“No money, no funny” is a statement my Baba ingrained in me from a young age. Even through her broken English, my childhood ears knew this to be true advice.
As a student of PACE’s Public Relations, Marketing, and Strategic Communications program, I am in classes full time until September; however, I am no stranger to the desire of relinquishing the textbooks and camping out on a patio with a leisure read and a pint, or five. Unfortunately, the cost adds up.
While the words of Madonna’s Material Girl still resonate with me, I’ve learned to enjoy Winnipeg summers on a budget. Thankfully this city is equipped with tours, events, and activities to entertain those with vast interests, even if on a non-existent student allowance.
Winnipeg is notorious for its grueling winter, leaving summer the task of resurgence. It’s time to turn the spotlight to June, July, and August. My Top 10 list is more-so geared to those who are spending one of their first summers in Winnipeg and are looking for what Winnipeggers do once out of hibernation.
Mark your calendars and get to bed early Thursday night–Winnipeg’s historical Exchange District comes alive every first Friday of the month. Various art galleries and boutique stores open their doors from 5 PM- late. Galleries are free of charge and happy to exhibit what is within. I’d recommend looking at the First Fridays website for the specific exhibits and galleries partaking.
The Leo Mol Sculpture Garden is nestled within the beautiful Assiniboine Park. This garden is serene, breathtaking, and educational, as it is home to many fine art pieces. If art isn’t your thing, bring a book and relax under one of nature’s many reading nooks.
There are many excuses not to exercise (trust me, I am well acquainted with them). Thankfully Fitness in the Park allows you to cross off ‘price’ and ‘inconvenience’, as these hour-long workouts are free and accessibly located downtown. The activities range, as do the workout locations. Please check the website for specifics.
Manitoba is notorious for its variety of music festivals throughout the summer. Kicking off the season is Winnipeg’s TD Jazz Festival. The Jazz Festival’s free Opening Weekend runs Thursday June 16 until June 19 in Old Market Square. Saturday, June 18 is Indie Rock Night, showcasing local talents such as Rayannah, Vikings, and Micah Visser.
The West End Biz provides a unique way to capture the history and culture of the West End. The West End Biz’s tour showcases over 50 pieces of public art as it takes you through Sargent and Ellice Avenue. This tour can be customized to the needs of your group–just remember to bring your walking shoes!
Another reason to get outside during the noon hour is the variety of free, live lunch hour concerts. Concerts run from June 1- August 31, from noon – 1 PM. Locations vary, but are all centrally located, such as the Air Canada Park and the Outdoor City Place Terrace on the second floor of City Place Mall.
From Here & Away, a local creative community created by photographer Joseph Visser is back with free summer photography programming. Visser describes it as “open to all skill levels and shooting styles. At our workshops everyone is a leader and everyone has something to learn. All are welcome!” Please visit the Facebook event page for more information.
It’s hard to miss the outside of The Manitoba Legislative Building; however, the inside often goes unnoticed. Take a guided tour inside to discover The Grand Staircase, The Rotunda, The Lieutenant Governor’s Reception Room, and more! (PS: this may or may not be the time to pull out any Harry Potter costumes)
August brings us the Manitoba Electronic Music Exhibition (MEME), a festival of digital arts and learning. MEME offers a large, outdoor family-friendly area and hosts free concerts at The Cube in Old Market Square from August 12-14.
June 25, 2016 marks the 10-year anniversary of Aboriginal Day Live! What can we expect this year? A jam-packed day of Indigenous musicians, artists, family-friendly activities, a skateboard competition, and a pow wow. Click here to see the array of talented musicians playing.
Despite being born and raised in this city, I am always looking for new ways to make the most out of summer. Please feel free to post your favourite Winnipeg summer activities below.
Thanks for reading– now turn off your electronic devices and enjoy the season!
Written By, Natasha Havrilenko, PACE PR, Marketing and Strategic Communications student.