We’re excited to tell you that there is a lot going on this February which is….well, unusual in Calgary to say the least. In case you haven’t heard, the inaugural Chinook Blast: Calgary’s Midwinter Roundup, powered by Shaw, has kicked off with tons of incredible installations around the city’s core. Now, its newest set of installations come with a sporting twist perfect for Calgary’s other major February events.

The past year of pro sports has been different, to say the least, from no fans in the stands to safety bubbles for months at a time. We’ve seen the NHL, NBA, NFL, and more follow suit, but what’s next? Well, curling, of course! And Calgary was the lucky city chosen as the bubble location for curling’s major events this year.

chinook blast

The Scotties Tournament of Hearts is kicking things off from Feb 20th to 28th, followed by the Tim Hortons Brier from March 6th to 14th. It also just so happens that the Scotties are taking place during the final week of Chinook Blast, Calgary’s annual midwinter roundup.

And because Chinook Blast is lighting up our winter weekends with gorgeous displays and installations all over the city, it only made sense to get Calgary’s curling fever into the artistic mix. That’s where ‘Between a Rock and an Art Place’ was born.

chinook blast

‘Between a Rock and an Art Place’ is all about celebrating our city, and the talented artists in it. 16 local visual artists were selected to design and paint 16 curling rocks that will be displayed at 16 different locations throughout the city. Where? Glad you asked!

Here’s where you can check out all 16 rocks:

  • Shoe & Canoe, 209 49th Ave SE
  • The Garage, 200 Barclay Parade SW
  • Roslyn Building CB, 400 5 Ave SW
  • Sheraton Eau Claire, 255 Barclay Parade SW
  • St. Louis Hotel, 430 8 Ave SE
  • Kanata Trading Post, 116 8 Ave SE
  • The Westin Hotel, 320 4 Ave SW
  • Sandman Hotel, 888 7 Ave SW
  • BHM Display, 228 8th Ave SW
  • Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame’s Edison Building, 150 9th Ave SW
  • ALT Hotel, 635 Confluence Way SE
  • Marriott Downtown, 110 9 Ave SE
  • Supreme Men’s Wear, 401 4 Ave SW
  • Hilton Garden Inn, 711 4 St SE
  • Volio’s Confections, 704 8 Ave SW
  • Hansons Outfitters, 813 1 St SW

The painted curling rocks vary in theme, colour, and design, but each design’s inspiration came from a deeply rooted appreciation for our city.

chinook blast

Some designs hold cultural importance, like Kalum Teke Dan’s curling rock at Shoe & Canoe. The warm-tone painted rock features spirituality, environment, and a coyote design. Hali Heavy Shield’s rock at the Sandman Hotel features geometric shapes, a Blackfoot fire, beadwork, and even graffiti.

Other designs take modern approaches on nature, like Art by Gooda’s display at ALT Hotel. Gooda created a piece that works in both day and night, with UV light, neon, pointillism, and a bright, abstract chinook arch.

art by gooda

While some take an entirely delicious approach to the project, like artist Emily Bickell. Emily designed maybe the tastiest looking curling rock that’s ever been, by modeling it after a Tim Horton’s donut. Seriously, we can almost taste that “icing”.

Living in Calgary, there’s really no way to escape winter – only embrace it. And really, that’s what Chinook Blast is all about. With an insanely walkable downtown core and neighbouring communities, it only made sense for us to have a winter celebration to encourage us to get out and explore our city in a socially-distanced way!

To celebrate ‘Between a Rock and an Art Place’ this month, we’ve teamed up with Chinook Blast for one unreal giveaway. So keep your eyes peeled on our feed, ‘cause there’s one contest on Monday that you won’t want to miss. Especially if you’re the type who’d LOVE a prize pack valued at over $2,000, that might just include everything you’ll need for an ultimate staycation downtown!

So, grab your bubble, go exploring, and make sure you enter to win on Monday!


When: Until February 28th
Where: Click here to find a map of attractions and a list of partner pop-ups!
Cost: FREE!