Over 50 people joined local historian Michael Dawe Sunday afternoon to learn about the rich history of downtown Red Deer.

Dawe spoke about its peak and decline and numerous attempts of revitalization.

Dawe said the 1930s, 40s and 50s were the golden years of the downtown core, when almost every business was situated in one location.

“When you talk about things like events, people, businesses and public services, you can all point to them by walking around downtown because that’s where it all happened.”

As time went on, Dawe said people started moving their business outside of the downtown which caused the decline.

“They started spreading out when they added the Parkland Mall, the Bower Mall and now we have the commons as they call them on the south and north ends of town."

With that being said, Dawe believes the city is currently moving in the right direction in trying to revitalize the area.

“Red Deer has done some really good things in the last few years in terms of building up. We’ve seen some specialty restaurants, specialty coffee shops and the Welikoklad Centre for an art centre.”

“We are getting some things down there that is making the downtown a livelier place.”

The tour was all part of the many Jane’s Walks taking place this weekend, where people get a chance to hear stories about their communities, explore their cities and connect with neighbours.