Credit: Heritage Inn International Balloon Festival / Janice Storch Photography

Things to do in Alberta: September 2023

By Allison Bench

The air is getting crisper, the leaves are changing, and it’s time to get out to enjoy pumpkin spice season! This fall, there are some wonderful ways to enjoy this time of year—or stay cozy inside.

Scarf some ‘Za and Nosh

While the seasons may be changing, one thing that doesn’t change is Alberta’s love for food. And luckily for Albertans, there are a couple of intriguing food events set to take place in September that will get your stomach rumbling. In Calgary, YYC Pizza Fest sees local restaurants craft unique pizza recipes to compete for the top ‘za in the city. In a democratic process from September 15 to October 1, Calgarians can get out and try the pies that pique their interest, and then submit their ratings on the Pizza Fest website.
Meanwhile, in Sherwood Park east of Edmonton, NOSH Food Fest is set to take place September 16–17, and focuses on the local food scene in the Edmonton and Alberta area. Whether you’re looking for some sweet treats or savoury hot sauces to kick things up a notch, or looking to check out some brews and spirits that were made in your neighbourhood—NOSH Food Fest promises a farmers’ market-style variety of choices for visitors.

Eyes to the skies
It’s an event that draws audiences out from all corners of the province each fall to get their eyes to the skies—the Heritage Inn International Balloon Festival in High River. The event includes a competitive balloon flight and balloon rides for purchase for attendees. Don’t miss the always magical Balloon Glow evening event, which invites spectators to come out for the evening, enjoy some food trucks and other vendors while you get up close and personal to the with a special light show in coordination to a curated playlist. The Heritage Inn International Balloon Festival takes place September 27–October 1 with the Balloon Glow evening set for September 29.

A whimsical family festival
In Edmonton, the Kaleido Family Arts Festival is set to take place September 15–17, and aims to celebrate the city’s Alberta Avenue Arts District. This festival invites collaborative performances like music, dance, theatre, film and visual arts using the avenue itself as a canvas—with performances on rooftops, sides of buildings, back alleys and parks. There will also be food and an artisan market on hand, so there’s no shortage of things to do for the whole family.

Calgary Phil takes on Fleetwood Mac
Fleetwood Mac fans, your Dreams will come true this fall as the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra hosts two special events focused on the iconic music of the folk-rock legends. Never Break The Chain: The Music of Fleetwood Mac takes place September 8 and 9, and will feature some of the greatest hits from the influential band, including Over My Head, The Chain, Don’t Stop, and Little Lies. Remember, AMA members save 15% on tickets for concerts at Calgary Philharmonic.

Prep your car for winter
Fall is the best time to get your car ready and set for the winter season, and AMA is ready to get you road ready. AMA’s 2023 fall Car Care events are set to takeplace in Edmonton on September 10, in Calgary September 16, and in Red Deer on September 17. When you attend an AMA Car Care event, our team of experts will check your battery, block heater, fluids, wipers, tires and more in 30-point inspection that’s free for AMA members. AMA is also playing host to Battery Test Events in Camrose, Grande Prairie, Lethbridge, and Fort McMurray on September 21 & 22, as well as in Medicine Hat on September 28 & 29. The events are all free to attend for members, but require you register in advance.

Battle of Alberta hits the field
Football fans, get ready, because it’s time for Alberta’s Labour Day Classic game. It’s a yearly tradition that sees the Calgary Stampeders face off against the Edmonton Elks at Calgary’s McMahon Stadium.  The Labour Day Classic game is a tradition that has taken place in Canadian football since 1949—so get out and cheer on your team to get those bragging rights solidified!

Cozy up at home and listen to the EV Life podcast
As the days get colder and the urge to cozy up at home increases, it’s a great time to check out the new season of AMA’s EV Life podcast. The show releases new episodes each Monday and aims to keep Albertans up to speed on electric mobility and electric vehicle news in the province—and beyond. The show features a huge variety of guests who will speak on the latest EV trends, research, advancements and more. So, get yourself a mug of tea and a fluffy blanket while you take a listen to the EV Life podcast and get charged up about the future of Alberta’s roads.