Middle Class Traveler

Adventures of the Middle Class

Tag: Calgary

Calgary Stampede Day 3 The Rodeo


Calgary Stampede Day 3 the rodeo started off wonderful. We had left our hotel and ventured down to the park where they had pancake breakfasts for everyone. The food was amazing and to my surprise the pancake breakfast they fed everyone was featured with bacon! Who doesn’t like bacon right!

So after we had our bacon pancakes, which were free, we took a walk back down to the Stampede grounds where we would check out the Rodeo on our final day. The rodeo if you don’t know is a very awesome event where there is bull riding and horse riding and really a whole bunch of different events, I would say this was the best part of the stampede for us. During the rodeo I was actually saying how this is one event I would come back to watch again.

During the rodeo the 50/50 draw was around $50,000 but unfortunately we didn’t win. The rodeo wasn’t the only thing going on that day as they still had all the other festivities outside the arena and we did manage to get our hands on some more of the amazing food that was being cooked up. We did get deep fried chocolate chip cookie dough and other things like that. I will say again that the people of Calgary put on an amazing event and fortunately it as very inexpensive in comparable standards to what I thought it would be. To give you an idea it was roughly $7.50 for a beer and most of the food you could buy was under $15  so in my opinion it was affordable. I really did expect to pay more for everything.

To end the trip on such an amazing not was really worth while. They had been calling for rain the whole time we were there and it held off just until the rodeo was done for us. We ended up taking there subway or street car system back to our hotel after the rodeo and caught up with some friends who have moved there a while back. I would definitely recommend the stampede to anyone who hasn’t been. Calgary was such a beautiful city and we had such a wonderful time.

To see more of our trip to the stampede you can also visit our Facebook page at here.

Calgary Stampede Chuckwagon Races Day 2

Day two of our trip to the Calgary Stampede started off an early one, but we were eager to see the chuckwagon races. We were awoken to the band practicing in the park across the street from our hotel and since our room was facing the park it just went right through. So we decided to get out of bed a little early and go see what was up around town.

When we decided to leave the hotel and venture out the Calgary Stampede Parade was just about to start and the streets were packed. We tried to get a spot somewhere that was close enough to see. The spot we did get wasn’t the greatest but it  worked and we got to catch a good portion of the parade. 

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When we decided to leave the parade we walked a couple blocks down and through some back lanes to get to the other side but the parade was so massive we weren’t able and we would have to wait. We decided to take a walk down by the Bow River and since it was just behind our hotel we didn’t have far to walk. The views were nice and the bike path that they have installed in that section is pretty remarkable. Coming from a city with one bike path and narrow streets because of the geology I enjoyed the sight, it was a good change.

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We decided to head back over to the parade sight to see if we could find a way through and by the time we came back the parade was almost done. When the parade finished at our end it had to make its way around which took about an hour and a half to two hours so we had lots of time to see the close attractions by our hotel before we could make our way to the Stampede Grounds. 


Hotels.com: $99 or Less

The art that was available to see was pretty remarkable. All of the parks had statues and sculptures and they were all packed with visitors who undoubtably finished a free breakfast that was being served daily! The hospitality the city gives is unlike something I have yet to see. It is really almost every park, and there is lots, that gives out pancake breakfast everyday during the stampede. 


Once the parade was done we were able to make it over to McLeod street which would bring us right to Stampede Park. Before we came to the stampede we had purchased the Chaps and Chucks package and we were scheduled to see chuckwagon races at 7:45 p.m. so we had all day to do some exploring.

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We arrived at the Stampede grounds around 1 p.m. and we had entry because of our package. When we got inside we were blown away. Food truck after food truck after food truck all with funky foods! You could get chicken on a stick breaded in Frosted Flakes and deep fried, which I did on day 3 to deep fried cookie dough. The food was amazing and the first thing I got was a foot long hotdog, wrapped in bacon with onions, pizza sauce and pepperoni! mouth watering yet?! It was all out and the prices were awesome. I paid $14 for this hotdog and it was worth it. Most of the stuff ranged between $6-$14 with the exception of freshly squeezed lemon-aid which was $3.75 or something like that! Can you imagine? a festival like this and not being gouged. It is unheard of in Ontario, seriously. 

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Maybe it was the price of oil and the organizers wanted to attract people to the events, who knows, but we found it inexpensive for what it was. Later in the afternoon while finishing up on gluttonous behaviour we walked around the grounds and made our way to the Saddledome. They had some horse stuff inside and decided to check it out. We entered the Saddledome through a country and western bar, at least that is how it felt. We then made our way through the dinning are to the arena. Once in the arena we had amazing seats about 10 rows up to watch some horse competitions.

After spending some time here we decided to go get something to drink and eat in the bar. We had a couple drinks and some deep fried pickles and it couldn’t have came to $20 with tip. Really nice atmosphere in the bar and once we were done there we decided to head back to the hotel for a rest before we would come back for the evening at the chuckwagon races.

Later on that evening we walked back to the grounds which was about 20 minutes from the Delta. We seen PETA outside protesting and ironically they had a woman protesting while holding a leather purse, fail! So we entered the grounds and headed to our event. When we arrived at the Stampede Stadium we entered the South Entrance and with no wait at all and about 30 minutes early at the most we headed to the second level to grab some drinks and check out our seats. we had some pretty good seats and we enjoyed the chuckwagon races. 

