Llama Tell You All You Need To Know About Folklorama

The 48th annual Folklorama— Canada’s largest and longest-running multicultural festival of its kind in the world–kicked off the two-week festival downtown with a party on Saturday night.

The pavilions open August 6 and are located across the city and include the RBC Convention Centre. Festival travel guides and maps can be found here.

It might be smart to start planning your Folklorama route now. You’ll want to maximize the entertainment and culinary delights you take in during the next two weeks. There will be added excitement as our guests from the Canada Summer Games are part of the Folklorama fanfare and will be likely experiencing the festival for the first time.

Starting downtown at the RBC Convention Centre is a great way to divide the city into quadrants and head out for your Folklorama fun. May we suggest buying tickets online–a new feature this year*. If you want to explore multiple pavilions in one evening, joining a VIP Tour is the way to go. Experience a VIP Tour by walking, cycling or motor coach. Folklorama’s VIP Tours include two or three pavilions and allow you to bypass the line, reserved seating with table service, and a delicious and authentic progressive meal. To explore the VIP Tours and buy online, visit folklorama.ca. Or if you want plan a spontaneous evening out! Round up your family and friends and enjoy dinner and a show!

And be sure to follow the Folklorama on social media, tag your posts #myfolklorama and share this fantastic festival Winnipeg is proud to host year after year. Powered by dedicated volunteers, Folklorama is a great way to share our city’s diversity with your family, friends, and any out of town guests traveling through Winnipeg.

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*ADVANCE ONLINE TICKETS ON SALE NOW!
Please note:
  • Purchase single admission tickets ($6.00) to select pavilions at folklorama.ca in advance.
  • Advance online tickets will be available starting July 3, 2017 at 9:00 a.m.
  • Purchase advance online tickets up to 9:00 a.m. on the day you would like to attend.
  • Advance online tickets are specific to pavilion and show times.
  • Once purchased, advance online tickets may not be exchanged for another pavilion, date or showtime and are non-refundable.

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Mother’s Day 2017: Meet You Downtown

This weekend is Mother’s Day and there are wonderful ways to celebrate the moms in your life at one of these events happening around downtown Winnipeg.

The Return of Evelyn Hart in Vespers

Internationally-acclaimed Canadian ballet icon Evelyn Hart joins the Royal Winnipeg Ballet in the world premiere of James Kudelka’s Vespers, a new ballet choreographed to Claudio Monteverdi’s ‘Vespers, 1610’.

Vespers means “evening prayer” and has stood the test of time for over four hundred years- a true testament to the music’s remarkable power. Vespers combines dramatic atmospheres with creative classical ballet technique, contemporary styles and perspectives on relationships, nature and the spiritual world.

Claudio Monteverdi’s stunning score is performed by a live choir accompanied by the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra. Vespers is alive with vibrant character, colour and texture with all the richness of a renaissance painting. This emotionally powerful ballet features iconic ballerina Evelyn Hart in a role created especially for her.

I recently had the opportunity to see this wonderful show and was thrilled to see the iconic Evelyn Hart make her return to the Royal Winnipeg Ballet for this world premiere. This show will leave you in awe and will even provide you with a little bit of laughter!

Vespers runs May 10-14. For show times and ticket information, please see the RWB box office and website.

 

Picasso in Canada

Opening this weekend–get ready for Manitoba’s first major showcase of work by Pablo Picasso in over 40 years. This summer, the WAG presents Picasso in Canada and Picasso: Man and Beast, two exhibitions highlighting the many sides of Picasso, who remains one of the greatest artists of all time.

As part of the WAG’s Canada 150 celebrations, Picasso in Canada brings together 35 artworks by the artist, including paintings, watercolours, drawings, prints, and ceramic works. Drawn from art museums across Canada and private collections, the exhibition spans five decades of Picasso’s artistic production, offering a range of well-known themes and images, including intimate portraits of five of Picasso’s lovers. Among these pieces is Seated Woman, arguably the most renowned painting by Picasso in a Canada.

