10 Reasons to Hit Up the Winnipeg Tattoo Show this Weekend!

The Winnipeg Tattoo Show is this week!  Opening at 1pm on Friday, February 23rd and running through to 6pm on Sunday February 25th, there’s a jam-packed schedule of Tattoo and Tattoo-related awesomeness coming your way.

Here are my top 10 reasons to hit up the Winnipeg Tattoo Show this weekend!

1.  Watch Live Tattooing and Tattoo Competitions

This one’s a no-brainer – there is a great selection of the best of Winnipeg’s Tattoo Artists at the show this weekend!  You can check out their work beforehand and even book yourself in for a tattoo during the show, if the artist you choose has availability.

There are different Tattoo Competitions each day – Friday is Neo-Traditional and Horror, for example  – and there are daily Tattoo of the Day awards culminating in a Tattoo of the Show award on Sunday.

If you’re a fan of the show Ink Masters, there are four of the show’s stars at the show this weekend – Big Ceeze from Anaheim, California, Babiery from New York, NY, Erik Campbell from Grand Junction, Colorado and Jhon, also from New York, NY.  Even if you haven’t been able to book an appointment with your favourite Tattoo Artist, this is a pretty amazing way to see them work live!

2. Catch Some Great Live Music

There’s a great selection of local musical talent to take in during the show, in addition to tattoo artist talent. Friday evening sees local band “Lowdown and the Dirty Rotten” play two sets – the first from 5 to 6pm and the second from 9 to 9:45.  Describing their style as rebel country/hillbilly, they’re definitely a band you need to catch!

The other two bands to watch this weekend, The Honour  and The Paul Stanleys will be playing as a part of the F#ck Cancer Fundraiser (Reason #3, below!).

3. Have Fun and Support a Great Cause at the F#ck Cancer Fundraiser for CancerCare Manitoba

$15 will get you in to the F#ck Cancer fundraiser social, from 9pm Saturday evening to 2am Sunday morning, with all proceeds going to CancerCare Manitoba.  There will be live bands (The Honour and The Paul Stanleys, mentioned above), a silent auction, prizes, dancing, and what Manitoba social isn’t complete with the traditional late lunch!  Get your tickets online or at the CancerCare Manitoba Booth on Friday or Saturday.

4. Watch Burlesque Performers

Come and watch M Funk Dance Productions perform burlesque-inspired routines at 4:30pm on Saturday and at 1:30pm on Sunday.

5. Crush on a Drag Queen, at the Drag Queen Show

Experience the most fabulousness that the Prairie Provinces have to offer!  On both Friday (from 7-7:30pm) and Saturday (from 6 to 6:30pm) Jenny Talia (in photo above, from Regina, SK), Victoria Lush (Winnipeg), Lita Takeela (Winnipeg), Satina Loren (Winnipeg) and Tyra Boinks (Winnipeg) will strut their stuff and entertain audiences !

6. Cheer on the Pinups in the Very First Peg City Pinup Competition

Hosted by the lovely and delightful Evie Assault (pictured on the poster to the right) and happening throughout Friday and Saturday, follow Peg City Pinup Contestants as they compete in Formal Wear, Swimwear and at a Talent Show. They are all vying to win the title of the very first Ms. Peg City Pinup, with a fab prize package that includes photo shoots with Pinup Photographer, Dano Tanaka, outfits from the prettiest pinup boutique, The Foxy Shoppe, along with a sash and crown.  The winner will be announced between 5:15 and 5:45pm on Saturday evening.

7. Support the Great Vendors

There’s a vendor area showcasing pinup and lifestyle clothing, artwork including pin-striping and graffiti styles, baking, cosmetics, you name it really!  The list of vendors can be found here.

8. Come Play at Kids’ Corner

Bring the family – kids 12 and under are FREE!  There’s an entire section dedicated to kids where they can colour, get “tattooed” (temporary tattoos by The Sparkle Girls and The Wow Factor), and play games.  Everybody’s favourite magical sisters, Anna and Elsa, will be in attendance on Saturday, between 2 and 4pm.

9. Marvel at Local Performers

Local contortionist and antipodist (juggling using her feet!), Samantha Halas  will be performing throughout the weekend, as will Brett Hogan , who can do everything from fire-breathing to acrobatics!

10. Drool over the Motorcycles and Hotrods

I don’t know about you, but it just seems to me that tattoos and speed go together!  Walk through and oggle the hotrods and motorcycles area of the Winnipeg Tattoo Show.

The Winnipeg Tattoo Show starts at 1pm on Friday, February 23rd and runs through to 6pm on Sunday February 25th.

