Last year was another record one for babies in Alberta and the third consecutive record-setting year for births.
There were 51,443 babies born last year, topping the prior records of 50,543 in 2008 and 48,589 in 2007. The 2009 total is 1.8 per cent higher than in 2008 and 38 per cent higher compared to 2000, when there were 37,155 babies born.
In 2009, the province recorded the births of 26,390 boys and 25,053 girls.
Some parents were inspired by astrology, history, mythology and literature in choosing names such as Aragorn, Archimedes, Cyrano, Draco, Michelangelo, Neptune and Voltaire for boys and Calliope, Cinderella, Gemini, Hermione, Pandora, Perseus, Phantasia and Virgo for girls.
Several notable names were associated with celebrities, including four boys named Presley, two named Viggo, two named Orlando and one each of Costello, Ericlindross, Ledger, Obama and Sutherland. For girls, Grace-Kelly, Lennon and Sigourney were registered once each.
Geographic names were also represented in parents’ choices with Aztlan, Bronx, Cairo, Egypt, Nashville, Oakland, Reno, Rome and Venice for boys and Alabama, Britain, Jerusalem, Maligne, Montana, Manhattan, Persia, Tennessee and Tijuana for girls.
Families also chose such one-of-a-kind monikers as Argyll, Bison, Boss, Chaos, Cherubim, Dice, Helix, Kal-El, Lightning, Morpheous, Mystery, Thunder and Whip for boys and Albertarose, Amazyn, Comfort, Epic, Fury, Fyre, Halleluya, Infiniti, Mischiefs, Mystique, Peanut, Twinkle, Victory and Whysper for girls.
Alberta parents showed their creativity with different spellings for names such as Phoenix, with variations including Feenix, Pheenix, Phoeniks and Phoenyx; and Lincoln, with Lincon, Linkon, Linkyn and Lynkyn.