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Free

Fun For Free

Sep. 2, 2016
By Afton Aikens

Exploring the Bow Valley doesn’t have to drain your wallet. There’s plenty of things to do that let you see the best of the area without costing a cent.

Take your bike on a scenic cycle path or go for a swim at a beautiful lake beach. Wander through local markets, historical sites and viewpoints and entertain the kids with activity packs and shows. Let the free fun commence!

Bow Valley, things to do for free (more…)

FREE Fun In Edmonton!

Photo 1-City Hall FountainSmall

Everyone loves having fun for free, and we have tons of ways to enjoy our vibrant city without spending a cent!

First up, take a free tour of the Alberta Legislature Building! Once you are done, cool off in the wading pools and fountains out front, catch some sun on the manicured lawn, and then, at noon and 6 pm every day, you can get a free concert! An instrument called a carillon plays beautiful, clear melodies that sounds like bells ringing!

The Ledge fountain is definitely not the only place to cool off though — you can enjoy the fountain in front of city hall or one of the city’s many free outdoor spray parks including the great one at the Kinsman Sports Centre.

Art fans, or those looking to experience something new, are in luck too! You can check out all of the amazing exhibits at the Art Gallery of Alberta for FREE on the last Thursday of every month.

The FAB Gallery (or Fine Arts Building Gallery) on the UofA Campus is currently showing work from the incredibly talented Master of Fine Arts students until July 11. You are sure to see some incredibly innovative and well thought out art!

The Works Art & Design Festival kicks off today (June 19) and there will be tons of interactive exhibits all over downtown. Head to Churchill Square for the bulk of the action that will be running until July 1.

Tomorrow (June 20) the SNAP Gallery will be printing huge large-scale prints using a steamroller just outside their studio on Jasper Ave.! The event, which will include live music, starts at 7 pm!

If music is what you are looking for, then you are in luck because Jazz Fest runs from June 18-29, and has a bunch of free performances throughout the entire festival.

It is also Aboriginal Day at Louise McKinney Park tomorrow (June 20)! There will be free fun from noon until 10:30 pm including music performances, and hands on interactive activities.

As seen on Global News Edmonton on June 19, 2015.

—Lindsay Shapka

3 Things To Do Tonight In Calgary

Sloan plays their 1994 classic album Twice Removed in order (with other songs) tonight at Republik.

3. Catch a Jupiter Comedy stand-up performance at 8 pm at the Oak Tree Tavern. No cover at the door. Get there early, and enjoy a pint from local Village Brewery on the patio—one of our picks for Calgary’s best new patios.

2. Check out Legend of A Warrior, a documentary by Calgary director Corey Lee about reconnecting with his estranged father (martial arts legend Frank Lee). The film plays at the Plaza Theatre in Kensington at 7 pm and 8:45 pm.

1. Sloan plays the Republik on their Twice Removed tour. Celebrate the release of the deluxe triple-vinyl edition of Twice Removed, the band’s critically acclaimed and universally loved second album released in 1994. Tickets are $22 and available at Prime Box Office. Doors open at 8 pm for this 18-plus show. – Adele Brunnhofer

Weekend Roundup September 7 – 9

Friday, September 7 Catch the opening weekend of the fall exhibit Reclamation at The Artist Proof Gallery. An opening reception will be held Sep 7, at 5:30 pm. The evening will begin with a public lecture from the artist.  The exhibit features detailed etchings and lithographs by Georgia-based artist Curtis Bartone. The gallery is located at 2010F 11 St SE. For more information call 403-287-1056.

For a night full of laughs this weekend head down to Yuk Yuk’s and check out stand-up comedian Bob Beddow. His homespun humor will be taking the stage September 6 – 8. For tickets and show times, call the Yuk Yuk’s box office, 403-258-2028.

Saturday, September 8 Stage West presents Sexy Laundry by Michele Riml. The play is an entertaining evening for men, women and couples alike. (more…)

Weekend Round-up August 24 – 26

Friday 24 – Sunday 26  The annual Expo Latino festival of local Latino and Hispanic culture kicks off Friday night at Prince’s Island Park. The festival features local and international dance troupes and musicians, including headlining Chilean superstar Americo, 7:15 pm Saturday. Food and merchant vendors on site. The festival runs Fri 6 am – 11 pm, Sat 11 am – 11 pm and Sun 11 am – 9 pm. Admission $15 per day, $30 for the weekend, available at the gate. Seniors and children under 12 free.

