A portion of Westgrove Dr. renamed Nelson Dr., effective Dec. 1

A portion of Westgrove Dr. renamed Nelson Dr., effective Dec. 1

Spruce Grove City Council honours one of its founding families with road name change

On Dec. 1, the City of Spruce Grove will honour one of its founding families - the Nelson family - by renaming part of Westgrove Dr. to Nelson Dr.

The portion of Westgrove Dr. being renamed runs between Highway 16A and Jennifer Heil Way. City council unanimously voted to rename this stretch of Westgrove Dr. in December 2014, recognizing the Nelsons as one of Spruce Grove's pioneering families.

Residents and businesses affected by the name change were informed of the renaming in December 2014.

Meet the Nelsons

The Nelson family has lived in Spruce Grove since the early 1900s on a homestead located along Westgrove Dr., the portion of road to be renamed. For decades they ran a mixed farm on a half-section of land, raising chickens, pigs and cattle.

Over the last 100 years, the Nelsons have watched Spruce Grove grow from a small hamlet of only a few hundred people to the vibrant community that it is today. The family has volunteered countless hours to the development of programs for both children and youth as well as adult sports clubs in Spruce Grove.

Earl Nelson, the family patriarch, and his late wife Eileen were founding leaders of the Girl Guides and Scout programs in Spruce Grove. Additionally, they were integral in the success of the Spruce Grove Curling Club, together serving on the club's board for 25 years and as its presidents for six.

Their home, which received Municipal Historic Resource status in August 2012, was built with local materials in 1912. The 2,300-square-foot farmhouse is three-storeys, uniquely large for a home built before the First World War and is located on the original homestead.

For six generations, a member of the Nelson family has owned and lived in this house.

To date, the Nelson farmhouse remains the only property in Spruce Grove to hold Municipal Historic Resource designation and currently, Earl and Eileen's grandson, Wilson Nelson, and his wife, Danielle, are working to restore the property.

On Dec. 1 when this portion of Westgrove Dr. becomes Nelson Dr., the legacy of the Nelson family will be further cemented into the history of Spruce Grove.