St Pierre-Jolys

St-Pierre-Jolys, Manitoba, incorporated as a village in 1947, population 1099 (2011c), 839 (2006c). The Village of St-Pierre-Jolys is located 56 km southeast of WINNIPEG near the Rat River.

St-Pierre-Jolys, Manitoba, incorporated as a village in 1947, population 1099 (2011c), 839 (2006c). The Village of St-Pierre-Jolys is located 56 km southeast of WINNIPEG near the Rat River. The village has had several name changes. Its post office was first called Rat River in 1879 and changed to Joly in 1883. In 1897 its name was changed to Laurier and then to St Pierre, after Saint Peter. In 1922 "Jolys" was added to honour Father Jean-Marie Jolys, the first priest in the settlement. He encouraged the development of the village and the surrounding area.

History
The settlement first developed as a wintering place for cattle from St Norbert (see alsoST NORBERT PROVINCIAL HERITAGE PARK) and St Vital (now suburbs of Winnipeg). The first settlers in the area were Métis, but in the mid 1870s colonization societies, like the French Colonization Aid Society in St Boniface, tried to attract additional French-speaking settlers to Manitoba. A number of families from Québec and from among the Canadian population of Massachusetts were convinced to resettle in Manitoba here and in other communities along the RED RIVER, south of Winnipeg.

Present Day
Today St-Pierre-Jolys is primarily a service centre for the surrounding agricultural district. The majority of the population is still French speaking so the village has adopted a bilingual policy. Each year the village hosts the Frog Follies, which features the Canadian National Frog Jumping Championship. The French heritage of St-Pierre-Jolys is celebrated each spring during its Sugaring Off Festival.