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The Final Frontier—a visit to Vulcan.


Vulcan is prairie town in southern Alberta of about 2,000 residents, located mid-way between Calgary and Lethbridge.  It was named in 1913 by a Canada Pacific Railway (CPR) surveyor who had a fondness for Roman Mythology, designating the town after the god of fire.

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In the last half century the farming community of Vulcan began to see a new path.  The town shared its name with the home planet of one of Gene Roddenberry's popular characters, the logical Mr. Spock.  This tie to Star Trek was something that has developed to the point where in 2010, Vulcan, Alberta, was formally recognized as "Official Star Trek Capital of Canada".

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As small prairie towns go, this one is unusual and interesting to visit.  Your first stop in Vulcan should be to its Tourism and Trek Station, which opened in 1998.  Here you can get detailed information and maps on tourist attractions in and around the town of Vulcan and Vulcan County. Trek Station is built to resemble a landed spaceship, and provided last week's One Clue Mystery.  It was recognized by George G and Jonathan L -- congratulations!

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The Trek Station is well worth exploring and there's no admission fee.  There are a few items in it related to the town's founding and agricultural background, but everyone's there to see all the cool Star Trek stuff on display.  So let the tour begin.

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While not that flashy, it took time and loving care to assemble the collection of memorabilia you can see in the Trek Station, including signed photos of cast members....

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There's an interesting collection of costumes, only some of which are shown here....

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There's even a Captains chair on display, but no Captain James T. Kirk waiting to sit it....

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14 VulcanThe main hall of the Trek station is designed to give you a feeling of being in space, with planets orbiting above.  In this space you'll see a large collection of Star Trek collectibles the likes of which you've not seen since visiting the lair of a 35 year old Trekkie living in his parents' basement.

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Trek station has an interesting gift shop with "must-have" swag items every Trekkie needs, some of which are shown below...

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Time to leave the Visitor Center and head into town.  There's several interesting sites for Trekkies including a nice replica of the USS Enterprise, completed in 1995....

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A shuttle craft....

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A clever mural featuring all of the Star Trek series doctors....

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Vulcan displays a lot of Star Trek related signage around the town, a sampling of which follows....

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I was quite impressed at how the community has developed this unusual identity that differentiates it from hundreds of other small towns.  Besides, Star Trek is fun!!

The town has an annual gathering/convention of Star Trek fans called "Spock Days", although 2020s was canceled because of CoVid.  Still there are thousands of people who visit the town each year because of its Star Trek connection.  I was just one of them.


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Twitter: @DrFumblefinger

"We do not take a trip, a trip takes us".  John Steinbeck, from Travels with Charlie

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