Over the years I have collected a few old Calgary Stampede images in my photo library as I come across them in my research. Given it will soon be Stampede time in Calgary (July 5 to 14, 2019), I thought I would see just what I had and would it make for a fun blog. I didn’t really have enough so I started hunting around the internet and found some more, then I hit the motherlode - the Calgary Stampede website has dozens of old photos.
I also discovered the Calgary Stampede website is full of great information. Things like “Frequently Asked Questions” the covers almost everything you could think of asking. It also has great information on the Stampede’s Public Art Program - murals and sculptures. And, you can learn about quirky things like the history of stampede breakfasts.
If you are looking for some interesting internet reading I would highly recommend the Calgary Stampede website. Here are some fun facts:
Stampede Park is a bit bigger than Disneyland.
Each rodeo animal is inspected by a veterinarian daily to ensure their well-being.
Over 100,000 people visit the Stampede’s art show, making it one of the biggest art exhibitions on the prairies.
Over 2,300 volunteers help to make the Calgary Stampede happen each year.
The world’s tallest flagpole (204 feet) is located at the Elbow River Camp, formerly the Indian Village.
It wasn’t until 1968 that the Stampede became a 10 day event.
Did you know there is a App for locating where Stampede breakfasts are located?
The University of Calgary is heavily involved in the Calgary Stampede. Researchers in the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine provide critical advice and innovative solutions to ensure animal care practices are cutting edge. The Galileo Educational Network, within the Werklund School of Education, developed a website to educate people on the long-standing and important history of the Treaty Seven Nations at the Stampede.Historians and experts in the faculty of arts have written the book on the Calgary Stampede and teach a Canadian Studies course on it every year.
Fun historical postcards from the Calgary Stampede.
FYI: There are two postcards at the end that I expect will surprise many of you!
Today the Calgary Stampede has evolved into one of the world’s most unique festivals. In fact, it combines seven different festivals offering something for almost everyone:
Visual Art Festival
When I first moved to Calgary I have to admit I wasn’t a big fan of the Stampede, but over the past 35+ years I have developed an appreciation for how it has shaped the city and given it a unique sense of place. While not everyone appreciates what the Calgary Stampede does for the City locally, nationally and internationally, in my opinion, every city needs a mega festival like the Caglary Stampede that annually celebrates its unique history and sense of place.
A mega makeover is planned for the Stampede Park over the next decade that will hopefully allow it to continue be evolve and be something Calgarians can continue to be proud of.