Until next time, friends and followers,

Valentine’s Day Ideas You Can Find Downtown

Love is always in the air downtown, it’s truly a romantic destination. You’ve got the obvious wins with amazing restaurants, luxurious hotels, world class spas and shopping that rivals anything you can find in any city.

I’m going to do you a favour and narrow it down a little with “Valentine’s Day ideas you can find downtown”.

Let’s start with entertainment.

  • Winnipeg Art Gallery has a “Maker” series class on. Create your own succulent garden. Go home with something cool that you created, and make a lasting memory. http://wag.ca/visit/events/diy/display,event/1059/makerlab-terrariums
  • Royal Winnipeg Ballet will be showcasing some of their up and coming talent and choreography. Be in the know on this world class dancing troupe. http://www.rwb.org/whats-on/show/firststeps
  • The Jets have home games on the 13th and the 16th. It’s not on the 14th, but if you are a sport loving couple, this is a pretty awesome answer.

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Food? We have got you covered downtown!

  • East India Company will never ever let you down. It’s delicious and a staple in the downtown of Winnipeg. Their buffet has butter chicken, nothing says love like butter chicken.
  • The Merchant Kitchen also can feed you right. They’ve got a fantastic menu, and if I may be so bold, try out their fried chicken, it is sure to light your passion.
  • Earl’s Main Street location doesn’t get enough love. They will consistently feed you well, give you some of the best wine on the market, and ensure you have a great start or end to your evening. Always a fan favourite.
  • Affinity Vegetarian Garden is always an amazing option. The food is absolutely delicious, and as the name suggests, vegetarian friendly. This is one of those can’t miss restaurants that sets Winnipeg apart.

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If you want a simple night of dinner and an activity, we have got you covered. Of course, there is the next level of romance and that’s a staycation. Yes, we have you covered there as well in downtown Winnipeg.

  • Fort Gary Hotel and Ten Spa are regularly offering amazing packages. Add to that a morning at Yoga Public and you could be on the path to a fantastic Valentine’s Day.
  • Inn At The Forks and Riverstone Spa pair together beautifully. You can spend the day at the Forks eating and shopping and then pass the evening away at the spa. If that doesn’t set up the most magical night, well, I don’t know what would.

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You really can’t go wrong downtown in Winnipeg. Of course, you can make at simple as a couple drinks at Brown’s Social House, The Pint, Rudy’s Eat and Drink or La Roca. Mix that with a walk at the Forks, and dinner at any one of the other amazing restaurants downtown and you’ve got the perfect night in the Peg. Love is always in the air, you just have to go see for yourself.

Did we mention the coffee shops? No, no we didn’t. We’ve got those as well.

DT-Peggy-Signature-2017

11 Fun Things to Experience at Rendez Vous On Ice!

Hého, my Downtown Winnipeg Friends!  It’s almost that time of year where we all embrace our francophone heritage, no matter how deeply hidden it may be!  If you’re wondering how Downtown Winnipeg celebrates Festival du Voyageur with our St. Boniface Neighbours, look no further than Rendez Vous on Ice!

Rendez Vous on Ice has been held for the past five years and is a licenced outdoor beer garden/trading post on the Red River Mutual Trail that takes place during the first four days of Festival du Voyageur.

Here are 11 fun things you can experience at Rendez Vous on Ice this year!

1. Food/Bevies

One of the top things that Winnipeg is known for, other than then our chilly winters, is our great foodie scene!  Rendez Vous on Ice has partnered with Evolve Specialty Catering to provide a great menu of Francophone faves!

They kick things off with Breakfast on Friday, February 16th from 7am to 10pm.  Grab a Breakfast Burrito or an Apple Butter Trail Tail on your skate commute to work, along with free hot chocolate!  On Friday evening, Saturday, Sunday and Monday afternoons and evenings, enjoy traditional treats like Smoked Meat on Bannock, Poutine, Shepherd’s Pie Potato Skins, Tourtiere, Pea Soup with Bannock, Mac N’ Cheese Bites or Baked Beans with Bannock.  There are also fun deserts like a S’mores Brownie in a Cup, Maple Taffy, Apple Butter Trail Tails and bevvies available too!  All food ranges in price from $4 to $8 – super reasonable, if you ask me!

2. Winter Sport Demos

If you’re like me and figure that if you can’t beat winter, you may as well enjoy it, Rendez Vous on Ice has a number of fun winter sport demos for you to try!  On the morning of Friday, February 16th, from 7am to 10pm, you’ll be able to try out Fat Biking, Snow Shoeing and even Cross Country Skiing!  I’ve heard that there’ll even be a Fat Tire Bike Loop Trail for people to try out!

3. Yoga

Looking for a little Zen after a hectic week? Look no further – at 7am and  5pm on Friday, you’ll be able to participate in Yoga on Ice with Ashley Bourgeois from Wild Path.

