Calgary Fun

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Multi-generational activities

Royal Tyrrell Museum of Paleontology

  • Dinosaur museum that is located in Drumheller, about 1.5 hours' drive northeast of Calgary.
  • An awesome museum that tends to appeal to people of all ages.
  • There are many people who believe that, aside from the Rocky Mountains, this is the one truly world class amenity that the Calgary area has to offer.
  • The museum is closed on winter Mondays (except for public holidays).
  • Another warning about the museum is that it tends to be very full during the touristy months of July and August, all the more so on summer weekends.
  • The museum's cafeteria is adequate, but nothing to write home about.
  • To make the best of the experience, it is recommended that you read the TripAdvisor Wiki entitled Inside Calgary : Day Trips.

Calgary Stampede

For information on this ten day, western-themed festival in July, see the following TripAdvisor Wiki articles:

Calgary Zoo

  • A fun place for kids.
  • Open year-round.
  • Annual family pass is very worthwhile.

Heritage Park Historical Village

  • Not old by European standards, but old by the standards of European settlement in the Prairies.
  • Genuine farming methods, buildings, etc., from the late 19th century and early 20th century.
  • Old fashioned amusement park.
  • Steam train.
  • Boat cruises on the lake in a paddle wheeler.
  • Watch the blacksmith at work, and have him make a miniature horseshoe for your child while you watch.
  • One-off entry fees are not cheap, but the annual season's pass for a family is a good deal.
  • Open from late May to early October.

Calaway Park

  • Outdoor amusement park, just off the TransCanada Highway, a few minutes' drive west of Calgary's city limits.
  • Open from late May to early October.
  • If you have children in the age group to whom this places appeals, a season's pass is a good investment.

Telus Spark

  • Planetarium and other fun science exhibits.

Calgary Tower

  • Get a panoramic view of Calgary as well as the Rocky Mountains to the west and the Prairies to the east.
  • If you like, you can step onto the section of the Observation Deck floor that is made of glass!

Devonian Gardens

  • Largest indoor garden in Alberta.
  • Located downtown on the North American fourth floor (British third floor) of Toronto-Dominion Square, at the intersection of 8th Avenue and 3rd Street SW.
  • Approximately 20,000 plants, bridges, fountains, waterfalls, sculptures and a children's playground.
  • Admission is free.

Inglewood Bird Sanctuary

  • Located at 2425 - 9th Avenue SE.
  • Admission is free, although donations are gladly accepted.

Bowness Park

  • Located at 8900 - 48th Avenue NW.
  • Open year-round.
  • Skate on the lagoon in winter.
  • Picnic in summer.
  • Also, depending on the season, canoe, paddle boat, cross-country ski, etc.
  • "Playland" rides for young children.
  • Admission to the park is free, but some rides and rentals cost money.

Children's extra-curricular activities

General comments

  • During school time, children are exposed to a limited amount of music, painting, gymnastics, etc.
  • Most sports, music lessons, dancing lessons, etc., take place in the afternoons, after school hours and on weekends.
  • Children rely on their parents to drive them to extra-curricular activities (although parents can join car pools to reduce the burden of driving).
  • Most sports teams rely on volunteer coaches who are drawn from the players' parents.
  • Lessons in individual sports (such as gymnastics), dancing and music are conducted by professional teachers, who are paid by the students' parents.

Ice Hockey

  • Children's ice hockey practices and games are organized through local community associations.
  • Coaches are volunteer dads.
  • The equipment involves quite a financial investment. However, you can reduce the cost by buying secondhand equipment for your child, and then selling that equipment when the child outgrows it.
  • Registration for the upcoming winter season usually takes place in the early autumn.
  • To find out more, contact your local community association or the Minor Hockey Association of Calgary.

Soccer

  • In recent years soccer, a previously little known game in Calgary, has become enormously popular.
  • The sport is a year-round game, as there are both outdoor and indoor fields.
  • There are various soccer associations in the city.
  • A good starting point for your enquiries is Calgary Minor Soccer Association.

