It amazes me how much this place has changed and grown over the nearly 14 years I have been an employee at the Calgary Stampede. I have seen buildings torn down; new buildings go up, changes in leadership, changes in departments, and changes in responsibilities … really so much change!

Photo Credit: Chris Bolin

This past month has really shown me personally just how much of a gathering place we are for both the local community and visitors from a far. I have had the pleasure of welcoming my own friends and family to three different events hosted on Stampede Park in the last 30 days. Friends have called to see if I can come and say hi while they are here, asking if I have had anything to do with the event they are attending, and to answer their questions about the various services that might be available to them while they are visiting Stampede Park.

In May, I received a call from a friend who was going to be attending the Canadian National Volleyball Championships, as her daughter was playing on a team. She wanted to know what options might be available to the team for food & beverage … of which there were plenty to share with her. While at work during the event, I ran into my friends in the concourse – I was able to have a quick chat with them and even sneak a peek of their daughter playing volleyball in Hall E of the BMO Centre.

Shortly thereafter, another friend shared they would be attending some of the grad festivities here on park – their daughter was graduating and attending her formal banquet at the BMO Centre. Photos and stories of their night were shared on Facebook, showcasing our amazing venue and beautiful décor. It was a sight to see, knowing that I had played a very small part in such a special occasion and celebration for them.

Today is the first day of the Global Petroleum Show – an international event that allows us to showcase our fantastic venues and western hospitality to the world. Yesterday afternoon I received a call from a family member who I haven’t seen in quite some time – he is exhibiting at the Global Petroleum Show – and until he arrived in Calgary, he had no idea that the show was actually at Stampede Park. We have now made plans to connect and I will be able to share with him all of the wonderful things both the show has to offer, but also our amazing park.

These last 30 days have really reminded me about what it is we are here to do. We are here to welcome all those who choose to visit; we are here to showcase what we can do together as a team; we are here to bring our community together through the western hospitality that is the heart and soul of our organization.

I have never been more amazed by what we can do and more proud to say I work for the Calgary Stampede.