Winkler is a city of about 12,500 people (2016) in the Pembina Valley of Central Manitoba. Along with the neighbouring community of Morden, it is the centre of a richly productive agricultural area, and home to a large Mennonite community.
European settlement of the area began in 1874 when German-speaking Mennonites from Russia began settling in the area. In 1996, two-thirds of its inhabitants claimed German heritage.
Winkler is the economic hub of southern Manitoba. Approximately 30% of the work force is employed in the industrial sector. The city's second-largest employer, employing 20% of the work force, is the health and education sector.
Winkler's agricultural sector is one of the most productive and diversified in Manitoba. The area surrounding Winkler is home to rich, fertile soils which are especially suited to growing potatoes. However, many other crops are grown in the area, including wheat, canola, corn and beans. The area's livestock operations also continue to grow; hogs and cattle are raised, while dairy farms contribute to the making of cheese.
Winkler's climate is typically continental, resulting in dry cold winters and hot, frequently dry summers. Summer temperatures typically range from 20 to 30 °C, while winter temperatures average between -15 and -25 °C. Winkler receives an annual average of 416 mm of precipitation (most of which falls during the spring and summer months) and 119.7 cm of snow.
- From Winnipeg: Take Highway 2 from Winnipeg, than turn onto Highway 3 at Elm Creek, then head east on Highway 14.
- From Highway 75: Take Highway 14 west.
There is no longer bus service from Winnipeg to Winkler (Jan 2018).
- The Pembina Thresherman's Museum, on Highway 3 between Winkler and Morden. It includes a number of historical buildings in a village setting and a collection of agricultural machinery, tools and household items, as well as a meeting hall.
- Bethel Heritage Park at the corner of Main Street and Pembina Avenue in Winkler features storyboards explaining the history of Winkler. Walk the pathways to learn about the Jewish, German and Mennonite settlers who first came to the area,then enjoy a picnic near the fountain.
- [dead link] Winkler Heritage Museum, in the Southland Mall. Tu-F noon-4 PM, Th F 7-9PM, Sa 10AM-4PM. The museum provides a glimpse into life in the early 1900s. Free (donations accepted).
- There are various art galleries in the region including the Pembina Hills Art Gallery in Morden, the Gallery in the Park in Altona, and Posers Gallery in Plum Coulee.
- Harvest Festival and Exhibition (the Main Entrance to the fair grounds is off of Park Street in Winkler), ☏ . Held at the Winkler Parkland in mid-August, it features a parade, midway, live stage entertainment, fireworks, rodeo. August 10, 11, 12 in 2018.
- Canada Day celebrations are held at the Winkler Parkland on July 1.
- The Cripple Creek Music Festival takes place on the fourth Sunday in July.
Farmer's Markets take place from late spring till early fall. Winkler's growers gather weekly at the Southland Mall parking lot on Tuesdays from 4-7PM.
- Ralph's German Restaurant & Cafe, Muirham Drive 551, ☏ . Daily 11AM-8PM.
- Flavors of Mexico, 370 Main Street (inside the Co-op Mall), ☏ . Tu-Sa 11AM-8PM.
- TiAnna's Cafe & Bakeshop, 390 1st Street, East Gate Mall, ☏ . 7AM-5:30PM.
|Routes through Winkler|
|Estevan ← Morden ←||W E||→ Carman → Winnipeg|
|Morden via ←||W E||→ ENDS at N S|