Home on the range at Riding Mountain National Park (photo: Parks Canada/Eric Le Bel)

Things to Do in Manitoba: Spring 2017

By AMA Staff

Embark on a cross-prairie excursion to celebrate Canadian spirit, sport and flavours in Manitoba.

Curious about Canada? As we fete the 150th anniversary of Confederation, get outdoors and see more of our incredible land. Throughout 2017, enjoy free admission to national parks, historic sites and marine conservation areas. Check out some local gems here in Manitoba, including Riding Mountain National Park’s bison enclosure with a herd of around 30 gentle giants, or York Factory National Historic Site, where you can see how Hudson’s Bay fur traders lived centuries ago.

Bust out the legwarmers and headbands: Another Flashdance is on stage at Celebrations Dinner Theatre. The zany sequel to the ’80s classic sees steel-worker-turned-dancer Alex try out for a snooty dance academy while balancing her mill job—all set to an Irene Cara-inspired soundtrack. The show continues until March 18. If you miss it, see a rowdy new class of Rydell High students during the theatre’s run of Greased 2, playing from March 25 to May 20. 

Sam Waller just might’ve been the most interesting man in Manitoba. A teacher by trade, the The Pas resident was also a naturalist, taxidermist and consummate collector of curiosities and oddities. After retiring from teaching, Waller opened a museum in his home, the self-billed “Biggest Little Museum in the World,” to showcase his eclectic collections of natural specimens, military artifacts, books, coins and paper goods, among many other treasures. The facility moved to a larger location in the community in 1970, before Sam’s passing eight years later. Today, visitors can marvel at his astounding assortment of objects to see Manitoba’s past, up close and personal.

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As the Jets 2.0 power through their sixth season back on home ice, it’s the perfect time to look back at the city’s hockey heritage. The Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame hosts “60 Years of Pro Hockey in Winnipeg,” a 16-display exhibit showcasing Winnipeggers’ love affair with the sport. Memorabilia and stories chronicle games, goals and players ranging from the Winnipeg Warriors of the 1950s to the American Hockey League’s Manitoba Moose and the modern-day Jets. Catch this once-in-an-ice-time exhibit before it closes in April.

With a name like Underdogs it’s easy to underestimate this new Winnipeg eatery. But that would be a huge mistake—like betting against the Cubs to win the World Series. The sports bar is the latest venture from Marc Priestley and Kyle Matheson, the guys behind the city’s beloved Nuburger. The menu, developed by Priestley and Underdogs head chef Alex Wong, focuses on pub classics with updated twists. Open since last fall, Underdogs fills a gap in Winnipeg’s bar scene with a friendly yet upscale place to catch a big game or bout. And with 36 beers on tap, it’s a slam-dunk on the drink front too. As Underdogs’ tagline recommends, head here for food, booze and a good rally.

The Canada Summer Games honour the spirit of sport. This year, Winnipeg welcomes the 50th-annual games, featuring more than 250 events across 16 sports. From sprinting to sailing, venues across the city will host athletes and audiences alike. In addition to elite athletics, a citywide cultural festival will highlight Manitoba music, arts, food and more. The games run from July 28 to Aug. 13, but you should race to get tickets as events are filling up fast.