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The city of Owen Sound is in Grey County (Southern Ontario) and has a population of 21,753. The city is located at the mouths of the Pottawatomi and Sydenham Rivers on Owen Sound Bay. The city is the gateway to the Bruce Peninsula. The sister city of Owen Sound is Miamisburg, Ohio.
Owen Sound was originally known as Sydenham when it was first settled in 1841 and gained its current name in 1851. The city was incorporated in 1857. For much of its history, Owen Sound was a major port city, known as the "Chicago of the North". Its location on Georgian Bay gave it access to the upper Great Lakes, and major rail lines moved cargo south from there. Being both the gateway to cottage country, and in the heart of Ontario's beef, apple and corn region, farming and tourism are still integral parts of the local economy.
The City of Owen Sound was a 2004 Cultural Capital of Canada and is home to a number of cultural events and facilities. It is home to the Summerfolk Music and Crafts Festival, held every August, and the Festival of Northern Lights, a large Christmas lights festival with many displays along the Sydenham River, downtown, and in Harrison Park, held from November until January every Winter, as well as A Novel Marathon, a special event fund raiser for the Adult Literacy Program of the Owen Sound and North Grey Public Library.
In 2007 Owen Sound celebrated its 150th year since incorporation, with special events throughout the year highlighted by the 10-day Homecoming 2007 celebrations July 27 to August 5.