4. Rugby

If Zen really isn’t your thing and you need more of an adrenaline rush, pop in on Saturday from 12pm to 4pm, to watch the coldest rugby tournament on the planet and the only one of its kind to be played completely on frozen river ice!  Cheer on the Winnipeg Wasps Rugby Club Snow 7s while they play!

5. Ice Carving Demos

On Friday, February 16th from 5:30pm to 8:30pm there will be half hour Ice Carving Demos where you can watch master ice carvers demonstrating their skills on blocks of ice that have been harvested from the Red River.  The carvings will be on display all weekend, but this is your chance to see the chain saws and chisels in action!

6. Pride Parade and after Party

At 3:00pm on Saturday, grab your rainbow flags and lace up your skates to join the Voyageur Pride Skate!  Fièrte du Voyageur is a Winter Celebration for Winnipeg’s LGBTTQ community that is open to everyone.  From 5:00pm to 8:00pm Room Service Winnipeg has lined up a great night of entertainment featuring local DJS and more!

 7. Fashion on Ice

On Sunday, February 18th, from 5pm to 5:30-pm, join in on this stylish celebration of Winnipeg, winter and fashion!  Fashion on Ice showcases local fashion and accessory designers and retailers with this year’s #WoodFashion theme sure to be a hip hit!  In its fifth year, Fashion on Ice proves that winters in Winnipeg can be fashionable!

8. Live Music and DJs

Throughout the four days that Rendez Vous on Ice is open, they will host a number of live musicians and local DJS.  Here are a few of the acts to catch – Spence Tradition, Justin Lacroix, Pierre Freynet, Sol James and Moonfruits, as well as a host of DJs like, DJ Breeze, DJ Ketchup Chips, Rhayne Vermette, MonsieurIceberg aka Damien Ferland, DJ Beekeeni, Tony Neu, DJ Kasm, DJ Cedrik le Fantastik, and more!

9. Fire Dancing and Glow Hooping

Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings from 7:30 to 8:30, watch Karrie of Kurrent Motion as she entertains the crowds with fire dancing and Glow Hooping.  Knowing Karrie, I’m sure that anybody who is interested will be able to join in a Hoop Jam!

10. Wild Winter Canoe Race

Pre-register your team of 5 at www.wildwintercanoerace.com  and head down on Monday, Louis Riel Day, to take part in head-to-head heats on the four-lane, 200-metre, snow packed course as participants race canoes in snow for awesome prizes and bragging rights!

11. Come play on Ice with Peggy!

I’m definitely going to be checking out Rendez Vous on Ice throughout the first weekend of Festival du Voyageur!  In fact, Stefano Grande, the CEO (aka Quarterback) for the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ and I have put together a super fun, fat bike tour that takes in all of the Warming Huts along the Red River Mutual Trail, stops for a warm up at Old Spaghetti Factory at Johnston Terminal and ultimately ends up at Rendez Vous on Ice for dinner and even a chance to take part in the Yoga on Ice!

There are only a very few spots –Click this link and select the February 16, 2018 date to register now for your chance to join us https://downtownwinnipegtours.com/tours/bikes-brunch/

All photos courtesy of Rendez-Vous On Ice, taken by Leif Norman

 

 

Top 5 Things to Look Forward to at This Year’s Wonderful Wedding Show

To do list: venue, invites, dress, cake, flowers, music. These are just a few of the many things you need to consider when planning your wedding. It can definitely get pretty overwhelming! If you’re planning your upcoming wedding, you’re in luck because the Wonderful Wedding show is back for another year at the RBC Convention Centre!

The Wonderful Wedding Show is the largest single source of information available about local wedding services, featuring all of the city’s leading wedding industry professionals.

This year’s Show features over 300 displays and 130,000 square feet of the latest must-have wedding products, services, fashion shows and more!

Wonderful Wedding Show

Here are the top 5 things to look forward to at this year’s Wonderful Wedding Show:

Fashion Show

Guests will be treated to two full-scale production fashion shows each day, with wedding fashions from the world’s foremost designers and the city’s leading retailers. The fashion shows will debut bridal wear for the new year, offering brides a chance to view gowns that have never been seen before.

The Fashion Show is included with the price of admission. Seating is limited so be sure to arrive early!

For Fashion show times and participants, click HERE.

Inspiration Gallery

Head over to the Inspiration Gallery for exquisite and unique tablescapes designed by the city’s top wedding professionals.

In partnership with a team of Premiere Wedding Experts, the Gallery promises to offer visitors an elegant experience with countless inspirational ideas and details to plan their ultimate day.

inspiration gallery
Photo by BEK Photography, Table by A Dream…Wedding & Events
The Brides Lounge

Don’t forget to stop by the beautiful Brides Lounge, designed by the FABULOUS Rick Mayhew of Decorations by Rick!

