Stampeding Into Calgary
I’ve spent a lot of time in Canada — I’ve been going since I was a baby — but despite all the trips to Quebec and Niagara Falls and Prince Edward Island, I haven’t been further west than Ontario!
But last summer, I went to Mexico for my yoga and surfing retreat and met several lovely ladies from Calgary. The retreat was headed by two women from Calgary who work in the fitness scene, and several of their clients came over. I was the lone East Coaster!
And from what they told me, Calgary is a surprisingly cool city that I should take the time to get to know.
So what’s there to love in Calgary?
For many Canadians, this is the event of the year! The Calgary Stampede is a giant city-wide rodeo that goes on for ten days. It’s way more than just horses and cows — there are parades, concerts, chuckwagon races, barbecues, and LOTS of parties and nightlife. The best part? Everyone in town gets Westerned up, rocking their cowboy hats and boots!
My friends from Ontario make the trek out to Calgary every year for the Stampede. For them, it’s the biggest party of the year!
The Calgary Zoo is the second-largest zoo in Canada. It’s an immense place and the animals are organized by destination, with sections devoted to Africa and South America, but its true standout is the Canadian Wilds section, featuring bison, wolves, and grizzly bears.
Calgary Zoo is also leading in conservation projects, including a recovery station for the Vancouver marmot, and a Ghanaian hippo sanctuary. In the future, keep an eye out for penguins!
Calgary Local Food Scene
Calgary is a surprisingly popular destination for locavores — people who eat only local food. There are quite a few Farmer’s Markets, and more and more restaurants are specializing in local cuisines. Community gardens like the Cornucopica Community Garden encourage urbanites to try gardening for the first time.
So, what’s best in Calgary? As you’d expect, beef is very big in the Rocky Mountains. Popular vegetables are radishes, zucchini, beets, kale, and carrots.
Staying in Calgary
And where to stay? The Roseman Executive Suites in Calgary are ideally situated, only a 10-minute walk from downtown, with light rail only five blocks away. Sounds good to me.
Whenever I’m finally able to make it to the Canadian Rockies, you can bet I’ll be exploring all Calgary has to offer.