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Reflecting on this childhood, Chris Keating sometimes feels as if he didn't exist. His parents' divorce left him with very little tangible evidence of his formative years, so he's spent his adult life as a photographer making sure children can look back fondly at warm family memories. Chris Keating and his Calgary staff have made this a reality for more than 3,000 families since opening the doors to Towne Photography in 2006. There, the professional photographic crew shoots posed and candid shots of families, children, couples, and babies at picturesque parks or against their studio backdrops, and they also snap triumphant graduate portraits, intimate prenatal shots, and provocative passport pics that make border crossing a breeze. Their ironclad guarantee allows unsatisfied clients to request reshoots, reprints, or resizing on all photographs, and they vow to remake or recapture any artwork that sustains damage over the years. Chris also takes his photographic knowledge on the road to conduct Betterphoto Workshops across the United States and Canada, teaching novice photographers how to artistically preserve their most precious memories.
Beneath a rotating disco ball, marksmen snake through a maze of glowing graphics, blasting opponents with infrared laser beams. After finishing up their five-minute games inside the 1,200-square-foot laser tag arena, sock-clad youngsters between the ages of 3 and 10 can dive into the ball pits, crawl through the tunnels, and glide down the slides of the two-storey play unit. Meanwhile, a separate toddler area accommodates tots with age appropriate ball pits, slides, and picture book adaptations of Sartre’s Being and Nothingness. Elsewhere, visitors can compete in rounds of air hockey and tic-tac-toe in the arcade or reenergize with whole-wheat sandwiches and house-made soups from the snack bar.
Since 1950, Fairhaven Bowl and Eastview Bowl—the two alleys that comprise Hunter’s Bowling Centres—have entertained bowlers with classic five-pin and ten-pin games while keeping up to date with modernized amenities including high-definition television screens and colourful glow lights. At both facilities, players can enjoy open hours and league play before refuelling in the on-site restaurant and lounge areas. The kitchen staff fires a full menu of classic pub fare including burgers, wraps, and pizza to complement their drink menus and keep players from licking the peppermint stripes off of bowling pins.
Formerly the Lingerie Football League, the Legends Football League stands as the "fastest-growing pro sports league in the nation" according to NBC Sports correspondent Rick Chandler. That success owes much to the league's unique format, which pits two exclusively female teams in alluring uniforms against each other in full-contact football games on a 50-yard field. Donning football pads and helmets over their revealing performance wear, the female athletes block, juke, and sprint uninhibited by such frivolous gear as the NFL's heavy chainmail hauberks.
Originally built in 1946, Broadway Theatre enjoyed an almost 50-year tenure of showing the popular films of the time and hosting live productions before it was sadly forced to close its doors in 1993. Dismayed by the loss of their theatre, members of the community came together, purchased the venue, and reopened it, and Broadway Theatre has remained under their watchful protection ever since. Now, the movie house screens independent films gathered from around the world and plays host to improv-comedy shows, concerts, and professional fire drills.
Karttrack invites racers of all ages to compete in high-velocity go-karting competition. Helmets in place, guests climb behind the wheels of one- or two-person karts for up to 15 minutes of racing around a course whose twists and turns are outlined by old tires. Karttrack also carries kiddie-sized karts, and offers an outdoor patio with picnic tables where friends and family can gather to cheer on your high-speed antics or boo the pirouettes in your victory dance.
At In Charge Self Defense, women master a mélange of karate, krav maga, kickboxing, and tae kwon do. Taught by a third dan black belt with Level 3 NCCP certification, the studio’s intimate classes help build self-confidence and discipline in students, while also borrowing fitness training techniques from yoga and Pilates. In Charge can work one-on-one with students for more personalized attention, and also offers co-ed training sessions for local high schoolers.
Snooker Shack lures pool-hall marvels with billiards tables, a family-friendly atmosphere, and a menu of classic bar fare that is available 365 days a year. Chase wily eight balls with a friend or friendly postman ($11.50) while snacking on some crinkle-cut fries ($3.33). The dry ribs heat benumbed tongues with boneless seasoned dry ribs, ranch dip, and a zesty lemon wedge ($9.29), and the herbivore nachos season crispy tortillas with tomatoes, green onions, black olives, and jalapeños ($7.86). The Burger of the Rings responsibly tops a 100 per cent Canadian ground beef patty with two crispy onion rings and sides the sandwich with fries or a caesar salad ($8.81). Snooker Shack also wraps cheese steaks and grilled or crispy chicken, like a newborn fairy, in a tortilla before tucking it in with ranch or caesar dressing ($10.21).