Courtesy CJSW 90.9 FM

Saturday 25  Head to Olympic Plaza on Saturday evening for CJSW 90.9 FM’s second summer concert series, 7 pm until 10 pm. The concert features performances by western-punk group Agnostic Phibes, folk rocker Ship Shape, folk-pop singer Forest Tate and experimental indie-pop outfit Boreal Sons. Admission is free.

Saturday 25 – Sunday 26  The Calgary Dragon Boat Race and Festival begins at North Glenmore Park, 7305 Crowchild Trail SW. Teams of 22 people race along the Glenmore Reservoir in 12-metre-long boats. Winners qualify for the Canadian Dragon Boat Championship in Vancouver. Various live music and dance performances take place throughout the festival. Admission is free. Free parking available at North Glenmore Park and Mount Royal University. Shuttle buses run between Mount Royal University and the festival site until 6 pm, daily.  – Sarah Sussman 

Weekend Round-up August 17 to 19

This weekend calls for beautiful weather so get outdoors and take in some fantastic summertime traditions!

Friday 17 – Saturday 18  The Calgary International ReggaeFest runs Friday and Saturday at Shaw Millenium Park. Visitors can expect hot performances by Bryan Art, Cherine Anderson and Jermaine Cowan. Also enjoy Caribbean cuisine, beer garden and a youth area. Tickets are available at Calgary Co-op locations or by calling 403-355-5696. (more…)

Hot Date: Chinatown Street Festival

Interior of the Chinese Cultural Centre. Photo: Courtesy Travel Alberta.

This Saturday, the annual Chinatown Street Festival takes place in the vibrant historic area between Centre Street and First Street SE and along Second Avenue and Third Avenue SE.

Savour the flavours of authentic Thai, Vietnamese, Japanese and Chinese eats in the Dragon City Mall shopping complex or at one of the food booths located along Third Avenue. Merchant booths will also be set up along Third Avenue with various clothing, accessories and gifts for sale. Karaoke, tai chi and other demonstrations will be held along Second Avenue SE. (more…)

50 Free Things To Do in Montreal

By KAT TANCOCK

#2 – Festival de Jazz (Photo by iker ender)

Travelling can get expensive, but you don’t have to spend on everything. Here are 50 free activities, festivals, tours and more in Montreal so you can save your cash for dinner and drinks. (more…)

Hot Dates: Editor’s Choice

Running from August 4 to 14, the Halifax International Busker Festival is Canada’s oldest and largest celebration of street theatre. Myriad Canadian and international performers take to the Halifax waterfront for 11 days, performing hundreds of shows on five outdoor stages. Performances include acrobatics, music, visual arts, comedy fire shows and more.

Hot Date: Great Skating

Rideau Hall in Winter. Photo credit: Sgt. Serge Gouin, Rideau Hall.

Looking for a break from the hustle and bustle of Ottawa’s downtown core? Visit historic Rideau Hall and enjoy a quiet (and free) skate. Glide back in time to 1872 when Lord and Lady Dufferin first had the rink built and would host skating parties for the public — their only stipulation was that all those attending were “properly dressed.” So make sure you bring your mittens, though you can probably leave your grandmother’s pea coat in the attic. The rink isn’t quite as big as a hockey rink, but there’s usually plenty of room for families and young beginners. Open to the public on weekends from Jan. 7 to March 13, weather permitting.

Frugal Faves: CN Tower and Harbourfront Centre

There’s so much to see and do in this city, but after a while, admission fees, restaurant bills and shopping sprees start to add up. Where Toronto’s weekly tips on discounted tickets, exclusive sales, free events and more help you get the most out of your trip without burning a hole in your pocket.

The CN Tower (photo by bensonkua)

The CN Tower (photo by bensonkua)

More Power to the Tower
Imagine a heap of food donations stacked as high as Toronto’s iconic CN Tower. While you probably wouldn’t want to stand on top of it, you may want to help build it. The CN Tower, in support of the Daily Bread Food Bank Holiday Drive, offers a 25 per cent admission discount to visitors who bring at least one non-perishable food item (such as rice, canned goods and baby food) to the Guest Services desk at the main entrance. You can gaze down at Toronto’s twinkling lights through the glass floor or enjoy the incredible view from the Sky Pod’s observation deck knowing that you helped the city’s neediest fight hunger this festive season.

