I Always Visit the Indian Village
The Calgary Stampede has always held special memories for me. The Parade, the "dressing-up", the breakfasts, the entertainment, the rodeo, the chuckwagon races, the Indian Village, the evening performances, the fireworks and the most important - the getting together with friends and family. It was an occasion that my mum so very much enjoyed. She would always claim that Calgary really knew how to put on a good party!
My mum and dad came from England in about 1954 with my oldest sister being 8 months old. My mum’s parents came for a visit in 1958 when I was almost a year old. There are pictures of us all at the Stampede. It must have been a fun time for all and made a big impression on my grandparents. When I was about 7 we visited grandma and granddad in England and they told me all about the time they had at the Calgary Stampede and how exciting it was.
Mum liked to tell the story of the time I went missing down on the Grounds - the worry was unbelievable she would recall. But she had a feeling where I had headed - the Indian Village - she was right - that's where she found me. To this day that is the one area that is a must for me to roam around the village and take in the teepees and shows that are offered.
Over the years as we grew older and families began of our own - we introduced them to the Calgary Stampede. We would come to visit Mum especially at this time in the summer so that we could take in all the fun and activities down on the Grounds. My Mum would host breakfasts, take in various parties and always enjoyed going down to the Stampede. Friends and family would visit from afar and we now cherish great memories of the fun spent at the Calgary Stampede.
Sadly it has been years since I have been able to make it to Calgary for the Stampede. The last time - about 12 years ago - our two girls and I went to Calgary for a visit to take in the Stampede activities. Mum had bought special tickets so that we had great seats to watch the Parade. How that brought back memories of when I was very young and we would go to see the Parade - but there was no reserve seating back then. On one of those special Stampede days the girls and I along with Mum spent over 12 hours down on the Grounds, taking in the special Kids day with breakfast and a show. Then there were the rides, the shows, the entertainment - oh - all so very exciting. We even walked home - a good 30 minute walk. What a wonderful day and a memory I hold ever so close to my heart as my mum is no longer with us.
Several years ago our two girls that now ride with a Grand Entry Team in Rocky Mountain House had the honour of riding in the Calgary Stampede Parade. How very special that day was - I am sure my mum was beaming with pride from up above in a special reserved seat.
We just learned last that the Grand Entry Team has been accepted to ride in the Parade again this year - the Team is so excited to be part of the Centennial. This will most definitely be another fantastic time spent at the Calgary Stampede.
The pictures I have included are only a token of the ones I have but give you a bit of the range and the people that enjoyed this special event.
Rocky Mountain House, Alberta