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.

Save

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

summerevents

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

timessquare

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

1297908578670_original

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

manyfest

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

2016-cdlf

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

portagemain

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

finditdowntown

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

truenorthsquare

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.

Experience Downtown Winnipeg this Holiday Season

The holidays are always an exciting time for downtown Winnipeg. If you’re trying to find something to bring on the holiday cheer, you can #finditdowntown! There is something for everyone during the festive season.

 

  1. Nonsuch Hold Tours

nonsuch

The holidays have arrived in Manitoba Museum’s Nonsuch Gallery, but the 17th century hasn’t left! The entire gallery has been authentically decorated, transporting you to 1668 England.

Treat yourself to the sights, sounds, and stories of the past. Listen to traditional folk groups, hear old Christmas stories, and take the rare opportunity to tour the Nonsuch’s cargo hold.

 

  1. Parkade Ball Hockey

hockey

It’s not winter without hockey! Every Tuesday from 8:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., the top of the plaza parkade at The Forks turns into a ball hockey rink. It’s the perfect opportunity if you’re sick of passing cars constantly ruining your street hockey games.

 

  1. The Jungle Book

Calling all Disney lovers! Five actors play 21 characters in the Manitoba Theatre for Young People’s adaptation of The Jungle Book. The story focuses on Mowgli a lost child who is adopted by animals in the Indian jungle. If your family enjoyed the live action movie earlier this year, you will love this chance to get up close to the magic of this treasured story.

junglebook

It runs December 8 to December 30. Get your tickets before they sell out!

 

  1. Holiday Farmers’ Market

From 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on December 15, Manitoba Hydro Place transforms into a vibrant farmers’ market. Whether you’re looking for fresh fruit and vegetables, organic hair products, or glass jewellery, you’ll surely find what you’re looking for.

farmersmarket

 

  1. It’s a Wonderful Life at The Metropolitan Entertainment Centre

wonderfulife

Enjoy a classic Christmas movie at an iconic Winnipeg venue. On December 18, The MET is showing It’s a Wonderful Life, the film about a guardian angel showing a suicidal man what would happen had he not existed. Tickets include popcorn and The MET’s delicious buffet.

 

  1. E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra

You’ve probably seen the movie. But have you seen it with a live orchestra? On December 11, the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra performs along with the 80s classic, which focuses on a child’s relationship with an alien who is trying to get home.

et

 

  1. Nutcracker

The Royal Winnipeg Ballet’s Nutcracker is back! Experience the treasured Christmas tradition with RWB’s world-renowned dancers. With the addition of new characters, the show is fresher than ever, and includes some famous Winnipeggers in walk-on roles. You’ll be hearing those Sugar Plum Fairies dancing in no time. Don’t miss it! On from December 22 to December 30.

nutcracker

Peggy’s Picks – The Biggest Gift Guide Ever!

FullSizeRender

December is here! The most wonderful time of the year! And this year, something extra-special happened. Downtown Winnipeg Magazine asked me – yes, ME! – to curate their BIGGEST GIFT GUIDE EVER!

I humbly agreed, and here’s a little taste of what I came up with. Be sure to grab a copy for yourself – you can find them in magazine racks around downtown, being handed out at Jets games, at the airport, the Liquor Mart, and maybe even in your very own mailbox!

