Edmonton is one of the largest northern urban centers in the world. Located in Canada, Edmonton is the capital city of Alberta. The city has a strong history as a trade center, and it served as the last major stop for the Klondikers during the Gold Rush. This is why we Edmontonions call our city "The Gateway to the North"

Please enjoy my perspective of one of of the fastest growing urban areas this side of China.

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Thursday, July 31, 2008

RIP Steph

Edmonton has released it's census. Since 2005 the city of Edmonton has grown by 40,000 people, or another way to look at it is, On average 30-40 people move to Edmonton on a daily basis.
Our metro population is now somewhere in the 1.1 million range.

Today that number is one less as a good friend has passed away after a long struggle with a rare virus. We thought he was out of the woods but a relapse occurred Friday of last week. He was started on morphine for pain management and slipped away in his sleep surrounded by loved ones.

Today will be a tough day.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Lunch Break

Really, who designed newspapers and why can't them make them so they fold easily!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Saint. Joe's - The Pulpit

I think pulpit is the right term, but then again the Roman Catholics have different terms than what I new as a kid. My mother took us to the United Church which is more in line with my personal views.
Regardless.. This is one of the churches twice daily masses. I would have loved to get more shots, but I had to remain respectful.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Saint. Joe's Continued

The is the courtyard between the Seminary and the church. I always find it odd when beautiful green spaces such as this are locked away. I would rather sit in a space such as this and reflect then in some dark solemn lifeless room.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Sacred Place #6 St. Joseph's Basillica

I am not catholic and I know very little about this church. I CAN tell you that this is where Wayne Gretzky was married.

The following is taken from wiki;

St. Joseph's Cathedral Basilica is a minor basilica in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. The basilica, located just west of the downtown core is the cathedral of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Edmonton and is one of the largest churches in Edmonton. It is the only basilica in Alberta.
Of architectural note are the 60 stained glass windows depicting scenes from the Old and the New Testaments and from the church's connection to St. Albert.

For almost three decades the basilica was known as the church without locks. It was open 24 hours providing a sacred space for worship and quiet prayers while its pews gave refuge to the tired bodies of homeless people. However, in the early 1980s, the church without locks had to close at night. The number of people attending perpetual adoration declined while on the morning of Feb. 28, 1980 an arsonist set the altar and crucifix on fire, causing smoke and water damage to the whole building. It was the darkest hour in its history. To remove soot and smell, all the stones inside the church had to be scrubbed. Its prized possession, the Casavant Brothers organ, was sent to Quebec for cleaning and repairs. Clean up and repair costs reached $250,000.

It also had its share of fame when parishioners shrugged off the controversy and international publicity surrounding the wedding of hockey superstar Wayne Gretzky to actress Janet Jones, both non-Catholics. About a hundred people objected to the ceremony being held at the basilica but many more applauded the Church's openness.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Canada Place

Canada place is our federal building. The interior of the building is a very Large and very open atrium that runs from end to end. It's a very neat space.

Below in the square "A Taste of Edmonton" is running. Restaurants from across the city are set up here offering tastes of there menus.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Batman, The Dark Night. Opening Scene Loction.

The opening parkade scenes of the new Batman film were shot in Edmonton. This is the parkade of my office tower and it's also the place where batman jumps 4 storeys onto an escaping car.
Anyone who knows me knows I hate heights. To get this I had to lean over a 12 storey opening and thusly after the shot I was sick and dizzy for a good hour.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

West Edmonton Mall - Dragon

West Edmonton Mall is a testing ground for marketing ideas. In the late 90's movie theaters tried to make themselves destinations by adding things like lounges and entertainment features. And thus our dragon was born. Every half an hour or so this guy comes to life. The lights dim, dramatic music plays and people stare.

We all sit around and comment how cheesy the stupid thing is, yet we can't help but watch ;-P

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

West Edmonton Mall - Rollercoaster

I have waited as long as I could to post a pic of the famed West Edmonton Mall. This mall is HUGE, one of the biggest in the world and for years THE BIGGEST.
Most Edmontonions hate it. In my opinion the place is a dump. the censor police have to stop me here or else I may get charged with slander.

There are a few cool things about this mall. One being The apple store, The Sanrio store and the roller coaster.
Again this coaster is/was the largest indoor roller coaster in the world. It was made famous when early in it's life one of the trains flew off the track and killed several people. As a child I remember this monster sitting there unused as YEARS of tests were done.

