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Winnipeg

Here & Now: Yuk It Up!

Chris Cubas courtesy Oddblock Comedy Festival

Chris Cubas courtesy Oddblock Comedy Festival

AUG 25-28

Oddblock Comedy Festival, a block party styled fest on South Osborne, has the street bustling. Venue-hopping comedians and attendees can grab a bite from nearby restaurants and food trucks or relax on streetside beer gardens. Check out more than 50 comics including podcast favourite Chris Cubas, improvisor Kate Berlant, and experimental comedian Ian Abramson. Various venues, 204‑478‑7275, oddblock.ca

Hot Art: Local Art

Mixed Media Mississippi River Travels by Brooklyn Samson, screenprint, 2016, courtesy Martha Street Studio

Mixed Media Mississippi River Travels by Brooklyn Samson, screenprint, 2016, courtesy Martha Street Studio

Aug 11-20 The INKubator Showcase at Martha Street Studio features silkscreen, linocut, intaglio and collagraph prints made by inner city youth in the INKubator Program. The program teaches printmaking techniques and offers studio access to aspiring artists. 11 Martha St, 204‑779-6253

Here & Now: Hear Here

Photo courtesy Interstellar Rodeo

Photo courtesy Interstellar Rodeo

AUG 12-14

After enjoying a successful inaugural fest last summer, Interstellar Rodeo returns with out-of-this-world artists. Big name roots, Americana and indie acts take the stage at this music festival in the centre of the city, where gourmet food and wine pairings go hand in hand with the music. Headliners  include Wilco and newly-formed supergroup Case/Lang/Viers, made up of Neko Case, K.D. Lang and Laura Viers. Weekend passes and single day tickets available. The Forks, 1‑855‑465‑2459, interstellarrodeo.com

Hot Dining: Expertly Crafted

Chef Sean McKay by David Lipnowski

Chef Sean McKay by David Lipnowski

In his heritage enclave in the city’s theatre district, The Mitchell Block chef/owner Sean McKay is creating incredible culinary concoctions. Beneath a gentle, warm demeanor, rock solid ambition drives this young chef. His considerable kitchen prowess asserts itself in scratch made components: charcuterie boards loaded with meats, mousses, pâtés, terrines and gastronomic touches like shaved preserved egg yolks that add depth to traditional dishes. 173 McDermot Ave, 204‑949‑9032

Hot Shopping: Scene In The City, The Forks

Courtesy Hartmont Candle Company

Courtesy Hartmont Candle Company

Winnipeg’s meeting place for more than 6,000 years is a prime destination for shopping, dining and recreation, making it one of the city’s biggest tourist draws. At The Forks Market, watch local artists create delicate glass figurines in Bayshore Gifts In Glass. The Almond Tree is stocked with specialty treats like Canadian favourite, maple syrup candy. Stroll across the plaza to Johnston Terminal and find rustic mirrors and contemporary jewellery at Lifa Home. The scent-acular space in Hartmont Candle Company is filled with locally made 100% soy candles (pictured). Nearby, The Children’s Museum Shop is a haven of books and games to spark the imagination of little ones.

Here & Now: Film Fun

Photo courtesy Downtown Winnipeg BIZ

Photo courtesy Downtown Winnipeg BIZ

AUG 2, 6, 9, 13, 16, 20, 23, 27, 30

Relive the golden days of drive-in theatres this summer. On Saturdays, a converted parking lot becomes a Downtown Drive-In showing Superhero flicks. Screen gems of years gone by are shown outdoors every Tuesday during Movies on Memorial. See Oscar-winning classics projected on an inflatable outdoor screen in Memorial Park. Free. Movies start at sundown (approx 9 pm). Call 204‑958‑4640 or visit downtownwinnipegbiz.com for details.

Top 5 Riverside Dining Locations

Photo courtesy The Forks

Photo courtesy The Forks

Winnipeg was built around the convergence of the Red and Assiniboine Rivers, and these waterways have provided everything from trade and industry to a place to canoe and kayak to the city’s residents over the years. Take in the city’s signature streams from these idyllic spots where beautiful food is matched with stunning river views.

Just outside the city, The Gates on Roblin shows off the prairies’ pastoral side. Lush riverbanks are visible from the atrium of this converted country estate, which serves local ingredients like bison, beets and pickerel. 6945 Roblin Blvd, 204‑224‑2837, thegatesonroblin.com

The Forks is the place to be on warm summer evenings when the breeze off the rivers hits The Beachcomber’s patio just right. Diners share seafood dishes like mussels swimming in smoky ancho chile sauce. 1 Forks Market Rd, 204‑948‑0020, thebeachcomber.ca

Ice cream parlour Sargent Sundae‘s proximity to the quiet footbridge that crosses the Assiniboine River into Assiniboine Park makes it a popular pick. 2053 Portage Ave, 204-832-5021