sandwich
Luxury Lunch – SANA Souphouse $13.50
rubber boots
Splish Splash – Designer rubber cowboy boots, Bella BALAS $94
perfume
Scentual – Bvlgari Jasmin Noir, Perfume Paradise $146
pajar boots
Boot It – Men’s Pajar Guardo winter boots (rated -30C), Canadian Footwear $199.90
noodles
Spice of Life – Clay Oven Express at MB Hydro, Clay Oven at Shaw Park
nailpolish
Spec-tacular – Pure Anada Cosmetics eco-friendly nail polish (Made in Manitoba), Generation Green at The Forks $14
kitty purse
Change Purrrrrse – Mr. Cat pouch, Best of Friends at the Library
hook mug
Hooked! – Fly fishing enamel mug, Gallery Shop at The WAG $14.50
hat
Cap it Off – 103rd Grey Cup hat, Uptown Sports $31.99
cookies
Christmas Cookie – George Box 13 cookies, Cookies by George $26.95
cook book
Dish it Out – Winnipeg Cooks cookbook, The Merchant Kitchen, Prairie 360, Sydney’s at The Forks $30
coffee
Coffee Kick – Pilot Coffee, Fools & Horses Coffee Co.
bracelet
Crystal Clear – bracelet, Neeta Gupta Jewellery $185
boot
Snow Big Deal – Mukluks, Teekca’s Aboriginal Boutique $139
books
Literary Library – classic tales, Bison Books
bird vase
For the Birds – festive arrangement, starting at $20
wings
Wings ‘n’ Things – downtown dining at Tavern United MTS Centre, 12 Resto Bar, The Met, Garbonzo’s Pizza Pub
wag bowl
Stick to It – bowl and plate, Gallery Shop at the WAG $190
turkey
Happy Host – turkey takeaway with fixings for 15, The Fairmont Winnipeg $390
soup
Full of Beans – soup mix and wooden spoon, The Forks Trading Company $10.99, $22.99-$24.99
scarf
Warm & Wooly – Shupaca alpaca wool circle scarf, Friends of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights $79.95

Don’t forget to keep your eyes peeled for your chances to win some of these items – in the magazine and through CTV Morning Live.

Happy shopping! And don’t forget to share when you #finditdowntown with me on Instagram, Facebook & Twitter @downtownpeggy!

And that’s a #downtownwishlist wrap!

The holidays may be over and the “New Year” is getting older by the moment, but I must say one way to keep the merry and bright going is to grant a whole bunch of people’s wishes. I had no idea how fun this would be!

In case you missed it, (and I’m sorry if you did!) I spent the month of December asking people to take photos of items or experiences they found downtown, for themselves or on behalf of someone special, and get them to me via Instagram, Twitter or Facebook using the hashtag #downtownwishlist.

I got to sit here, watch the (over 200!!!) entries roll in, and then grant some wishes!

Thank you so much for participating! I loved seeing what you were wishing for and hearing your stories – I’m sure I wasn’t the only one on social media who came away with a bunch of great Christmas gifting ideas!

In the end, and thanks largely to the generosity of the businesses in the downtown, I was able to grant 30 wishes in total!

Here are a handful of highlights:

WHO 1
We got her a new winter coat, and Warehouse One generously threw in a bonus pair of jeans! What a great BFF!
HBC mitts
Thanks for sharing this cute photo!
shoppers makeover
Shopper’s Drug Mart makeovers are actually free! But we got her a GC so she could get a few new fave products.
Lennard Taylor
I also kickstarted my modelling career over the holidays! Not. But this was fun!
1503277_896691550349242_218393837699859436_n
We got her some tickets. 🙂
WAG
As if she could choose JUST ONE thing from the WAG gift shop. Everything is SO NICE. It was a good choice though, I must say!
upbeat
A Christmas wish come true – gifts for mom! 🙂
mushroom platter
Love all the artwork at Upbeat Artworks in Portage Place, and love to support an initiative that supports mental health recovery and awareness.
Era
Dinner at Era it is! Hope you don’t mind a third wheel! 😉
belly dance fabric
She promised photos of the new dress she sews!!!
HBC watch perfume
Spotted this gal in the skywalks all the time! She has great taste and loves downtown. We might be soul sisters.
Moccasins
Loved meeting this thoughtful gal!
GlobalStellas
Thanks for bringing us the news and weather everyday! Sure, let’s do brunch!
parking pass
Huge thanks to cityplace for the parking pass! That ought to make these frigid months a little more bearable!

 

Special thanks to Carbone Coal Fired Pizza, True North, The Fort Garry Hotel/Ten Spa, Era Bistro, The Fairmont Winnipeg/The Velvet Glove, cityplace, Prairie 360 and the Winnipeg Art Gallery for your generous wish-granting contributions!

