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Alberta

The Talented Woodworking Team of Oliver Apt.

Oliver-Apt

The team of Oliver Apt. Photo courtesy of Oliver Apt.

This quickly growing local company had its beginnings in carpenter Landon Schedler’s Oliver apartment (a community in Edmonton’s city centre). He started creating unique, beautiful furniture to enhance his space, and soon his friends began asking for pieces as well. As the word got out, and demand for his pieces grew, Schedler incorporated a company name, opened an online store and started bringing together a team of creative designers and carpenters.

Now, not only does the talented team make organizational products and furniture, they also help design entire spaces including local restaurants Woodwork, MEAT, Three Boars Eatery, Bar Bricco, Duchess Bake Shop, and more! Check out their products and learn more about these talented locals on their website.

Picnic in the Park

By JANET DAVIE

calgary_park_family

Courtesy of Tourism Calgary

August may be coming to a close, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t still enjoy the lingering warm days. Celebrate the end of summer outside with a picnic in one of Calgary’s parks:

Central Memorial Park
Located in the heart of the Beltline district, this park is adorned with pretty flowerbeds, fountains, and a couple of statues. Grab a few friends and order the Group Lunch to Go at the Boxwood Café, situated in the park itself (note that groups must call 24 hours in advance to order). The boxed lunch consists of your choice of sandwich, salad, and a cookie, and there are additional add-ons that you may order as well. The full menu at Boxwood is also available for take-out. Roll out a blanket and you have the perfect picnic lunch with your pals.

St Patrick’s Island

Recently opened in July, this spot is just a few steps from East Village and features marked walking and biking pathways and a small amphitheater to host performances. Before walking to the island, pick up lunch at Sidewalk Citizen Bakery in the Simmons Building. Try their Jerusalem Mix—chicken thighs and livers are tossed with caramelized onions and cumin, served with hummus and pickles—to compliment your house-made sandwich. The bread pudding is quickly becoming a crowd favourite and is not to be missed.

Riley Park

Head to Flipp’n Burgers located in the heart of Kensington and order up one of their award-winning hamburgers (we recommend the signature Flipp’n Burger or the organic vegan burger) and don’t forget the onions rings on the side and a classic milkshake to drink. Take the meal to go and head a short walk west to the sprawling Riley Park where you can enjoy the food and then cool off by walking through the shallow wading pool.

 

Prince’s Island Park

If you’re looking for a picnic fit for Royals, be sure to order a picnic basket from River Café in the beautiful Prince’s Island Park located just north of Eau Claire. The picnic meal must be ordered 24 hours prior, and includes appetizers of fruit, salad, and cheese, and your choice of baguette sandwich for an entrée. A sweet selection of desserts finishes the meal, and the picnic basket comes complete with linens and utensils.

 

Fish Creek Provincial Park

Bike or walk down to Fish Creek Park in the southeast and stop at Annie’s Bakery—located just west of the Bow Valley Ranche Restaurant—for some lunch including their yummy soups and sandwiches. Take it to go and walk on the path until you find a nice spot to spread out a blanket and enjoy your meal.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Symphony Under the Sky

symphony-Under-the-Sky-photo-credit-Michael-Woolley-copy

Photo by Michael Woolley.

Reverberating off the striking Heritage Amphitheatre in Hawrelak Park, you’ll hear the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra in an affable, natural setting during their Symphony Under the Sky concerts from August 27 – 30. The first night will feature classic songs from iconic folk rock songwriters of the 70s, such as Gordon Lightfoot, Joni Mitchell, and Neil Diamond, while the next night moves further back in time to play orchestral favourites from Beethoven, Mozart, and Rachmaninoff. The third night will embrace the sounds of Hollywood, with timeless scores from Disney films and big blockbusters while the final night will feature the conductor’s favourite songs.

And catch a FREE performance from the ESO on September 4 – 5 in Churchill Square for Symphony in the City! The orchestra will provide live accompaniment for highlights from the innovative animation in the Disney classics Fantasia and Fantasia 2000. Arrive early and bring your own seat to this incredibly popular event.

For more information and tickets, visit the ESO’s website.

—Matthew Stepanic

Ask the Expert: Les Clefs d’Or Corner (July/August 2015)

Nella-Blog

Nella Mirante. Photo by Jamie Tweedy of Tweedy Studios.

We asked Edmonton expert and Les Clefs d’Ors Concierge Nella Mirante at The Westin Edmonton for her advice about enjoying the city in the summer!