A scenic drive along the Red River leads to Half Moon Drive In in Lockport, where the menu of hot dogs, burgers and ice cream is the stuff of family traditions. 6860 Henderson Hwy, 1-204‑757‑2517, halfmoondrivein.com

Set right on the Red River, Cibo Waterfront Café provides one of the best views of the city’s skyline as backdrop for sumptuous arancini and bruschetta. 339 Waterfront Dr, 204‑594-0339, cibowaterfrontcafe.com

Here & Now: Culture Bash

Photo by Darcy Finley

Photo by Darcy Finley

JUL 31-AUG 13

A yearly highlight, two-week festival Folklorama is a multicultural extravaganza. More than 40 pavilions celebrate the diverse groups that call Manitoba home, with traditional dance, music and food turning each into a party. Crowds will line up for this popular fest, so book a spot on the VIP World Tour to stop in at three different venues in one night. For more information visit folklorama.ca or call 204‑982‑6210.

Here & Now: Tour de Food

Earth on plate. 3d render.

AUG 1-31

Sample global flavours during Ciao! Taste The World. This culinary event sees some of the city’s top dining establishments dishing up globally inspired specials for lunch throughout August. A $12 price tag makes it easy to transform lunch time into a world tour. Visit ciaowinnipeg.com for a full list of participating restaurants and menus.

Here & Now: Beautiful Ballet

Photo by Rejean Brandt

Photo by Rejean Brandt

JUL 27-29

See members of the Royal Winnipeg Ballet plié, jeté and pirouette on an outdoor stage at Ballet in the Park. The annual free fresh air performances take place on warm summer evenings in lush Assiniboine Park. Audience members bring lawn chairs or curl up on picnic blankets in front of the Lyric Stage. Arrive early to score prime seats. Show starts at 7:30 pm. Assiniboine Park, main entrance, 2355 Corydon Ave. Call 204‑956‑0183 for details, rwb.org

Editor’s Pick: Top 5 Shops For Cultural Treasures

Courtesy Winnipeg Trading Post

Courtesy Winnipeg Trading Post

These shops offer one-of-a-kind artisanal crafts from around the globe.   

Linen shirts, called ‘vyshyvanka’, at Oseredok Boutique are decorated with hand-embroidered designs symbolizing cultural pride and national hospitality. 184 Alexander Ave E, 204‑942-0218

Find mukluks and moccasins (pictured) created by Aboriginal artisans at Winnipeg Trading Post. Mukluks are designed for warmth and durability in the frigid northern tundra. 1128 Main St, 204‑947-0513

Mandarin International carries a mix of gifts from the Far East and Canadiana souvenirs. Shelves burst with Winnipeg-themed t-shirts and mugs, as well as colourful Chinese fans and chopsticks. Johnston Terminal at The Forks, main floor, 204‑943‑0383

Shop t-shirts and tank tops adorned with February’s Festival du Voyageur logo at Boutique du Festival. Traditional sashes which were used to carry belongings during the fur trade era are made by Métis company Étchiboy. 233 Provencher Blvd, 204‑237‑7692

Vibrant decorations from Mexico colour the walls of La Bodega Imports. Star light fixtures are made by craftsmen from Central Mexico out of tin, brass and glass. 955 Portage Ave, 204‑772‑4331

Hot Art: Artist Spotlight, Karel Funk

Karel Funk Untitled #19, 2006 Acrylic on panel 78.7 x 61.0 cm Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal © Karel Funk, Courtesy 303 Gallery, New York

Karel Funk Untitled #19, 2006 Acrylic on panel 78.7 x 61.0 cm Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal © Karel Funk, Courtesy 303 Gallery, New York

Winnipeg- born Karel Funk has garnered international attention for his paintings of lone hooded figures. These intimate and abstract explorations have been displayed at prestigious galleries including the Guggenheim Museum, Whitney Museum and the National Gallery of Canada. The first retrospective of his work taken from public, private and corporate collections across North America is on now at the Winnipeg Art Gallery.

Funk describes his style as rooted in Renaissance portraiture, contemporary urbanism and photo realism. In 2001, he moved to New York to complete his Masters of Fine Arts at Columbia University. “I was taking lots of art history classes and I was going to the MET quite a bit. I loved looking at the details of the brush strokes.”

His hyper-realist portraits were further influenced by his experience on crowded New York subways, where he became intrigued by facial details of fellow riders. His fixation with ear lobes and hair follicles of strangers merge intimacy with anonymity.

A single image can take up to two months to complete. Funk’s technique involves layering, at times, more than 100 thin semi-transparent coats of acrylic paint on a wood panel to capture folds in jackets and strands of hair.

His recent work removes the human form, further masking identity and creating a sense of mystery.

The installation, a collection of 24 pieces, will be on exhibit at the Winnipeg Art Gallery from Jun 11-Oct 2. 300 Memorial Blvd, 204‑786-6641