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Edmonton

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.

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.

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.

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

Fantastic August Festivals in Edmonton

Cariwest-Credit-Jennifer-Linford

The parade at Cariwest Festival. Photo by Jennifer Linford.

Edmonton Folk Music Festival August 6 – 9
International stars of blues, Celtic, bluegrass, gospel, and world music perform at this open-air festival, where a hillside serves as a natural amphitheatre. Headliners this year include Of Monsters and Men, and Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros.
Gallagher Park 9411-97 Ave. 780-429-1999

Animethon August 7 – 9
This annual event celebrates Japanese animation and design through workshops, gaming, costume contests, film screenings, and more.
MacEwan University 10700-104 Ave. 780-497-5040

Cariwest: Edmonton Caribbean Arts Festival August 7 – 9
This lively festival of parties and celebrations includes a colourful costume parade, calypso competition, dance performances, block party, and steel band competition.
Various Venues 780-421-7800

Edmonton International Fringe Theatre Festival August 13 – 23
This alternative theatre festival is the largest of its kind in North America, featuring over 1,200 uncensored and non-juried shows and performances from over 200 theatre companies from around the world! Venues are located in the Old Strathcona area with roving street performers, beer gardens, delicious food, and great street shopping adding to the festive spirit. This year’s theme is “SupercaliFRINGEilistic”, so expect it to be a jolly holiday!
Various Venues 780-409-1910

Edmonton Dragon Boat Festival August 14 – 16
An intense series of Dragon Boat racing competitions on the North Saskatchewan River celebrate the city’s Chinese-Canadian community and the skills of several impressive athletes.
Various Venues 780-493-8158

The Edmonton Blues Festival August 21 – 23
Top local and international acoustic and electric blues acts shake the house with everything from funk to zydeco.
Various Venues 780-708-7230

Celebrating 40 Years of Heritage Fest Fun!

linfordj_Heritagedays-35 2The Servus Heritage Festival celebrates its 40th anniversary this year, and is amping up for a huge celebration! Five new countries have been added to the festival this year — Haiti, Lebanon, Morocco, Rwanda, and South Sudan — joining more than 80 other countries in showcasing their culture through food, performance, crafts, clothing, and artwork.

New this year, a large Heritage History Tent will join the 60+ pavilions in Hawrelak Park to offer a visual look back on how the festival grew into its renowned three-day celebration of Canada’s vibrant multicultural heritage.

 

The kids’ area, full of face painting, games, monster murals, a sandbox, and Jumpy Things has been expanded, and now includes a Let’s Talk Science display by the University of Alberta Outreach program.

Let’s not forget the food — this year adds over 60 new dishes for you to sample! And in the spirit of the festival’s 40th year, select food items will be 40% off during specific time periods. So watch out for special pavilion signs and Twitter posts!

Entrance to the festival is free, however food and cash donations to the Edmonton Food Bank are encouraged.

Visit the website for more information.

—Georgia Ashworth

3 Challenging Golf Courses in Edmonton

Golf-Courtesy-City-of-Edmonton

Photo courtesy of City of Edmonton.

Whether you’re looking for a stunning natural backdrop for your golf game or a unique challenge at a skill-testing course, one of these courses in Edmonton will fit your needs!

1. First developed in 1896 (before the city was even founded), Victoria Golf Course is the oldest city-run course. Featuring over 61 stalls on its driving range, this picturesque course is ideal for beginners to mid-handicap players, and will treat them to a gorgeous backdrop of the river valley, Alberta Legislature, and University of Alberta buildings.
Victoria Golf Course | 12130 River Rd. | 780-496-4710

2. Nestled along the North Saskatchewan River, The Quarry has 27 holes of championship golf with long yardages, ranging from 5,100 to 7,600 yards!
The Quarry | 945-167 Ave. | 780-477-8437

3. At Jägare Ridge in the Whitemud Creek Valley, the natural setting has dictated the design of each hole, preserving the secluded and mature valley. You’ll be testing your skills at this championship-level course, while you also admire the stunning scenery.
Jägare Ridge | 14921 Ellerslie Rd. SW | 780-432-4030

—Matthew Stepanic