Romance and candy make February the sweetest month
By Jesse Cole | January 24, 2023
Apples on a Windowsill
Travel from Edmonton to Rome through the lyrical prose of Edmonton author Shawna Lemay as she celebrates the launch of her book, Apples on a Windowsill, a meditation on still life, marriage and beauty, at Audreys Books this month.
What’s Good for the Soul
February 2 to 11
Now that you’ve put all those silly ideas of New Year’s resolutions to bed, treat yourself to some culinary excess with Feed the Soul Dining Week, showcasing some of Edmonton’s best Black-owned restaurants, retailers and artisans.
Digital is So Last Year
Going to events digitally is so 2020. That’s why this year, Evolution Wonderlounge is holding its lauded Drag Aphelion competition IRL. But this time, it’s not a competition, just a showcase of amazing local talent.
Looking for a Friday night date idea? Need something to entertain the kids that isn’t going to give you frostbite? Head over to Fort Edmonton Park for a viewing of the timeless and time-bending classic Groundhog Day at the historic Capitol Theatre. Already seen it? That’s OK, it’s the type of movie you can watch over, and over, and over…
Flying Canoë Volant
Until February 3
It’s time for one of Edmonton’s most photoshoot-friendly cultural events. Flying Canoë Volant, which celebrates French-Canadian, First Nations and Métis culture, lights up Mill Creek Ravine, Edmonton’s French District, and the spirits of everyone who attends.
February 6 to 8
The children are our future, and a healthy future means healthy education. That’s why the Indigenous Knowledge & Wisdom Centre is once against hosting its annual First Nations Educators Conference. Featuring keynote speakers as celebrated as Dr. Gabor Maté and former NHLer Jordin Tootoo, this conference will spread knowledge at the River Cree Resort & Casino.
Mozart & Mendelssohn
February 8 to 10
You are once again invited to treat your ears to some musical delight as the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra brings the compositions of Felix Mendelssohn and Wolfgang Mozart to the stunningly acoustic Winspear Centre. It features a prelude presentation by musicologist D.T. Baker on both Feb. 8 and 10, to boot.
Edmonton’s longest running winter festival, The Silver Skate Festival, has a new home! The family-oriented, skating-and-more (there’s a snow sculpture garden, roving performers and a nightly, Burning Man-like fire sculpture burn) sets up shop at Sir Wilfrid Laurier Park for 10 whole days. And it’s free! You can’t go wrong.
A (Virtual) Birkebeiner for Canadians
February 9 to 24
Last month we told you about the Full Moon Birkie — a traditional Scandinavian cross-country ski race — but if you missed that one, you can still get into the spirit of the race with a virtual birkebeiner this month. In response to a distinct lack of snow this year, the Canadian Birkie Ski Festival is reverting to the COVID-19 inspired online festival. Participants can remotely take part in the festivities by registering online and completing a distance of their choice in any outdoor activity.
From Ukraine, With Love
Alberta is home to a vast number of people who trace their heritage back to Ukraine. The diaspora here is proud of its roots, and the Ukrainian National Ballet will celebrate them on the Edmonton stop of its current Canadian tour. With 23 of the ballet’s 150 dancers, the Ukrainian National Ballet is among the most lauded ballet companies on Earth. So, embrace your heritage, or just head over for some cultural enlightenment.
Hullabaloo About Rubaboo
February 10 to March 3
Rubaboo means “leftovers stew” or “big pot” in Michif, the traditional Métis language. This intimate yet exuberant performance by Métis performer Andrea Menard will immerse audiences into the intricacies and beauty of the culture.
Crafty & Wyrd
Until February 10
Hipsters, crafties and those with exceptionally eclectic pallets rejoice — you still have until February 10 to try some of the strangest brews we’ve ever come across as part of the Wyrd Bier Adventure. Sixteen brewers have opted to take part, slinging all sorts of strange and sultry suds including a brisket beer, a lobster farmhouse AlePI, a Caribbean jerk stout and even an alcoholic take on the iconic green onion cake. Drink up!
Receding Hair(line) Metal
With skin-tight leather, leopard print, and enough hairspray to pop a new hole in the ozone, Live Wire — the world’s foremost Mötley Crüe tribute band — is about as close to seeing Vince, Nikki, Tommy and Mick as you’ll get anytime soon. So, whether you’re a lifelong fan looking to compare hairlines, or a newly minted cock-rock aficionado, Dr. Feelgood’s prescription is a ticket to Live Wire at Bunker’s Sports Pub.
