November 29, 2013 2:29:13 PM
With the Christmas season now in full swing, most of us are looking forward to a month jam packed with shopping, entertaining, decorating and the usual gamut of holiday activities. As fun as it is, though, the hustle and bustle of the holidays can be exhausting, which might make this the ideal season to treat yourself to a day spent enjoying the finer things in life: namely, food, drinks and art!
Start at the Edge Gallery (612 Spring Creek Drive). Their current exhibition, entitled “Out of the Woods” showcases work depicting the vast and varied Canadian forests. Two artistic perspectives are offered on this subject: one from painter Barb Fyvie and another from sculptor Grant Berg. The exhibit runs until December 18th.
After the gallery, head to Mountain Mercato Specialty Food Market for their Aperitivo Happy Hour, happening Thursdays, Friday and Saturdays from 4:00pm to 7:00pm. Enjoy half price aperitivo platters and $7 glasses of wine with your art-loving companions. It’s a charming way to finish off your high-culture day (in case you didn’t know, “apertivo” is the word for an Italian drink meant to stimulate the appetite before dinner). Mountain Mercato has some of the freshes, tastiest and most distinctive food in Cankmore, so it would be a great place to stick around for dinner.
If you’re around this weekend, and hungry for more local art and culture, be sure to check out the Artists of Elk Run open studio event, happening Saturday Dec. 7 and Sun Dec 8. 9 artists from the local collective will be opening the doors of their professional studios to the public, hosting tours that give visitors a glimpse of their artistic process. There will also be opportunities to buy their art—everything from blown glass to jewelry to sculpture.
When your day of art and aperitivo comes to a close, retire to your comfortable room at the BEST WESTERN PLUS Pocaterra Inn for a blissful night’s rest.
November 20, 2013 12:49:05 PM
Christmas in the Rockies is a magical time of year. And in the weeks leading up to the holidays, the Canmore area is vibrant with festive things to see and do that will have you humming carols in no time.
So if you’re looking for some unique gift ideas or would like to take in some great entertainment, check out these upcoming Christmas events in Canmore.
Christmas markets abound at the Canmore Christmas Artisans Market – Nov 23rd & 24th
Christmas shopping can be a lot of fun and Canmore offers several ways to seek out the best presents. The Canmore Christmas Artisans Market runs Nov. 23 and 24 at Canmore Collegiate High School. With a gorgeous array of unique handcrafted items made by more than 80 artists and artisans from the Bow Valley area, you will find something perfect for every person on your shopping list.
From jewelry to silks, pottery to hand-crafted knives and so much more in almost every price range, you're sure to find some memorable gifts. It's all under one roof and the $2 admission goes to help Canmore Preschool. There is also the annual Christmas Market and Sale that offers a variety of items for everyone, including the men in your life. It's held at the Canmore Seniors Hall and runs Nov. 30 from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Dec. 1 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Shop for some art at the Artists of Elk Run Studio Tour – Dec. 7th & 8th
Combine Christmas shopping with a chance to explore more of beautiful Canmore. The annual Artists of Elk Run Studio Tour runs Dec. 7 and 8. There are 10 studios involved where the artists will open their doors, talk to you about their art and offer great prices on everything from pottery to glassware, paintings and more. The online map will guide you around the studios where you will find some of the most unique Christmas presents possible.
Oh! Christmas trees! at the annual Festival of Trees – Dec. 5th – 8th
The Rotary Club of Canmore holds its annual Festival of Trees from Dec. 5 to 8. This fund-raising event for Rotary offers a breath-taking forest of gloriously decorated trees, complimentary hot chocolate and cookies, raffles and the chance to vote on your favourite tree by making a token donation to Rotary's good works locally and around the world. Festival events also include children's craft sessions daily and a fun bonspiel at the Canmore Golf and Curling Club on Dec. 7th.
Get in the Christmas spirit downtown at the Canmore Christmas Festival – Nov. 28th – Dec. 24th
Downtown Canmore's annual Christmas Festival offers ample family fun and it runs from Nov. 28 right up to Christmas Eve. You can go skating on the pond, take a jingle bell sleigh ride or join in with strolling carollers. There's even late-night shopping along the brightly-lit, decorated streets of the downtown core.
Big Band Christmas concert – Dec. 14th
Enjoy an afternoon of Christmas music and help out the less fortunate at a concert on Dec. 14, from 2 – 4 p.m. at the Royal Canadian Legion, Three Sisters Branch #3. The Big Band Christmas event, featuring musicians of the Valley Winds Music Association, is free with a food donation to the Bow Valley Food Bank. Cash donations during the performance support the VWMA.
However you choose to get into the holiday spirit, choose the BEST WESTERN PLUS Pocaterra Inn for the perfect winter holiday getaway.
