women’s basketball team will compete on August 12 against the United States, followed by Spain on August 14. They have won every game they have played so far against China, Serbia, and Senegal. Kia Nurse, 20, from Hamilton is the player to watch and is the top pick for the talent pool of the basketball team this year.  Nurse has previously helped her team win the 2015 Pan American Games and was also the MVP for the 2015 FIBA Americas Women’s Championship. Nurse comes from a strongly athletic family, with father Richard Nurse previously playing in the CFL, and mother Cathy Nurse played basketball at McMaster. Nurse’s brother Darnell Nurse currently plays for the Edmonton Oilers and her older sister, Tamika plays Basketball for Oregon.

The Fab IV. Taken from the Fab_IV twitter.
The Fab IV. Taken from the Fab_IV twitter.
  1. The Fab Four, Divers

Four divers in Montreal spend hours together in the pool and have become Canadian athletic icons. Benfeito, and Roseline Filion have already won bronze in the synchronized 10m dive. The other two contenders of the “Fab IV” on the Canadian diving team are Jennifer Abel, 24, from Montreal and Pamela Ware, 23, of Longueil. Abel and Ware missed a medal by one point at the Aug. 7 in competition, but still have another shot at winning in individuals coming up. The women’s 3m individual synchro final on Aug. 14.

Women are leading the way for Canada and it is exciting to see them continue to win more medals in Rio. By tuning in and showing support for these hard-working athletes, it demonstrates solidarity and passion towards Canadian women dreaming of being on that podium. I wonder, who will win next?