Heritage Days -A Sell Out Crowd

Heritage Days -A Sell Out Crowd

In Alberta, the first weekend of the month is a holiday weekend with Monday being Heritage Day. Here in Edmonton the celebration goes all weekend where over 100 tents are set up around Hawrelak park where one can sample entertainment, food and crafts from over   particular country. It is HUGE and this year we broke attendance records with a total of 360,000 people on Sunday alone. That was more than the whole weekend last year. I went on the last day, Monday when the clouds looked ominous so there were much smaller crowds. I always enjoy the dancing and sampling the food from different cultures.

Time was a factor so saw a few, such as the newest one from Syria where I watched folk dancers and smelled Shawerma Damas and Mushabaks, in other words wrapped pita bread containing chicken shawarma, garlic sauce, pickle and pepper sauce and the latter a mix of fried sernolina dough dipped in syrup.

I just realized I don’t have a photo of the Syrian Pavilion. Well then, on to the Arab culture. There were dancers here as well and Sharwarma sandwich, Shish kabob, Falafel to name a few.IMG_0022-2

I enjoyed hearing Latino beats at one place where the young man led the crowd in Cha Cha and Salsa. That was a sight to see-people in all sorts of ethnic wear joining in to the impromptu dance lessons. Wanted to protect identity of the crowd but since this Latin man is in the public had no qualms about posting his photo.IMG_0014-2

I always go to the Aboriginal tents with the fried Bannock and Bison Burgers and saw lovely bead and quill earrings! There were two guitarists playing accompanied by two dancers moving more slowly than I usually see, but very flowing and graceful. One  was a shawl dancer and the man as you see here was a hoop dancer.IMG_0032-2

A glimpse of part of the set-up at one end of the park, the aboriginal tent. IMG_0025-2

A little bit of the Ukraine where you can get pierogies and sausages. It is like going around the world in one weekend. Unfortunately this barely demonstrates the massive crowds that were present the day before, but that makes it easier to get your food tickets line up for the food.IMG_0008-2



A Pleasant visit to a Lake in the City

A Pleasant visit to  a Lake in the City

My friend and I wanted a respite after a frustrating day so had a pleasant picnic on a bench beside a storm run-off lake in the northern part of the city. What a blessing! I stated that I was hoping to see the “Penguins”  which got my friend Diane heartily laughing. When I realized my mistake I corrected my choice to “Pelicans”  and quipped, “It was so cold yesterday that they just might show up.”

The water was calm and there was no breeze so it was quite enjoyable, although there were a lot of weeds in spots which reminded me of the tragedy recently when a girl was walking her friend’s dog which ran into the water and was having difficulty. She ran in to rescue it , got caught in the weeds and mud and drowned. Horrific! Thinking of the family and friends who have suffered this loss and sending a caution out to others who may be tempted to wade in.

The light was lower and I did see a Pelican preening itself on the raft with a Cormorant and a Duck. Well gee, can you two turn around?


Got some success at wishing they would pose for me.IMG_0215-2

It was nice to see different families of Mallards of varied ages this late in summer.IMG_0213-2

I was oblivious to this group until I almost walked into their space huddled on the shore.IMG_0236-2

Come to think of it, this may be the same brood.IMG_0264-2

I am grateful for the time with a friend  and a visit with nature.

Just Ducky!

Just Ducky!

I am at the library so thought I would take advantage and post photos of my favourite duck images that I have with me. Now that I am offline at home, I take photos and download them to my computer, then put them on a USB stick and take that to the library for publishing. A bit of a process but I am grateful that I have a way to share my photos. Enjoy!

Looks like this guy is skidding in for a landinguntitled-0246-2

I love watching the ducklings half run half swim acrooss the top of the wateruntitled-0309-2

A handsome Lesser Scaup in the early eveninguntitled-0398-2

A Mallard Drake Chillin’ at the ponduntitled-0025-2

Nice pose with good lightmallard drake-4

Sputtering Ruddy Churning up the Waterpictures 046-2

Aw-w-w…cuteness itself with this baby Mallardpictures 050-2

No Rain Going to Spoil this Parade!

No Rain Going to Spoil this Parade!

K_Days parade was today to kick off K-Days  for the next week or so. It did rain on this parade but it didn’t pour and no spirits were dampened. I love the horses and bands, and the floats although there weren’t too many floats. There was lots of enthusiasm from the crowd and the participants. K-Days used to mean Klondike Days but we don’t dress up for it as a lot of people can’t afford it or do not bother. Judging from the crowds, a lot of people got out for the fun!

Got to love the horses! This group is called the Sheriff’s PosseeIMG_0030-2

Spiderman was a big hit with the crowdIMG_0043-2

And so was Batman!IMG_0045-2

this clown like the others was riding a unicycleIMG_0049-2


Like the creativity of this puppet master!IMG_0065-2

One of my favourites! The kids were elated!IMG_0070-2

Look at this team…gorgeous! And the rigging too!IMG_0096-2

The Chinese community was well represented in the parade and had great dancing . IMG_0143-2

What’s a parade without the other attractions?IMG_0190-2

Unfortunately there are the downsides, like the stuff that people leave behind. Be responsible for putting it in the garbage can, please.IMG_0194-2




A Snake in the Bush

A Snake in the Bush

I went for a drive to Wetaskiwin a small community south of Edmonton. They have a wonderful park called “Park by the Lake” where a lot of birds hang out and there are trails around the lake as well as a concession that sells many flavours of hard ice cream.

It was great to spot the pelicans resting on the wharf across the pond and I spotted a pair gliding above me.untitled-0069-2



I saw three families of geese, one with the “teenagers”…untitled-0045-2

untitled-0048-2and one with a younger brooduntitled-0043-2

The highlight of the day was finding a snake in the bushes which I observed for a while. It is a Prairie Garter Snake, about a metre long.untitled-0020-2


Though tempted, I skipped the ice cream and considered seeing the snake the real “treat of the day”.

Happy (belated) Canada Day!

Happy (belated) Canada Day!

I enjoyed the fireworks, it was a big show celebrating our 150th though tempered with thought and empathy for the first Nations people who have been resisting all this time , and rightly so since we stole the land from them, then took the children forcibly from their homes and abused them in the residential schools as the settlers tried to assimilate them . Lots of damage done but they survived and are thriving. An apolog I look forward to the next 150 with renewed relations  focusing on meeting the charters “Calls to Action” on Truth and Reconciliation.

I just had to take a photo of everyone with their cell phones, getting ready for the first start of the show.









So there is a Lady in Waiting

So there is a Lady in Waiting

I mentioned before in a previous blog that I wondered if there was a companion for the male Ruddy Duck. I saw the pair of them diving together, but no young ones unless this female is a juvenile. Nice to see the two of them , however.






Here he is doing his thing, stiffening the tail and shivering, causing more ripples than usual, but it never amounted to much. Just showing off.