We all know that the Calgary Stampede is a ton of fun, but it takes a special person to do all ten days of the Stampede, and for some the greatest outdoor show on earth is just not simply for them.  For all those people, I appeared on Breakfast Television this morning to share some of my favourite Stampede alternatives. Making the list, I considered a variety of budgets, ages and originality. If you have some more to add, head to the comments section and let me know!

Midsummer Night’s Swing

Every Thursday from June to September.
7:00pm Drop-In swing dance lesson.
8:00pm Social dancing.

The first time I stumbled upon these outdoor swing classes, I was instantly enamoured. If I’m being honest, I immediately thought: This is totally something that happens in NYC, but it’s happening in Calgary! How cool!

Event description:
Every Thursday night during the summer,  Top Cat Swing graces upon Poppy Plaza in the heart of Kensington to celebrate the joy and fun of swing dancing. This outdoor event features both live and DJ authentic swing music from the 1920’s – 1950’s. A beginner lesson is included with every dance and gives you the basics to be able to dance the night away! This is a great way to promote Swing Dancing in the Community at large. Bring your friends and help inspire them to join our amazing swing community! Celebrate the joy and connection of swing dancing and Lindy Hop and keep the culture alive!

Century Downs

261095 Dwight McLellan Trail
Friday evenings, and Saturdays, Sundays starting at 2:00 pm.

Event description:
Century Downs Racetrack and Casino brings the long-lived passion of horse racing back to the city of Calgary. Century Downs has live races Saturdays, Sundays and holidays starting at 2:00 pm, and then Friday evenings in the summer months. On non-live race days visit our vibrant and spacious off-track betting room for more horse race action.

Check out a Night Market!

Tomkins Park Night Market:
July 6, 7, 9 and 10. (5:00pm-11:30pm)

Inglewood Night Market
Friday, July 10, 6pm-11pm

I’m officially ready to call Calgary the Market City. It seems more and more markets are popping up and I couldn’t be happier. During Stampede there’s two night markets to check out featuring browse local artisans’ booths, eat some delicious food and listen to live music

Family Golf Nights

Richmond Green – July 11th
(there’s a variety of golf courses and nights, this is the only one during Stampede.)

-The City of Calgary is offering Family Golf Night at the  9 hole golf courses at McCall Lake Par 3 and Richmond Green and Lakeview Golf Course. Those interested will also get free lessons and tips from 5 – 7 p.m.
– A family of four can golf for $37 including club rentals at McCall Lake Par 3 and Richmond Green Golf Course. These 9 hole Par 3 golf courses are easy enough for beginners and great for experienced players wanting to improve their short game. (And $48 including club rentals at Lakeview).

Out of the city:

Dig for dinosaurs in Dinosaur Provincial Park
Guided hikes and tours.

I did this a few weeks ago, and I think I’ve talked about it every day ever since. It is honestly one of the coolest things I’ve ever done and I feel like people still don’t know about it. In the park, there are a a variety of interpretive programs for all ages, both outdoor and indoor, some strenuous and others easy, less than one hour to multi-day. You can read all about my experiences here! 

Mike Morrison


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