Next year I want to grant even more wishes – so keep your eyes peeled and send them my way!

 

 

Five actually good last-minute gift ideas

Ready or not, Santa’s coming down the chimney in just over a week. There’s cookies to bake, things to wrap, a turkey to stuff, and only a few hours in between all that to finish your Christmas shopping. Some (I) call this fun. But I understand it can be a stressful time of year so here, let me offer some expert advice.

Before you decide to phone it in completely and just raid that endless selection of gift cards at the checkout stand on your next grocery run, consider these ideas that are a bit more thoughtful, but just as simple (and as always, #finditdowntown!):

For the person on your list who deserves a little down-time:

We all know someone who fits this criteria. Heck, we all fit the bill. Call up Riverstone Spa at the Inn at the Forks or Ten Spa at Fort Garry Hotel and get this person a little me-time treat. And while you can, and I would highly recommend it, don’t feel obligated to go all out – even someone who goes in for a basic manicure or pedicure treatment is entitled to use the steam showers, sauna, and lounge around in a fluffy robe for as long as their hearts desire. But if you can splurge on the mud wrap, massage and/or facial, by all means do.

For the person on your list who is either a kid, Disney fanatic, or kid at heart:

Disney on Ice: Worlds of Fantasy is coming to the MTS Centre in March and there are a whole bunch of kiddos who want to see it. An afternoon out with a miniature Disney fan, mesmerized as their favourite characters and heroes glide and fly across the ice? Priceless (tickets start at 29.99). Also, this is a fantastic cotton candy opp – messy, I know, but worth it.

1503277_896691550349242_218393837699859436_n

For the person on your list who’d love a delicious treat:

And again, who wouldn’t? Why not make it an experience with a gift certificate to Prairie 360? As I’m sure you’ve seen on Instagram, the view is stunning and the meal is guaranteed to be tasty. It can be budget friendly too – brunch goes for $20 per person. For a higher-end option, go for a few courses and wine pairings overlooking the twinkly lights of the city below. How romantic!

For the holiday season lover on your list:

If I was on your list, this would be my number one wish (hint hint!!!). The holiday season is absolutely not complete without catching the Royal Winnipeg Ballet’s Nutcracker performance (at least once). That’s all there is to it. If there’s someone on your list who hasn’t experienced the Sugar Plumb Fairy in real life, no matter how old or young they are, this is the gift for them.

For the person on your list who enjoys a beer every now and then:

This idea probably has the potential to cover off a bunch of people on your list: Carbone Coal Fired Pizza beer buttons. You might have heard, but there’s this new, delicious pizza place on St. Mary Ave. where you get to pour your own pints. You can purchase the buttons that activate the taps and load ’em up with as many dollars as you like. Want to try before you buy? Help your neighbours out and post your go-to, last-minute gift ideas and you could win a $25 Carbone beer button. Contest closes Friday, Dec. 19 at 3PM – just in time for you to pick up and re-gift your prize if you’re in that much of a pickle! 😉  

IMG_0308

Top 5 must-haves for your next holiday party

It’s my favourite time of year, I think we’ve established that already. But just to remind everyone, I LOVE the holidays. I love getting creative with gift-giving (aka shopping!), indulging in all the delicious treats that seem to come with the season, and I especially love throwing a good holiday party for all my friends.

I know you’ll make great use of these five tips for your next holiday party!

1. Music to set the tone.

To get yourself in the mood, you have to put on some holiday tunes while you get ready. Personally, I like to check out the seasonal collection of CDs at the Millennium Library (2nd floor) for an eclectic mix.

Library music

2. A signature scent.

I love working a delectable signature scent into my ensemble – it’s an important accessory! Which is why I could only narrow it down to two favourites. Hermes Rouge ($134) and Des Merveilles Elixir ($145), both from Perfume Paradise. I suggest putting a little dab right behind each ear once you get out of the shower, and let the compliments about your subtle yet sophisticated choice wash over you all night.

