Are you playing along with our #28DaysOfYEG challenge? You still have three weeks to join the fun! Check our list of ways you can enjoy winter in Edmonton, then read on to get inspired by our blog team’s adventures completing the list and our weekly Storify recap. Check back each week for updates!
No. 6: Tweet a photo of the Ice Castle — a new and exciting feature in Hawrelak Park this winter!
I visited the Ice Castle in Hawrelak Park on the sunny afternoon of Feb. 7, while the temperature was a balmy 4°C and the walls of ice in full sun were making small trickling sounds as they melted. The sparkle of the ice in the sunshine was dazzling, and my 12-year-old budding photographer was thrilled to practice with her camera. The space thronged with families exploring the castle’s passages, tweens posing on monumental thrones carved from huge slabs of ice and little ones playing on the ice slides.
To be honest, I wish I had seen the Ice Castle earlier in winter, before the embellishments on the ramparts were diminished by the warmth of the past few days. However, I’m still impressed by the photos other challenge participants are posting from nighttime visits to the LED-lit castle, and I’m hoping to go back during the evening for a completely different experience.
No. 11: Don’t wait until summer festivals to watch some great local theatre or music acts.
When my coworkers asked me what I was doing the first weekend of February, it became apparent that I inadvertantly had a very artsy weekend ahead. We started with Ursa Major (part of the Chinook Series at the ATB Arts Barns), a two-man play that I could have happily walked away from after the first half, watching a couple experience the idyllic moments of their relationship. The second half, however, takes hold of your heart and twists it in the most emotionally wrenching way possible, maybe for the exact reason because it is “an unimaginable story about completely imaginable people.”
This was followed by the Edmonton Opera’s Carmen, which, while enjoyable, absolutely confirmed that my favourite operas are the dark and twisty ones (specifically, The Tales of Hoffmann, Eugene Onegin and Lucia di Lammermoor).
No. 12: Talk a walk outside at night and marvel at the way the lights interact with the snow.
If Winter City Edmonton ever needed a new slogan, it might be, “It’s better when it’s -40°C.” I was thrilled to see so many people enjoying the recent Flying Canoe festival with the unseasonably warm weather, but it also loses some of its magic when you’re literally walking on the heels of the people in front of you, to see the lighting installations by Dylan Toymaker and students in the fine arts department at MacEwan University.
Without a doubt, this is my do-not-miss winter festival of the season, but I’m excited to hopefully be able to check out Silver Skate Festival in the coming weeks (and maybe earn double points for this challenge?).