1. It’s festival season in Edmonton! What are five things that you suggest packing in your Festival Survival Kit?
1. A copy of WHERE Edmonton Magazine! It’s the perfect reference for the festival season!
2. Sunscreen — the sun can be very powerful here in the summertime, even on the cloudiest days.
3. A mobile battery charger for cell phones. You will need to keep up with social media and post all the fab places you’ve visited and indulged at!
4. A bottle of water to keep hydrated.
5. Your travel buddy! I always like to have a fellow concierge or best friend to explore and indulge with me.

2. Where would you send visitors to get supplies for a picnic lunch?
I would highly recommend Sunterra Market in Commerce Place for the freshest ingredients to grab and go.

3. What is your favorite thing about summer in Edmonton?
My fave thing is the incredible lineup of festivals one after another, accompanied by warm nights and extra daylight hours!

4. Where would you go for a refreshing cocktail?
My go-to spot is North 53. I like to sip on the Rosie Cheeks, but they are fantastic at mixing up anything you wish to try!


Les Clefs d’Or Concierges have been opening doors for hotel guests in Canada since 1976, and today there are more than 150 members from coast to coast and more than 3,500 members worldwide!

5 Spots for a Cold Brew

Beer-by-Pedro-Escobar

Photo by Pedro Escobar.

1. The Common
Grab a spot on the patio and sample unique brews like the Dieu Du Ciel Rosee D’Hibiscus.
9910-109 St., 780-452-7333

2. Yellowhead Brewery
Take a tour of the brewery before indulging in a pint of their signature lager.
10229-105 St., 780-423-3333

3. Mercer Tavern
Enjoy an ice-cold pint of Stone Brewing Co. Arrogant Bastard Ale at this local watering hole.
10363-104 St., 587-521-1911

4. The Next Act Pub
Take a break from the bustle of Whyte Ave. with a locally brewed pint of Alley Kat Main Squeeze grapefruit ale.
8224-104 St., 780-433-9345

5. Remedy Café
You’ll find a surprising selection of craft beer at this licensed café that is open late!
10279 Jasper Ave., 780-757-7720
10310-124 St., 780-705-4464
8631-109 St., 780-433-3096

—Lindsay Shapka

Fantastic Shows at the Edmonton Fringe Festival

FringePosters-Photo-by-Pedro-Escobar

Photo by Pedro Escobar.

With over 200 shows at the Edmonton International Fringe Theatre Festival, it can be a bit of a challenge to settle on a fantastic show to see. Look below to find a round-up of a shows that we’ve enjoyed!

Miss Katelyn’s Grade Threes Prepare for the Inevitable
Cascading from comic to dark, this one-woman show follows Miss Katelyn’s last-ditch effort to prepare her students (the audience) for the inevitable dangers of the world that will befall them.

Life is a Musical
One lucky audience member will become the star of the show as the cast improvises a one-of-a-kind and hilarious musical about their life.

Letters to West 113th
As he shares the story of an incredible mindreader that even stumped Harry Houdini, mentalist Jeff Newman will leave you stunned as well at the end of his show filled with impressive mind tricks.

Searching for Dick: A Paranormal Comedy
Based on a true story, Tara Travis may cause you to question everything you believe as she seeks out mediums in order to receive her in-laws approval from beyond the grave.

What’s Wrong With You?
In her riotously funny one-woman show, Amber Nash (the voice behind Archer‘s Pam Poovey) recounts the hits and misses in her acting career and the wack-a-doo characters she’s met on the way.

The Lover
Actors Belinda Cornish and Mat Busby sizzle in this Harold Pinter adaptation about a couple that appears to live amicably together by taking on lovers — but nothing is certain when the lights dim.

The Great Canadian Tire Money Caper
Perhaps the most Canadian story at the fringe, Corin Raymond shares the heart-warming story of how most of the country came together to help him fund an entire album with Canadian Tire money.

Double Double: The Musical
Calling all Tim Hortons obsessives — this truly Canadian musical features vignettes that explore Canada’s most cherished and patriotic coffee shops.

The No Bull$#!% History of Canada
It’s the social studies class you always wish you could have taken, as Kyle Allatt pulls the 11 most interesting and quirky people from out of Canada’s history book in this one-of-a-kind lesson.

Subway Stations of the Cross
Stretching the boundaries of storytelling, spoken-word performer Ins Choi relates the story of how his mother always wanted him to be a preacher and his journey to be an artist that led him to have three profound interactions with homeless men on subway-station platforms.

Truth or Dare
Lindsay Mullan and Jamie Northan raise the stakes of improv to a whole new level as they dare each other to do risque things with audience members or reveal embarrassing truths from their pasts.