The Brides Lounge is a perfect place to take a break during the show with your wedding posse and relax and enjoy free fine wine sampling courtesy of Barefoot Wine & Bubbly.

Decorations by Rick will also be showcasing the latest wedding trends that will provide you with endless inspiration for your own special day.

The Brides Lounge is located right next to the main Bar & Concessions so you can also enjoy a light lunch and drinks with your besties!

The Grooms Lounge

The Eph Apparel Grooms Lounge will provide a relaxing environment with a comfortable seating & television area for visitors to take a much deserved break during the show.  And of course the Grooms Lounge will also feature free wine & liquor sampling, some sweet treats and fun games!

grooms lounge

Chance to win a $20,000 Dream Wedding

103.1 Virgin Radio, the Wonderful Wedding Show, & St. Boniface Golf Club are proud to present “Win a $20,000 Dream Wedding.”

Two contestants will be selected from entries from the Virgin Radio website contest to participate in the Dream Wedding finals. Two additional contestants will be drawn from entries taken at the show at the Virgin radio booth, located in front of the Fashion Show stage.

This wedding show weekend sounds like its going to be an amazing one and I want to send one lucky person and their squad to experience it! Visit my Facebook page and enter to win 4 tickets!

For more information about the Wonderful Wedding Show at the RBC Convention Centre and to purchase your tickets today, click HERE.

Happy wedding planning!

DT-Peggy-Signature-2017

The Ice Castles Are Here!

I don’t know about you, but ever since I heard that they were being built at Parks Canada Place on the Forks Historic Site, I’ve been excited to see the Ice Castles! Any trip to the Forks for the past month has involved me walking or biking past the fenced-off area, watching the castles grow as if by magic.

Finally, after much anticipation, the Ice Castles will open to the public on Friday, January 5th, and I got to have a sneak preview last night, along with my media, travel and tourism pals!

First off, let me say that it was a brisk -35°C with the wind-chill. I bundled up with thermal layers, massive cozy scarf, my favourite Hudson’s Bay toque, alpaca wool socks and some warm boots.  The “floor” of the Ice Castles is made of layers of ice and ice chips – which is much like walking on coarse gravel – so good, flat-soled boots are recommended.

Just approaching the Ice Castles at night is breath-taking.  I hadn’t even walked up to the entrance and was already snapping pictures of the towering ice walls, glowing with colour-changing LED lights.

As I entered, I was greeted by a couple of popular enchanted Ice Princesses.  The Ice Princesses will be greeting guests on Saturdays and Sundays between 1 to 4pm, weather permitting.

The most beautiful and adorable Polar Bears and Polar Bear cubs, painted by our own amazing Kal Barteski, are dotted  throughout the Castle walls and corridors.

 

There’s something so wonderful about watching a fire dancer with a backdrop of ice!  The fire twirler last night was as funny as he was talented, keeping up a running banter as he twirled, getting the audience involved in his act. On Friday and Saturday evenings, from 7 to 10pm, there will be fire performances.

What would an Ice Castle be without ice slides?  Young and old(er) alike will delight in whooshing though the icy chutes on magic carpets. So FUN!

My favourite feature was the colour-changing ice fountain.  I was mesmerized as the water danced and changed colours from dark red, to purple to pale blue, accompanied by music.

I had the chance to talk to Blake, who is the Site Manager of the Ice Castles. It’s really an amazing process where icicles are made and then hand-placed in location. The icicles are then sprayed with water to make the ice-walls and other structures grow.  The ice artists were able to start on building the structure at the beginning of December, working daily to grow icicles and create the astounding Narnia-esque structures.

Probably what I loved the most about the Ice Castles was how beautifully they frame two of Downtown Winnipeg’s iconic structures, the Esplanade Riel bridge and the Canadian Museum for Human Rights.  Both lovely in their own right, they made a glorious backdrop to photos taken from within the Castles.

The Ice Castles will open officially on Friday, January 5,  from 4 to 9pm.  They will be open during the day on Saturdays from 12:00 to 10:30pm and Sundays from 12 to 8pm. They’re also open weekday evenings on Monday and Wednesday through Thursday from 4 – 9pm.  They will be closed on Tuesdays.  For more information, and to purchase your tickets, check out their website: www.icecastles.com/winnipeg/

Until next time,

DT-Peggy-Signature-2017

 

Top 8 Things to Do Downtown This Holiday Season

With tons of activities and fun things to do, downtown is the perfect place to celebrate this holiday season! Enjoy markets, festive music, live shows and cozy restaurants. You can also dance, skate on rivers, watch holiday movies and visit Santa. Find all this and more in downtown Winnipeg!

