Meet Sexsmith, a community in bloom with good vibes


Sexsmith, in the Grande Prairie region, is a northern prairie gem with photo hot spots, fun events, artisans, cafes and natural beauty. #exploreNWAB #GPtourism 

Sexsmith, AB — Long horizons, blooming flowers, a proudly restored grain elevator and friendly locals greet visitors on their arrival to the northern Alberta prairie town of Sexsmith, in the County of Grande Prairie. This picturesque town is a surprise to those who haven’t visited, for both its local hospitality and aesthetic beauty. 

Photographer Paul Lavoie, who hails from nearby Peace River, has gotten to know the community through several visits there over the last couple years. He talked to ZenSeekers to fill us in on some of the cool things to do, scenic highlights and surprises in Sexsmith.

WATCH: take a #behindthelens tour of Sexsmith’s scenic highlights

Watch Follow the flower to Sexsmith, AB on YouTube.

“What I really like about Sexsmith is the old 1900s style buildings, vibrant, painted and restored, really nice for the camera,” says Lavoie. “The colours really pop and it creates a really neat feeling in town. The flowers and gardens look great,” he sums up, from his recent June visit during Chautauqua Days. (His photos from the trip are spread throughout this story.) 

“It’s not your typical northern Alberta town. It’s a little more vibrant, active, lively and well cared for, you can tell the community is making an effort.” 

Take a relaxing trip to Sexsmith for good vibes, long northern days

That doesn’t just happen by chance in Sexsmith. Enter Melody Sample, the town’s dedicated wellness coordinator.

Wellness coordinator? Yep, you got that right. From regular fitness programs, to pickleball drop-ins, canning workshops and weekly Farmers’ Market, the Town of Sexsmith takes its GDH— gross domestic happiness—seriously. And that means cool things for locals and visitors alike.

Photo: Paul Lavoie
Among its wellness programs, the Town invites locals and visitors alike to join in on activities like pickleball.

In 2023, the town entered the Communities in Bloom program, and will be welcoming judges to assign its bloom rating. That includes a contest encouraging residents to showcase their green thumbs. 

“Even walking is so much better when you can walk in beautiful places or you feel like you’re in nature,” says Sample. “And we just finished the new dog park and it’s fantastic, with big old trees, lush and green.” 

The Town’s investment in wellness has a tangible impact, Sample believes. “It adds to quality of life; you can do more here, with less driving to access programs. It definitely creates community feel—you get to know the people here.”

You can expect a warm welcome, too, says Lavoie: “Every time you’re walking around people ask how you’re doing. At a festival like Chautauqua Days, it’s busy but everybody in the community is out, getting ready for summer, meeting their neighbours and having a good time.” 

When visiting Sexsmith, Lavoie shares three must-dos and tips for photo buffs. 

“First place I would go is around the historic grain elevator around sunset, play with lens flares on the building, or a long exposure with the elevator, and old CN rail cars, there’s lots of scenic stuff you can use. 

Another hot spot is the local campground. “There’s a little fishing pond inside the campground, with a fountain, all surrounded with trees, which makes a great setting.”

Photo: Paul Lavoie
Sexsmith teems with photo opps, from the grain elevator, to local nature scenes to long horizons.

And lastly, “one other thing about Sexsmith is, it’s a northern prairie town so you’ve got big horizons, lots of skies and in summer you can watch the sun setting for a long time, it’s not hidden by skyscrapers or big buildings.” 

Make a note and plan to soak in some of that beauty on your visit. Sample highlights a few of her favourites from a local perspective as well—checking out main street with its restored buildings, the town’s extensive walking trail system and the old boardwalk. 

Get in a Sexsmith visit for northern sun, prairie flavours and local vibes

And last but not least, the farmers’ market, says Sample: “It’s a community hub. That’s where people go to meet friends, have dinner and wander through the market. We’re only homemade, handmade, homegrown. Most are pretty immediate locals within 30 min to an hour, with an average about 30 - 40 vendors weekly." 

Some of her highlights? “The baking is fantastic, we have a local coffee roaster, a lady who makes all kinds of jams (with labels like traffic jam, or mash of berries) and of course the fresh produce grown on farms in our area.”

Photo: Paul Lavoie
Lavoie suggests hitting the patio at Crumbs for great views, food and brews to end your Sexsmith day.

Once you’ve explored all the town’s hotspots and photo opps, Lavoie offers a suggestion for a way to wind down: “At the end of our shoot we headed over to this cool little coffee shop, Crumbs, had some pizza and beer on the patio,” he recalls. “It was super refreshing on a hot summer day with views overlooking town.” 

Just one of several ways to catch one of those epic sunsets.


The Town of Sexsmith is found within the region of Grande Prairie. Grande Prairie Regional Tourism Association can connect you to information on where to stay, where to eat and things to do while in the region

Driving times & directions 
From Edmonton: 4h35min drive northwest via AB-16 to AB-43N 
From Grande Prairie: 20min drive north via AB-2N 

More about Sexsmith
Get to know more about the community and its history here

Sexsmith events
The Town has a lively events calendar where you can find info on wellness events, active living and community happenings. 

Sexsmith Farmers Market 
weekly, on Tuesdays from 4 - 7pm at the Sexsmith Curling Club

More #explorenwab adventures 
For more inspiration and travel tips around northwest Alberta, check out our #explorenwab expedition.

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