Calgary Is Special

Photograph by: Gavin Young, Calgary Herald

Photograph by: Gavin Young, Calgary Herald

My wife and I were featured in The Calgary Herald‘s Home section this week. The feature, written by Jacqueline Louie, profiles different people in the city talking about their community, their home, and the favourite room in their house.

Honestly, we don’t totally “love” our house. We don’t totally “love” our neighborhood either.

In the article, I call our house a “Calgary Special”. It’s a term borrowed from “Vancouver Special“. In Vancouver’s housing boom decades ago, many of the houses looked the same.

Calgary’s boom in the early 2000s has had the same effect: all the houses look the same. Drive our street and you’d be hard pressed to tell where in the city you are until you turn a corner and see the COP ski jump 5 blocks away.

While we love the location of our home on the west side of Calgary, we wish there were big, old trees, water, and closer public schools.

Here’s an excerpt from the article and some more of the great photos taken by Gavin Young for the piece.

Photograph by: Gavin Young, Calgary Herald

Photograph by: Gavin Young, Calgary Herald

Question: Describe your home.

Answer: We are in a “Calgary special.”

Ours is a two-storey, 1,800-square-foot home (2,300 square feet including the basement), with a bonus room, three bedrooms, an office and a finished basement.

Our home, which was built in 2006, feels more like a townhouse than a house — it’s long and thin.

Question: Which room in your home is your favourite — and why?

Answer: The living room/kitchen/dining nook. It’s a funky room; it takes up a quarter of the main floor.

Because the house is rather narrow, it was an awkward space for us. We had Aly Velji, one of Calgary’s best-known interior designers, help us pick the colours and the layout.

Question: What activities do you — and other family members — do in this room?

Answer: We cook, eat, play, read and watch TV. It’s the centre of our home.

I have an Apple TV hooked up to a small 26-inch TV in our living room — that’s for the boys to watch their movie before bed. And I can watch a show while I’m preparing dinner.

Read the rest at The Calgary Herald

Photograph by: Gavin Young, Calgary Herald Photograph by: Gavin Young, Calgary Herald Photograph by: Gavin Young, Calgary Herald Photograph by: Gavin Young, Calgary Herald Photograph by: Gavin Young, Calgary Herald Photo by Gavin Young , Calgary Herald

Interview: Carly Rae Jepsen [Jan ’09]

carly rae jepsen and buzz bishop

Carly Rae Jepsen is making headlines around the web this week now that Justin Bieber has signed her to her record label and she’s in LA taking meetings with Interscope.

BUT .. before Carly Rae Jepsen was a big international deal, she was a semi-big Vancouver deal. In 2007 she finished 3rd on Canadian Idol (Brian Melo was the winner). 18 months later, she was out and doing it on her own as an independent artist.

Here’s an interview from January 2009 when Carly Rae Jepsen visited me and KJ in the Virgin Radio Vancouver studios and started things off by doing a cover of the classic Blueberry Hill, then we chatted about her Idol time and how she’s trying to do it on her own before she did another performance of her hit (at the time) Tug of War.

Buzz Bishop, KJ and Carly Rae Jepsen – Vancouver, January 15, 2009

Back in the day I thought Carly Rae had the sweet sound, the honest songwriting, and the hooky production to catch on and be a big deal.

I was about 3 years ahead of the curve.

The song that has catapulted her to stardom, Call Me Maybe, has that spine-tingling Vanessa Carlton string arrangement along with the teen angst perfect lyrics.

The dream come true couldnt happen to a sweeter girl.

It’s Mardi Gras! Show Me Your Pancakes!

2010-03-27 pancakes

Today is the day before Lent, the Christian season remembering Jesus’ 40 days and nights in the desert being tempted by the devil.

During this time, you’re supposed to go through your own personal torture by “giving something up for Lent.”

Back in the day that meant leaning down your meals and a lot of fasting. Since today was the last day to use up fattening groceries on hand, that usually meant pancakes. Hence the Pancake Tuesday title.

Mardi Gras literally translates from french as Fat Tuesday. Again, a reference to the last chance to have the good stuff before “giving it up for Lent.”

How Mardi Gras turned into plastic beaded necklaces in exchange for a quick flash of boobies, I’ll leave you to discover on your own.

pancakesJen and I aren’t religious, we’re not giving anything up for Lent, but we do love us some pancakes. So, instead of boobies – let us show you our pancakes!!

Jen rocks her stacks old school – plain butter and syrup.

Me? I like ‘em special, so I made a syrup with a squoosh of Aunt Jemima, a handful of frozen berries, a pat of butter, a cinnamon stick and orange zest.

