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What to Do Edmonton

Best Spots to Shop for Books in Edmonton

Photo from wce.wwu.edu

With LitFest: Edmonton’s Annual NonFiction Festival (the only NonFiction book festival in Canada, I might add!) taking place October 16 – 17, 2013, what better time is there than to pick up some new reading material and explore some of Edmonton’s book shops and literary talent? You’ll find great reads in some unique places!

Be sure to check out daily LitFest events, including headliner Dan Savage on Monday, October 21, 2013. The provocative, progressive relationship “Savage Love” columnist and “It Gets Better” campaign creator speaks at the Winspear Centre; tickets must be purchased in advance at www.winspearcentre.com. A complete schedule of LitFest events can be viewed at www.litfestalberta.com.

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Edmonton Comic and Entertainment Expo: From Back to the Future to Walking Dead

“The Edmonton Comic & Entertainment Expo returns September 28-29, 2013 to the Edmonton Expo Centre to celebrate all things pop culture. Coming off a highly successful inaugural year in 2012, the second annual Edmonton Expo has expanded to over 150,000 sq.ft of exhibit space providing fans with triple the action.  With more space to explore over the two days fans can feed their inner geek with celebrity Q&A panels, autograph & photograph sessions, exhibitors, workshops, and more.”

Edmonton Expo 2

Courtesy Edmonton Expo

“We are proud to expand the exhibitor space almost three times as much as 2012, which enables us to provide the fans with what they want ­ more exceptional programming and a bigger outlet to explore their passions,” states Kandrix Foong, event director Edmonton Expo. “We feel privileged to be able to provide this opportunity for Edmonton fans to connect with their heroes and our special guests from hit shows like Arrow to Walking Dead.”

In 2013, over 50 programming events and over 300 vendors from industry artists, designers, retailers, and creators at the Edmonton Comic and Entertainment Expo Centre will fill Halls E, F, G, and H of the Edmonton Expo Centre (7515 – 118 Ave.). Programming includes workshops, shop talks, industry insights, guest spotlight panels, and meet-and-greet photograph and autograph sessions with 15 media and celebrity guests. 20 industry guests (comic book creators, video game personalities, and more) will also be on-site to talk about new and current projects, industry career insights, and all things creative.

John Barrowman © BBC 2009

John Barrowman
© BBC 2009

Robert Englund as Fredddy Krueger Photo courtesy Edmonton Expo

Robert Englund as Fredddy Krueger
Photo courtesy Edmonton Expo

Q&A panels, autographs, and photo sessions will be available with celebrity guests, including:

·       JOHN BARROWMAN (Cpt. Jack Harkness in Doctor Who, Torchwood; Arrow)

·       ROBERT ENGLUND (Freddy Kruger in Nightmare on Elm Street)

·       JOE FLANIGAN (Lt. Colonel John Sheppard in Stargate Atlantis)

·       CHRISTOPHER LLOYD (Doc Brown in Back to the Future)

·       CHAD COLEMAN (Tyreese in Walking Dead)

·       SARAH WAYNE CALLIES (Laurie in Walking Dead)

·       JON HEDER (Napoleon Dynamite)

Visit edmontonexpo.com for a complete list of celebrity guests and industry vendors!

Tickets: Available in advance or at the door; tickets at the door are first-come, first-served and venue may reach capacity. Guests who pre-purchase tickets will be guaranteed admission. Cost: $20 in Advance; $35 Weekend Pass in Advance. $25 At the Door; $45 Weekend Pass at the Door. Tickets available online via Ticketmaster or by calling 1-855-985-5000.

Date: September 28-29, 2013; Saturday 10 am -7 pm; Sunday 10 am – 5 pm

Location: Edmonton Expo Centre, 7515 – 118 Ave. NW Edmonton, AB. Easily accessible via Edmonton public transit by taking the LRT to Stadium Station.

Cirque du Soleil in Edmonton: Amaluna Dazzles

With 19 different productions currently performing around the world, it’s likely you’ve heard of the much-hyped Cirque du Soleil shows.

Now’s your chance to see Cirque du Soleil in Edmonton — for the first time under the signature yellow-and-blue striped Grand Chapiteau Big Top Tent — with its production of Amaluna from May 29, 2013 – June 23, 2013.