Perfume

For your man, spritz him with Abercrombie & Fitch Fierce ($114) and thank me later.

Abercrombie

3. Chic table setting.

It’s coming together. It’s sounding good, you’re smelling fabulous, now it’s time to set the table. This one takes some thought. Will you have a theme? What’s the nature of the event? Classic and classy? Casual and friendly? Upscale cabin in the woods? Whatever you’re looking for, Glucksteinhome at Hudson’s Bay downtown has some beautiful tables set up for inspiration, and some even more beautiful sales. I’m a fan of the Alpine Cabin series – plaid tablecloth (regular 69.99) and napkins (19.99), now 40% off – you can dress them up or down.

Table

4. Make your own floral arrangement

Not a DIY-er, you say? Nonsense. I love leaving it to the experts too, but it feels good to make something beautiful for yourself (or someone special). Plus in this case, the experts at Freshcut Downtown will be guiding you along every step of the way.

What: Create a beautiful centrepiece to take home for the holidays!

When: December 16, 5:30 PM

Where: Freshcut Downtown (Portage Place)

Cost: $25 plus tax, portion of proceeds go to Change for the Better

Space is limited! Call 204-943-6514 to reserve your spot!

FullSizeRender

5. Wine.

Need I say more? Fenton’s Wine Merchants at The Forks has you covered – even if the MLCC strikes this holiday season. I suggest anything red or white, sparkly or pink, frequent re-fills and a plan for a safe ride home.

Wine

Wish you had something special for your next holiday party? Snap a photo and put it on your #downtownwishlist by tweeting or Instagramming me (@downtownpeggy) or posting on my Facebook wall! Remember to use the hashtag #downtownwishlist. You have to #finditdowntown!

Happy holidays!

Granting wishes is fun!

Thanks so much for sharing your #downtownwishlist wishes with me! I love seeing the products you spot and love downtown!

What do I love more than that? Giving this stuff away! Here’s a roundup of #downtownwishlist winners so far! And remember, if you’ve shared photo of your wish, I’ll contact you if you’ve won, so keep your eyes peeled!

Keep the #downtownwishlist wishes for yourself or someone special coming my way! Get at me on Twitter @downtownpeggy, Instagram @downtownpeggy or post on my Facebook wall, and your wish just might be granted. Remember, you have to find it downtown!

 

TUBrequest
From The Urban Bakery, to keep her bros lookin’ good and reppin’ the 204!
HBCcoatrequest
A nice, warm winter coat for her husband!

Prairie360request ColesBooksRequest

Some make crafts. I SHOP for crafts.

I cannot make crafts. I’ve tried. Really, I have. All that happens is after 45 minutes I have glitter in my hair, my fingers are glued together and I need a break and a glass of wine.

So I’ve stopped letting Pinterest delude me into thinking I can make my own holiday ornaments, and I’m going to the pros this year. There are not one, not two, but THREE crafty markets downtown in the next little while that you can hit up on your lunch hour!

 

Farmers Market Image

1) The Downtown Winnipeg Farmers Market – the holiday edition! November 14th (that’s this Thursday!) more than 30 vendors are setting up inside Manitoba Hydro Place so I can shop for homemade honeys, jams, preserves, and crafts to create some one-of-a-kind holiday gift baskets!

Festive Artisans Market

 

2) The Festive Artisans Market! This one’s created by the Manitoba Crafts Museum and Library. They’re bringing in everything handcrafted you can think of – quilts, stained glass, felting, handmade greeting cards, pottery, jewelry, Christmas ornaments and more!
December 4th, 11am – 5pm
Manitoba Hydro Place (360 Portage Avenue)

 

3) The Signatures Craft Show & Sale – this one’s at the RBC Convention Centre, so we’re talking acres of booths filled with decorative goodies I couldn’t hope to create myself. November 21 – 24
RBC Convention Centre

 

I think I’m going to need some new storage bins for all this stuff…