Discounted admission may be used until January 4, 2010, and applied to any CN Tower ticket except CityPass and the Premier Experience. Call 416-868-6937 or visit the tower’s website for more information.

The Natrel Rink (photo by Jennifer Hart)

The Natrel Rink (photo by Jennifer Hart)

Lakeside Delights
With the first weekend of December looking mild this year (keep those frost-free fingers crossed!), it’s the perfect time to take a stroll around Harbourfront Centre and enjoy its free outdoor attractions. Kids can take free curling, skateboarding and freestyle-slalom this Saturday, or head to the Natrel Rink and spend some fun hours gliding across the ice (skate rentals are available). Afterwards, warm your toes by one of the controlled fireplaces among the trees overlooking Lake Ontario, or stare wide-eyed at the enormous boat installation in blue and red lights, one of the features of Toronto’s annual Cavalcade of Lights.

The Harbourfront Centre is located at 235 Queens Quay W.; call 416-973-4600 or click here for more information.

Frugal Faves: Gardiner Museum, Kidzfest and the William Ashley Warehouse Sale

There’s so much to see and do in this city, but after a while, admission fees, restaurant bills and shopping sprees start to add up. Where Toronto’s weekly tips on discounted tickets, exclusive sales, free events and more help you get the most out of your trip without burning a hole in your pocket.

The Gardiner Museum (photo by Shai Gill)

The Gardiner Museum (photo by Shai Gill)

Pay Less, See More
Nurture your passion for porcelain with a visit to the Gardiner Museum. On Friday evenings, admission is half price from 4 p.m. until closing time. The renowned institution’s permanent collection boasts more than 3,000 ceramic pieces  of Ancient American, Asian and European provenance, as well as many dynamic contemporary pieces by international artists. The current exhibition Bigger, Better, More: The Art of Viola Frey invites visitors to come face to face with whimsical, larger-than-life clay sculptures created by the late California artist. Through to December 10, a dozen spectacular holiday trees, decorated by some of Toronto’s top designers and architects, are on display in the museum lobby. And for a jump-start on holiday shopping, stop by the Gardiner Shop, which offers beautiful ceramics, glass, jewellery and more—perfect for the gift-giving season.

Admission to the Gardiner Museum is half-price every Friday, 4 to 9 p.m.; call 416-586-8080 or visit here for more information.

Child-friendly fun abounds at Kidzfest

Child-friendly fun abounds at Kidzfest

Festive Family Fun
Exotic animals and beloved cartoon celebrities invade Yonge-Dundas Square this weekend for Kidzfest, an annual holiday hootenanny for little ones and their willing parents. Part of the ongoing Winter Magic celebrations in the Downtown Yonge neighbourhood, the free event features kid-friendly activities, educational entertainers and zany stage shows. Budding young artists can make colourful creations in the craft tent and wildlife lovers will love the live jungle cat shows and birds of prey demonstrations. Popular characters like Spongebob Squarepants and Dora the Explorer are sure to create a frenzy during special meet-and-greet sessions.

Kidzfest runs November 28 and 29, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Southeast corner of Yonge and Dundas streets; click here or call 416-597-0255 for further details.

William Ashley's warehouse sale is a bonanza for bargain hunters

William Ashley's warehouse sale is a bonanza for bargain hunters

China on the Cheap
Whether you’re picking up presents for loved ones or treating yourself this holiday season (hey, you deserve it!) you’re sure to find some stunning pieces at the 34th annual William Ashley warehouse sale. Savvy shoppers can save up to 90 per cent on a vast selection of name-brand china, crystal, flatware, and chic home decor items that are ideal for any gift-giving occasion. Hint: to avoid the crowds hit the sale on weekday afternoons between 3 and 6 p.m.

Sale on now to December 6. Monday, Wednesday to Friday 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., weekend 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. (closed Tuesdays). 62 Railside Road; call 416-964-2900 or visit here for details.