It is a very fun ride, but is often overlooked by roller coaster fans. The initial drop is extremely steep and is almost straight down. I can ride this coaster over and over again!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Sacred Place #5 My Desk

If you think about this it makes sense. The majority of my day is spent at the office. I have a small shrine on my meeting table with a Buddha and a small fountain. My office is also dotted with art pieces like this fun guy.

I also sit for a large part of the day saying "Holy" words to my computer!

Have a great Tuesday guys!

Monday, July 21, 2008

More Parade

Life has gotten in the way a tad and I have not been able to shoot as much as I would like.
I have been out of town the last few days which also doesn't help.
Please bare with me as I have almost exhausted all my postable photos.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Capital Ex Parade

Capital Ex is here. The 10 day event kicks off with a parade. Over that span there are concerts and various other live shows. There is also a Midway. I will be heading down to the grounds next weekend, so I will share more pictures then.

Here is a selection from the Capital Ex website.

Edmonton’s biggest summer celebration runs from July 17 -26

More value, more smiles, more entertainment and more shopping! There’s more of everything at Edmonton’s biggest summer celebration, Capital EX, running from July 17-26.

“Well Edmonton, get ready for our city’s biggest summer celebration to date,” said Laura Gadowsky, Northlands Director Responsible for Capital EX. “The 2008 edition of Capital EX is set to kick off with the biggest names in entertainment, incredible thrills, unforgettable family fun, and amazing shopping experiences creating an exceptional 10-day experience.”

Announcing its Canadian debut during Capital EX is Cirque Mechanics Birdhouse Factory presented by Mosaik MasterCard BMO Bank of Montreal. Imagined by veterans of the world-renowned Cirque du Soleil, the show occurs in a factory where the workers are acrobats and the machines are circus props. This world-class event takes flight for two shows each day in Hall D and is included in the $10 gate admission.

Take flight for an amazing family adventure with The Spirit of the Butterfly. The overwhelmingly popular butterfly exhibit is five times larger featuring 25,000 exotic butterflies including the World's Largest Butterfly; just imagine a butterfly the size of your hand!
Top off your summer experience with some of the hottest, big-name talent around at Ed Fest presented by Coca-Cola and Molson Canadian. It's 10-days of high energy outdoor fun for people of all ages. And it’s absolutely free with your Capital EX gate admission. The 2008 line-up includes Hedley with Rides Again (July 17), Collective Soul (July 18), Raine Maida with Joel Plaskett (July 20), Jully Black with Kreesha Turner (July 21), Joan Jett and the Blackhearts (July 22), The Sam Roberts Band (July 23), Doc Walker (July 24), The Trews (July 25), and Metric with Bedouin Soundclash (July 26). Or get full of ‘Corner Gas’ with an evening of priceless laughter with Brent Butt (July 19).

Sip! is just what the doctor ordered. Wind-down after work in Hall A at Sip! the wine and food experience at Capital EX. Celebrating delicious food, wine, beer and spirits, you can take a break from the mini-donuts and experience a gourmet alternative to traditional fair food.

Discover a feast for your eyes with Northwest Originals, a visual arts experience featuring remarkable treasures from across western Canada. Showcasing local young artists, Northwest Originals is pleased to display short-listed student art from the Heart 2 Art contest. Led by the City of Edmonton Youth Council, Heart 2 Art seeks to raise awareness and understanding of homelessness issues through visual art.

Midway fanatics can get their ticket-to-ride and check out the new Double Shock ride from Italy with a $35 ride-all-day (RAD) pass from any MAC’s Convenience store or Ticketmaster locations. Families can also head to the grounds with the advance Family Pass for $60, offering four gate admissions plus 80 multi-use midway coupons.

Racing along side Capital EX is three days of wild with the Rexall Edmonton Indy from July 24 to 26, 2008. Get ready to see the biggest names in car racing including Danica Patrick, Marco Andretti, and Helio Castroneves put on the show at the only Canadian stop on the IndyCar Series calendar. Gate admission into Capital EX is included with every Indy 3-day pass purchase.

