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From Red Deer and Jasper to Calgary and Edmonton, you’ll find a wide variety of festivals and community celebrations held throughout the year. Mingle with locals at seasonal events, see top name entertainers, and sample some of the region’s award-winning food and beverages. The Calgary Stampede, Big Valley Jamboree, and the Winter Festival of Speed are just a few of the events that bring vacationers to Alberta, Canada year-round.
The Edmonton Folk Music Festival in August features folk, blues and world beat music. Held along the banks of the North Saskatchewan River at Gallagher Park, the event offers multiple stages, craft vendors, food, and songwriting workshops with artists like Rodney Crowell. You’ll see headline entertainers like Emmylou Harris, K.D. Lang and Janis Ian performing along with local bands and country artists like Anderson East. The annual event has attracted music lovers for over 30 years and boasts a very popular beer garden and vendors serving a variety of tempting foods.
The Edmonton International Fringe Theatre Festival transforms the city’s parks, sidewalks and alleys into entertainment venues. Recognized as one of the most acclaimed alternative theatre events in the world, the August celebration features numerous outdoor stages, businesses converted into theatre venues, and roaming street performers. Locals and visitors enjoy 10 days of unique performances, a kid’s stage, food vendors and local beverages from craft breweries and wine makers.
Big Valley Jamboree is a four-day music festival in Camrose. Recognized as the Country Music Event of the Year by the Canadian Country Music Association, the August festival features top country music artists like Keith Urban, Lee Ann Rimes and Toby Keith. The popular Autograph Tent offers a chance to meet your favourite country music performers before or after concerts. The festival at the Camrose Exhibition Centre also includes events like bull riding, pig races and lumberjack competitions. The weekend of entertainment spans multiple stages with entertainment for the whole family.
Calgary’s International Film Festival in late September presents films from Canada and more than 40 other countries. The 12-day event includes screenings, gala events and special forums connecting local and international filmmakers and audiences. Panels, film discussions and numerous activities are open to the public. Edmonton’s International Film Festival, also in early October, offers 10 days of films, workshops and events for fans of independent and international movies.
Drumheller Dinosaur & Comic Expo is a blast for comic book and sci-fi fans. For two exciting days in September you’ll get a chance to mingle with thousands of other expo goers and enjoy exhibits on gaming, comic books, science fiction, cartoons, horror films, dinosaurs and collectibles. Whether you choose to go in costume or just enjoy the people watching, it’s fun for the whole family.
Lethbridge Oktoberfest celebrates German culture with a variety of food vendors, music, games, and more than 10 varieties of imported German beers. Local brewmasters also showcase their Oktoberfest concoctions. The town of Olds celebrates Bavarian culture and its western heritage with Oldstoberfest in mid-September. The two-day event includes a Bavarian rodeo, beer garden, food vendors and live entertainment.
The Jasper Dark Sky Festival in mid-October draws stargazers from all over the world to Jasper National Park. Designated a Dark Sky Preserve by the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, the park offers ideal conditions for dark sky viewing.
Red Deer celebrates autumn with its fun Sauerkraut Festival in mid-September. Learn about the health benefits of fermented foods like sauerkraut and pickles, test your skills in the eight-acre corn maze, take a wagon ride, enjoy pumpkin cannon shows and gnome walks, or pet the friendly farm animals.
The International Balloon Festival in High River is a fall event featuring hot air balloons from all over the world. Balloons ascend into the skies morning and night as pilots compete in the Canadian Balloon Championship. The annual celebration includes food trucks, a DJ and live entertainment.
The winter season is a fun time to be in Alberta. Stroll through snow-covered streets decorated with twinkling lights, listen to live music, or take a sleigh ride at the Silver Skate Festival in Edmonton. Watch skilled ice carving artists create magnificent sculptures at the Lake Louise Ice Magic Festival, or thrill to snowmobile, car and motorcycle races at the Winter Festival of Speed in Lac La Biche.
Founded in 1897, the Jungle Farm is located on the northern edge of Innisfail, Alberta, just an hour's drive north of Calgary. While it is a member of the Innisfail Growers, the farm offers a lot more than just crops – the bale maze, corn maze, petting farm, pumpkin patch and pumpkin slingshot are a few visitor favourites.
The Jungle farm plays host to private parties and is a popular destination for school tours. Curriculum-based programs teach kids about growing strawberries with games and a wagon ride through the farm. Visitors to the farm can also visit the General Store, which features farm fresh fruit, as well as other products such as jams, syrups and dressings.