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Killarney is a town in Southwestern Manitoba, Canada, at the corner of Manitoba Provincial Trunk Highways 3 & 18. As of 2005[update], its population was approximately 2300. The incorporated town is surrounded by the Rural Municipality of Turtle Mountain. It is well known for its lake, situated within the town proper. The town of Killarney is located in a rural area, dependent primarily on agriculture and agribusiness. The town is approximately 20 kilometres from the US border, 100 kilometres south of Brandon and 250 kilometres southwest of the provincial capital, Winnipeg.
The Rural Municipality of Turtle Mountain area is rich in history and tradition. In the late 1800s, the Boundary Commission Trail ran through the southern part of the municipality. North-West Mounted Police used the trail, as they travelled west to the Rockies in an effort to tame the prairies. Prior to this time, the area was home to many Aboriginal people, as well as hunters and trappers taking part in the fur trade. The RM of Turtle Mountain was incorporated in 1882.
The Town of Killarney was officially incorporated in 1906. An Irish land surveyor named John Sidney O'Brien, named Killarney Lake(before that, it was called Oak lake by the aboriginal people) after the Lakes of Killarney, in Ireland. Legend has it that as he sat on the shore of the lake, homesick for his native home, he took a bottle of "Good Irish" from his pack and pouring it into the lake christened it Killarney. The "Irish"-ness of the town is often used as a tourist attraction with things such as green fire engines, Erin and Kerry Parks, Little Irish Downs, and many other good Irish-themed attractions used to play up this theme. It is worth noting however, that Killarney, Manitoba does not have any actual connection with the town of Killarney, Ireland. Most of the people who originally settled the region were from the Scottish Highlands, the English or were Mennonites or Hutterites of Central European extraction.
The local landscape of the area is common to the Westman area and much of the southern province. The land is mainly flat with gently rolling hills breaking the horizon. Numerous tree lined rivers and streams cross the landscape breaking up vast farm fields. The area is rich in agriculture with many local residents actively farming.
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