Here are the top 8 things to do downtown this holiday season:

Downtown Winnipeg Tours

Various dates and locations

You can now choose from three new tours that will get you outdoors during the holidays and  showcase the incredible selection of restaurants that downtown Winnipeg has to offer. In addition, you can now enjoy your favourite tours all year-round, including the Tap In (beer) Tour, Breakfast Club and Winnipeg Wine Tour.

New tours this year include:

Cocktail Crawl – This fun walking tour takes advantage of our Winnipeg walkways to take you and your friends from cocktail spot to cocktail spot without ever putting on a coat!  Participants visit four restaurants and receive a featured cocktail along with shareable appetizers at each stop along the way!

Cost: $40.00

2017 Dates: November 10

2018 Dates: January 12, February 2, March 9, April 6

Bikes and Brunch – Be a true Winnipegger and conquer the winter blues with this tour of downtown’s best brunch spots using a winterized or fat bike! Participants bike to three of downtown Winnipeg’s best brunch spots, receiving a breakfast sample at each stop.  There is an option to rent a fat bike, or you can use your own winterized/fat bike.

Cost: $40.00 plus option to rent a fat bike for an additional $20.00

2017 Dates: December 3

2018 Dates: February 11

Caesar Crawl – Grab your friends and sip on some of the best Caesar Cocktails downtown Winnipeg has to offer!  Participants will visit four restaurant stops where they will receive a signature Caesar and sharable appetizers at each stop, before voting on their favourite Caesar of the night!

Cost: $40.00

2018 Dates: January 26, May 11 (the Friday before International Caesar Day)

If you’re looking for the perfect gift for the person who has everything, we’ll also have Gift Certificates available in $40.00, $50.00 and $85.00 that recipients can use towards the tour of their choice.

Downtown Winnipeg BIZ will also be offering customized tours this year! You can now book your holiday party and/or private tour which can include a minimum of 10 people and up to a maximum of 50 people. For more information and to book a customized tour, contact Susan at tours@downtownwinnipegbiz.com.

For a complete listing of downtown tours including dates and featured restaurant stops, and to purchase tickets, click HERE.

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Santa Suite at the Fairmont Winnipeg

November 29 – December 17, Fairmont Winnipeg

In celebration of Santa’s favourite holiday tradition, Santa’s elves have decorated the suite with whimsical details including twinkling Christmas trees, an elegant dinner table set for Santa and his special guests, a letter-writing station for leaving holiday wish lists, and exciting giveaways to spread the good cheer.

Santa checks in on November 29 and checks out on December 17. Santa himself will take a break from his hectic holiday schedule to pose for photos with visitors in his Fairmont Winnipeg Santa Suite. At $10 per visiting group, receive a professional photo with Santa. All of the proceeds go to supporting the Children’s Wish Foundation.

Guests who post or tweet a photo of their Santa Suite visit using the hashtag #WPGSantaSuite will be entered to win a one-night stay at Fairmont Winnipeg.

For more information, click HERE.

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Third + Bird Christmas Pop-Up

December 2 – 17, The Forks Market

Third + Bird will once again host a Christmas Popup at The Forks! This is a great final push for Christmas shoppers and product. The Forks is alive and thriving. The Common, Fools + Horses and amazing food vendors have made the Forks the place to be on weekends!

Third + Bird will host 3 weekends of Popups on the second floor balconies overlooking the Common this Holiday season.

Dec 2 + 3 – 11 am – 5 pm

Dec 9 + 10 – 11 am – 5 pm

Dec 16 + 17 – 11 am – 5 pm

For more information, click HERE.

third and bird pop up


Investors Group Presents Home Alone at Hudson’s Bay

December 9, Hudson’s Bay Downtown

The Downtown Winnipeg BIZ and the Hudson’s Bay Downtown have partnered to host a fun holiday movie event the whole family will enjoy! Come early to take part in some pre-movie activities starting at 10 am, including face painting, arts and crafts, and games. The screening of Home Alone starts at 11 am.

Plus, take part in the Home Alone contest! Show us your best Kevin McCallister impression and you will be entered to win a prize pack with some of his favourite goodies, including a large cheese pizza courtesy of Garbonzo’s U of W ANX.

Please enter the event on the east side (Vaughan Street) entrance of the building.

For updates and more information, click HERE.

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Celebrate the Season: Dinner and Movie at the Met

December 17 and 19, The Metropolitan Entertainment Centre

December 17 – Celebrate the Season at The MET and bring the kids to brunch and a Sunday matinee movie as The MET presents Elf! Doors & Brunch Buffet opens at 11 am. Movie Starts at 1 pm.

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December 19 – Celebrate the Season by joining us for a dinner and a movie as The MET presents It’s a Wonderful Life! Doors & Dinner Buffet opens at 5 pm. Movie Starts at 7 pm.

