There's always someone cheering at The Cheer Bar & Grill, either at their favourite team making a big play or at their favourite server arriving with frosty brews and fresh-cut fries heaped with bearnaise or rich gravy. The flatscreen TVs project hockey and football for cheering fans splitting wings by the pound or tearing into new york strip steak sandwiches. Late night, the place transforms as the first chords played by live bands and DJs stream from the sound systems. The main area swiftly turns into a dance floor with pulsating lights, and barstools become dance partners for shy wallflowers.
Beneath locally crafted hanging artwork, visitors to Ellice Cafe & Theatre dine on house-made café fare as they view family-friendly films inside a nonprofit community theatre. Pre- and post-show diners can tear into the eatery's signature meatloaf, which refuels empty body tanks alongside mashed potatoes that, like Mr. Potato Head after a shower, are drenched in gravy. Vegetarian and meat pizza ingredients are generously piled upon handmade herbed crusts, while house-made muffins, apricot-date squares, and other dessert specialties add a sweet epilogue to meals. Meanwhile, the theatre’s packed calendar of events includes an ever-changing lineup of films, live theatre productions, and staged re-enactments of the previous day’s live theatre production.
For 30 years, Cinematheque, which is operated by The Winnipeg Film Group, has devoted itself to screening a wide variety of independent and international films while exposing audiences to local filmmakers and special events. The intimately sized theatre's vast programming includes restored 35mm classics, contemporary Canadian and aboriginal films, and films that demonstrate unique and innovative approaches to the art of cinema. During weekly and one-off presentations, special guests such as directors, actors, and scholars place selected works into context by explaining the director's intentions, the film's impact on other filmmakers, and why dogs were used on set instead of ottomans. Similarly, the ongoing Cinema Lounge: Critical Dialogue on Canadian Cinema series features Canadian artists introducing a contemporary or classic Canadian film that has personally shaped their career, thus encouraging a public debate about the film's importance and influence.
A casual gastropub, Luxalune tosses out tapas rafts to woozy taste buds. Settle into one of the plush leather couches and compare spirit animal housebreaking tips with friends while perusing a menu of small plates infused with global flavours. The De-Luxsole pizza ($13.99) balances stacks of pepperoni, chorizo sausage, and smoky bacon atop a bubbly crust. Social snackers can sample the English lamb masala ($13.99), braised lamb in a spicy curry sauce dotted with chick peas and served aside flat bread, or keep roving hands occupied with the antipasto sampler ($14.99), a savoury selection of five local cheeses, pickles, olives, and gourmet cold cuts. Though this Groupon is not valid toward alcohol, Luxalune boasts more than 150 beers – arguably the largest selection in town, according to the Winnipeg Free Press. Patrons can flex stiff legs and restless rotator cuffs by circling the pool table or sinking into a live music act Wednesday and Sunday evenings, invigorating a meal faster than a dip in a dry ice bath.