We’re back with another edition of Stampede Mythbusters.  I’ve been asking around to find out if people are going to Stampede this year and this myth seems to be a popular reason people give when they say they don’t plan on attending.  It’s a great topic to investigate because it’s something that applies to everyone – Stampede is too expensive.  Or is it?

Now, don’t get me wrong, if you WANT to spend a lot of money during Stampede, there are oodles of ways to lighten your wallet.  But, if you’re like me, you want to have a great time, enjoy some old faves, check out some new things, and know that your bank account isn’t going to be hit too hard at the end of it.

How much does it REALLY cost?

Let’s start off with some numbers so that we’re all on the same page.

Stampede Gate Admission – $14 ($11 if you take advantage of some of the deals – see below.)

Rodeo admission – $12 gets you in, but you’ll be standing.  For good value, I recommend the Bronze seats – $24.50 which includes your gate admission and the best part is you’re up high so you’re covered from excess sun (or rain!).

Grandstand and chucks – $15 puts you on the tarmac (lots of excitement down there for the Chucks, but harder to see for the Grandstand).  For good value try the silver seats – $41.50 – you’re down low so you’ve got a great view of everything, plus it includes your gate admission.

What does it get me?

Stampede Gate Admission is a smokin’ deal.  Essentially, you get access to everything except the rodeo, chuckwagons/evening show, concerts going on in the Pengrowth Saddledome, and rides on the midway.  Honestly, the Coke Stage concerts themselves are worth the admission price but you’ll also be able to check out things like the Acrobatic Ice show, the High Dive act, old faves like the Superdogs, the Western Oasis, and the Stampede market; honestly I could go on and on.

Your pre-purchase rodeo and evening show tickets INCLUDE admission to the Park.  Often it’s a better deal to buy your seats ahead of time.

I HIGHLY suggest using the Stampede Planner to see what sparks your interest and which days will let you get the most bang for your buck.  I really like the ATCO Kitchen Theatre so I ran a search on that and am going to stop by to check out the dueling chefs!  The best part is the free samples at the end!

Looking for a Deal?

There’s no need to pay full price to get into the park or to ride the Midway.  There are several deals that offer you at least a couple bucks off your gate admission.  Check out the deals page to find the one that’s right for you.  If you plan on snapping up the midway deal, act fast.  It’s only available at Safeway stores until July 8th.

Ok, I think that’s a pretty good overview of what it really costs to get in the gate, watch the rodeo, or take in the Chucks and Grandstand show.  If you want to upgrade your experience with the purchase of something like mini-donuts, luckily they are only a few dollars more!

The point I’m trying to make is that you really do get a LOT for your dollar; you can still enjoy your old favorites as well as the new attractions.  If you are looking to save some money, there are ways to do it too.

Finally, why not win to get in?  There are lots of cool contests going on through the Stampede Twitter and Facebook pages.  Check out Twitter at @calgarystampede and @HereAllYear, or the official Facebook fan page, and stay tuned to the Stampede Blog as Stampede Mythbusters keeps bustin’ those myths!