By SILVIA PIKAL
Celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday year with one of these events in Southern Alberta’s host city.
Transalta Grandstand Show
July 7 – 16
This year the evening grandstand show at the Calgary Stampede has a Canada 150 theme. Called “Together,” the show celebrates Canada’s multiculturalism through diverse music, dance, and visual imagery. It will be hosted by Calgary’s own singer-songwriter Jann Arden, who will perform alongside other talents with a mix of popular Canadian music and a new score by producer Dave Pierce, who won an Emmy award scoring the music for the 2010 Winter Olympic Ceremonies in Vancouver.
For a guide to everything great going on in 2017, check out the free Passport 2017 events app and website. The app is updated daily with events in your area, including music festivals, film screenings, sports, official Canada 150 celebrations, and more. Read articles on all things Canadian from hockey trivia tidbits to how to make the best poutine. Visit passport2017.ca and download the free app from the App Store (iOS) or Google Play (Android).
Parks Day and Creekfest
Come down to Bow Valley Ranche at Fish Creek Provincial Park for a celebration of Canada’s 150th and Alberta’s natural areas. Learn about the importance of protecting local watersheds through interactive games and activities, educational guided walks, a fly-fishing demo, and more. Enjoy live performances, draws, and refreshments.
Calgary Folk Fest Concert
Calgary Folk Music Festival is hosting a free concert to commemorate Canada’s 150th. Canada Far and Wide: Grands Esprits showcases traditional songs from Canada’s history along with songs from trailblazing Canadian musicians like Joni Mitchell, Hank Snow, Buffy Sainte-Marie, and Leonard Cohen. Performers at the concert include Jason Collett, Basia Bulat, Cris Derksen, Turkwaz, DJ Shub, Mélisande (électrotrad), Birds of Chicago, and Barney Bentall. Toronto-based musical group Choir! Choir! Choir! will lead the grand finale of the show with an audience sing-a-long.
August 15, 17, 19, 22, 24, 26
For Canada’s birthday, GlobalFest is switching from international displays to a Canada-only focus. Five teams—Western Canada, the prairies, Ontario, Quebec, and Atlantic Canada—are putting on an elaborate fireworks show choreographed to regional music, with food and activities related to each region. The last day of the festival is a finale with live accompaniment.
August 23 – 24
Named one of Canada’s 150th ambassadors, k.d. lang is celebrating another big milestone this year. 2017 is the 25th anniversary of her platinum album Ingénue, and she’ll perform songs from the album on her solo tour. The singer-songwriter will also play hits from her 2004 album Hymns of the 49th Parallel, which features covers of songs by other Canadian musicians including Joni Mitchell, Leonard Cohen, Neil Young, and Ron Sexsmith.
150 Celebration on the Hill
Come out and celebrate Canada’s multicultural communities with the Strathcona Christie Aspen Community Association. There will be a citizenship ceremony, flag-raising ceremony, art exhibition, sports showcase, entertainment stage, outdoor family area, plenty of food, and a LEGO competition for kids with a theme of what you love about Canada.
September 7 – 10
The Honens Festival showcases some of Canada’s brightest classical music stars. The festival has several free events, including the popular open-air concert at Central Memorial Park that lets you enjoy chamber music under the sun, and concerts that set popular children’s stories to music.
Through Fall 2017
Don’t miss Milestones: Sarah McLachlan, a temporary exhibition at Studio Bell, home of the National Music Centre, which honours Sarah McLachlan’s 2017 induction into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame. See a display of McLachlan’s instruments, awards, and a stage costume from Lilith Fair.
National Parks and Historic Sites
Through December 31, 2017
All National Parks and Historic Sites in Canada are offering free admission in 2017. This includes 19 places in Alberta such as Banff National Park, Waterton Lakes National Park, and Bar U Ranch National Historic Site.