December 7: Artist Barone; Queen's portrait; Hotel Fort Garry blaze; Grey Cup's first Western champs.

Winnipeg Blue Bombers 1935
December 7, 1935 - The 'Winnipegs' defeat the Hamilton Tigers 18-12 to become the first Western Canadian team to win the Grey Cup (it was cup number 23 !)

Fritz Hanson scored a 78 yard touchdown seal the game. He led the Blue to two more Cups. 

The late, great Fritz Hanson scored a 78 yard touchdown to guarantee the win. He led the Blue to two more Cups. 

December 7, 1878 - The first train from St. Paul, Minnesota arrives in Winnipeg.

December 7, 1971 – Fire breaks out on the 7th floor banquet level of the Hotel Fort Garry. All 95 guests get out safely. 

Fire and water damage to the top three floors was heavy but the first three floors remained open while the building was renovated.

December 7, 1954 - The St. Ambroise Dakota Entrenchment, near St. Ambroise in the R.M. of Portage la Prairie, is designated a Provincial Heritage Site.

Churchill Skies
December 7, 1770 - Arctic explorer and Hudson Bay Co. factor Samuel Hearne leaves Prince of Wales Fort in Churchill to start his third and most famous attempt to find a western passage. He would reach the Arctic Ocean in July of the following year.

December 7, 1979 - A giant portrait of Queen Elizabeth II is unveiled inside the Winnipeg Arena prior to a game between the Jets and Edmonton Oilers. The Free Press reported that: "It was enthusiastically received, though everyone in the crowd was not a monarchist."  

For more on the Winnipeg Arena's two royal portraits and their artist.

Boissevain, Manitoba
December 7, 1992 - Artist George Barone dies. In the 1960s he created a new method for building large sculptures using foam and fibreglass and used it to create larger than life roadside attractions for many Manitoba towns: the Gimli Viking; Hi Neighbour Sam; McCreary's Skier just to name three. 

For more about Barone and his work.

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