October 22, 2013 12:49:10 PM
By day, the Communitea Café in Canmore is the sort of place where you can cozy up on a bean bag chair, sip a cup of fair trade coffee and while away the afternoon with a good book. By night, it transforms into one of the city’s top live music venues, hosting intimate concerts from the rising stars of Canada’s independent music scene.
You’ll find Communitea Cafe in the heart of downtown Canmore at 1001 6th Ave. (a 4-minute drive or 20-minute walk from the BEST WESTERN PLUS Pocaterra Inn). Here’s a preview of some of the café’s upcoming shows, any of which would make for a great evening on the town when you stay at our hotel in Canmore.
Julia Lynx (with Marc Atkinson) – Fri. October 25th
Celebrating the release of her debut album Wild Patience, on which she collaborated with Juno-nominated musician and producer Marc Atkinson (who joins her for this concert), Canmore singer-songwriter Julia Lynx might just be on the cusp of a breakthrough. Driven by her confessional lyrics, heartland themes and unpretentious vocal style, her music recalls other Canadian greats like Joni Mitchell and Jan Arden. She will be joined by a number of local performers for this concert, officially billed as her “CD release”. Tickets are $20 in advance or $24 at the door.
Aidan Knight and Justin Rutledge – Tues. November 12th
It’s a double bill of two of the brightest stars in Canadian independent folk and country. Knight is a fixture on the BC experimental folk scene, riding the success of his second studio album Small Reveal. Rutledge, hailing from Toronto, is an alt-country heartthrob with literary predelicetions and 5 albums under his belt, the recipient of endless comparisons to Ryan Adams and Hank Williams. See them both for the very reasonable price of $25 in advance or $30 at the door.
Hollerado (with The Zolas) – Wed. November 20th
Although this show isn’t officially listed as a “double bill”, it should be, because both of these bands deserve the headline spot at any show they play. Hollerado received a Juno nomination for Best New Group in 2011 for their quirky brand of hook-filled indie rock. while Zolas have a near-cult like status in their native Vancouver for their upbeat, eccentric, piano-driven pop. Tickets are $20 in advance or $24 at the door.
Advance tickets for these and other upcoming shows are available on the Communitea Café website.
In the 1940s, Vic Lewis played a monumental role in bringing band music to Canmore. For more than twenty years, he shared his love of music by teaching band students across the Bow Valley.
To honours the memory of Vic and his many accomplishments, the Vic Lewis International Band Festival invites more than 800 junior high and high school music students to Canmore to perform, learn, listen and celebrate the spirit of music over three fun-filled days. It’s recognized as one of the top non-competitive music festivals in the province.
The Vic Lewis Festival takes place from November 1st to 3rd at Canmore Collegiate High, Canmore Recreation Centre and the Cornerstone Theatre.
2013 marks the 16th year of the festival and, hopefully, one of the best. Last year’s festival welcomed over 30 jazz bands, wind ensembles and concert band from across Western Canada, along with some of North America’s most renowned band directors. Big names that have graced the festival’s guest list in the past include UBC director of wind band Dr. Robert Taylor, Kwantlen University director of ensembles Wayne Jeffery and jazz composer Alan Matheson.
Although Vic Lewis passed away in 1999, shortly after that year’s festival ended, his spirit lives on in the many contributions he made to Canmore’s music education programs and musical community. Come celebrate Vic’s legacy by watching the so many talented young musician’s perform.
If you’re seeking Canmore group accommodations for the Vic Lewis Band Festival, look no further than the BEST WESTERN PLUS Pocaterra Inn. We are located within walking distance of Canmore Collegiate High and Canmore Recreation Centre and just a short drive or 30-minute walk to Cornerstone Theatre. We have clean, modern rooms and a variety of onsite amenities including an indoor pool with waterslide and daily complimentary breakfast.
Book your stay today!
128 years ago, the last spike of the Canadian Pacific Railway was driven into the dirt at Craigellachie, BC. It was a triumphant moment, one that signalled the start of a new era of westward expansion, immigration and economic prosperity. But the triumph of the CPR’s completion obscured something much darker: the sweat, sacrifice and suffering of thousands of workers who laboured thanklessly to construct it.
The Canadian Pacific Railway’s dichotomous history as both gateway to paradise and vehicle of oppression is explored in the current exhibit at Banff’s Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies, entitled Picturing the Canadian Pacific Railway. Bringing together art, photographs, artifacts and historical records, the exhibit traces the history of the railway while illustrating the changing ways in which artists, citizens and policy makers have conceived of its function and symbolism over the last 150 years.
The comprehensive exhibit draws from the Whyte Museum’s own collection along with a sizeable selection of work from public and private lenders, everything from idealized early-1900s paintings of the railway’s tourist attractions to stark images of downtrodden labourers to contemporary art that represents the CPR’s wide-reaching social impact. Notable artists include Kristopher Weinmann, Peter von Tiesenhausen, Ciprian Muresan, Michael Cameron, and Jeff Spalding.