Baseball / Softball

  • This is an outdoor, summer team game that is played with a bat and ball.
  • Enquires:
    • Calgary Minor Softball Association, Telephone 403-245-3008
    • Double Diamond AA Softball Association, for girls 13-19, Telephone 403-280-9544
    • Little League Alberta, ages 5 - 18, Telephone 403-295-6224
    • Softball Calgary, Telephone 403-245-1559.

Gymnastics

Dance

  • There are a number of ballet studios that offer lessons for children.
  • Children also can learn various kinds of ethnic dancing, e.g., Irish dancing.

Music

  • There are many teachers from whom children can learn how to play the piano, the violin and other instruments and from whom they can take singing lessons.
  • Teachers follow many different styles and principles -- Suzuki, Kodaly, etc., etc., etc.

Theatre

Scouts and Guides

  • Boy Scouts are organized by age into Beavers, Cubs, Scouts, Venturers and Rovers.
  • Girl Guides are organized by age into Sparks, Brownies, Guides, Pathfinders, Cadets and Rangers.

Children's summer camps

Info to be added. If anyone wants to contribute in the meantime, please feel to go ahead.

Preschoolers

Play groups

Calgary Public Library

  • The various branches of the Calgary Public Library offer preschool programs, such as story reading, songs and fingerplay.

Swimming

  • The pools operated by the City of Calgary, the pools in various public leisure centres, and YMCA pools offer parent and tot swimming lessons.

Information about Children's Activities

  • Keep up to date with with a free subscription to fornightly online bulletins published by Calgary's Child Magazine.
  • Calgary Parent Zone - heaps of information, not only about amenities for children, but about many other topics as well
  • Canadian Relocation Systems - heaps of information, not only about amenities for children, but about many other topics as well

Babies and toddlers

  • Calgary Moms - This website's blurb says, "Join our large community and enjoy playgroups and playdates, moms only and couples nights out, scrap booking and stitch n bitch club events, slumber parties and rejuvenating retreats, weight loss challenges, walking clubs and so much more." It costs $20/year to join the Calgary Moms Community. However, even if you don't want to join, the website has lots of links to other resources. Scroll down the screen, and look at the links in the left hand margin.
  • Calgary Newcomer's Club - Comprised of people who also are new and don't have family and established friends nearby. Includes a Mom and Tots group.
  • A Baby Guide to Calgary - This book by Paula McGarrigle is addressed to parents of babies from birth to twenty four months. It describes services, facilities, amenities and activities in Calgary as well as in nearby towns like Airdrie, Cochrane, Okotoks and Chestermere. It's available in several Calgary stores, or you can order it online.


Adults

British pubs

  • This Wiki would benefit from a list of British pubs, particularly those in which British sporting events can be viewed.
  • As a starting point, consider the Ship and Anchor at 534 - 17th Avenue SW. This is located in the Uptown 17th Avenue district, nicknamed the Red Mile.
  • Five minutes west at 2703 17th Avenue SW is the Newcastle Pub with a menu full of British classics.

ffwd

It is pronounced Fast Forward, and it is Calgary's news and entertainment weekly. The freely available hard copy edition has more information, but some information is available on the website as well.

Ticketmaster

Online ordering of tickets to artistic, musical, theatrical and sporting events.

Calgary Culture Club

  • It's free to join.
  • It's a convenient vehicle for coordinating activities with people who share any number of cultural interests (theatre, thought-provoking movies, ethnic dining, etc., etc., etc.).
  • It attracts adults of all ages.

Calgary Outdoor Club

  • Free to join.
  • A convenient vehicle for coordinating activities with people who share interests in hiking, cycling, skiing, kayaking, and many other outdoor pursuits.
  • No age limit as such, but tends to attract younger adults, say people in their twenties and thirties.

The Calgary British Expats Meetup

A group that holds informal monthly gatherings in pubs around town.

Visit Calgary

Travel Alberta

Tripadvisor's Wiki on Calgary

TripAdvisor's Wiki on Banff National Park

Related Information

  • This is one of a series of British Expats Wiki articles about Calgary.