Have A Grande Time
Grande Prairie is like that friend who’s always up for whatever you want to do.
That’s because there’s never any shortage of things to see and do here.
In 2019, this community marked 100 years since becoming a town and this “town” offers all you could want in a community much larger than its 70,000 people – no matter the time of year.
The early settlers who gave Grande Prairie its name for its expansive landscape could only imagine the vibrant, dynamic legacy they would start.
A great place to begin your visit to Grande Prairie is Muskoseepi Park which runs through the heart of the City, showcasing how the community has balanced growth with preserving green space.
The park is a shining gem in the city’s crown of attractions and features more than 1,100 acres of parkland with six distinct areas offering their own special opportunities. This includes nearly 30 kilometres of asphalt, gravel and wilderness trails.
Within the park is the Grande Prairie Museum which features many artifacts that showcase the history of the area. If you’re visiting during the summer, you will also have the opportunity to walk through the Heritage Village and check out some of the historic local buildings.
The recently renovated Bear Creek Pool, see https://bit.ly/2PsDJwe, lawn bowling, horseshoes, mini golf, a spray park and picnic area, a skate board park, and a newly constructed playground are all part of the downtown component of the park.
If you’re visiting during the winter, the park features a pond that can be used for ice skating and there is plenty of space for tobogganing.
While you are close to the downtown area, you can enjoy a walk up the streets to visit some exceptional shopping attractions. There are more than 400 shops and services in the City Centre.
You’ll find an array of locally owned cafes, restaurants and gift shops and year-round Farmer’s Market. The downtown core has recently undergone a revitalization project for an even more inviting and walkable shopping district.
Downtown is also home to five art galleries. Some artwork comes from far-away places but Grande Prairie has also produced many talented artisans who craft works such as sculptures, paintings and pottery. These venues provide the opportunity to showcase their wares.
The Art Gallery of Grande Prairie, located in the Montrose Cultural Centre along with the public library, and the nearby Centre for Creative Arts are both excellent locations to check out fabulous exhibits. If you happen to be downtown for an opening night at either of these locations, you can meet some gifted artists!
Places to Eat
Grande Prairie has many franchise fast food and full service restaurants as well as a host of locally owned eateries, including several that will give your taste buds a tour of global cuisine, from Ethiopian dishes to food from the Middle East, Greece, and Asia.
You’ll find many renowned chain restaurant names here including The Keg, Montana’s, Mr. Mike’s, Brown’s Social House, the Sawmill, and Canadian Brewhouse.
Pho House Vietnamese, Acropolis Greek Restaurant, Tito’s, Hong Fah, Padrino’s, Red Rock Urban Grill, Better Than Fred’s, the Office Lounge, Ramona’s Pizza and Family Restaurant, Jeffrey’s Café Co., provide visitors with a wide range of offerings.
An international food festival made its debut in June 2019 with 20 countries represented, reflective of the city’s significant multicultural makeup.
Several locally owned coffee shops offer cozy atmospheres and great coffee selections, including Wapiti Bean Co., Ole Smokes, 55a Kaffee, Grande Prairie Coffee Co., Common Ground, Grains, Jeffrey’s, and Esquires.
Thirsty and looking for something to spice up your visit? Grande Prairie has a growing number of award-winning breweries and distilleries that use ingredients grown in the area. These include Latitude 55 Distilling Co, Broken Oak Distilling Co, Grain Bin Brewing Company, and BP Brewing Co.
The Eastlink Centre
Our early pioneers would never have imagined a 450,000-square-foot modern health and fitness facility.
The Eastlink Centre is located on the community’s southwest side. It delivers numerous aquatics options, including a 50-metre pool, water park and surfing centre. You’ll also find a field house, racquetball, courts, fitness classes, drop-in yoga and an expansive gym facility staffed with personal trainers.
The facility attracts large-scale swim meets and other high-calibre athletics events.
The City of Grande Prairie provides residents and visitors with numerous exceptional recreation opportunities.
Revolution Place is Grande Prairie’s premiere entertainment facility for big name concerts and Junior A hockey.
2019 big name music acts included Loverboy, Dallas Smith and Dean Brody. Elton John, Janet Jackson, Shania Twain, the Backstreet Boys, and Rihanna have also hit the stage at Revolution Place.
The facility has also hosted the 2004, Royal Bank Cup (Junior A hockey), the 2006 Ford World Women’s Curling Championship and the 2016 Scotties Tournament of Hearts.
If you are looking for interactive fun for all ages can enjoy you can try bowling or laser tag. If you like to use your analytical side, pay a visit to Trapped, an interactive escape room game. Card’s Board Game Café is a great place to sit and relax and try some games you may not have at home. Still have energy? Visit the Jump Yard for some fun indoor trampoline fun.
Grande Prairie is a regional shopping centre with residents of communities from as far away as Fort St. John, B.C. and the Northwest Territories visiting to stock up. They know they’ll find stores they wouldn’t expect to see north of Edmonton.
The Prairie Mall has more than 100 stores and the Westgate Shopping Centre on the city’s west side continues to expand opportunities for shoppers.
In 2019, two major developments had ribbon cuttings. Windsor Ford opened the largest Ford Dealership in Canada here in Grande Prairie and Grande Prairie now has the largest single floor Canadian Tire store in Canada.
The entertainment calendar is never slow in Grande Prairie. There are many festivals and events held throughout the year, including the Bear Creek Folk Festival held annually in Muskoseepi Park.
In 2019, the event marked its fourth year with a three-day event, using four stages.
The 2019 festival featured Feist, Blue Rodeo, Alan Doyle, Crash Test Dummies, Dan Mangan, Ruthie Foster, home-grown star Celeigh Cardinal, and many more. Past lineups have included the likes of case/lang/veirs (Neko Case, kd lang, and Laura Veirs), City and Colour, Michael Franti, Corb Lund, Bruce Cockburn, Ricky Skaggs and Kentucky Thunder, Matt Andersen, Ashley MacIsaac, and Bahamas
The Douglas J. Cardinal Theatre located in Grande Prairie Regional College and Grande Prairie Live Theatre regularly showcase local and touring entertainment.
The Grande Prairie Stompede, held every May at Evergreen Park, just outside of Grande Prairie attracts thousands of visitors every year from near and far for top notch rodeo action. This celebration of western heritage has something for everyone, including a midway and art show.
The Festival of Trees is the Grande Prairie Regional Hospital Foundation’s largest annual fundraiser, another feature event at Evergreen Park.
If you’re in Grande Prairie between mid-November and late December, the Peace Draft Horse Club will get you into the festive spirit with the Northern Spirit Light Show.
If you are wanting to maintain an active lifestyle even when you are away from home, find out what kind of races may be on. Grande Prairie has several fun runs each year including the Mega Bounce Run, the Glow run, the Zombie run, and the Run for a Wolf which supports athletic scholarships at the college.
Grande Prairie is one of those places where you can’t take in everything in one visit. Not only that, the community continues to grow so fast that you’re bound to miss something if you’re gone for long. We can’t wait to see you!