With all of the hype this past week with certain marital events in a small island across the continent, election day being just around the corner or even starting the infamous spring clean it’s hard to believe there is much else happening in the world. But believe it or not, we have arrived at the first weekend of May!
This weekend we have more even more sunny weather forecasted! So it’s time to break out of the house we’ve been hibernating in all winter and enjoy the spring air, roll up your sleeves, get the kids out of their snowsuits and jump into spring with these lively concerts and fun events this weekend.
Lake Louise – VW Spring Episode
Saturday and Sunday: 9am – 5pm
Weekend long event with kid’s zone, live concert, BBQ’s and a slope showdown!
Saturday - Breast Cancer Fundraising Event – Events and prize giving, all for a good cause. Plus a downhill show of support against fighting the disease.
Saturday – 8 Mile Crew Challenge – Event starting from the afternoon with various heats during the day with the final commencing at 4pm. More information at the hill.
Saturday 11:30am and Sunday 3pm – The Dudes Live – No strangers to the stage after forming back in 1996, this band has captured the hearts of many Canadians, citing the likes of Wheezer and The Flaming Lips as their inspiration.
Sunday 12:30pm – Hot Dog Eating Contest! The bravest men and women battle it out to become the Sunshine Village hot dog eating machine of 2011. Not for the faint-hearted.
Sunshine Village – Coors Light Event
Saturday and Sunday
Free - but must purchase a gondola ticket to reach event.
The Coors Light event is being held all weekend with live concerts, bands, ski events and the slopes open all day.
Saturday and Sunday Live concert with Gilby Clarke - Most notably as the rhythm guitarist from the Gun’s and Roses, Gilby Clarke talents will be gracing the stage all weekend, so sit back and enjoy the sounds in the sunshine.
Various events and BBQ’s will be happening all weekend. As well as upcoming events from music country stars Adam Gregory and George Canyon later in May.
Bring the family along for another great weekend in the mountains.
British Royal, and second in line to the throne, Prince William, is marrying his long term girlfriend Catherine Middleton on Friday April 29th 2011 and there is certainly a hype about it. Being 4000 miles (or 6500km) away does not seem to have deterred anyone’s sense of excitement here in Canada, and it seems everyone is preparing themselves for the big event this Friday!
Canada and Banff have their own history with the Royals after greeting them on many a visit to the area. From King George & Queen Elizabeth’s visit back in 1939, Queen Elizabeth remarking it as one of her favorite places, to the Duke of Edinburgh returning for many years on formal duties. Canada has always held a special relationship with the Royal family.
Not only is that but Alberta certainly going to be playing its own role in the Royal wedding as it has been confirmed as a honeymoon destination for the newly married couple between June 30th and July 8th. Rumors have been flying that they might even make a visit the Bow Valley area!
If you are in Banff this weekend, why not bring along a spot of tea and a scone to enjoy in your comfy room or pop down to the Fairmont Banff Springs for Afternoon Tea. If you don’t fancy waking up at 3am to start watching the 15 hour coverage of the wedding, many of the major news channels and several places in town will be rerunning the day’s events from 5-8pm, and with Canadian news channels sharing British camera feeds, you will have the best seat in the house! Literally!
Enjoy the event and keep your eyes and ears open for a potential royal visit to the Bow Valley this summer!!
Easter Weekend is almost upon us and many families are heading to the mountains to spend some family time together. We can say with confidence that the weather is set to be sunny, there are several events happening around town and you may even catch a glimpse of the Easter Bunny as he is certainly doing the rounds in Banff! So get your little ones out, enjoy the fresh spring air and take a look at some of these upcoming events.
The Easter Bunny Visits the Fairmont Lake Louise – Pop down to Lake Louise to meet the Easter Bunny from Friday 22nd to Sunday 24th! He is sure to have a basket full of eggs and we’ve heard he likes to share. You might just have to hop to catch up to him!
YWCA Banff– An annual event gathering all members of the community together for a family fun event. Easter Egg hunts, egg decorating, face painting, crafts and a visit from the Easter Bunny is all on the cards. Events are happening between 2-4pm on Saturday23rd April.
Last Ski of the Season at Norquay – Due to phenomenal snow this season, Mt. Norqauy (our closest ski hill) has extended its ski season for Easter weekend! We’ve also heard there is an Easter Egg hunt at the hill as well! Enjoy skiing and tubing in Banff’s ‘backyard’. Norquay will close on March 25th.
Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel – They have a number of events going on throughout the day, with egg and basket making, magic shows and egg hunts.
Don’t forget! If you’re staying with us this Easter Weekend bring along all your Easter Sunday food and drink to cook in your own personal kitchen in your room, just the way you like it.
From everyone at the Douglas Fir Resort and Chalets, we wish you all a very Happy Easter!
There are a few things you expect on your visit to the Douglas fir Resort, like the waterslides, Playzone and stunning scenery. But what you might be pleasantly surprised at is the amount of wildlife roaming around the resort! The wildlife ranges from the small squirrels running up the trees to the Elk slowly meandering their way across the road. So we have created a little ‘Animal Tracking List’, for you to tick off during your stay here at the hotel as well as descriptions of each animal.
Columbian Ground Squirrel – Identifiable by its rusty colored underbelly and nose. Often seen running from tree to tree!
Mule Deer or White Tailed Deer – Medium size, distinctive white tails and ears similar to those of a Donkey (as seen above).
Elk (Wapiti) – Larger than the Mule Deer, sometimes with antlers. Count how many ‘points’ there are on one side of an
Elk’s antlers and you can usually tell its age or status within a herd.
