Winnipeg is the capital and largest city of Manitoba, Canada, and is the primary municipality of the Winnipeg Capital Region, with more than half of Manitoba's population. It is located near the longitudinal centre of North America, at the confluence of the Red and Assiniboine Rivers (a point commonly known as The Forks).
The name "Winnipeg" comes from the Cree for "muddy waters." The Winnipeg area was a trading centre for Aboriginal peoples prior to the arrival of Europeans. The first fort was built there in 1738 by French traders. A settlement was later founded by the Selkirk settlers in 1812, the nucleus of which was incorporated as the City of Winnipeg in 1873 with a population of 1,869. Winnipeg is the seventh-largest municipality in Canada, with a population of 663,617 in the Canada 2011 Census.
Winnipeg has a diversified economy, with sectors in finance, manufacturing, food and beverage production, culture, retail and tourism. Winnipeg is a major transportation hub, served by Richardson International Airport. The city has railway connections to the United States and Eastern and Western Canada through three Class I rail carriers.
Winnipeg's cultural organizations include Manitoba Theatre Centre, Manitoba Opera, the Royal Winnipeg Ballet, Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, Manitoba Museum, Winnipeg Art Gallery and Le Cercle Molière. Some of the city's popular festivals are the Festival du Voyageur, the Winnipeg Folk Festival, the Winnipeg Jazz Festival, the Winnipeg Fringe Theatre Festival, and Folklorama. Professional sports organizations based in the city include the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, the Winnipeg Jets, and the Winnipeg Goldeyes. Winnipeg's universities include the University of Manitoba, the University of Winnipeg, Canadian Mennonite University and University of St. Boniface (formerly known as St. Boniface College).