The Friendly Town. Almonte, Ontario.

Pronounced “AL-mont”. Named after General Juan Almonte (al-MON-Tay).

Previous name(s): Shepard’s Falls, Shipman’s Mills.

Population? About 5,000 (2013).

Although everyone calls it “Almonte”… in 1998, Almonte and the nearby townships of Pakenham and Ramsay were amalgamated into a new entity call the “Town of Mississippi Mills.”

That doesn’t stop big-time movie company Hallmark from coming in and using the gorgeous scenic mill town as a place to film many holiday movies such as ‘A Cheerful Christmas’, ‘Christmas Festival of Ice’, ‘The Rooftop Christmas Tree’ and more.


You want to get into your car and go there now huh? We don’t blame you.

Before Hollywood North, Almonte was home to many mills such as grist and saw. First started by Daniel Shepherd and then continued on to a different Daniel, Daniel Shipman, who developed the grist and sawmills and blacksmith’s shops, schools, and other ventures. What gave a name to Almonte though was the textile mills.

Almonte Grist Mill. Photo provided to by Michael Dunn



There was SEVEN mills operating at full capacity in Almonte for decades until the 1980s. Millwork was a family way of life, and passed onto generations. You may know someone who knows someone’s great-grandfather that worked in one of the mills. Although the mills turned into condominium projects, there is the Mill of Kintil Conservation Area to see, and the Mississippi Valley Textile Museum.

Old textiles not your thing? How about Waterfalls? Basketball? VW buses? Maybe even Highland Games!

Grand Falls of Mississippi Mills

Called the “Grand Falls of Mississippi Mills,” it was previously just “Falls No. 2″… We think it was a good idea to call it the Grand Falls… Because, well, look:

Photo by Mark Harris (
Photo provided to by Michael Dunn



Think white water rafting would have been invented here? Nope, the inventor of basketball, Dr. James Naismith was born and raised in the small gem of a town of Almonte, Ontario. He graduated from the town’s high school in 1883, then earned a degree in physical education from McGill University. There is a small museum in Almonte dedicated to him. He pinned two peach baskets to the wall and you could say the rest was “nothing but net.”


VW Bus Festival

Moving from sports, Almonte calls on the 1960s hippies and fans alike with the hosting of the annual VW bus festival called “BusFusion” every June. Enjoy all things hippy.


North Lanark Highland Games

Calling on the Scottish roots, last and not least is the North Lanark Highland Games! Twenty pipe bands, hundreds of dancers, and champion heavyweight athletes… You can unleash your inner Scotsman with the picturesque background of Almonte.

Photo from


Almonte has history, and is a place locals are proud to say “This Is My Town”. Whether it is history or festivals, this friendly town should be on your bucket list.


Filed under: #ThisIsMyTown, 1-for-country, This Is My Town