Photo by Kraig Brachman
Since 1990 we’ve celebrated Family day as statutory holiday in Alberta. We were the first province to do so and, in fact, it wasn’t until 2007 when Saskatchewan joined us. 14 years later it is now observed in British Columbia, New Brunswick, and Ontario as well.
Family Day is important because it is an official holiday set aside to spend time with your family. Well, in 2021, we still live in COVID times and that makes it challenging to get together for those who don’t live with their family. But, we’ve got you covered. For this 2021 Family Day we’ve put together a socially distanced dinner tutorial so you and your family can make a meal together and sit down, eat, and chat over a video call.
And to shake off those cabin fever blues, we are highlighting 3 of the best parks you can explore with your family safely!
Recipe: Slow Cooker Turkey Meatball Chilli
1/2 pkg (280g) frozen extra lean turkey meatballs
1/2 sweet onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 large carrots, chopped
3 stalks of celery, chopped
1 can (796 mL) diced tomatoes, no salt added
1 can (540 mL) red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
2 tbsp (30 mL) tomato paste (optional)
1 tbsp (15 mL) chili powder
1 tsp (5 mL) ground cumin
1 tbsp (15 mL) each salt and pepper
1 cup (250 mL) frozen peaches and cream corn
2 tbsp (30 mL) chopped cilantro
Step 1. In a 4.5- to 6-L slow cooker, stir together meatballs, onion, garlic, carrots, celery, diced tomatoes, red kidney beans, tomato paste, chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper.
Step 2. Cover and cook on LOW until flavours are blended, chili is thickened and meatballs are tender, about 7 hours. Add corn and cook on HIGH until mixture is steaming hot and corn is tender, about 7 min. Top with cilantro.
**If you're in a rush, you can throw everything into a large pot and cook on medium-high heat for 25-40 minutes. Stir often!
3 Amazing Parks in Calgary
Nose Hill Park
Nose Hill Park is a natural environment park that lies in the northwest part of Calgary. It is surrounded by 12 residential communities, covers 11 square kilometres, and was granted park status park in 1980.
It features gorgeous views of the Calgary area, a stone Siksikaitasitapi medicine wheel, hiking trails, tipi rings, designated off-leash areas for the furry four-legged members of the family, wildlife, and washrooms.
Nose Hill Park is the fourth-largest urban park in Canada and one of the largest urban parks in North America.
It is simply a crown jewel of parks in Calgary and provides an escape from the city while never having to leave city limits. If you do head out this Family Day, make sure to bundle up as it can get quite windy up there and bringing a bottle of water wouldn’t be a bad idea either.
Prince’s Island Park
Prince’s Island Park is located downtown at 698 Eau Claire Ave SW and is 20 hectares.
While many of its features are closed during the wintertime, it is still a beautiful park with picnic areas, playgrounds, pathways, and hiking trails. The park is connected to the Bow River and the Peace Bridge.
Prince's Island Park is home to the Chevron Learning Pathway, which is a reconstructed wetland with restored native plants. You can learn more about it here.
Since its development in 1950, Prince’s Island Park is an urban oasis and an important contributor to cultural and recreational quality of life that hosts many festival and events.
Fun Fact: Prince’s Island Park is often misnamed as Princess Island Park, and often the name is misattributed to Prince Edward of Prince Edward Island fame. In actuality, it is named after Peter Anthony Prince, from Quebec, who was a lumber worker that created logging operations for the Eau Claire Lumber Mill and Bow River Lumber Company. To more easily receive floating timber logged in the Kananaskis region at his mill, Peter had a channel dug out which water from the Bow River flowed into.
You can read more information about the history of Prince’s Island Park here.
Saint Patrick’s Island Park
One of Calgary’s oldest parks with development beginning in the 1890s. The park reopened July 31, 2015 after being flooded in 2013. The park is 31 hecatares and located at 1300 Z00 Rd. N.E.
Saint Patrick’s Island Park features:
The Tip: A vantage point and seating area at the island’s westernmost edge, with views of the river and downtown Calgary.
The Seasonal Breach: A restored channel where visitors can wade into the water and venture safely onto a gravel bar.
The Rise: A grassy knoll, nine metres high, that provides a perfect setting for community celebrations, performances and movies in the park during summer, and tobogganing during winter
The Lowland Channel: A seasonal riparian wetland at the heart of the island, with an elevated boardwalk for no-impact access to the wetland and the Gallery Forest (an important habitat for nesting eagles, owls and songbirds).
The Lookout Plaza: A gathering place with seating areas, a small amphitheatre, and water features.
Bloom: A 23-metre tall sculpture made of connected streetlights that represent a towering flower.
When things open up, look for festivals, guided nature walks and family picnics to help you discover all the new park has to offer:
Saint Patrick’s Island Park is a beautiful and a great spot to see wildlife; as well, it is within walking distance and has easy access to many other attractions like the Calgary Zoo, Bridgeland, Inglewood, and the East Village.