Sunday, 16 December 2012

Winter Wonderland

With Christmas just around the corner (9 days and counting), and as my oldest son Connor turns sixteen, five days before Christmas, I’m reminded of when he was little and the fascination that he had with everything to do with Christmas.  At times I think he was more interested in Christmas than his actual birthday.  From decorating the tree to “helping” me wrap presents he was excited to do it all, and that excitement spread through the whole house. 

So as I watch the hustle and bustle of shoppers in The Forks Market and the little children getting excited about the Christmas lights, the big tree and Santa’s sleigh you can just feel the magic of the holiday season.

The smell of fresh baking coming out of the oven at Tall Grass Prairie Bread Company or the sound of the steamer at Human Bean Coffee and Tea making a latte are just the things to put you in the Christmas spirit. 

Walking through The Market Loft retailers on the second floor will definitely inspire you with fabulous one of kind gift ideas from personalized ornaments from Bayshore Gifts in Glass to hand made moccasins from Teekca’s Aboriginal Boutique. With nearly 75 shops on site there is truly something for everyone while shopping at The Forks.

The magic comes alive every weekend with a visit from the big guy himself Santa Claus, and his lovely wife Mrs. Claus. Every child is welcome to come and see Santa, sit in his sleigh, and talk to their hearts content. 

Hearing impaired children can communicate directly with Santa in American Sign Language on December 15th and 21st. Then once they're done visiting they can head over to the atrium to make a special  ornament to take home and hang on their own tree. Happy Holidays!

-Andrea Clow

Friday, 7 December 2012

Warming Huts

We recently announced the winners of the Warming Hut v.2013: Art and Architecture on Ice. One winner from Cambridge, one from New York and one from Winnipeg. As well we rolled out our invited architect from Montreal and the U of M entry.

Warming Hut v.2013 Winners

New this year were two art pieces that have nothing to do with the competition but will be installed on the River Trail anyways. There are several other various art and programming pieces that are in various stages of creation and may actually be realized this winter. I can’t tell you much more, but they are all very interesting.

However what the most interesting part to me is how a relatively simple project like a skating trail inspires creative genius here and around the world. Creating a skating trail down a frozen river seems fairly simple and rather obvious in a winter city. It doesn’t take a great visionary to have that idea. However, the jolt that  this skating trail has given to the creative spirit is truly amazing. It has spun a whole other world of the human spirit. Recreation mashing with art.

It would have been hard to imagine when creating the world’s longest skating trail a few years back that it would have also resulted in the world’s largest outdoor art and architecture gallery. It’s hard to imagine that artists and architects the world over would take such a great interest in the project and compete far beyond the monetary rewards (we simply cover the cost of the builds) to be able to participate. We didn’t set out to do any of these things but they happened anyway.

Skating at The Forks

A simple idea creating complex thought and effort. Quite a spin off.

This year as you skate, ski, bike or walk and enjoy 15 different huts, several art installations, crazy events and  random acts of architecture take a moment and marvel in the creative spirit that is unleashed when people gather together to create things for no other reason than pure fun.

-Paul Jordan