In addition to the Picturing the Canadian Pacific Railway exhibit, which runs until October 13, you’ll find a number of new exhibits and events happening at the Whyte Museum all year round, along with an impressive permanent collection of works both historical and contemporary. Established in 1968, the Whyte Museum does more than any other organization to celebrate and preserve the history and art of the Canadian Rockies.
The Whyte Museum is located in Banff, less than a 30 minute drive from the BEST WESTERN PLUS Pocaterra Inn in Canmore.
September 12, 2013 3:06:34 PM
Early fall in Canmore is all about bridging the gap between the summer season and the ski season. Luckily, there’s no shortage of events and activities happening around town to keep you busy over the coming weeks. Here are a few suggestions:
Women’s Wellness Weekend, Sept. 13 – 15
You work hard, so why not reward yourself with a relaxing weekend of women-only yoga, cooking lessons, spa treatments and wine! The Women’s Wellness Weekend offers a host of activities designed to inspire, educate and rejuvenate. Take an African Dance Class, embark on a guided canoe trip or indulge in wine and cheese with new friends.
Poetry Collision at Zona’s Late Night Bistro, Sept. 26
It’s no secret that Canmore is a hotbed of creative types and great writers are no exception. Make your way to Zona’s Late Night Bistro on September 26th to mingle with Canmore’s literary community and hear local and visiting poets read their work. Even if you’re not a member of the esteemed literati, you’ll be sure to enjoy this very accessible event, which emphasizes humour and audience interaction.
Festival of Eagles, Oct. 18 & 19
Around this time of year, the majestic Golden Eagle makes its autumn migration over the Canadian Rockies. In celebration of these fascinating creatures, the Festival of Eagles stages performances, talks, interactive exhibits and nature tours that explore the eagle’s life, habitat, and cultural symbolism. Events take place at the Canmore Civic Centre and Elevation Place. Pre-registration is encouraged.
Stay tuned to our blog for up-to-date information on upcoming local events and attractions in the Canmore area. And when it's time to plan your trip to Canmore, look to the BEST WESTERN PLUS Pocaterra Inn to provide luxurious accommodations at affordable rates. Book your room using the handy booking engine at the top of this page.
Summer isn’t over yet, folks! With a few weeks left in the sunny season, there is still plenty of time to pack your provisions, lace up your boots and take to the trails.
When it comes to world-class hiking, few destinations in Canada offer hikers as much variety, challenge and breathtaking scenery as the Canadian Rockies. Here in Canmore, we are surrounded by some of the Rockies’ most picturesque trails, making our town an ideal home base for hikers looking to get the most out of their trip to Kananaskis Country.
Whether you’re a novice or a seasoned-pro, you’ll find a trail to tickle your fancy within a short drive of Canmore. Many online resources are available to point you in the right direction as you plan your hiking itinerary, but we recommend getting your hands on a guidebook, ideally one written recently and geared specifically to the Canmore-Banff area. The “Where the Locals Hike” series of books is a great place to start.
When venturing into the backcountry, it’s extremely important to pack the right gear and fully educate yourself on the terrain and possible risks. If you’re new to hiking, we recommend signing up for one of the many guided hiking tours available in the Canmore and Banff area.
If you’re looking to chart your own adventure, but are unsure about your experience level or knowledge of the area, consider trip-planning services from local hiking guru and guidebook author Kathy Copeland. Kathy’s years of experience traversing Alberta’s trails is an invaluable aid to any hiker visiting Canmore.
After a long day of hiking in the Rockies, look forward to resting easy in your comfortable room at the BEST WESTERN PLUS Pocaterra Inn in Canmore. We have a host of onsite amenities to help a weary hiker relax including an indoor pool, hot tub, steam room and sauna.
People run for a variety of reasons. In many cases, it’s to improve their cardiovascular fitness. It could also have something to do with the sport’s social aspect; running clubs are a great way to make new friends. Perhaps they do it for a sense of personal accomplishment. Or maybe they crave the rush of endorphins known as “runner’s high”.
On September 8th, when runners take to the streets for the Canmore Rocky Mountain Half Marathon, these reasons won’t matter. For the 5 or 10km that they run, the participants will be unified around a single goal: to help those who need help the most.
The Canmore Marathon is organized to support the CAUSE Kids Program, raising funds to support children in some of the world’s harshest and most poverty stricken regions.
CAUSE Kids is a division of CAUSE Canada, a relief agency that works to provide impoverished communities with health care, education, clean water and business development. In order meet the urgent needs of children in these communities, which in many ways demand more pressing and difficult aid work, the Kids program is directed towards establishing child sponsorship networks that lift struggling youngsters out of poverty in West Africa. The program works to provide meals, gardens, clothing, school supplies, health care and infrastructure in ways that address the specific needs of children.
