What to do? What to do?

I’ve often referred to our fair city of Calgary in the somewhat disparaging term of “a suburb to the oil patch.” A harsh assertion to say the least, however not one that is entirely untrue. This city sprawls like no other and seems to be no more than an endless strip of cul-de-sacs and strip malls.

However, I am always quick to qualify the seemingly derogatory description of my birthplace by pointing out that while the city isn’t the most beautiful place in the world, the surrounding area is breathtaking. From the hiking trails of the Rocky Mountains to the Badlands in Drumheller to the many wondrous and beautiful inner-city parks here in Calgary, summer here has it all.

Hence this little supplement, a guide to help point all those interested in the right direction for a thoroughly enjoyable Calgary summer.

Barring a brief stint in Edmonton in my early years, I have spent all my summers in the prairie oasis that is Calgary, Alberta. I have collected errant golf balls, I have set up countless lemonade stands, I have played hundreds (maybe thousands) of games of street hockey and I have loved every second of it. This is a glorious place to spend a summer.

From weekends in Banff to afternoons at the Ship and Anchor, there are memories waiting to be made around every corner. All you have to do is take the plunge and make them.

Some of my fonder recollections include afternoons spent biking and hiking around the river valleys of Northwest Calgary. Zipping up and down the bike paths with friends make up many memories of my long lost childhood.

There were the afternoons spent splashing about the Silver Springs outdoor swimming pool, making friends, getting tanned and killing time under the sun.

There are many reasons why I have such an affinity for the movie The Sandlot.

While Calgary is known worldwide for its winter attractions and sees a boom in tourism each year once the snow and cold has descended, few give southern Alberta’s summers the credit they’re due.

Even for those of us without copious amounts of time and/or money to go flitting about the province, the opportunities to escape the hustle and bustle of the nine-to-five day in, day out are plentiful.

Had a stressful day at work? Take a stroll through the river valley to soothe your mind. Getting burnt out by too many long days at the office? Head to Banff or Invermere and take a load off.

We’re blessed in Calgary with access to everything–might as well make use of it.

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