WHERE Edmonton attended the premiere of Cirque du Soleil Edmonton on May 29, 2013 and had a fantastic time at the show — it’s well worth the price of admission. The upbeat music, stunning visual elements, and jaw-dropping, I-can’t-believe-they’re-doing-that stunts make Amanula a show that you have to see to truly believe — there’s an immersive, dazzling energy to the show that is simply felt and cannot be described. And, yes, the hype these shows get is well deserved!

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Whether you’ve seen multiple other Cirque shows or thinking Amaluna should be your first, here’s what you need to know:

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Festival City Heats Up! Your Guide to Summer Festivals in Edmonton

Summer-Campaign-Image-credit-TravelAB-cmyk_lores

Edmonton Folk Festival
Photo Courtesy Travel Alberta

Vocal Arts Festival Edmonton | Various Venues | www.operanuova.ca
May 18 – June 29
Canada’s only summer opera festival, this unique event brings together some exceptional Canadian vocal talents. Even those leery of classical music will enjoy the accessible, contemporary, and inspiring performances. Visit vocalartsfestival.com for more information.

International Children’s Festival | St. Albert | www.childfest.com
May 28 – June 1
Musicians, dancers, storytellers, artists, and puppeteers from around the globe converge to delight the young and young-at-heart with upbeat music, crafts and games, and funny stage performances.

Dreamspeaker’s Film Festival | Various Venues| dreamspeakers.org
May 29 – June 1
Filmmakers, performers, and artists host this four-day celebration of Aboriginal culture, art, and heritage with screenings of some of the finest Aboriginal films, events, and industry workshops.

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Rush of Excitement: Edmonton Rush Take On the National Lacrosse League Playoffs

CGY v EDM Rush event: 451

Photo Courtesy Edmonton Rush Lacrosse Club

After an intense season, the Edmonton Rush lacrosse team has secured a spot in the National Lacrosse League Playoffs in May, looking to claim the 2013 Championship title after narrowly missing a win in 2012 in the final 6-9 game against Rochester Knighthawks. With one game left in the regular season, the Rush hope to go in to the playoffs on a high note with a win against the Calgary Roughnecks.

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Cheers for Edmonton Craft Beer Festival!

2013 is the year of the very first Craft Beer Festival in Edmonton

2013 is the year of the very first Craft Beer Festival in Edmonton

Raise your glass to toast the arrival of Edmonton’s first annual Craft Beer Festival, debuting Friday, June 14, 2013 (4 pm – 10 pm) and Saturday, June 15, 2013 (2 pm – 9 pm) at Edmonton Expo Centre (7515-116 Ave.).

Whether you’re a beer aficionado who’s looking for the newest releases, or you have no idea what IPA stands for (or even that it’s a type of beer!), this is a great event to learn more about how to enjoy craft beer!

5 Reasons to Attend Edmonton Craft Beer Festival:

1. Try Something New! Think you don’t like beer? Think again! With over 425 beers from breweries around the world available, the Edmonton Craft Beer Festival will present the opportunity to taste beers people may not have ever tried before. You’re certain to find something that suits your taste! “Even someone who thinks they don’t like beer will find something to suit them and those who are set on their personal preferences are likely to find a new favorite” Alberta Beer Festivals judge Dave Nuttall claims. So many breweries have signed up that this will be the largest craft beer festival in Canada, outside of Toronto!

2. Exclusive Sips! Several breweries will have sample of exclusive, limited-edition beers that will only be available at the festival —  Ribstone Creek Brewery (Edgerton, AB), for instance, is brewing a limited-edition IPA exclusively for the Alberta Craft Beer Festivals. WHERE Edmonton sampled their Buckin’ Bronco IPA at the Calgary International Craft Beer Festival, and it was delicious! Flavourful without being too dry or bitter, this beer will intrigue beer newbies and equally satisfy fans of IPAs. Beer Geeks shouldn’t miss out on the opportunity to try some rare and unique brews!

3. Learn! Enjoy a Brew Masters Seminar to learn about the various properties, characteristics, and flavours of beers from top brew masters — some who have travelled from as far away as Europe to present! “This is a rare opportunity to speak with brew masters you wouldn’t otherwise get the chance to,” says Mark Kondrat, Project Manager of the festival. “This truly is an international festival and Edmontonians should be very proud to host such a prestigious event.”

