Sponsored by Heritage Park

It’s May! There’s nothing like the hope of spring, the return of warm weather, and the excitement of the first long weekend of ‘summer.’ May is such a bright, happy month; I love this time of year and the possibilities it holds. (I also love moving the outgrown snow pants and dirty boots out the door.) There are all kinds of great things happening in Calgary, especially as our favourite venues open for the summer season, so it’s time to get out and play! Keep reading to find terrific May events for your family.

Oh, I do love a good deal and I enjoy going to garage sales to find all the things I never knew I needed. Hunting for the best deals takes time, but when so many communities host a Parade of Garage Sales, you can easily hit lots of garage sales in one day, without a lot of driving. We’re compiling a list of community sales as we find out about them and you’ll find quite a few on Saturdays in May.

That Very Useful Engine is coming back to town, ready to whisk you to the Island of Sodor. (Okay, he’ll just whisk you around Heritage Park, but that’s pretty cool, too.) During Day Out With Thomas at Heritage Park, from May 6 – 7 and 12 – 14, 2023, your train lovers can ride in a train pulled by Thomas himself and enjoy all kinds of other train activities.

Arts Commons Presents has two great shows for Calgary this month. National Geographic Live brings you Diva Amon: From Shallows to Seafloor from May 7 – 8, 2023, and younger families will want to check out Leonardo! A Wonderful Show About a Terrible Monster from May 26 – 28, 2023.

Maybe I’m biased, but the Calgary Reads Big Book Sale needs to be on everyone’s calendar! (It’s May 12 – 22, 2023, if you want to write it down.) This annual Big Book Sale event is an important fundraiser, supporting a year-long commitment to literacy for children across Alberta. Get ready for a great summer of reading!

Mother’s Day is May 14, 2023, and we have a great Mother’s Day guide in the works to give you some fun ideas on what to do for the weekend. Plan brunch, a show, or maybe a visit to one of Calgary’s book sales!

Storybook Theatre, Calgary’s beloved family theatre, is presenting Disney’s Newsies, from May 12 – June 3, 2023. It’s an energetic, upbeat story the whole family will appreciate. But tickets to Storybook Theatre sell out quickly, so don’t wait too long.

Heritage Park Opening Weekend (Family Fun Calgary)

Another favourite is when Stars on Ice comes to town! On May 14, 2023, get your tickets for figure skating’s hottest stars, where athleticism and artistry collide!

Looking for another book sale? Then head to the RESET Society Book Sale from May 3 – 7 and 12 – 14, 2023. The RESET Society of Calgary book sale raises funds to help women and girls who have been victims of exploitation and human trafficking.

Calgary’s Anime Convention, Otafest, is from May 19 – 21, 2023, and is celebrating Japanese art, culture, and media in the Canadian community.

Heritage Park Historical Village opens for the season on May 20, 2023. Your family can experience living history from the 1860s to the 1950s over a long weekend filled with activities. It is the Park’s mission to preserve the history of the early West and to educate and entertain guests of all ages, so there’s always something to discover at Heritage Park, whether you want to pack your day or just relax.

If you love the creepies and the crawlies, you’ll want to check out the Calgary Reptile Expo on May 27 – 28, 2023. It’s dedicated to the love of reptiles!

There are lots of other events happening during the month of May. Calgary is a great place for families to enjoy activities together. Be sure to check out our calendar to find more family fun. You can also submit your family-friendly event to us; just fill out our event submission form. Don’t forget to check out the new contests we are running and if you are planning your summer, take a look at our Summer Camp Guide. Enjoy the month, Calgary!

Sign up for the monthly Family Fun Calgary e-newsletter. We give you a peek at all of the great, upcoming, family-friendly activities scheduled in Calgary.

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Heritage Park Opening Weekend (Family Fun Calgary)It’s time to ignite your senses and kick off the best summer fun at Heritage Park Historical Village! Heritage Park opens for the season on May 20, 2023, and they’re offering Calgary families more to experience, more to explore, and more to discover. For everyone from new visitors to those who always purchase an annual membership, this year is guaranteed to wow you like never before.

Getting excited for the 2023 season? Us, too! Check out all the ways you can experience history at Heritage Park this summer.

  • More to do: Heritage Park offers a wide range of activities and experiences that visitors can enjoy. Start your visit with a ride to the Park gates on the historic streetcar. Take a ride on the authentic steam train or hit the open water on the S.S. Moyie – Calgary’s only steam-driven paddle wheeler. Stop by the antique midway for a ride, play games throughout the park, and visit the First Nations Encampment. Peek into the history of how Western settlers lived on the prairies, from a tiny sod dwelling to the Burnside Ranch House filled with the smell of delicious cooking to the luxurious Prince House. Grab a drink at Drew’s Saloon, go for a ride in the horse-drawn wagon, and watch the blacksmith at work.
  • More to see: The Park features over 180 exhibits and attractions that showcase the history and culture of Western Canada, including historic buildings, vintage vehicles, and artifacts. Visit the agricultural area, with 42 animals, this year. Step aside as vintage vehicles trundle past, catch ‘The Telegraph of Time’ street theatre production, or rest your feet in the Canmore Opera House and watch a magical vaudeville act.
  • More to touch: Visitors can interact with the exhibits and activities, getting a real sense of what life was like in the past. Play an Indigenous game, mail a letter, or churn butter. Gently pat the horse’s nose, do your sums on a slate, or pan for gold. This is living history!
  • More to smell: The park’s authentic historical village and demonstrations engage all the senses, including the smells that will carry you back in time. The sharp smell of printer ink at the Strathmore Standard and the wood smoke from the blacksmith’s shop transport you to everyday work and the freshly baked bread from the bakery and the delicious aroma of traditional foods cooking over an open flame or cookstove will delight you.
  • More to taste: Heritage Park is filled with treats we love, including ice cream and milkshakes at Harvey’s for a sweet treat in Heritage Square. Plus, your taste buds will love the new food items being introduced for the 2023 season! Try the Cotton and Candy drink, mini Oreo churros, Xangos (deep-fried caramel, banana cheesecake), or the Orient Bistro Banh Mi Sandwich (satay chicken, pickled veg, and cilantro served on a French baguette). Yum!

Heritage Park is a registered charity and offers family fun for all ages, all year long. But when the Historical Village opens, it’s a celebration of summer family fun, no matter the era. Everything to discover is included in the ticket price, so you can explore the nooks and crannies of history together. This Victoria Day weekend, with new exhibits, new food items, and the return of beloved attractions, it’s time to throw open the doors to another must-visit season at Heritage Park Historical Village!

We’ll see you there!