Grey Cup Festival run off Nov. 20 to 24 at Stampede Park with the game being played at McMahon Stadium.
Feel the action of rodeo. Calgary’s Stampede Park will be home to the first-ever Grey Cup Rodeo when the city hosts the CFL championship festival in November.
We are not brave enough to do it outdoors, though, so we’ll do it inside at the historic Stampede Corral,” said Geordie Macleod, executive director of the Grey Cup Festival.
With the Corral planned for destruction to clear a path for a $500-million extension to the BMO Center, the Gray Cup Rodeo could be the last rodeo held in the structure.
The celebration begins on Nov. 20 with the Tim Hortons Kickoff Party, which will stamp the official appearance of the Gray Cup trophy.
At that point on Nov. 21 the Nissan Street Festival outside site will open — 140,000 square feet of room including the Stratosphere Projection Dome, an about 20-meter high inflatable Imax theater.
We certainly think that will be a pretty cool focal point for our festival,” said Macleod.
The CFL awards will be handed out Nov. 21 at the Saddledome and the CFL Gala will be held the next night.
The rodeo will be hung on Saturday, alongside what Macleod called a “critical show” on the Stampede grounds.
Firecrackers will likewise be in plain view every night of the celebration, set to various Canadian artists.
Since the climate can be fluctuating in Calgary in November, there will be occasions inside too, including the 50,000-square-foot Family Zone, where affirmation will be free.
Considering himself a long lasting Stamps fan, Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi said the expectations the festival will unite Canadians from over the counry.
It’s one of those things that really binds us together as a nation,” he said.
It’s a celebration of community, it’s a celebration of Canada, and I love, love, love, love that we get to do it in Calgary, because not only are we going to put on a party like you’ve never seen before, we’re actually going to show the country, we’re going to show the world, what it really means when we talk about how sport can help build a community.
Events like the Stamps House — which Macleod expects will be popular — Spirit of Edmonton, Riderville and The Atlantic Schooners Down East Kitchen Party will also be held on the Stampede grounds at the BMO Centre.
In the end, we will host more than 40 unique events and attractions,” said Macleod.
The 107th Grey Cup will be played on Nov. 24 at McMahon Stadium and will mark the fifth time the city has hosted the event.
The Calgary Stampeders are defending champions, having defeated the Ottawa Redblacks 27-16 in last year’s championship game in Edmonton.