Enjoy beers from over 110 breweries around the world — including an exclusive brew from Ribstone Creek Brewery — at the Edmonton International Beer Festival.

Enjoy beers from over 110 breweries around the world — including an exclusive brew from Ribstone Creek Brewery — at the Edmonton International Beer Festival.
Photo by Detour Photography

4. Have Your Beer and Eat It, Too! Attend a “Cooking with Beer” seminar and learn how to pair foods with beer — just like with wine! — and how to prepare foods using beer as an ingredient. “Beer really is more versatile than any other beverage when it comes to pairing with foods,” says Kim Spence, Alberta Beer Festivals judge.

5. Eat! Over 25 local restaurants will have delicious food samples available to try and pair with your beer during the event.

Single-day tickets are $19 in advance; Weekend passes are $29; Beer Geek VIP tickets (allow early admission and guaranteed seminar seating) $25 single-day, or $35 weekend-pass. Tickets are available online, at all Sobey’s grocery stores in Edmonton and surrounding areas, and single-day tickets will be available at the door for $25. Sample tickets are $0.50 and available at the event. More Info: edmontoncraftbeerfest.com

 

CONTEST:

WHERE Edmonton has 10 tickets for each day of the Edmonton Craft Beer Festival to give away to our readers!

To enter: Follow @whereedmonton on Twitter and tweet us the name of your favourite craft beer and/or microbrewery! Be sure to direct your tweet to @whereedmonton. Enter any time through June 9, 2013. Draws will be made at random between April 8, 2013 and June 10, 2013; winners will be announced on Twitter. Each Twitter account may win only once.

Love Beer?

Look for the June/July issue of Canadian Cowboy Country magazine (available June 1) for an exclusive feature article on craft beer in Western Canada! Be sure not to miss the issue — subscribe here

Rick Mercer Celebrates 100 Years of Literature

The Edmonton Public Library (EPL) had it’s Centennial Anniversary on March 13, 2013 and is celebrating all year long with a variety of exciting activities designed to continue to promote and support public engagement with literature. Best of all, every event is FREE!

EPL cards are FREE during the Centennial celebrations; from March 13, 2013 – March 13, 2014, register for a card and enjoy access to hundreds of thousands of books, CDs, DVDs, music downloads, and magazines. Now, you also have access to hundreds of digital magazine edition with EPL’s new Zinio subscription, so you can download the latest issues of magazines from all genres — and they aren’t obscure titles, you’ll likely recognize US Weekly, Men’s Health, Rolling Stone, and Harper’s Bazaar among the hundreds of titles offered. Visit www.epl.ca for more information and to register for your card.

Rick Mercer will be in Edmonton for a talk addressing the importance of public libraries and access to free information in Canada on June 15. Photo courtesy of Edmonton Public Library.

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You’re Invited… to a Tea Party!

You’re invited to Teatotaled, a whimsical tea party with exceptional food and drink offerings! Hosted by the High Street Social Club (HSSC) at Manor Casual Bistro (10109-125 St.), this event will take place on Sunday, March 24 at 6 pm.

Modelled after a classic High Tea (or “meat tea”, as it is sometimes known), guests are invited to have fun by modelling their attire in elegant, dressed-up styles.

Sample a variety of unique and unusual teas at the Manor Casual Bistro’s Teatotaled Tea Party.

This won’t be just any tea party — some unusual and exotic tea styles, such as Pu Erh & Lapsang Souchong, will be served. Guests try new flavours and learn more about this traditional beverage. Plenty of tea will be flowing and will also be used as ingredients to infuse the cocktails and food. The food will seek inspiration from local ingredients, as well as the classic High Tea dishes. Pendleton Rye and Compass Box Whisky are sponsoring the event, which means a great variety of cocktails will be served at very affordable prices.

As always, with HSSC events, the seating will be communal and a sense of community and social interaction with new friends will be fostered by the team! Not only is it a fun opportunity to try new food and great teas, but it is a great way to meet new people!

Tickets are $55 per person, which include all food, a greeting cocktail, and taxes/gratuities. Call 780-482-7577 to reserve tickets.

Looking for other great tea-spots in Edmonton? Read our article Tea Cozy to see our Top 5 best spots to enjoy a cup tea!