Some of the fiercest athletes head to Rexall Place during Capital EX. Elite mixed martial art fighters from around the world face-off July 19 in King of the Cage. With hand-to-hand battles of skill and art, it’s like no sport you’ve ever seen. Professional Bull Riding takes over July 24-26 where fans will see two and a half hours of full-throttle bull riding action - PBR style! Tickets purchased for Rexall events include gate admission into Capital EX.
Capital EX is Edmonton's biggest summer celebration providing something for everyone July 17 - 26, 2008.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Sacred Place #4 My Garden

I live for these lilies every year. The deep rich colour of them amazes me.

I dare you all to post a pic of your sacred spot.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Mud Puddle Magic

Mud Puddles must be magical because if they weren't kids would not spend so much time in them!

Sacred place number 3

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Christ Church

Christ Church is built in a very English Tudor style. Just blocks away from my house it offers a wonder spot to loose yourself in. I have cut and pasted a portion for the churches website below.

In 2002 the congregation decided that it was a "Time to Build". The church would be celebrating its 100th birthday in 2009 and the foundation and the roof were showing signs of age and we needed more space as a result of our continued growth.
Once the construction was completed, we were left with a Memorial Garden and a lawn that had more ruts and weeds in it than lawn. The congregation decided that since we were blessed with so much space around the church that we should develop an oasis in the middle of Oliver that could be enjoyed by the church members as well as the community as a whole. It was a "Time to Plant".
Three years have passed and the last piece of this phase of our development was completed in October 2005 - the Garden Pavilion. We now have a place that blends in with the other buildings on our property to store all of our garden tools.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Robertson-Wesley United Church

I am going to do a series on sacred spaces. I am reading American Gods right now and it has me thinking about the power of road side attractions and other such magical spots. Blogger also seems to have issues uploading photos today.

Robertson-Wesley United Church is a church located a short distance west of the downtown core of the city of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada in the neighbourhood of Oliver. In addition to being a place of worship, the church is also a popular venue for music events.
The current congregation was formed in 1971 when the congregations of Robertson United Church and Wesley United Church merged. The new congregation moved into the Robertson United Church building.
The church building is an example of High Victorian Gothic Revival architecture featuring a barrel vaulted ceiling, curved pews, and excellent acoustics.[1]

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

The People's Pedal

The People's Pedal is Edmonton's bike share program. For a small membership fee you get access to bikes all over Edmonton. You just book via the Internet, take your bike and return it when your done.
It's a great idea.. and I believe you don't have to return the bikes to the same local, but I could be wrong there.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Communities In Bloom

On Sunday I was sitting in my house surfing City Daily Photo when a strange lady started taking pictures of my yard and then walked away leaving only a note in my mailbox and this little yellow sign.

Turns out I have been nominated for having one of the best yards in Edmonton.

I know it's a very 1950's housewife, state fair type of award but I am super excited! No one would know or suspect that this tattooed and pierced guy likes to get down and dirty ;-P

Sunday, July 13, 2008

I Spy with My Little Eye

It is the last day of the Street Performers Festival. So instead of covering another act I will post this photo. No one ever takes pictures of US! In fact I think she caught me snapping this. Because shortly after the picture was taken, I got a somewhat perturbed glare from her. All's fair in love and photography.
The square has been crawling with photo buffs all week. Many professionals, and even more amateurs. Here is to us.... We are the people watchers, the ones who think in shutter speed, iso level and aperture size and the stewards of moments and happenings.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

The Be Arthurs

I went to School with these three. It was a wonderful and unexpected meeting when I found out they were playing the festival. The Be Arthurs is the World's only ukulele cover band. http://youtube.com/thebearthurs . In the last photo from left to right is Bob Rasko, Ryan Parker and Sheldon Elter. You can also check them out on face book and myspace.

Thanks guys for a very fun show!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Magic Brian

Magic Brian is from New York and was a lot of fun, Very Crass, but a lot of fun. I have been to New York so I enjoyed his attitude and openness, but it may have been a bit much for conservative, polite Edmonton. The title shot where he is begging for the keys is my favorite. He put that lady through such embarrassment, and this was her moment of revenge. I think you can see how much she TRULY enjoys that moment.

Happy Friday

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Super Belly

Super Bell preformed acrobatic tricks on his death defying wobbly pole. His bright green costume made him visable across the square.

Another enjoyable performance.

He went very well with my Elephant Ear and deep fried chocolate bar ;-) I have to watch it or else I too will be called Super Belly

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

The Yo - Yo People

Duo from Boston (I think) were by far the best! Just the right amount of 60's camp and a whole lot of fun.
They had a wonderfully polished show.
Enjoy the photos

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