1. The Stampede
The best party of the year! Put you boots on and head down to the grounds to drink and dance all night after checking out the rodeo, rides, and booths. Not to mention the great concerts at the Saddledome or on the Coke Stage.
2. Naheed Nenshi
The best mayor in the whole world. Universally loved, Nenshi makes everyone want to call Calgary home.
We have two hockey teams (the Flames and the Hitmen), a football team (the Stampeders), and a lacrosse team (Roughnecks), as well as tons of amateur sports teams; so there’s always something to go watch.
We have an excellent police force and income disparities rarely force people into crime, so walking the streets and being out late with friends don’t leave you feeling terrified.
5. All four seasons
We get every season (some longer than others) so we can enjoy winter activities as well as summer activities.
6. No PST
Provincial Sales Tax is the worst. When I lived in BC I would save up all my shopping for the next time I was in Calgary to avoid it.
Now that we’ve expanded, we no longer need to head south for good shopping. The Core downtown, Southland and Chinook Centre in the south and Market Mall in the north all offer popular stores, while there are also a ton of small boutiques and specialty shops around the city (especially if you hit a popular walking spot like 17th Avenue, Inglewood, or Kensington).
8. Young population
The lure of jobs attracts a young, well educated population which leaves calgary with a median age in the mid-late-thirties. You know what that means if you’re a young professional; there’s always a bunch to do, a great nightlife, and a large dating-pool for the singles out there.
9. Excellent economy
Our economy is (as of right now) among the best in Canada and personal wealth is at an all time high; meaning you can do more money-costing things!
10. Proximity to the mountains
It’s about 45 minutes to an hour to the mountains so you’re never far from some of North America’s best skiing and hiking. Not to mention the energetic and unique mountain towns.
11. Diverse culture
One of the things I get often from (very ignorant) people when travelling to other parts of Canada is an assumption that everyone in Alberta is a caucasian redneck who wants to destroy the planet. This is obviously very wrong and extremely laughable. People come from around the world for job opportunites, so Calgary is hugely diverse ethnically.
12. Public transit
The C-train is speedy and goes to the far reaches of the city, while busses run ajor routes as well as into smaller neighbourhoods. It’s easy and (relatively) quick to get around without a car and, speaking from experience, it’s a great money-saver.
13. Arts scene
Playhouses, operas, art galleries, Wordfest, ballet… I could go on and on.
14. Parks and pathways
Our parks and bike pathways are beautiful and stretch to all four corners of the (very large) city. Surrounding two beautiful rivers, the scenery is always picturesque.
15. Great restaurants
In a large city, you’re always lucky enough to find excellent restaurants and Calgary is no exception. From the expensive (and delicious) like Catch, Rouge, Teatro, and Bolero, to the cheap (and delicious) like Peter’s Drive In, or Jimmy’s A A, you’ll always find something awesome to eat.
16. Golf courses
When you get a city as widespread as Calgary, you’re bound to get great golf courses. The city has many public and private courses to choose from.
17. No rats
Alberta is rat free. Hell yeah.
18. The Calgary Public Library
Our libraries are numerous and conveniently located all across the city. You can check out movies, music, books, magazines, etc. and pick them up or drop them off at any location.
19. Quality of life
Work, housing, nightlife, health, etc. are all excellent and people are happy and friendly.
There are tons of activities to do both indoors and outdoors all year round. Yoga, swimming, running, rock climbing, skiing, cycling, etc. Plus tons of gyms throughout the city. Add in an educated population with healthy eating habits and you’ve got an (overall) very healthy city.