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For more information, click HERE.


The Nutcracker

December 21 – 30, Centennial Concert Hall

When midnight strikes, young Clara’s enchanted Christmas gift leads her into a wondrous world… with the valiant Nutcracker at her side, Clara defeats the Mouse King and his army of mice, and journeys to the Land of Snow and the Kingdom of Sweets. This sparkling holiday tradition is a festive feast for the senses with enchanting costumes, timeless choreography and a brilliant score by Tchaikovsky.  A holiday classic for the whole family!

For more information, click HERE.

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New Year’s Eve at the RBC Convention Centre

December 31, RBC Convention Centre

This New Year’s Celebration will feature the beauty and elegance of a glistening winter’s evening in the warmth of the City View Room which will be transformed into a festive wonderland with a little winter carnival flare.

After enjoying a gourmet feast starting at 6:00 pm with complimentary passed hors d’oeuvres and a fabulous five course dining experience, it’ll be time to toast in the New Year as the party kicks off with the ever popular Ron Paley and his 21 Piece Band featuring some of Winnipeg’s most notable performers. Dance until 2 am as Ron and his band plays top 40 hits and classic dance tunes.

For more information, click HERE.

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Wawanesa Insurance Family New Year’s Eve

December 31, The Forks

Fun, family programming inside and out from 5 pm – 8 pm will include, art activities, horse drawn wagon rides and snow sculpting – capped off with a family dance party and
exciting pyrotechnics at 8 pm in Festival Field.

DJs and art inside The Forks Market from 9 pm – Midnight.

For updates and more information, click HERE.

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Visit http://downtownwinnipegbiz.com/event/together-downtown-holidays/ for a complete listing of this year’s downtown holiday events.

Happy Holidays,

DT-Peggy-Signature-2017

My Top 6 Things To Do In Downtown Winnipeg This Winter – Plus 1 Bonus!

If the sudden* arrival of the white-stuff has you blue, here are my top 6 things to do in Downtown Winnipeg this Winter.

* How can it be sudden when this is Winnipeg? I’m sure you know what I mean…I’m never *quite* ready…

Indoor Downtown Winnipeg Farmers’ Markets

The Downtown Winnipeg Farmers’ Market goes inside at Cityplace from the beginning of October to the end of May!  Find your favourite bakers, makers and growers pretty much every second Thursday throughout the fall, winter and early spring months.

Visiting the Farmers’ Market is a great lunch-time activity to get you moving out of the office, even if you negate the fitness gains of a brisk walk through the walkways by buying a dozen cinnamon buns.  I don’t judge!

Winter Downtown Farmer’s Market Dates indoors at Cityplace: November 23rd, December 7th & 21st, January 18th, February 1st & 15th, March 1st, 15th & 29th, April 12th & 26th, May 10th & 24th

Spa Break

If the winter weather is getting you down, a spa treatment is always a sure-fire pick-me-up! Whether you’re looking for a quick pedi during your lunch break or a full-spa treatment, Downtown Winnipeg has many great options!

The Magic Room is my go-to for an on the go pedicure. They have a half-hour express pedicure that fits perfectly in my lunch hour.  A quick stop at their neighbour Second Cup for a peppermint hot chocolate and I’m back to the office with time to spare!

Spas in Downtown Winnipeg:  Ten Spa (Hotel Fort Garry), Riverstone Spa (Inn at the Forks), The Loft (also has a bar!), The Magic Room, Blacksmith Parlour (for the fellas!)

Fat Bike Rental

In the spirit of full disclosure, I am a total fat bike junky!  I rented a fat bike a few times in February of this year and have been waiting all year for the snow to fly so that I could get out and play on one again!  Sick I know!

That being said – this is an amazingly fun way to kill a few hours, feel super energized and as a bonus you’ll have earned the amazing pizza that you’ll “need” to eat afterwards from Red Ember Pizza at the Common!

Rent a fat bike from White Pines, in the Johnston Terminal at the Forks – rentals start at $15 for an hours,  $25 for a half day (5 hours), $45 for a day (24 hours) – there are also special weekend and week-long rates.

Or…you know…buy one from White Pine Bicycle Co. or Mountain Equipment Co-Op!

Winter Downtown Winnipeg Tours

 I know we usually associate summer with the Downtown Winnipeg Tours – I’m looking at you, Patio Crawl Participants – but as of November 2017, I will be doing the Downtown Winnipeg Tours throughout the year.  I have also created two new Winter-Only tours – check them out on my previous blog post, here. Spoiler alert – one MAY involve fat bikes!

