By JANET DAVIE
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.
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.