Coyote – Medium-sized grayish dog with a slender muzzle, large pointed ears, and a bushy tail. This one is very shy!
Red Wing Blackbirds – Fairly common and easy to spot. Dark black feathers with vibrant red and yellow ‘shoulder pads’.
American Robin – With its red breast and brown feathers, the American robin is a true sign of spring in the Rockies.
Big Horn Sheep – Sandy brown coats with a white rump patch. The males have large horns which curl around the side of the head. The females have short, spiky brown horns. You are likely to see them along the roadside.
Whilst we love seeing the wildlife around the hotel, we also realize that we share this space with the animals. We do our best to keep the wildlife wild, and would appreciate if you would do the same. Tempting as it may be to feed them, please don't feed the animals (our food is bad for the digestive system of animals) or get too close to them.
Please note the following National Park Regulations during your stay in Banff:
Give wildlife space. It is against the law to touch, entice, disturb or otherwise harass any wild animals big or small.
Keep food away from wildlife. Feeding any park wildlife is prohibited. Always keep coolers stored in vehicles. Pick up litter and dispose of garbage in bear proof bins.
Put pets on a leash. Unrestrained pets may harass wildlife, provoke wildlife attacks and endanger people.
Leave it for others to enjoy. Whatever treasure you find be it a rock, a flower, an antler or an historic artifact it belongs where it is.
Help protect people and the park
Call 1.888.WARDENS if you see anyone violating park regulations.
Please report all bear, cougar, or wolf sightings or aggressive behavior by any wildlife to the nearest Park Warden Office or Information Centre.
Take pictures and admire from afar and see if you can spot some of the real locals in Banff!
Family holidays just aren’t complete without the presence of their little furry family members. Understanding this, the Douglas Fir Resort is happy to provide comfortable lodging for all of your family members in our special ‘pet-friendly’ rooms.
As we pay extra special attention to our pet-friendly rooms there is a small pet charge of $25 per a pet, per a day to cover additional cleaning costs. However, as we don’t want to forget the pets out there that don’t have families, the Douglas Fir Resort & Chalets is now donating 5% of these pet fees to the Bow Valley SPCA.
The Douglas Fir Resort is proud to support the Bow Valley SPCA in their mission is to provide our community with an adoption centre following a no kill, no cage philosophy to shelter, care for and re-home stray and abandoned dogs and cats. What does this no kill, no cage philosophy mean?
The Banff SPCA Adoption Centre's design is based on the organization's no-kill philosophy: saving both adoptable (healthy and free of serious behavioral problems) and treatable (medical treatment or behavioral training) dogs and cats, regardless of age or disability.
Euthanasia is considered only as a last resort for dogs and cats that are terminally ill or suffering intractable pain, as well as dogs proven dangerous to people or other dogs.
All dogs and cats are housed in rooms rather than cages or kennel runs. This reduces the stress of being housed in an adoption centre; however, it also decreases the number of animals that can be housed in our facility.
In addition, the shelter seeks to promote humane attitudes and responsible pet companionship through educational programs and community leadership. What an incredible cause!
Our popular waterslides were first built in 1985. To this day, the Douglas Fir Resort is the only hotel in Banff to have ever featured indoor waterslides. Since 1985, our waterslides have been used thousands of times, become a fixture in many childhood memories and are now one of the main reasons guests come to stay with us time and again. But as with anything that has seen so much use, there comes a time when fixtures need to be replaced and surfaces need to be re-polished! We all know that ladies need their space to primp and preen, so we are planning a fantastic renovation of our ladies changing room in the waterslides.
We want every stay at the Douglas Fir Resort to be a transient, soothing escape from reality, and we are constantly striving to improve the Douglas Fir Resort for you. But because we're open 365 days a year, we need to fit these renovations into our usual operating times. So for the short period between May 11th and June 22nd we will be beautifying one of our most-used public spaces to make future stays even more enjoyable! The main objective for the renovation is to provide more space for women and children for changing and showering.
The waterslides will be open as usual to hotel guests during this period. Registered guests of the Douglas Fir Resort will have access to our waterslides during this improvement process via an alternate means of access through the interior of the hotel that will be clearly marked. The waterslides will be closed to outside patrons during this period.
As for the rest of our plans for the future....watch this space!
....to ski! We may be well along the way to spring with temperatures hitting the dizzy heights of plus 4 and the brown grass appearing here and there, but there is still a good 6 weeks of the ski season left to enjoy. If you and your family are coming to Banff for a getaway make sure you hit the slopes! So far the last ski of the season stands at April 24th for Norquay, May 2nd for Lake Louise and May 23rd for Sunshine Village. There will also be lots going on between now and the closing days such as music concerts and the Sunshine Village ‘Slush Cup’, so keep your eyes open for some fun events coming up.
And if, like me, you're a complete novice when it comes to snow sports, or you're looking to get your kids out the house and immerse them in the majestic beauty of the great outdoors, there are some great last minute deals for ski lessons at each hill. If it's lift tickets you’re after, ask one of our friendly front desk staff as we have discounted tickets to purchase on your arrival to create the perfect custom ski package for you.
If skiing and boarding is not quite your thing, why not head out for a bit of tobogganing! There are a couple of great spots. Our personal favorite is on the Banff Springs Hotel golf course. You can have hours of fun here with kids of all ages, with the hill offering a gentle to moderate slope, as well as a maintained ice rink for ice skating, a fire pit and fantastic views. For something a little closer to home, try the hill out the back of the Douglas Fir!
With warmer temperatures and blue skies why not get out and enjoy the last bit of winter, and share your experiences with us on our Facebook page.