Step Into a World of Pure Imagination
February 15 to April 21
You’ve seen them on the big screen, and you’ve definitely seen them on the small screen, but now’s your chance to step in to the screen with the Immersive Disney Animation. This family-friendly event features timeless music from throughout the Disney discography and stunning visuals from all chapters of a film’s development displayed across the walls, floors and ceilings of the Edmonton EXPO Centre.
In an Auditorium Far, Far Away
February 15 and 16
Watching Star Wars on the big screen is a luxury most of us today will never have (unless you count those sequels, which we of course don’t), but now you have a chance to experience the film that started it all. The Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium will hold a screening of Star Wars: A New Hope, but there’s a kicker — the entire film score will be performed live by the 78 musicians of the FILMharmonic Orchestra. Is there really any better way to hear Vader’s iconic entrance music for the first time?
February 17 and 18
Adrenaline junkies and climbing connoisseurs need not make the four-hour drive to the Rockies this month now that the International Climbing and Mountaineering Federation (UIAA) has decided to bring the Rockies to Edmonton. The Ice Climbing World Championships will descend (ascend?) onto the city’s Ice District.
Until February 17
If you’re courageous enough to brave these winter temperatures after dark, you can take in some of the marvels of our beautiful night skies at the Elk Island National Park as part of the Snowshoe and Stargaze series, where attendees can take part in a short, guided snowshoe hike around the shores of Astotin Lake.
Fat Tire Cyclists, You Make the Rockin’ World Go Round
February 22 to 24
Cycling in negative Celsius weather seems counterintuitive, but there’s a whole congress of people who brave the slush, sleet and snow in Edmonton — and now you can be one of them! The Winter Cycling Congress will be celebrating the art of winter riding with seminars and excursions relating to the practice of year-round, self-propelled transportation.
It’s Not a Phase, Mom!
Show your folks that it wasn’t a phase and you’re still committed to the alternative fashion lifestyle by supporting the Alt. Market After Dark. With 35 local vendors, artists and brewers and a rule against those obnoxious MLMs (you won’t find anyone slinging Tupperware here…unless it’s goth Tupperware?) this night market located at the Old Strathcona Performing Arts Centre will have you reminiscing on those angst-ridden teenage days in no time. Entry is free!
Wine About It
February 23 and 24
Why whinge about the weather when you can wine about it? Winefest returns to Edmonton with all manner of boozy, bubbly and bacchanalian goodness to make you forget all about dry January.
From Canada to Cape Town and Everywhere In Between
The African diaspora has contributed vastly to the cultural tapestry of Alberta and Canada and now you can celebrate those contributions with Taste of Africa. Organized by the Africans and African Descendants Friendship Club of St. Albert, this rich display of dance, poetry, storytelling and food returns for its fifth year as we celebrate Black History Month.
Winter in Woodcroft
Fancy trying your hand at snowshoeing? How about getting in touch with your inner child and jumping on the sled? All this and more is up for grabs at the Woodcroft Community League’s Winterfest where neighbours, community members and fans of all things winter fun will gather to embrace the winter chill and try something new.
Ewoks, Wookies, Boba Fett and More
Until February 26
If you can’t have Han Solo encased in carbonite, then at least you can have his figurine encased in plastic. Unofficial Galaxies, one of the largest private collections of Star Wars memorabilia in the world, will be on display at Southgate Centre until February 26. You can scour a galaxy far, far away, but you’re unlikely to find as much unique merchandise as you will here.
These Girls Are On Fire
February 29 to March 10
Edmonton’s Skirtsafire returns this year with a plethora of poignant and powerful artistic performances honouring the contributions and impacts of women who create, perform and uplift in our community. Featuring performances, workshops and exhibits across a slew of artistic mediums, this multi-venue event is enough to light our hearts and minds on fire with inspiration.
Live Poets Society
There’s nothing that stirs the human spirit quite like the written (and spoken) word, and Allison Russell’s way with words has earned her four Grammy nominations. The poet, singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and activist is bringing her beautiful poetry, prose and song to Festival Place where she’ll perform her critically acclaimed debut album Outside Child.