Book a Downtown Winnipeg Tour – www.downtownwinnipegtours.com

Dinner (or cocktails!) with a View

If you love the lights of Downtown Winnipeg this time of year, this one’s for you!  Let the earlier sunset work to your advantage and book yourself a table at Prairie360, at Fort Garry Place or Resto12, in the Radisson Hotel!  Both of these venues offer great food, innovative cocktail menus, superior wine lists and unparalleled views of Winnipeg!

Prairie360, of course, has a revolving view of Winnipeg and you can see as far as the horizon in all directions.  One of the waiters there told me that the restaurant does a full rotation in about 70 minutes – so plenty of time to take in the gorgeous lights while you tuck in to your choice of locally sourced mains!  If you’re really just looking to have a great cocktail, or two…or three, visit the Sky Lounge after 6pm on Fridays and Saturdays for a fab non-revolving view and some of the best cocktails to be found Downtown.

Resto 12, located on the 12th floor of the Radisson Hotel, has a premium spot on Portage Avenue and you get an amazing view of all of the lights at the heart of our Downtown.  They have a fab menu which includes local items and make a beautiful Caesar!  They also have a cozy lounge area if appetizers and cocktails are your jam!

A Night at the Theatre  

Prairie Theatre Exchange (PTE) is located on the third floor of Portage Place Mall and has just kicked off it’s 2017/2018 season.  Ubuntu (The Cape Town Project) is a very moving and uplifting play about connection, heritage and identity and is really a do-not-miss.

Ubuntu at the Prairie Theatre Exchange runs until November 26th, 2017

Salt-Water Moon is their next offering, which runs from January 25th to February 11th, 2018

Bonus!!!

Ice Castles are Coming to the Forks this Winter!

I’m so excited to see this!  Expected to open at the Forks in late December, these ice castles are made by “growing” icicles that end up growing together to create beautiful and eerie structures that look like all of your Narnia-dreams!

To keep up to date on when they will be opening, they have a Facebook Page and will sell tickets through their website.

Stay tuned for my December Festive Activities List!

Gripped by “Gracie” – Opening Night at Prairie Theatre Exchange

When I received the email invitation to the Opening Night Performance of Prairie Theatre Exchange (PTE)’s “Gracie”, a play written by Joan MacLeod, I was immediately intrigued by the description –

“Gracie’s world is full of faith and family, but as a fifteen-year-old girl brought into a polygamous community as a small child, she feels increasing pressure to conform.  Will she dare to take the leap and step into the outside world?”

Hold on a second…polygamous?

I’m sure that I’m not the only one who is intrigued by the lives lived in communities who have separated themselves from main-stream society, due to faith and a desire to avoid the consumerist and sin-riddled masses.  (*waves at fans of the TLC “reality show” “Breaking Amish” and Discovery’s “Amish Mafia”*) There is something about being a fly on the wall of these sorts of communities that is very compelling.  Through the play we get a very interesting view, indeed.

The titular character, Gracie, arrives at a polygamist colony in B.C. at the age of eight, along with her older sisters and a brother.  They are all a part of a package for the male community leader, which includes taking Gracie’s mother as his eighteenth wife.

The play charts Gracie’s arrival in this new colony from a similar colony in the United States.  We see the colony, and Gracie’s family, through her eyes as she adjusts and integrates into the closed colony of arranged marriages for young girls and forced labour for young boys.

We watch Gracie, masterfully portrayed by Samantha Hill, a Winnipegger who now calls New York her home, grow up and struggle to fit into a world where women are considered of marriageable-age at fifteen.  Given how different and comparatively closed her world-view is, Gracie is a very relatable character.  We were all fifteen and struggled to fit in, even if Gracie’s struggles overall are quite different and shocking.

As a one-person play, Samantha Hill carries the unfolding of Gracie’s world and experiences with believable aplomb.  Gracie is feisty and funny and has decided opinions of her own. As an audience, we like and root for Gracie from the beginning of the play to the very end, as she embarks on a new life.

The set, designed by Gemini Award winning Brian Perchaluk, is minimalist and used to great effect to help Samantha tell Gracie’s story.

 

Coming in at around 90 minutes from start to finish, there is no intermission.  As someone who rarely ever stays in one place for long, I was gripped by Gracie’s story all the way through!

“Gracie” runs at Winnipeg’s Prairie Theatre Exchange until October 29th.

All photos are Samantha Hill in GRACIE by Joan MacLeod at Prairie Theatre Exchange. Photos by Leif Norman.

Downtown Bro Date Ideas

Can we just all agree that downtown Winnipeg is just about the best place to hang out and relax for an afternoon? You have the Jets in winter and the Goldeyes in summer, The Forks all year with the most amazing atmosphere and shops to grab things you won’t find anywhere else, and in the downtown you’ll find some of the best restaurants in the world waiting to feed you.