Shear Madness: Dinner Theatre Fun with Local Twist

Shear Madness is the latest show being performed at the Mayfield Dinner Theatre, based on the longest running, non-musical play in American Theatre History.

The audience becomes a part of the performance during this hilarious, interactive comedy-suspense play, which invites viewers to help look for clues, interrogate suspects, and solve the mystery.

The play relies on its original format but is in no way outdated; it’s a fun one because it involves a lot of improvised and ad-libbed comedy that allows for unique and humorous interactions with the audience, as well as mentions of current events. For instance, one of the characters asked a guest sitting in the front row to describe an item she had just seen on stage. When she couldn’t recall, the character quickly smirked “what, are you not sitting close enough?”

Their jokes were witty and on-point with current local and pop-culture trends, as well as with local stereotypes and histories. There are also plenty of jokes that rely on wordplay and the audiences ability to notice why it’s funny that one of the characters had to clarify the kind of “pot” he was using; it may be silly, but you can’t help but laugh. The characters are not especially original (there’s a flamboyant male hairdresser and a gossipy, rich socialite, for instance) but their improvised humour is where the unique possibilities for a clever, entertaining show comes in to play. Every show is slightly different, and that’s what makes it a hilarious, entertaining play. We thoroughly enjoyed the performance, which had us laughing non-stop!

Before the show, which runs about two hours including an intermission, you’ll be treated to am elaborate, Indian-inspired buffet that includes a sushi bar and a plentiful dessert buffet.

Some language and content (mild sexual humour, references to violence) may be inappropriate for children; we’d recommend this show for audiences ages 16+. The dinner-and-a-show setting makes it a great, all-in-one evening out for any couple or group!

Shear Madness shows Tuesday through Sunday, through April 7, 2013 at the Mayfield Dinner Theatre (16615-109 Ave.) Tickets must be purchased in advance, and prices range from $59.99-$94.99, depending on day, time, and seat location. Call 1-877-529-7829 or visit www.mayfieldtheatre.ca to purchase tickets.

Enjoy the show!

 

 

Diana: A Celebration — Exclusive Exhibit at West Edmonton Mall

Diana: A Celebration is an exhibition that pays tribute to the life and legacy of the late Diana, Princess of Wales, through a display of over 150 personal artifacts and exquisite family heirlooms. The exhibit is displayed for two months every year at the Spencer family’s Althorp Estate in Northampton, England, and typically only travels to one other city each year. The exhibition has not toured in Canada since it was on display in Toronto ten years ago, and is now on display in Edmonton for a limited engagement through June 9, 2013 at West Edmonton Mall (8882-170 St.) during regular mall hours: Mon – Fri 12 pm – 9 pm; Sat 10 am – 9 pm; Sun 11 am – 6 pm. Last admission will be one hour prior to closing.

Photo courtesy West Edmonton Mall

The exhibit is divided into nine displays, each focusing on a different aspect of Diana’s life. Displays include the Royal Wedding — featuring Diana’s elaborate wedding dress — a moving memorial tribute with her brother’s original, handwritten eulogy (boxes of Kleenex are strategically available in this room! It’s hard not to tear up while Candle in the Wind is playing alongside footage of her funeral), and a fashion showcase featuring 28 of Diana’s most memorable designer outfits. Written tributes to Diana are found throughout, and staff members are on-hand to answer questions and provide additional information about the items on display, the history of the exhibition, and Diana herself.

WHERE Edmonton has visited the exhibit and it is absolutely stunning! It is amazing to see how much interest there still is in Diana, and how much of an influence she has as her life work and kindness that created her legacy continues to serve as an inspiration to others. Even if you are not familiar with Diana’s life and work, this exhibit is especially interesting because it details some of the most iconic moments in recent history and is very informative, engaging,  and accessible to a large audience.

A small selection of  souvenirs (bookmarks, mugs, tote bags, decorative plates, magnets, ornaments, and postcards) are available in the gift shop. All profits generated from Diana, A Celebration go to the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fund which continues Diana’s charity work to help improve the lives of disadvantaged people in the UK and around the world. However, don’t expect to find knock-offs of Diana’s famous engagement ring or stunning tiara’s here — her brother requested that no replicas be sold in the gift shop, and instead everything is adorned with imagery of the Althorp Estate, her childhood home and burial site.

