Stampede 2017 has been a doozy so far and if the meteorologists out there are worth their two cents, the final days are shaping up to be scorchers. Whether you’re a nightly fixture on the dancefloor at Nashville North or you’ve been spending your time herding cats – er, kids – around the midway at high noon, here are some strategies to get you through the end of Stampede and bring you back to life when all is said and done.
Avenue Calgary publisher Joyce Byrne swears by this night time-use facial serum developed by XO Treatment Room‘s founder Annie Graham specifically for the Calgary climate. “Calgary’s beautiful summers come with a price to your skin. Add the long days and nights of Stampede and my face is really showing the signs of the candle being burnt at both ends,” Byrne says. “Not only will XO PM leave your complexion in better shape by morning, the subtle lavender scent will help you fall asleep.”
XO Treatment Room, 1306 1 St. S.W., 403-475-3088, xotreatmentroom.com
Tucked into the rise directly south of the Stampede grounds, the Reader Rock Garden is one of the city’s most beautiful hidden gems. Just a short walk across 25th Avenue S.E., this verdant oasis on the grounds of the former home of William Reader, the city’s parks superintendent from 1913 to 1942, is a perfect place to check out and recharge from the midway bombast. Meander along the stone pathways through cool groves of trees and flowers and rest your bones (and your mind) on a bench while you zone out to the sound of the bubbling brook that runs through it.
After 10-straight days of morning pancakes and whatever they’re deep-frying on the midway, you’d best get yourself some fresh veggies stat, lest you come down with a case of cowboy scurvy. While grab-and-go salad places have been popping up everywhere, if you want to make a nice meal of it, there’s no place like The Coup. The veggie-vegan O.G. of Calgary’s dining scene is still serving up well-composed healthy salads in a room that has kept its cool over the years. You’ll feel healthier just walking in the door.
The Coup, 924 17 Ave. S.W., 403-541-1041, thecoup.ca
A spicy bloody Caesar crammed with pickled asparagus and garnished with a barbecued rib might seem like the perfect chaser after a night of beer-tub Buds and well rye ‘n’ Cokes but you’ll be better off with a fresh-pressed juice, particularly something with the liver-boosting properties of beets. Hit a bottle of Hank, a beet-carrot-apple-spinach blend from local juicery Juice Because. Or pop the top on Be Well, a beet-carrot-apple-ginger-lemon concoction from Well Juicery, another local company, that is pegged as a “master liver tonic” that will give your “overburdened cleansing organ a break.” Both are a rich red on account of the beets so you could always pretend that they’re Caesars if you needed to. Find Juice Because and Well Juicery products in refrigerators at stores across the city.
If your mind is feeling a little cloudy, book yourself a cushion at Modern + Mindful, a guided meditation studio in the Beltline. The studio’s roster of core classes includes the 30-minute Pause, designed to soothe any aggressive tendencies and release you back out into the world feeling relaxed, focused and supremely chill.
343 11 Ave. S.W., 403-690-2256, modernandmindful.com
The perfect antidote to the dust of the rodeo arena and the bake of hot asphalt is sitting in a serene mountain enclave while water pours over you. The core experience at the Willow Stream Spa at the Fairmont Banff Springs begins with a steam or sauna, followed by a progression of increasingly cool waterfall pools and culminating with a soak in a calm mineral-pool, leaving you physically and psychically refreshed. Add something from the spa’s gamut of beauty and body treatments, or just while away the hours on one of the private patios or in one of the low-key relaxation lounges.
405 Spray Avenue, Banff, 403-762-1772, fairmont.com