For show details and tour information, please visit picasso.wag.ca.

Meet You At The Library For A Movie

On Sunday, May 14, at the Millennium Library treat yourself and mom to this much talked about film based on Rosalie Ham’s bestselling novel of the same name. The Dressmaker is the story of femme fatale Tilly Dunnage who returns to her small hometown in the country to right the wrongs of the past. A stylish drama with comic undertones about love, revenge and haute couture. 119 min. Rated PG. Showtime is 2:00PM – 4:00PM.

BONUS IDEAS:

If you and mom are working on your FitBit competitive levels, consider lacing up those walking shoes and taking in The Loop as presented by Tourism Winnipeg. This fantastic tour takes you through Winnipeg’s best and most iconic spots and at your own pace. Download the map here, plan your noshing spots, and get out and enjoy this beautiful city with mom on her special day.

Artisan Craft Sale at the Marlborough Hotel

Sure you’re invited to brunch but then stay and shop at one of Canada’s historic landmarks in the heart of city.

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Downtown Winnipeg Welcomes Third + Bird!

Third + Bird puts on two major markets a year during the Spring and Fall and this year’s markets are headed to the Hudson’s Bay downtown for the first time ever!

Their markets are a juried show, selecting the best, top, local brands which provide products from local vendors for every demographic including: men’s, ladies, kids, accessories, home decor, art, skin care, and so much more!

Spring Market –  May 6th between 10 am – 6 pm (general admission at the door)

Fall Market – Last full weekend in November, this year November 24 – 26

Third + Bird has brought out over 6,500 people to recent markets and they are now ready to bring that energy downtown! Join the community and enjoy the Third + Bird market this Saturday where you’ll see over 110 local businesses and their amazing products.

I recently visited their new location at the Hudson’s Bay Downtown and got a sneak peak of some of  vendors that will be joining the Market this weekend! Here are just a few of the ones that you can expect to see:

Tiny Inspirations

Stylish necklaces for mom and safe teething accessories for baby. Modern designs for the modern family. Teething rings, pacifier clips and more.

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Kate + Norah Co.

Kate + Norah Co. makes handcrafted products which follow a minimalistic approach with a conscious effort to be sustainable, natural and eco-friendly.

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Little Box of Rocks

Little Box of Rocks sells thoughtful gifts for every occasion – thinking of you, words of encouragement, birthday gifts, anniversary gifts and much more.

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Naked Skincare & Apothecary

Naked is a small batch apothecary production founded by Amber Magus. Inspired by the simplicity and beauty of nature, she has created a minimalist, all natural, 100% good stuff line and believes that when it comes to your skin, less is more.

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Huron Woodwork

Huron Woodwork, a tribute to the places we call home. Whether it is their flagship Manitoba pieces or that unique piece that adds a special touch to your own home, their hand-cut, handcrafted products are made with love.

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Barletta Beeswax

Barletta Beeswax specializes in quality, hand-dipped and poured, 100% pure beeswax candles and related products using locally sourced wax and fine cotton wicking. Offering beeswax candles in all shapes & sizes: the classics (tea lights; votives; tapers; pillars); and lots of fun & elegant shapes (swirls; animals; flowers and pinecones,etc).

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In addition to all these amazing vendors, Third + Bird will feature beautiful art installations, a cafe with good food and eats, womens co-op from Nepal table, and cookie + raffle tables!

For a complete list of vendors at this year’s Third + Bird markets visit, Vendors – THIRD + BIRD.

See you downtown,

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Spring Break Downtown: Highlights and Must-Dos

As the clock strikes 3:30 today, could you hear the cheering of voices from the children all around Winnipeg?

Spring Break is up next week, and there is no shortage of fun and amusement available throughout downtown Winnipeg.

