Lethbridge is the largest city within southern Alberta. It is the 3rd largest following Edmonton and Calgary, and the fourth biggest in population after Red Deer, Calgary and Edmonton. Called the "Cultural Capital of Canada" for the 2004 to 2005 seasons, Lethbridge city is home to events and venues used for promoting the arts. The Allied Arts Council of Lethbridge is the biggest group which is devoted to preserving the local arts. Southern Alberta Art Gallery houses contemporary and modern artworks; the Bowman Arts Centre comprises three galleries, and the University of Lethbridge Art gallery has contemporary exhibitions that consist of works from its numerous Europeans, American and Canadian art collections. Music is likewise an essential part of the city's culture, and the Lethbridge Symphony Orchestra has been existing ever since the year 1960. Its spin-off music groups are the Southern Alberta Chamber Orchestra and Lethbridge Musical Theatre. Vox Musica is a part of University of Lethbridge's choir, whilst the New West Theatre is the university's theatre division. The Genevieve E. Yates Memorial Centre consists of two theatres: the 180-seat black box Sterndale Bennet Theatre and Yates Theatre.
Lethbridge has several historical attractions. One of the most popular ones is its steel trestle bridge: the Lethbridge Viaduct (also normally called the High Level Bridge). The last battle between the Blackfoot First Nations and Cree during the year 1870 is honored at the Indian Battle Park, in the coulees of the Oldman River. Nikka Yuko Japanese Garden (south of Lethbridge) was opened in the year 1967 to celebrate the centennial event that was attended by Japan's Prince and Princess Takamatsu. Galt Museum and Archives is considered to be the largest museum in the Lethbridge area, and its building was previously used as a hospital through the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Other well-known structures include the Alberta Terminals grain elevators and the water tower.
Half of Lethbridge's occupations come from service and trade businesses, with emphasis on finance/insurance, food processing, construction, real estate, construction, and public sector services. Several national businesses are based within Lethbridge. They include the Canadian Freightways, Taco Time Canada, H&R Transport and Minute Muffler. In 2006, the Economic Development Lethbridge had a joint partnership with Alberta SouthWest Regional Alliance and SouthGrow Regional Initiative to create the Southern Alberta Alternative Energy Partnership. Their merger promotes alternative energy, like for instance wind power, biofuel and solar power. During the year 2007, it was ranked as fourth among Canadian economic development groups for "volume of capital investment and job creation" by Site Selection magazine, and in 2007-2008, it won first place at the Economic Developers Association of Canada Awards.