Stampede Tips and Tricks

A survival guide of a different kind. 


How to have the best 10 days of your summer by a self proclaimed Stampede queen

July is upon us and you know what that means. Half of the city is as excited as a kid on Christmas morning. The other half is leaving town or locking their doors and staying inside until next Sunday.

If you hate Stampede stop reading. We won’t understand each other.

If you ask me, the next 10 days are some of the happiest of the year. I will defend the Calgary Stampede until my dying day, even if it’s the thing that kills me. Chances are good that will be my fate.

My cowgirl outfits may be a little more revealing than that of my grandmothers in the 1920s, but aside from that, when she shares stories about her own Stampede adventures, it seems not much has changed.

One time she caught two people having sex on a hay bale behind a stage.

See? Same same.

I have compiled a list of things to do, a guide if you will, that will ensure you have the happiest of memories come mid July.

1. Make Friends

It’s a party of all ages! Everyone comes out to play. I love seeing the generation before us throw caution to the wind and let loose. I find them the most fun to talk to because they’ve got the best stories- just beware of those wedding ring tan lines.

Not cool.

2. Embrace the lineups.

As one of my friends puts it, the lineups are a great chance to scope out who you’d like to ____ later.

It’s just part of the experience. If you can, head out earlier in the day to avoid spending 3+ hours in a line.  And remember there are plenty of cowboy filled venues around the city. Cowboys Tent won my heart last year, but there’s more to life.

3. Pre-game like you’re 19 again.

This will make the lineups more fun. Just beware of the drunk girl that over did it and looks like she’s going to throw up… She probably will.

By the time you actually get into the tent, you’ll have come back down to a perfect tipsy, ready to down another icy beer and flirt with some plaid shirted men.

4. Go to spin class.

Or else goodbye summer body. Glad I had you for a week.

5. Don’t look at your dwindling bank account.

Yes it’s expensive. But here’s the thing: Yesterday at work I kept ringing in mom’s who were dropping $800 on fluorescent lycra.

We all have our splurges. 80 beers or 8 pairs of lululemon pants? You always have a choice. I choose 10 days of day drinking with my friends listening to live country music – I love it; it’s worth it to me.

6. No regrets

Lastly, there are many things you might regret come next Sunday. You might be sleepy, you might have lost your voice at a concert, you might have $0 left to your name. But there are certain regrets that you really don’t want.

So wrap it up.

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