Scenery, Space and Solitude

For those who’ve had their fill of the hustle and bustle of the big city and yearn for a different way of living, perhaps it’s time to embrace the option of acreage life.

With Calgary surrounded by wide open prairies, rolling foothills and the majestic Rocky Mountains, opting to live outside city limits has some obvious advantages.

Debbie LeBlanc has spent the last 25 years living on an acreage between Cochrane and Calgary. Having previously lived in Calgary, LeBlanc says the move was encouraged in large part by the ability to be closer to the great outdoors.

“We’ve always liked camping and being outdoors, so we thought living on an acreage would be ideal. Plus I had a horse that I was boarding out and thought it would be great to have him with us on our own acreage.”

The ability to draw upon the experience of living in the city prior to becoming a rural Albertan has allowed LeBlanc to compare the two ways of life. While she admits there are a few more conveniences that come with city living, they’re outweighed by the unique advantages that come with country life.

“I do like our space and being able to look out at something other than the house and yard next door or across the street,” says LeBlanc. “In the city, you can hear everything your neighbor says next door, whether you want to hear it or not.”

However, the biggest advantage that comes with living in the country is the country itself. Providing both residents and wildlife alike with room to roam, the ability to be at one with nature is something LeBlanc says is an irreplaceable amenity.

“In the country, you hear the birds and the coyotes – I love that. I love the animals that come through – we have moose, deer, a couple of fox that live in our trees and muskrats in the pond – it’s great!”

Of interest to those living on acreages in and around Southern Alberta, Aggie Days will be taking place Apr. 12 and 13 at the BMO Centre in Stampede Park. Showcasing the same way of life found on farms and acreages across the province, those in attendance can enjoy many interactive agriculture activities including cow milking, sheep shearing, livestock auctioneering, the amazing corn maze, and much more.

The importance of Alberta’s rural economic activity was recently highlighted as part of the provincial government’s 2014 budget. According to numbers in the budget, Alberta’s yearly rural economic output amounts to $77 billion.

Also making headlines was the recent record listing of one Calgaryarea acreage. A 10-minute drive from the city, the 5,000 sq. ft. home sitting on 242 acres was listed for $37.88 million, which would represent the most expensive residential listing ever in the Calgary area.

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