The chuckwagon races ran without any incident. I was a little surprised to be honest. One tip if you ever see chuckwagon races, never take the outside lane because for some reason they tend to line them up in a manor that makes it impossible for them to win. I also found it odd there was no gambling on who would win. Maybe there was but we didn’t see it. The 50/50 draw was also over $30,000 so it was nice to see that. 

Once the chuckwagon races were complete we headed in to look around at the gift store which is located on the first floor. After we did this we got a few more drinks and headed inside to watch the evening entertainment and the fireworks. The one thing I found very surprising was the comradely with the people of Alberta. During the show they had bits about the Wild Fires in Fort Mcmurray and some were crying and some were giving a standing ovation to the fire fighters. It was nice to see the pride and spirt of Albertans. You don’t see that now days. 

The show we seen after the Chuckwagons had everything from Motocross Bikes doing back flips and superman tricks to piano’s being carried through the air while being played. This was a production in a half and was very well done. They also had the roughnecks, which is what they call the oil and gas workers, assemble an oil rig in a competition to see who could do it the fastest. Awesome stuff if you like the entertainment. Last but not least the evening ended with a fireworks display that would top Ottawa on Canada Day. I swear all I could think is Oil Money when the show was going off. It was loud and continuous for 20 minutes maybe and it was one after the other, great stuff. 

My next blog about the stampede will be my final one and will be about day three and the bull riding. If you would like to see a complete album of the trip please visit my Facebook page HERE. If you ever go to Calgary I would say go during this time. It is truly breathtaking.

 

Calgary Tower

Calgary Stampede Day 1



Our journey this time took us to the wonderful city of Calgary, Alberta. We decided to visit Calgary for one reason, Calgary Stampede. It has alway been a bucket list item of mine to visit the stampede and when I had read that by the end of 2016 you needed to spend all your airmiles or lose them, I figured this was the place I wanted to go. Spending time and travelling in my home country of Canada is always a must do.

 

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Now that we have decided to travel to Calgary we had to get our flight and we decided to fly from Sudbury to Toronto and connect there to go to Calgary. The airmiles is the same regardless if you are travelling from Sudbury or Toronto so we decided to save a night in a hotel and go from our home town. We flew Air Canada which was extremely convenient because we could drop our luggage in Sudbury and get it in Calgary.

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Upon arriving in Calgary we were picked up at the airport by a friend who I haven’t seen in ages and we went for a quick drink before heading to the hotel. After we checked into the hotel we decided to venture the city and see what was up. Keep in mind this is Thursday and the Stampede doesn’t officially begin until Friday. We ended up staying at the Delta Calgary Downtown and it was a great hotel. We did pay a little over $300 a night and according to the taxi guy on the way to the airport it was double or triple of what it usually is. That being said comparing to downtown Toronto meh, it was reasonable.


FlightHub

Now we decided to hit the town. We ventured out with no particular plans whatsoever and we were on foot so we explored. The view from our hotel room was of the beautiful Calgary Tower so we decided to head that way to see what else we could find. We first went to the park across the street from the hotel and marvelled at the statues they had. I found to my surprise that this downtown was extremely artsy. I never would have thought that to be the case so I was really surprised.

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Nonetheless once we had finished up looking at that stuff we took a walk down to Stephen Avenue Walk. This is an area of downtown Calgary that you cannot drive, only walk and its filled with restaurants and street venders. We really had no clue where to go so we decided to stop at Thomsons Restaurant which is attached to the Hyatt. While there I had an amazing beer called the Wild Rose Czeck Pilsner which was excellent. Normally I don’t drink the no namers but it was a good guess. For my food I had the salt and pepper chicken wings, another great choice.

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After having some food and a couple drinks we decided to head out to do more exploring. We ended up walking to the Calgary Tower to see what the views of the city were like. This was probably the most expensive thing we did but at the end of the day it was a must do thing. So we took the elevator to the top and gazed out over the Calgary skyline. The view was spectacular as the mountains where just visible because of the weather but it was an amazing view. If you are ever in Calgary its a must do.


Now that our night was finishing up we decided to find ourselves some cowboy hats. Myself and my wife took a stroll back to Stephens Avenue to find a store that would have some at a reasonable price. The one thing I found about this trip is this, Calgarian’s don’t rip off there tourists and for that I think they are awesome. We went and found a store where my wife could find a hat for roughly $35 and mine was about $120. It was the real deal and not a plastic one so honestly I didn’t mind paying. Our hats were purchased at Lammles at the Stephens Walk.


Now that we had found what we were looking for we decided to head back to our hotel. I had a friend who was working in Calgary who we were meeting up with for dinner and we would be meeting at Joey Eau Claires in the Eau Claire Market. This restaurant was perfect really, not to fancy but very good.  So what I had there was Steak and Sushi and I also had a potato wrapped in what appeared to be a spring roll. I am not sure what its called but awesome.


Now that we finished there we decided to head back to the hotel which was about a 15 minute walk. When we arrived at the hotel we were walking in and I spotted someone who looked like the Premiere of the Province, Rachel Notley sitting in the lobby restaurant. To my surprise it was and I asked her for a picture and she kindly accepted, to my surprise. She said go get a cowboy hat after taking the picture and to be honest her security looked super annoyed but oh well. I got a good laugh on Facebook after.


Hotels.com: $99 or Less

So this is the end of Day 1 for me in Calgary at the Calgary Stampede and continue reading on because we spent two more wonderful days that were fun filled. Such an amazing city and group of people.

More great pictures can be found at this Facebook Link HERE

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