The course for the Canmore Rocky Mountain Half Marathon takes runners on a scenic journey through the town’s majestic mountain landscape amidst streams, woodlands and wildlife. For visitors it’s a great way to experience this beautiful part of the world while supporting an urgent cause and meeting lots of like-minded people.
Register now to participate or pledge your support to a runner. And if you’re seeking Canmore hotel accommodations for the Rocky Mountain Half Marathon, you can’t do much better than the BEST WESTERN PLUS Pocaterra Inn. We are located just a few minutes from the marathon starting point at Lawrence Grassi Middle School and offer all the relaxing amenities that a tired runner deserves.
Picture a throng of spandex-clad cyclists swarming through some of the most spectacular scenery in Canada: this is the essence of the RBC Gran Fondo, taking place in Banff on Saturday August 24th. It’s not a race, per se. But it’s not simply a casual sightseeing tour either. The 142 km course, which boasts a hefty 800m of elevation gain, tests the endurance of even the most experienced riders. It’s a challenge that rewards not with the thrill of victory but with the satisfaction of personal accomplishment.
Gran Fondo in Italian means “Big Ride”, which speaks both to the large number of simultaneous participants in this style of cycling event and also the length of the course, which, in this case, travels around tunnel mountain, along the shores of Lake Minnewanka, through the downtown core of Banff and across the scenic Bow Valley Parkway. RBC’s annual Banff Gran Fondo is the only Gran Fondo in North America that takes place entirely within the bounds of a national park, making this event as much about the cycling as the setting.
While the course is gruelling, the RBC Gran Fondo isn’t just all work and no play. Once the last cyclist has passed the finish line, it’s time to break out the champagne. Throughout the day following the main event, participants and their entourage can enjoy live music and entertainment, food and refreshments, fun activities for kids and even massage services (likely much needed).
Registration to ride in the RBC Gran Fondo is open to everyone and costs $250, for which you’ll get a special time chip to track your performance, a ride to the finish line if you can’t get there on your own and a commemorative keepsake when it’s all said and done. In addition, riders get access to 4 rest stops set up along the course to provide water, electrolyte supplements, energy bars, washroom facilities, repair services and first aid.
If you’re seeking hotel accommodation for the RBC Gran Fondo, we invite you to stay at the BEST WESTEN PLUS Pocaterra Inn, located just 20 minutes from Banff in Canmore, Alberta. With better value than many Banff hotels, we offer our guests a deluxe complimentary breakfast, well-equipped exercise facility and modern in-room amenities. Book your stay today.
There’s no better way to spend a gorgeous hot and sunny day in the summer than being outside and soaking up a great outdoor concert. That’s right! Festival season is upon us once again, which means loads of fantastic shows to fill up your summer dance card and keep you boogying your nights away.
The Heritage Day long weekend this August brings about the return of the 36th annual Canmore Folk Music Festival. Running in full force every summer since 1978, the Canmore Folk Music Festival is the longest running folk music festival in Alberta and also one of the greatest. This three day event is jam packed with lots of entertainment and performances that are sure to delight audiences of any age.
Held in the heart of the Canmore valley, the Canmore Folk Music Festival features three stages set against the beautiful backdrop of the magnificent Rocky Mountains. The view alone is part of what makes this festival so special and worth adding to your summer concert checklist. What better way to enjoy some of the best music summer has to offer than doing so at the base of the most majestic mountains in North America while the beautiful Alberta sun slowly sets behind them, blanketing the sky in gorgeous crimson and orange?
Over 18 musical acts and performances will be taking place over the weekend, with world-famous talent such as Blue Rodeo’s Jim Cuddy and Spirit of the West headlining this year’s event. Tickets for the August 3-5th event can be purchased online in advance, starting at $89.50 for a standard Adult weekend pass. Special pricing is also available for youths aged 16-25 and family weekend passes when purchased in advance online.
On top of all the fabulous music included in the price of your ticket, there are also a number of great free and family events over the course of the weekend. For the pint-sized music lovers, there’s a free children’s concert on Saturday afternoon, and Friday night features a downtown street dance complete with a kid’s area packed with loads of activities to delight the little ones, from puppets and crafts to a climbing wall and bouncy castle.
Held at Centennial Park at the intersection of 5th Avenue and 5th Street in the heart of Canmore, the Canmore Folk Music Festival is just a quick 5 minute drive from our BEST WESTERN Pocaterra Inn. Relax and unwind after a long day of dancing in our luxurious whirlpool, steam room or indoor swimming pool. We even have a large waterslide to keep the whole family entertained long after the music has stopped. Give us a call and book your Folk Fest weekend spot with us today.