Sables-Spanish Rivers

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Sables-Spanish Rivers
Township (single-tier)
Township of Sables-Spanish Rivers
Welcome sign along Highway 17
Welcome sign along Highway 17
Sables-Spanish Rivers is located in Ontario
Sables-Spanish Rivers
Sables-Spanish Rivers
Coordinates: 46°14′N 82°00′W / 46.233°N 82.000°W / 46.233; -82.000Coordinates: 46°14′N 82°00′W / 46.233°N 82.000°W / 46.233; -82.000
Country  Canada
Province  Ontario
District Sudbury
Established January 1, 1998
 • Type Township
 • Mayor Leslie Gamble
 • MP Carol Hughes (NDP)
 • MPP Michael Mantha (NDP)
 • Land 815.21 km2 (314.75 sq mi)
Population (2016)[1]
 • Total 3,214
 • Density 3.9/km2 (10/sq mi)
Time zone EST (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
Postal code span P0P
Area code(s) 705

Sables-Spanish Rivers is a township in Ontario, Canada, on the north shore of Georgian Bay. It is located in the Sudbury District, approximately 70 kilometres (43 mi) west of Sudbury.

The township was created in 1998 by amalgamating the former towns of Massey and Webbwood with the township of Spanish River and the unorganized geographic townships of May and Shakespeare, and was named for Massey's location at the junction of the Spanish and Aux Sables rivers.

The township's population was 3,214 in the Canada 2016 Census. The municipal offices are located in Massey.


  • 1 Communities
  • 2 Demographics
  • 3 Transportation
  • 4 Media
  • 5 Culture
  • 6 Famous people
  • 7 Recreation and sports
  • 8 See also
  • 9 References
  • 10 External links


Massey (46°12′50″N 82°04′30″W / 46.21389°N 82.07500°W / 46.21389; -82.07500) is located at the junction of the aux Sables and Spanish Rivers, close to the northern shore of Lake Huron. Chutes Provincial Park is one of its principal attractions. Massey is one of several sites that claim to be the home of broomball.

Walford (46°12′18″N 82°13′48″W / 46.20500°N 82.23000°W / 46.20500; -82.23000) is the westernmost community of the township located along Highway 17. Its economy is primarily based on logging and mining. The old Walford fire tower still stands north of the village on Tube Lake.

Webbwood (46°16′12″N 81°53′24″W / 46.27000°N 81.89000°W / 46.27000; -81.89000) was incorporated as a town in 1906. On January 21, 1910, a train derailment in the community killed 42 people.

The hamlet of Lee Valley is divided between the municipalities of Sables-Spanish Rivers and Espanola.


Canada census – Sables-Spanish Rivers community profile
2011 2006
Population: 3075 (-5.0% from 2006) 3237 (-0.2% from 2001)
Land area: 815.80 km2 (314.98 sq mi) 806.27 km2 (311.30 sq mi)
Population density: 3.8/km2 (9.8/sq mi) 4.0/km2 (10/sq mi)
Median age: 43.5 (M: 43.4, F: 43.7)
Total private dwellings: 1625 1701
Median household income: $40,527
References: 2011[2] 2006[3] earlier[4]

Population trend:[5]

  • Population in 2011: 3075
  • Population in 2006: 3237
  • Population in 2001: 3245
  • Population total in 1996: 3535
    • Massey (town): 1171
    • The Spanish River (township): 1598
    • Webbwood (town): 563
  • Population in 1991:
    • Massey (town): 1186
    • The Spanish River (township): 1636
    • Webbwood (town): 588


All three of the township's main communities are located directly along Highway 17. Massey is located at the junction of Highway 17 and Highway 553.


The township is served primarily by media from Sudbury, Elliot Lake, Espanola and Little Current.

In 1995, The Canadian Wildlife Experience Inc. received a licence to operate a new low-power tourist information radio station to serve Massey, Walford and Spanish, Ontario at 98.5 MHz, during the spring, summer and fall seasons. The call letters were CJWE-FM. It is uncertain if the station is still currently in operation. [6]


Massey hosts an annual Street Painting Festival in September of each year.[7] The community also hosts an annual fair in late August, which celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2006.

Massey holds a fall fair every year at the fairgrounds. There are rides, contests, prizes, many games and even more vendors. A crash-up car derby has been recently been added along with a four-wheeler mud bog competition. In 2008, the classic car show at the fair was very small compared to the years before so it may be cancelled. There are motocross races, horse pulls, and horse shows there as well.

Famous people[edit]

The citizens of Webbwood elected Canada's first female mayor, Barbara Hanley, in 1936.[8]

Massey is the birthplace of artist Robert Lougheed and former NHLer Pete Horeck. It is also the hometown of writer and former bank robber Stephen Reid and the current home of poet Charlie Smith.

Theodore Drake, one of the inventors of Pablum, was born at Webbwood.

Recreation and sports[edit]

The Massey District Community Centre and Arena is located in Massey, and plays host to the Massey Predators Minor Hockey Association and the Massey and District Figure Skating Club. The Massey Marathon is held annually using the arena as a centre for registration and award ceremony. The marathon is now in its 33rd year and is a qualifier for the Boston Marathon. The township is also the home of Chutes Provincial Park.

See also[edit]

  • List of townships in Ontario
  • List of francophone communities in Ontario


  1. ^ a b 2011 Census Profile
  2. ^ "2011 Community Profiles". Canada 2011 Census. Statistics Canada. July 5, 2013. Retrieved 2012-02-15. 
  3. ^ "2006 Community Profiles". Canada 2006 Census. Statistics Canada. March 30, 2011. Retrieved 2011-04-11. 
  4. ^ "2001 Community Profiles". Canada 2001 Census. Statistics Canada. February 17, 2012. 
  5. ^ Statistics Canada: 1996, 2001, 2006, 2011 census
  6. ^ Decision CRTC 95-796, New low-power FM radio station, CRTC, November 1, 1995
  7. ^ Massey Street Painting Festival
  8. ^ "History Made in Webbwood When Woman Mayor Elected". Sudbury Star, January 6, 1966.

External links[edit]

  • Township of Sables-Spanish Rivers