Staff Picks: What to Do During the Last Weekend of Stampede

If you only have time for a few more Stampede activities this weekend, these are some of the must-do activities we recommend.

Photograph by Chris Landry.

 

Watch the fireworks from Scotsman’s Hill in Ramsay

The bluffs overlooking Stampede Park are by far and away the best vantage for watching the nightly Stampede fireworks display that sets off at approximately 11 p.m. If you haven’t seen them yet from here, then this is definitely something to schedule into your final Stampede weekend. Before you go, however, be aware that you can’t just drive up there at 10:45 pm, as the streets are blocked off to non-residents over the entire course of Stampede. The one way to get up there with your vehicle is to pay for parking in the lot at the top of the hill that is set up each year in the field just south of the Ramsay Community Rink. The lot is run as an annual fundraiser for the Ramsay Community School and is staffed by parent-volunteers. It’s $10 to park there after 5:30 p.m. ($15 for the full day). The access point is at the intersection of Burns Avenue and Spiller Road, where you pay for parking and receive a receipt card that you then give to the volunteers at the entrance to the lot as proof of payment. You can pay with your credit card (they have those tap square machines) or cash (exact change only). *Full disclosure: I am one of these parent volunteers, which is how I know all this. That was me out there on Wednesday night waving people into the lot with that cool light-up baton that looks like a light sabre. — Shelley Arnusch, editor-in-chief

 

Fly across the midway on the WestJet Skyride

If there was ever a year to add this ride to your Stampede Midway must-do list, this is it. Things look a little different on the grounds this year, and travelling across the park from above allows you to fully take in the changes, like the new location of the Coca-Cola Stage (it’s near the Erlton Entry now, as opposed to the Main Entry near Victoria Park Stampede Station), and the addition of the 150-foot-high Superwheel, the largest travelling Ferris wheel in North America. Plus, you’ll get a better sense of the gargantuan project that is the BMO Centre expansion, and the impact it will have on Stampede Park when it opens in 2024. Whether you go for a one-way or roundtrip, grab an icy cold lemonade, strap in, and enjoy the ride — with all the air travel challenges as of late, it may just be the smoothest flight you take this summer. — Dominique Lamberton, managing editor

 

Go to the Calgary Stampede Evening Show

The Calgary Stampede is much more than a midway full of delicious treats, beer tents and music festivals. Although those are fun aspects to our 10-day long outdoor show, the Stampede also continually educates guests and locals on the western way of life. The evening show is a great way to learn while also being entertained. Held nightly starting at 7:45 p.m., the evening show kicks off with our city’s renowned Cowboys Rangeland Derby (the chuckwagon races), which are an important tradition (you can read more about the races here). After the thundering of hooves quiets down, the Bell Grandstand Show begins. This year’s grandstand show is called Amplified. It features Canadian country singer Dean Brody and performances from the Young Canadians. The Bell Grandstand Show also incorporates “North America’s best First Nations relay racing teams,” who ride bareback and swap horses as they circle the track. The evening show ends with fireworks that are visible around the city. — Gabby Cleveland, editorial intern

Want more suggestions for the best things to do in Calgary? Sign up for our Weekender Newsletter.

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