Written by Nanica Brown
The weather outside may still be frightful but Calgary has a lot of secrets to share. Insiders know that the best places are ones that keep kids engaged but don’t bore the snowpants off mom and dad. For that reason here are some of the hotspots around Calgary this winter:
Tried and true:
When the weather is just too cold out it’s time to take to make a run for places that burn off all that energy without the household damage.
- Calgary has some of the best indoor playground. Places like Tommy K Play, Coffee and Scream, Shakers and Stir Crazy allow parents to enjoy a moment of peace while kids can run to their hearts content.
- You can’t go wrong at the Creative Kids Museum. With activities that challenge both mind and body this is one of the best places in Calgary for kids of all ages. Check out their paint wall which gets the creative juices flowing with less mess.
- For those looking for more intellectual pursuits once a month the Rothney Astrophysical Observatory at the University of Calgary holds an open house. They have one of Canada's largest telescopes and the only telescope in Canada patrolling for killer asteroids.
And if you have already checked out the Glenbow’s expansive exhibits try one of the lesser known museums in downtown Calgary.
- Calgary Chinese Cultural Centre Museum - The only museum in Canada devoted exclusively to Chinese culture; see life-sized clay warriors who once guarded the tomb of Qin Shihuang, China's first emperor, as well as ceramics, bronzes and paintings.
- Calgary Police Service Interpretive Centre - Learn about the role of police in society and the consequences of crime for young people. Find out about forensic science and how police officers conduct investigations, with true-to-life Calgary cases as examples.
- Aero Space Museum - The museum has one of Canada's most extensive collections of aircraft, helicopters and aero engines. Along with the Avro Lancaster Mark X, one of the last of some 7,400 built, there are over 25 other airframes. Location: SE corner of the International Airport, Calgary
Baby it’s cold outside: Calgary gets cold, but even the worst weather provides some of the best opportunities for fun. Just make sure you have a good pair of snowpants and mittens and you are ready to explore all the fun in Calgary when the temperature drops.
- The Calgary Zoo offers a ‘Bad Weather Bundle’ when temperatures drop. It’s a great time to visit the zoo, lots of animals enjoy the colder weather and if it gets a little too chilly just head to one of the many indoor exhibits to warm up.
- Head down to Fish Creek, Edworthy and Bowness Parks to feed the chickadees or have a winter picnic. Shannon Terrace, Bebo Grove, Votier's Flats, Glennfield and Hull's Woods all have firepits to help keep you toasty warm. Make a day of it and go tobogganing and then warm up with marshmallows and hotdogs.
- Take a walk through the Inglewood Bird Sanctuary. With over 250 bird species and a variety of mammals call these 32 hectares of natural area home. See what birds you can identify during your visit. Location: on the Bow River at 2425 9 Ave.
- The City of Calgary has just opened a premiere spot to skate at Princes Island Park. The lagoon, where everyone duck watches in the summer is now ready for pleasure skating. Outdoor skating is also offered daily at Olympic Plaza, Bowness Park (48 Street N.W.) and Prairie Winds Park (Castleridge Blvd N.E.).
So whether you are looking for a warm spot to wear the kids out or a winter wonderland to explore these are just a few of the many adventures that Calgary has going on this season.
Truly a child at heart Nanica is constantly exploring Calgary for new things to keep her out of trouble. She enjoys dragging her husband and son out and around regardless of the weather because you never know where the next adventure will come from.