Here’s our list of must-do events during Spring Break:

FESTIVAL OF FOOLS

Festival of Fools is free family event held at The Forks during spring break week. This 7-day free family festival features jugglers, clowns, acrobats, swinging trapeze and circus workshops and tons of hilarious shows! In addition to funding support from The Forks and the Winnipeg Arts Council, the WICF solicits donations at the event to both present the best in family entertainment and to keep the festival affordable for everyone! Did we mention it’s FREE?! And with The Common now at The Forks, it’s easy to make a day of it. Food options for even the most picky eater and of course, flights of craft beer for the adults.

Canadian Museum for Human Rights

Saturday, March 25 to Sunday, April 2, 2017

Bring your family and join us in special activities taking place throughout spring break! Spring break programming starts Saturday, March 25 and ends Sunday, April 2, 2017. All activities and special events are included in the cost of admission.

Special offer: Kids 12 and under get in free from March 25 – April 2, 2017.

More information available on CMHR website.

 

MANITOBA MUSEUM

March 25 – April 2 • Open daily 10 am – 5 pm
Meet you at the museum for a week of fun activities in the newly renovated and expanded Alloway Hall and the debut of a brand new Planetarium show.

  • Portraits of the North: Drawings by Gerald KuehlGet inspiration from Portraits of the North exhibit and experiment with different drawing techniques at our portrait station.
  • Crafts and hands-on activities – Create and decorate a miniature birch bark paper basket and decorate it with your own designs or create a Red River friendship bracelet.
  • Wildlife Haven Rehabilitation Centre – Get up close to the live animal displays (Mon, Wed & Fri 1:00 – 4:00 pm)
  • Take the 10 Things Challenge – Try and do all 10 activities at the Museum before the end of Spring Break including boarding the Nonsuch, exploring the Dino Dig and building a race car.
  • Meet BMO the Bear (Tue & Thurs at 1:30 & 3:30)

Towne Theatre

After visiting downtown shops and restaurants, how about taking in a movie? Beauty and the Beast and other exciting movie experiences are waiting for you and your family at The Towne. Check showtimes here.

 

Millennium Library

Reading with Raptors

Wednesday, March 29, 2017, 2:00PM – 2:45PM

Registration is required for this event.

Owls and falcons will be swooping in to the library with staff from the Prairie Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre.  Staff will bring an owl or falcon and together we will read stories and learn interesting facts about these wondrous birds.  For children ages 6 years and older.  Younger siblings may attend if accompanied by an adult.

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No matter what you do this spring break have fun exploring and experiencing our downtown and all it has to offer your family!

 

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Delicious Honey, Coming Straight from your Neighbourhood

For centuries, honey has been known as “nature’s gold” for its great taste and amazing health benefits such as the prevention of heart disease, reducing throat irritation, and the healing of wounds. How amazing is that! Honey is definitely a favourite of mine and when I found out that we had hives here in downtown Winnipeg, I was super excited to find out more!

Chris Kirouac, the founder of Beeproject Apiaries, started his company as an experimental project, as the bee community and the ability to extract a pure and natural food from them, piqued his curiosity. He now refers to it as his out of control hobby!

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Chris initially started out with five hives and he and his wife now maintain over 140 in the Gimli/Winnipeg area, including some in our very own downtown. Last year, Beeproject produced Neighbourhood Honey by beehives kept on the Manitoba Hydro Place rooftop, where they fit perfectly with the sustainability mindset that the building was created with. While downtown, these bees discreetly pollinated local flowers in their search for local pollen and nectar.

One of the many great things about Beeproject is that they promote urban beekeeping and are committed to using sustainable methods by using organic techniques of hive management whenever possible.

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With its great taste and amazing health benefits, it is sad to see that the honey bee population is globally declining with over a third of the population disappearing over the last five years. What this means is that our agriculture is in serious danger. More than 130 fruits and vegetables that make up a nutritious diet, depend on the cross-pollination of honey bees.

Urban settings such as the rooftop of the Manitoba Hydro Place are ideal for honey bees, as they are shielded from the many bee-killing pesticides linked to industrial agriculture, while also gaining more days for pollinating due to warmth and wind protection.

