Calgary Citizen Newsletter Thursday Feb. 8

Plus: Outdoor skating rinks, free cocaine sample charges, and Stampede scandal settlement

Good morning !

Oops—we had a weird glitch in the newsletter on Tuesday and part of the newsletter disappeared so it might have seemed shorter than normal but that wasn’t our intention and we apologize. We did however want to run the poll intended for Tuesday’s newsletter on your thoughts about the recall attempt against Mayor Jyoti Gondek so let us know what you think in the poll below and share your comments with us so we can share them with our readers in Saturday’s Insider newsletter. Become a member here and receive our Saturday edition.

Krista Sylvester, Managing Editor

👀 In today's edition:

  • GRAND Theatre’s future in peril

  • Free samples of cocaine lead to charges

  • Check out these outdoor rinks

Today’s read time: Approx. 4 minutes

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🌧️ Today: High -3C, Low -6C. See the 7-day forecast.

🚗 Driving today? Check the current traffic situation, and find the city’s traffic report and road closures.

The 112-year-old GRAND Theatre is at risk after landlord rejected proposal to keep the historic theatre in the downtown arts community

Opened on Feb. 5, 1912, the same year as the inaugural Calgary Stampede, the GRAND Theatre is part of the Lougheed Block in downtown Calgary. // Julie Vincent Photography

For 112 years, the GRAND theatre has been a pivotal part of Calgary’s downtown landscape but the iconic theatre’s future is in peril.

The Calgary GRAND Theatre Society released a statement detailing the efforts it made to create a sustainable future after agreeing to sell the theatre to a company that shared its vision in 2021.

The theatre says it engaged a key community partner—Arts Commons—in discussions with its new landlord, Allied Properties REIT, about a proposed partnership arrangement.

“Together, we developed an exciting plan to leverage shared resources that would have incorporated the GRAND theatre space into the Arts Commons ecosystem of downtown venues," executive director Erynn Lyster said.

The theatre says it was “surprised and disappointed” to learn its landlord rejected the proposal despite more than a year of “productive discussions and feasibility planning.”

"With heavy hearts, and because we are running out of time and options, we feel it's important to let the community know that the Society's final act as steward of Western Canada's oldest theatre is expected to take place later this year," said Devon LeClair, board chair.

The society says it will continue to act in good faith with its landlord over the next few months to keep the 112-year-old theatre in Calgary's performing arts community.

"If we cannot achieve a sustainable plan soon, the Society will be dissolved,” LeClair says.

The Grand Theatre is an iconic arts staple and many are speaking out about its potential loss.

"The Grand is absolutely brimming with history—and I am crushed at the uncertainty of its future," says Wakefield Brewster, a poet laureate, professional poet and spoken word artist.

Allied Properties REIT couldn’t be reached for comment as of deadline.

Related Story

Need to know

💸 A tentative $9.5M settlement has been reached in the Calgary Stampede abuse class-action lawsuit.

👮 A man accused of giving free samples of cocaine to people outside a casino has been charged.

💰 Three Calgary friends claim the $50M lottery prize after 17 years of playing together.

🚓 Police investigate after suspected copper wire theft knocks out power in downtown.

🪧 'It stings a little bit': Calgary's mayor reflects on the complexity of the job amid recall petition. The Calgarian behind the petition aims to draw attention to council leadership.

🛬 A University of British Columbia student commutes by plane from Calgary because it is cheaper than paying Vancouver rent.

🏫 Calgary students join the walkout to protest the province's proposed gender policies.

🚗 'Shaken up': An out-of-control SUV plowed into two northeast businesses.

👮 ‘Sends the wrong message’: Advocates want police removed from schools.

🎒 Sign up for Calgary’sChild Magazine’sfree weekly newsletter, which is packed with family-friendly activities, local events, excursions, and giveaways.

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Get some skating in before winter is over at these six outdoor rinks

You could also hit the frozen lakes of Kananaskis country to enjoy outdoor skating scenery as beautiful as this.

Outdoor skating is one of those things we always want to do but winter is often done before we get a chance. We thought it was a great time to remind you about some great spots to get some skating in before the ice and snow are gone for the spring and summer.

Olympic Plaza: Built in 1988 for the Olympic Winter Games, Olympic Plaza is probably the most well-known outdoor rink in Calgary. Open to the public, there’s always tons of events that take place at the plaza.

Bowness Park Lagoon: A shallow lagoon running along the Bow River between Stoney Trail and 85 St. NW, Bowness Park offers a ton of winter activities from ice trails and ice bikes to an outdoor rink and cross-country skiing.

Carburn Park: Another park along the Bow River, Carburn Park has an outdoor rink along with picnic tables for a sit down after a day of skating. Additionally, there is tons of wildlife in the area for a family to see.

North Glenmore Park: Bordering the northern side of the Glenmore Reservoir, North Glenmore Park has an ice trail, a shinny rink, and cross-country ski trails.

Barb Scott Park: Named after councillor Barb Scott, the park features the Chinook Arc and an outdoor skating rink that provides the Beltline a space for people who work and live in the area.

Prairie Winds Park: A staple of northeast communities, Prairie Winds Park provides two outdoor rinks for the public to enjoy. Located at 223 Castleridge Blvd., NE.

Where to eat and drink

🍴 Class Clown Hamburgers: This retro hamburger spot in Mission is popular for a reason. Check out the smash-style burgers made with Alberta chuck and brisket ground in-house.

🍴 Luke’s Drug Mart: Some of our favourite ice cream is offered by this one-stop shop. Our favourite: The affogato!

🍴 Forbidden City Seafood & Dim Sum Restaurant: Enjoy tasty dim sum options such as steamed Shanghai dumplings, Chinese doughnuts wrapped with rice crepe.

Have a food or drink suggestion? Message us and we might share it!

Local specials

💸 Crimson Lingerie: For those looking for romance, this spot is offering 50% off for February so get those Valentine’s Day ideas.

💸 Stokes stores: You’ll want to take advantage of this Winter Sale where some products are 75% off until Feb. 18.

💸 Teatro: Enjoy the “bottoms up” special Monday through Friday from 2pm -4:30pm with $18 pizzas and half-priced bottles of wine.

Have a promo suggestion? Message us and we might share it!

Things to do

🎟️ The Military Museums Commemorates Black History Month: The Military Museums is hosting an exhibition in its atrium to honour Black Canadian soldiers until Feb. 29.

🎟️ Pallas Athena Women’s Fighting Championship: Competitive women’s Mixed Martial Arts is returning to the city on March 9 with unforgettable battles between world-class athletes so snap your tickets up before they’re gone.

🎟️ Dragon & Lion Dance Performances: The Calgary Chinese Cultural Centre is ushering in the Year of the Dragon and invites the community to join in on the free Lunar New Year Celebrations throughout the month.

Have an event suggestion? Message us and we might share it!


Our reader shared this picture of cross-country skiing in Highland park. // Rock Dagenais

That’s it!

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