Have you met my new friend Jordan Cieciwa? He’s the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ’s new Ambassador of Health and Happiness. Myself, Jordan, and his friend and camera guy Jaremy Ediger headed out for an afternoon and evening of entertainment downtown recently.

Jordan works with NOTT Autocorp when he’s driving around downtown making his wellness videos, so we saw an opportunity to have a little fun in his car, and test Jaremy’s photo skills.

First we checked out The Forks. Jordan is guilty heading to The Forks only when they have events going on. Immediately I saw my chance to convert yet another Winnipegger into a “True Forks Believer”. You have to go people watch and check out the stores that have amazing artwork, unique clothing, and just about everything else including bicycles that scream “Winnipeg”.  It also gave Jaremy a chance to take a couple cool photos.

Photo by Jaremy Ediger

Even though I could walk and shop at The Forks forever, we had places to be and a fancy car to drive, so we zoomed off in style to our next stop, food at “La Roca“.

We found a pretty solid place to hang out with friends at La Roca. I’m not going to lie to you, the best part of La Roca is the amount of cheese in their quesadillas; well, that and the amount of people in the place having a great time. We were heading to the Goldeyes game next, and we weren’t the only ones there getting ready for the Goldeyes to be champs again. Lots of people in the place were gearing up for a good time downtown, and as always with La Roca, the atmosphere was electric.

We finished our food paid our tab and chalked another win up for La Roca. From there, things got real.

Real rainy that is.

We headed over to Shaw Park where we got the terrible news, game cancelled due to rain.

Photo by Jaremy Ediger

For those of you who don’t know, the Goldeyes just won their second title in two years and their third since 2012. The Winnipeg Goldeyes are the American Association Champs back to back, 2016 and 2017!

This team is a well oiled machine: they play with pride, and they play to win. There are a ton of cities in the states that know about Winnipeg because our baseball team crushes them each and every year, but who’s counting right? We were! Huge congrats to the Goldeyes. Even though you didn’t entertain us this night, you came through in the end. History was written, and the events leading up to the win were so “storybook” that even Sports Illustrated took note. The Winnipeg Goldeyes are famous!

However for our day downtown, we now had a bit of a gap.

As it turns out, Jaremy is full of fun facts about Downtown Winnipeg so he took us to some of his favourite spots to share some local history. As a guy that loves the music and entertainment scene, Jaremy has walked most of the downtown to see a ton of local bands and he blew our minds with a couple facts.

Photo by Jaremy Ediger

There was a team decision made that we are going to start a regular trivia segment on Instagram. The downtown is simply the coolest, and it should be celebrated.  So, speaking of celebrations, we want to see where you party… specifically where you partied to celebrate the Winnipeg Goldeyes winning the second title in two years. The best celebration selfie wins $100 at La Roca. I believe everyone needs to get down there to try their amazing food! Enter to win now by sharing your selfie on Facebook (find the post and share your photo in the comments), Twitter on Instagram by September 30th at 4pm. Tag me @downtownpeggy to enter!

See you downtown,

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Thick Cut Bacon And An Epic Concert – That’s Downtown Living

If you are into delicious food, a brand new restaurant just opened up at 285 Portage called Tipsy Cow. I’m not telling you that you have to eat there, but I’m telling every person I meet how amazing the Thick Cut Candied Bacon is. It’s where I fueled up before Interstellar Rodeo, and I’m trying to figure out if I can somehow eat there twice a day for the rest of my life. Pro tip, try combining Little Brown Jug 1919, TC Candy Bacon, and the Winnipeg Burger; that’s the good life and you can only find it downtown.

When you walk into Tipsy Cow you know it’s going to be good. There’s a bar in the front ready to get you started with a local drink, or you can get seated right away and get some amazing starters for you and your group/date. Tipsy Cow is a simple place to get a good burger, and a beer and then get on to an amazing venue downtown.

I personally went from a burger to watching Beck rock the house at the Forks. This is an artist I’ve been waiting to see since 1997 and he lit up the stage and the crowd. Even the hipsters said he was cool and couldn’t help but dance a little as this master of the stage entertained a full house.

The Forks is always an option for entertainment. If you missed Interstellar Rodeo this year, make sure you plan to be there next year. Also, add The Forks to your favourites list and follow them on Instagram and TwitterThe Forks always has something going on in their events section. 

Add Tipsy Cow to your Winnipeg “must eat” list, perfect before a game at MTS, a concert, or just because your working downtown and working makes you hungry. I’m certain this restaurant will make your day complete; they have beer and bacon, the rest is a bonus.

SHARE this post on Facebook or Twitter and you will be entered to win a $50 gift certificate to Tipsy Cow (enter by August 27 to be entered to win).

See you downtown,

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