Eating Pasta Off the Floor
Flawless shifting between several diverse characters, Maria Grazia Affinito tells the story of her complicated relationship with her eccentric mother and the trip to Italy that brought them closer together.

Gidion’s Knot
In this tightly wound play, a conversation between a distraught mother and an emotionally overwhelmed teacher will leave you in suspense until the very end as everyone tries to understand what happened to a student.

Grandma’s Dead
After their grandmother’s death, two estranged brothers must travel across Western Canada to bury her in a small Saskatchewan hometown in this touching family tale by master storyteller Sam Mullins.

 

The Edmonton Fringe runs until August 23! To buy tickets to any of these shows, please visit the website.

The Lion King in Calgary

By JANET DAVIE

11-01 Patrick R. Brown & L. Steven Taylor

Photo courtesy of Broadway Across Canada

 

This classic Disney tale is the king of the Jubilee.

Join Broadway Across Canada as they adapt one of Disney’s most beloved films, The Lion King, and bring it to the stage with a ferocious Tony Award-winning splendour. Simba, the young and precocious lion prince lives with his royal family in the African Pride Lands. After a tragedy plotted by his Uncle Scar leaves his Father, Mufasa, dead, Simba leaves his home and befriends an unlikely duo, only to discover that he must go back to Pride Rock to avenge his Father and fulfill his destiny of becoming king.

The show features Elton John’s memorable hits such as “Can You Feel the Love Tonight?” and “I Just Can’t Wait to Be King,” as well as some new songs not in the original film. The triumphant song “Circle of Life” is performed in a dazzling opening scene that you need to experience to understand—you might tear up with childhood nostalgia and the sheer impressiveness of the costumes. More than 40 actors bring the Savannah to life with spectacular makeup and wardrobe, including known characters Pumbaa, Timon, and Zazu. Rafiki, the wise baboon, is a hilarious delight.

With awe-inspiring visuals, stunning choreography, passionate music, and jaw-dropping talent, Broadway Across Canada’s The Lion King is indeed worthy of its crown.

The Lion King is playing in Calgary through September 6 at the Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium. Visit jubileeauditorium.com for tickets and more information.

 

 

Adventurous Boating Experiences in Edmonton

Dragon-Boat-2-by-Pedro-Escobar

Photo by Pedro Escobar.

Flowing over 1,287 km, the North Saskatchewan River begs to be toured by boat. For the strip of blue that runs through Edmonton, you have several exciting boating options depending on how adventurous or intimate you want your experience to be!

Paddleboat
Rent a paddleboat at Hawrelak Park in the boathouse next to the Heritage Amphitheatre, and enjoy a leisurely tour on calmer waters. edmonton.ca

Riverboat
Take in a picturesque view of the river valley on a relaxing dinner cruise! The Edmonton Queen sails rain or shine from Thursday to Sundays. edmontonqueen.com

Dragon Boat
Over 2,000 years ago in China, boats adorned with dragonheads were once a part of a fertility rite to encourage plentiful rains and a good harvest. Here in Edmonton, they are a part of the exciting Dragon Boat Festival from August 14 – 16!

Canoe
Paddle down the North Saskatchewan River from Devon with Edmonton Canoe! Your trip can be as leisurely as you like, taking time to pause and admire the valley scenery, spot wildlife, fish, or go for swim. edmontoncanoe.com

—Matthew Stepanic

Hold on to Your Hat at the Canadian Derby

CanadianDerby

Photo courtesy Northlands.

It’s the perfect time of year to take your elaborately decorated hats, oversized hat out of the closet — it’s the 86th running of the exciting Canadian Derby! The fastest horses and the top jockeys will be gathering at Northlands Park to compete for Western Canada’s top racing crown. Get ready for an afternoon of non-stop action, excitement, and bourbon!

If you need some help putting together the perfect wardrobe for the derby, check out the fashion tips from Simons in the video below:


General admission for this event is FREE and outdoor grandstand seating is still available! For tickets and more information, visit the website.

Canadian Derby | August 15
Northlands Park | 7410 Borden Park Rd.

FRINGE-ilistic Fun in Edmonton

Fringe-3-by-Jennifer-Linford

Photo by Jennifer Linford.