The Urban Pollination Project, an initiative created by the Beeproject, is generating awareness about these issues and continues to promote urban beekeeping which is so great for these honey bees and our downtown! Find out more by visiting their website at http://www.beeproject.ca.

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WHERE TO FIND BEEPROJECT HONEY: Beeproject’s creamed honey can be purchased at a number of retailers throughout the city, while their Neighbourhood Honey can only be purchased directly through their website or exclusively through Parlour Coffee and Chew Restaurant.

We also have some exciting news to share! Beeproject will be opening a storefront in the Osborne area this Spring (launch is TBA). Be sure to check them out!

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FUN FACTS:

  • Neighbourhood honey which is produced in urban settings has subtle fruity and floral notes and both the flavour and colour changes throughout the season as the dominant type of flower changes.
  • Natural raw honey will crystallize over time and if you prefer your honey to be softer or liquid in consistency, simply warm your honey to the desired consistency. You can also enjoy it in the solid form with all its flavour and health benefits fully intact.
  • If stored appropriately (with the lid on and only clean cutlery used in the jars), it should last forever!
  • Honey is great to include in hot beverages like tea or coffee, on fresh baking or paired with soft/ fresh cheeses. Raw honey easily replaces refined sugar in many recipes.

Craving some honey yet? I have the perfect solution. Share this blog post on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and tag both @BeeProjectCa and @DowntownWpgBIZ. You will receive one free jar of Beeproject’s Neighbourhood Honey (produced on the rooftop of Manitoba Hydro Place) while supplies last!

See you downtown,

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Winter Fun Downtown

There is never any shortage of winter fun in our downtown. For all ages, there is always a way to take in the fun of the chilly days and nights and enjoy Winnipeg winters at their best.

Here are a few events taking place this weekend downtown:

Million Dollar Quartet

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Wonderful Wedding Show Comes to RBC Convention Centre

The proposal. The ring. The planning. When a wedding is in your immediate future everything becomes research—your last hotel stay, every other wedding you attend, every cupcake, donut, or pie, and even dress shopping becomes a second job.

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The Wonderful Wedding Show takes place January 21 and 22 at the RBC Convention Centre. This annual event is the largest single source of information available about Winnipeg wedding services, featuring the city’s leading wedding professionals. With over 300 displays and 130,000 square feet of the latest must-have wedding fashions and trends, wedding products and services, and much more, every couple can explore the ways to make their wedding dream come true. One lucky couple will even win a DREAM WEDDING!

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Make a day of the Wonderful Wedding Show. Start by meeting up with your bridal party at a downtown restaurant or coffee shop to plan your route throughout the show over brunch or appetizers. When you enter the RBC Convention Centre be sure to get your copy of V.I.B Weddings Magazine, a magazine for the Very Important Bride!  V.I.B. Weddings features local content and real weddings highlighting products and services from Wonderful Wedding Show vendors that will inspire couples with ideas and has a special Show Guide section with Exhibitor Listing, floor plan and editorial about the show.

Downtown Winnipeg is a regular spotlight in local urban weddings. Whether downtown Winnipeg is the backdrop for wedding photos, or where the wedding reception is held, to where couples book their honeymoon suites in one of many iconic hotels, there are so many wonderful spots, corners, and signature spaces that hold special memories for Winnipeg couples. Take advantage of our fantastic downtown scenery and architecture to make your wedding memories uniquely Winnipeg. Tag us in your Wonderful Wedding Show photos on Insta and Twitter with #finditdowntown and enjoy planning your special day!

Top left, clockwise: Photo credit @blackandgoldphoto; Inspiration Gallery 2016 winning table by Just In Couture Designer Planning & Luxury Décor, photo credit Wonderful Wedding Show; Bottom left: Wedding planning by Like A Star Weddings, photo credit @nghiatranphotography. All photos used with permission.

Don’t miss out on these key daily features:

Brides’ Lounge with performances by Danny Kramer Dance Band at 1:30 & 3:30pm daily

Eph Apparel Grooms’ Lounge – Grooms-to-be can even enter for a chance to win the Ultimate Sports Prize Package

Inspiration Gallery – 2,500 sq ft of inspiration!

