Wedding in BarrieBarrie is a city of 128,430 residents, the 35th largest municipality in Canada. It is located on Kempenfelt Bay, an arm of Lake Simcoe in Central Ontario, Canada. It is the county seat of Simcoe County.
The city's north and south ends are separated by a deep valley which contains the downtown area along Kempenfelt Bay.
At the north end of Barrie is the Highway 11 and Highway 400 interchange. Many consider this the gateway to northern Ontario resort destinations (referred to as cottage country).
Barrie is also home to the MacLaren Art Centre, an innovative art gallery that supports the visual arts in Simcoe County. It inspired the "Art City" project, which has had many different large sculptures installed around the city. These can be found in parks and along the scenic waterfront.
Barrie's downtown is situated in a bowl-shaped valley, surrounding the western edge of Kempenfelt Bay. Terrain is generally flat near the city's centre. Moving away from the downtown, the terrain becomes more uneven, with more rolling hills -- some quite steep. Over the years, the city has expanded its urban area beyond the confines of the valley onto higher ground surrounding the city.
The city does not have any major rivers within its limits, but does have numerous creeks and streams, all of which empty into Kempenfelt Bay.
There are several manufacturers currently located in Barrie and Canadian Forces Base Borden is nearby. In recent years Barrie has become a bedroom community for people who commute to Toronto, which is approximately 100km south of Barrie, or (more often) to the northern suburbs of Toronto in York Region.
Tourism plays an important role in the local economy. Barrie's waterfront is at the heart of its tourism industry, with events like the Kempenfest Arts and Crafts festival attracting more than 300,000 people. Recreational activities include skiing at nearby Horseshoe Valley, Snow Valley, Mount St.Louis Moonstone, and Blue Mountain as well as boating in Kempenfelt Bay. The city also boasts several beaches including Minet's Point Beach, Johnsons Beach, The Gables, Tyndale Beach, and Centennial Beach. Barrie's waterfront is currently under heavy construction, with the relocation of several roadways to provide more greenspace and parklands along the lakeshore. Being strategically situated between Toronto and Muskoka on Highway 400, Barrie is also considered the gateway to northern Ontario resort destinations (referred to as cottage country).
Barrie has two major school boards that operate inside the city at a public level. The Simcoe County District School Board administers a Public education in Barrie and Simcoe County, while the Simcoe Muskoka Catholic District School Board administers to the Catholic population and serves the Simcoe and Muskoka areas.