Urban Legends of Canada

A collection of distinctly Canadian urban legends.

Published Jun 30, 2014

In celebration of Canada Day (July 1), we've put together a collection of legends featuring the people and customs of the Great White North:

1) Getting the Points

National flags are often full of meaning and symbolism. Legend holds that the eleven points on the maple leaf of Canada's flag represent the number of Canadian provinces and territories.

2) Canada Dry

The Canada Dry company isn't based in Canada, and its products — soft drinks — aren't dry in nature. So why is it called 'Canada Dry'?

3) Guilt Edged

When Canadian police stop a malfunctioning vehicle, the American occupants immediately assume an "about to be frisked" position.

4) Toronto's Clean Streets

It's the ultimate "Canada is so clean!" tale: A Toronto film crew returning from a break found their intentionally garbage-strewn street had been cleaned by sanitation workers.

5) Fur the Queen

Remnants of empire: Legend holds that in accordance with a requirement of their original Royal Charter, the Hudson's Bay Company of Canada makes annual payments of elk and beaver pelts to the Queen of England.

6) Nicotine Non-Fit

Why is the coffee from the Tim Hortons chain of stores so invitingly good? Rumor claims it's because Tim Hortons adds nicotine to the brew to keep their customers hooked on it.

7) King of Cups

The misadventures of hockey's Stanley Cup, including its once having been left in a snowbank.

8) Red Ensign Scare

Frightened Americans used to look for Soviet Communists under their beds. Canadians topped that by looking for American flags over their Parliament.

9) A Loon Way Home

The story of why a loon appears on Canada's one-dollar coin: because the original dies, featuring a different design, were lost in transit.

David Mikkelson founded the site now known as back in 1994.

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