Fashion Show – 12:30 & 4:30pm daily

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Purchase tickets in advance to be entered for a chance to win a FREE vacation courtesy of LA Travel Group, Air Canada Vacation, and Palace Resorts. Trip value up to $6,000. Includes flights, transfers, hotel, & taxes. Click here for more prize details

Tickets available at http://wonderfulweddingshow.com/tickets/

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Home Dreams: Winnipeg Renovation Show Runs January 13-15

If you are attending the Winnipeg Renovation Show this weekend at the RBC Convention Centre, you’ve already thought about all the things you would like to change, tweak, and move around in your home. Have you taken a look downtown for shops and suppliers that could make your dream home come true? Lucky for you, downtown Winnipeg can offer some great retailers and businesses focused on ways to take your space from drab to fab.

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  1. Colour Us Excited

Picking the colour for a room can help set the tone for the space. Will you go bold or keep it traditional? Whatever you’re thinking for your reno or refresh, visit Western Paint for the latest on trends and colours. They now offer a decor centre carrying modern flooring options; wallcovering, wall murals and decals; and a variety of hardware – over and above their expansive line of Benjamin Moore paints and stroke-of-genius staff.

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Have a piece of furniture that you want to refinish? Maybe a treasured piece that needs to be brought up to date? Western Paint now houses a spray booth which means anyone can easily refinish a beloved piece of furniture using just about any colour under the sun – and it can even save you money on costly kitchen cabinet upgrades. The solid lacquer job can refurbish dated cabinets, doors, chairs or tables with a clean, custom finish.

  1. Can You Hear Me Now?

The pursuit of sound and the crystal clear projection of that sound means multiple devices throughout our homes competing for speakers. American HiFi are your downtown experts for what your ears crave. From home theatre to audio to custom designing a system for your space, they have the answers and equipment for the discerning audiophile.

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  1. Kitchen Party

The heart of the home. It’s all about the kitchen. It’s where to sip that morning coffee or tea, daydream, cook dinners, make lunches, and plan dinner party menus. And sometimes it needs a refresh. You don’t have to break the bank but you do want to set out a plan to make your dream kitchen come true. Kitchen Designs on Cumberland will take your dated kitchen and create a fresh, warm space where you can create memories and recipes for years to come.

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Have fun at the show this weekend and let us know how our members can help with your next design dream! For more information on shopping downtown visit downtownwinnipegbiz.com.

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Downtown Winnipeg Highlights from 2016

2016 was a fantastic year for downtown Winnipeg. Reduced crime, increased cleanliness, and added community support have continued to shape the downtown into a great place to play, shop, and live. Here are ten highlights from 2016 to celebrate as the year comes to a close.

 

  1. Sizzling Summer Events

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The Downtown Winnipeg BIZ hosted 230 events between June and October, attracting over 50,000 visitors to the downtown! From Zumba to movie screenings, festivals to concerts, there was truly something for everyone.

 

  1. Times Square Expert Takes On Portage and Main

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This February, president and CEO of Times Square Alliance Tim Tompkins came to the Fairmont Winnipeg to discuss opening Portage and Main to pedestrians. Tompkins played a huge role in turning Times Square into the tourist destination that it is today, and his perspective on Portage and Main provided a proven vision for the future of this iconic intersection.

 

  1. Police Unveil New Downtown Safety Strategy

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In mid-December, Winnipeg Police Service announced a new strategy to patrol the downtown. With a combination of modern technology and “walking the beat,” the new strategy will increase the presence of officers and foster a heightened sense of community. We look forward to seeing it in action.

 

  1. Manyfest Continues to Grow and Impress

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Seventy thousand people enjoyed the sixth annual Manitoba Liquor & Lotteries Manyfest from September 9 to 11. The event celebrates arts, entertainment, community, and healthy living. The Food Truck Wars, presented by ROYALE Tiger Towel, was a particularly tasty highlight again.