Admission: Adult $27.30; Senior (60+) $23.10; Children 12 and under $14.70. Discounted rates are available Mon – Thu. Tickets can be purchased at the door, or in advance by calling 780-444-5321 or via Ticketmaster.

Global Visions Film Festival Featuring Bernie Finkelstein

Global Visions Film Festival is Canada’s longest-running documentary film fest that bolsters public awareness of global human rights and social and environmental issues, while also applauding the perseverance of the human spirit. Featured this year — you won’t want to miss it! — is How to Survive a Plague, a 2013 Academy Award nominee for Best Documentary. This film reports “the story of ACT UP and TAG (Treatment Action Group), two organizations whose activism and innovation turned AIDS from a death sentence into a manageable condition. Despite having no scientific training, these self-made activists infiltrated the pharmaceutical industry and helped identify promising new drugs, moving them from experimental trials to patients in record time”. How to Survive a Plague will be shown on February 28 at 7 pm at Garneau Theatre.

A range of topics is explored by the festival films — everything from bullying to climate change to social justice through music is explored — and prior knowledge of the issues explored is not a prerequisite to enjoy them. Go see one or two — or all of them! — and be treated to an insightful, engaging story that may just shock and surprise you. The films are thought-provoking and, at times, challenging, but also incredibly entertaining and accessible.

Academy Award-nominated American documentary How to Survive a Plague will be shown during Global Visions Film Festival.

Films in the festival series will be screened February 27 – March 3 at the Garneau Theatre (8712-109 St.) and Art Gallery of Alberta (2 Sir Winston Churchill Square). Special guests who worked on the featured films will be present at some of the screenings for a panel or Q&A session following the show. Single tickets are $12 at the door, or discounted passes can be purchased in advance; for a complete list of films, showtimes, and ticket prices, visit globalvisionsfestival.com.

Canadian music business icon Bernie Finkelstein will be at Audreys Books ( 10702 Jasper Ave.) on Saturday, March 2 at 2 pm to sign his bestselling book True North – A Life in the Music Business, which was was named by Amazon.ca as one of the Top 100 Books of the Year in December 2012. Not familiar with the name? Finkelstein is major behind-the-scenes fixture of the Canadian music scene; he’s most notable for founding  True North Records, Canada’s oldest and longest running indie record label, that has been responsible for more than 40 gold and platinum records and received more than 40 Junos. Finkelstein has also managed several artists, including Bruce Cockburn. Finkelstein’s film Bruce Cockburn – Pacing The Cage will be screening at the Global Visions Film Festival as a part of SOUND & VISIONS, a special event that honours music in documentary. After the film screening, Bernie will participate in a panel discussion hosted by CKUA’s Terry-David Mulligan, to answer questions about the film and his career.

Edmonton Events Calendar Feb 15-18: Family Day Edition

There’s so much going on this weekend, and with the Family Day Holiday (did you know it’s only celebrated in four provinces in Canada?) there’s plenty of time to take in many of the special events going on in the city!

All-Ages Activities

ATOM Invitational Family Day Hockey Tournament | West Edmonton Mall | Feb 16-18 | FREE
Visit the Ice Palace during regular mall hours and watch hockey teams from across Western Canada compete in a showcase of skills and sportsmanship. www.wem.ca

Telus World of Science | Feb 15-18; Fri – Sat 10 am – 10 pm; Sun – Mon 10 am – 7 pm | Rates vary for General Admission, STAR WARS Identities, and IMAX; call 780-451-3344
Spend a day viewing five exciting galleries and full-dome shows, plus see the exclusive STAR WARS Identities exhibition. The brand-new IMAX movie Rocky Mountain Express opens February 15 and explores the breath-taking views of the west coast with spectacular aerial cinematography. www.telusworldofscienceedmonton.com

Which side will you choose? Find out your STAR WARS identity at the TELUS World of Science!

Royal Alberta Museum | Feb 18, 9 am – 5 pm | FREE
In addition to 4 exciting featured exhibits and 3 permanent galleries, enjoy a showing of the movie Ice Age at 10 am, and educational talks about the Arctic at 12 pm and 2 pm. Free admission is only applicable on Family Day, February 18 www.royalalbertamuseum.ca

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