SupercalFRINGEilisitic is the sound (and theme) of Edmonton’s not at all atrocious summertime festival brimming with drama and comedy: the Edmonton International Fringe Theatre Festival from August 13 – 23. Now in its 34th year, the festival’s theme speaks to the silly and child-like imaginations that exist inside us and on the over 50 stages throughout the city! In the beer tents, be sure to chat up your tablemates, as they may have a hot tip for a must-see show reviewers aren’t talking about. The festival also has tons of free fun with street performers and outdoor stage shows (though performers do appreciate donations). Head to the Fringe grounds yourself and discover why over 665,750 people visited the festival last year and bought over 118,280 tickets to the shows! To buy tickets, please visit the website.

Sea-Town: Great Seafood in Calgary

By: JANET DAVIE

 

Photo 2014-02-15, 4 14 21 PM

Photo Courtesy of Rodney’s Oyster House

 

 

Though Calgary is known for beef, seafood lovers can still find great options in the city. From oysters to lobster to fish, you don’t need to head to the coast for your seafood fix:

 

The Keg

The Keg has rolled out their Lobster Summer menu, a celebration of –you guessed it— lobster. The regal crustacean is featured in many ways, from being mixed with veggies in Szechwan style to crispy lobster tacos. For true enthusiasts, a steak and half lobster entrée is available, as well as a whole (2 pounds!) lobster served with hot butter and lemon. Hurry, the menu is available until August 30th.

320 – 4 Avenue SW, 403-699-9843; 130 Crowfoot Terrace NW, 403-208-0220; 7104 Macleod Trail South, 403-253-2534; 425 – 36 St NE, 403-235-5858; 1101 – 5 St SW, 403-266-1036; 100 – 4600 130 Ave SE, 403-726-1022; 1923 Uxbridge Drive NW, 403-282-0020 www.kegsteakhouse.com

Catch

This elegant seafood restaurant has a menu that changes with the seasons, to always guarantee the freshest food. Entrees in the dining room include Wild BC Halibut and Alaskan Weathervane Scallops. After work, head to the lively Oyster Bar to slurp down fresh oysters. Daily Oyster Bar specials are featured.

100 – 8 Ave SE, 403.206.0000 www.catchoysterbar.com

 

Charbar

Head to the newly opened Charbar in the Simmons Building where seafood items include clams, oysters, and a tableside ceviche. If you’d like to combine the best of both worlds, order the seafood and meat platter. With seafood this fresh and the rooftop patio overlooking the Bow, it’s almost like you’re right on the coast.

618 Confluence Way SE, 403-452-3115 www.charbar.ca

 

Rodney’s Oyster House

This seafood restaurant has one of the best seafood selections in the city, with a charming cape-cod décor to match. Main dishes include steamed mussels, garlic shrimp, and Dungeness crab, with five different types of chowder available as well. Their Bait and Tackle takeaway spot (located on the side of the restaurant) is perfect for seafood on the go. Items include Fish and Chips and a Lobster Cobb Salad.

355 – 10 Ave SW, 403-460-0026 www.rodneysoysterhousecalgary.com

 

Rush Ocean Prime

If you’re really into seafood — and we mean really into it — then head to Rush Ocean Prime and order the decadent Seafood Tower, loaded with smoked shrimp, tuna tartare, king crab legs, smoked salmon, and more. Not ready to commit to such a feast? Other seafood items on the menu include a selection of sushi, lobster pot pie, and seabass.

207 – 9 Ave SW, 403-271-7874 www.rushoceanprime.com

 

Modern Steak

Modern Steak serves up more than just great beef; they also have a tasty seafood menu as well. Order up a pan roasted Atlantic cod, or try the Prawn Skewers. The Bacon “Not Wrapped” Scallops is a fresh take on an old classic, and those looking for a comfort dish will not go wrong with the Lobster Mac n’ Cheese.Modern Steak

107- 10a St NW, 403-670-6873 www.modernsteak.ca

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jack Bush’s Colour Field

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IMAGE: JACK BUSH, TALL SPREAD, 1966 © ESTATE OF JACK BUCH / SODRAC (2015)

One of Canada’s first artists to achieve international recognition, Jack Bush created advertisements and illustrations for 42 years before devoting himself to painting in 1968. Through his membership with the Painters Eleven group in Toronto (artists who banded together to promote abstract painting), he met influential New York art critic Clement Greenberg who encouraged him to abandon his Abstract Expressionist style, pushing his work into the Colour Field realm that he is most celebrated for today. The massive, brightly coloured works featured in this retrospective exhibition are an abstract record of his perceptions — “he did not expect the viewer to see the flower or hear the music that inspired his work, but only to share in the feeling through the painting.”

Through August 23 — Art Gallery of Alberta, 2 Sir Winston Churchill Sq., 99 St. & 102A Ave., 780-422-6223