 

  1. Canada Day Living Flag Still the Biggest

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Over 3,158 people gathered at Shaw Park on Canada Day to create a living flag, and we’re proud to say it was the biggest in the country! Shout-out to all the participants who made this event one for the record books.

 

  1. Pop-Up at Portage and Main

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From June to September, all four corners of Portage and Main hosted pop-up events on the last Friday of the month. Pedestrians experienced an exciting variety of events and entertainment in Canada’s famous intersection.

 

  1. #finditdowntown

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In May, the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ won Marketing Campaign of the Year (over $2,500) at the Winnipeg Tourism Awards of Distinction. Our social media platforms are doing better than ever at informing followers, capturing moments, and celebrating all that downtown Winnipeg has to offer.

 

  1. Host it Downtown

 

The Downtown Winnipeg BIZ’s “Host It Downtown” program aims to increase the number of events downtown. It was founded in 2015, and in 2016, we attracted new and existing events like the Manitoba Filipino Street Festival, SpaceLand, and Peg City St. Patrick’s Day Parade to our downtown. Perhaps we could host your next event?

 

  1. CHAT Program Better than Ever

 

The Downtown Winnipeg BIZ’s Community Homeless Assistance Team (CHAT) received increased support this year, with an annual investment of $120,000 from Manitoba Liquor & Lotteries and $150,000 from the City of Winnipeg.

 

The CHAT program provides support to downtown Winnipeg’s vulnerable populations, including homeless people and/or people struggling with addictions or mental health issues.

 

  1. True North Square announced

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In February, True North unveiled plans for True North Square, a $400 million development featuring businesses, hospitality and entertainment, residential space, outdoor rinks, and more.

 

Construction is already underway, and the end product will show again how much our downtown has to offer those who want to live, work, and play in this bustling area that continues to grow with opportunity.

Downtown Holiday Shopping for Kids

Spend the day downtown, and you’ll be surprised by how easy it is to find amazing gifts for your kids! Here are some of our favourite spots to look out for.

 

Kite and Kaboodle

Start your day at The Forks! Get some breakfast and head over to Kite and Kaboodle, which has an impressive selection of books, toys, kites, and games. The store is bursting with over 25,000 items, and 5,000 are added each year.

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The staff at Kite and Kaboodle attend trade shows and constantly search for new products, so you get to choose from the best.

 

Pylon

While you’re at The Forks, pop in to Pylon. If you lose to your kids on every pop-culture quiz imaginable, you’ll want to see their selection.

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With Superman socks, Sonic the Hedgehog toques, Doctor Who figurines, and thousands more, this is your one-stop pop-culture shop!

 

Living in the moment: Experience art and culture downtown

One way to give a gift that lasts all year is to gift a family membership so you can experience your favourite places over and over again and get exclusive invites and sneak peeks to upcoming events. Another way is to gift tickets to show or special presentation from one of the many iconic cultural and arts organizations within downtown Winnipeg.

If you’re looking for a family membership, have a look at the Manitoba Museum or the Manitoba Children’s Museum.

If you’re interested in taking in a play or art display with the family, how about Manitoba Theatre for Young People, the Royal Winnipeg Ballet, the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra at the Centennial Concert Hall, or any of the programming events put on by the Winnipeg Art Gallery or the Winnipeg Railway Museum at the Forks.

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Books and more!

Downtown Winnipeg has plenty of stores for the bookworms in your family.

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Located on the main floor at cityplace, Coles features a wide selection of new books and gifts. If your kids are Harry Potter fanatics, get them Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay. If they love hockey, pick up 99: Stories of the Game by Wayne Gretzky.

 

If you’re looking for quality, pre-owned books, check out Book Fair Winnipeg. This Portage Avenue bookstore has books and comics that you may not find at Coles.

 

If you’re looking for even rarer books, head over to Bison Books on Graham Avenue. They have 20,000 used, old, and out-of-print books that you won’t find anywhere else.