The program presents Saskatchewan-born baritone Peter McGillivray intoning songs and arias investigating humanity's sinister side. Ivory-tickler Julien LeBlanc accompanies the award-winning troubadour as he skates across barely frozen lakes of vice, blackguardism, and illegal downloading. Saskatoon Opera is Saskatchewan's premier outlet for libretto-based amusements, with performances held in the elegant, modern Persephone Theatre. Seats are on a first-come, first-serve basis upon arrival at the box office.
CrossFit Saskatoon improves the physical fitness and well being of eager pupils through the CrossFit training method, which joins together a combination of movements such as pushing, lifting, and running with a variety of equipment, from free weights to a climbing wall. Unlike a standard gymsperience, members of CrossFit Saskatoon aren't abandoned in a sterile labyrinth of barbells, treadmills, and minotaurs, but receive personal coaching in a group environment guided by a knowledgeable trainer. Fostering a supportive group atmosphere is part of the CrossFit approach, which turns training into a sport by folding in motivational, game-like elements of camaraderie and competition, without the conniving influence of multi-million-dollar fitness agents. The principles of CrossFit are explained at length during the intro sessions, which give participants a chance to learn more about the program and experience an actual workout.
Though they owned successful health clubs, the founders of Fitness For 10 were growing frustrated as they floundered to keep profits up while paying salespeople, group fitness trainers, and childcare providers. So they founded Fitness For 10 to cut out the extra fluff, stocking their club with just the workout essentials. Their return to basics paid off, and today, they have more than 10 clubs in the United States and Canada.
At the Regina location, rows of elliptical trainers and other cardio machines line the checkered floor, in addition to three complete exercise circuits, a range of free weights, and SportsArt Fitness strength-training machines. Bright yellow, green, and orange walls energize eyes as guests hit the treadmills or grab exercise balls from the front lobby. After hearty sweat sessions, guests can slip into a tanning bed to bronze their skin for lounging on the beach or distinguishing themselves from their doppelgänger snowmen.
At the age of 26, Hot Yoga on 20th owner Dallas Kruszelnicki was in a great deal of pain. After breaking numerous bones skateboarding and snowboarding, he turned to yoga and soon realized that he had not only found a way to heal but also found his calling. He set about opening Hot Yoga on 20th, outfitting the studio with sustainable cork floors and a wall of mirrors that let students check their alignment and practice winking. The 1,800-square-foot studio uses a state-of-the-art heat-recovery and air-circulation system that keeps temperatures hovering around 42 degrees Celsius for most classes. Hot Yoga on 20th has both male and female changing rooms, each equipped with bathrooms, showers, and lockers.
In Nutana Curling Club’s eight-sheet arena, throwers deliver stones as sweepers make way using the sport’s signature brooms. This familiar scene unfolds throughout the season, as the more than 80-year-old club hosts leagues for curlers ranging from beginners to seasoned pros. Off the ice, non-members can relax with pints of beer while watching sports on big-screen TVs or playing shuffleboard—a sport similar to curling—or darts—a sport similar to launching nuclear missiles at random cities. Along with regular events such as bonspiels, Nutana Curling Club also hosts several international competitions that draw world-class players from across the globe.
The top rope and lead climbing routes at Grip It Indoor Rock Climbing beckon wall scramblers up an extensive variety of vertical terrain suitable for any skill level. For novices, the gym's team of certified instructors offers one-on-one coaching and lead classes such as an Introductory offering, appropriate for those unacquainted with the sport or those with an uncontrollable tendency to keep rocks as pets. Climbers can also enlist themselves for longer climbing programs, such as the Technique course, which helps improve form and mindset, and Learn to Lead, which instills safe indoor climbing skills.
The Premier Wine Festival offers connoisseurs of wine and spirits the chance to sample numerous high-end products without having to invest in the whole bottle. Guests at the popular event buy tasting tokens, which can be traded for sips of aged wines and single-malt scotches as well as nibbles of specialty food items. The 2013 festival also features additional events that are accessible with separate tickets, including a Chilean Winemaker and Riedel Glass seminar, a winemaker luncheon, and a Food and Wine Connection seminar.