Wow. Yum.

The Blog According to Buzz. Spread the word, ya heard?

Kids In Calgary: Bow Habitat Station

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BOW HABITAT STATION 1440 – 17A Street SE, Calgary
HOURS: Tuesday – Saturday 11a – 4p
ADMISSION: Adults $10, Seniors $8, Youth $5, Kids under 4 Free.

If your kids like to fish in Alberta, chances are they’ve hooked a rainbow trout that got it’s start at the Bow Habitat Station.

As many as 3 million fish each year are nursed from egg to fry in the Sam Livingston Fish Hatchery in Inglewood near the banks of the Bow River before being used to stock ponds, lakes, rivers, and streams across the province.

In addition to the hatchery, there are information stations, aquariums, interpretive wetlands, and more for the kids to explore. The main floor is home to the hatchery, where tours happen daily at noon and 2p.

The top floor is a vast interpretive area filled with displays, educational games, models, and more. Think of the sort of exhibits you would normally see in a science centre and then target them specifically to wetlands and fishing and you’ll get the idea.

The basement is the aquarium area featuring fish from all over the province of Alberta.

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Outside the Bow Habitat Station is a an interpretive wetland on the Pearce Estate Park. There’s a playground, a stocked trout pond and places to wander, picnic and play.

Give yourself 1-2hrs inside the Bow Habitat Station and then you can easily spend another hour or two walking, exploring and playing on the grounds (even longer if you bring your rod and try your luck on the banks of the river).

For other things to do with your family in Calgary, check out the entire Kids In Calgary series.

The Bachelor Canada Auditions In Calgary

chris harrison bachelor canada

Love is in the air as The Bachelor Canada hits the road in search of Calgary’s most eligible bachelorettes.

Citytv’s nationwide casting tour for The Bachelor Canada is calling on all eligible women looking for love, romance and adventure to audition for what could be the most important blind date of their lives.

Calgary auditions take place from 11a – 8p on Tuesday, February 21 at the Hyatt Regency Calgary, 700 Centre St. S.E.


To be eligible for The Bachelor Canada, participants must be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada and over the age of majority.

For a complete list of rules, regulations and registration forms, visit

Applicants must bring valid photo ID and application form to the audition.

Participants unable to attend the casting tour can submit their application online.

This is going to be a delicious train wreck. I’ll be sitting in the lobby of the hotel watching the dateless, desperate, and wannabe celebs in too high heels, too short skirts, and too much make-up stroll by. Pass the popcorn.

Team Diabetes 2013 Calendar

Team Diabetes 2013 Event Calendar

Team Diabetes is well known for its roster of unique events, and 2013 is no exception.

Walt Disney World, Florida – January 12 – 13, 2013
Experience the wonder of Walt Disney World in a whole new way! Join us for a weekend of events that are as magical as they are memorable. Walk or run through theme parks and receive a coveted, Disney themed medal to commemorate your completion of the half marathon, full marathon or the Goofy Challenge!

Vienna, Austria – April 14, 2013 [ NEW EVENT]
Join us for our inaugural visit to the City of Music! Austria’s capital and largest city, Vienna boasts beautiful architecture, numerous museums and galleries, stunning parks and world famous landmarks, some of which you will see on course. Choose between a half marathon, full marathon or marathon relay!

Edinburgh, Scotland – May 25, 2013 [NEW EVENT]
A city rich in history, Edinburgh is home to famous landmarks such as Edinburgh Castle and Arthur’s Seat. Due to its unique character, “Old Town” and “New Town” were named a Unesco World Heritage site. The event itself offers something for everyone – 5K, 10K, half marathon, marathon and marathon relay!

Reykjavik, Iceland – 30th ANNIVERSARY of the MARATHON & NEW HIKE OPTION!
August 17, 2013

2013 will be 30th Anniversary of the Reykjavik Marathon so we couldn’t miss the opportunity to return to our most popular event to celebrate with them! You can choose between a 10K, half marathon or full marathon.

Like to hike? Due to the dramatic and unique landscapes that abound in the “Land of Fire and Ice”, we are also offering a one day hike option for those who prefer to challenge themselves off the beaten track!

Amsterdam, Netherlands -October 20, 2013
Team Diabetes is excited to announce our return to Amsterdam! Known as the Venice of the North, Amsterdam features numerous canals, more than 1,500 bridges and impressive architecture. Enjoy the sites of this scenic city as you make your way along the 8K, half marathon or marathon course.

You are invited to join us at our Team Diabetes Celebration Nights on March 7th and 15th in select cities to learn more about these incredible destinations and meet current team members, alumni and future members of Team Diabetes.

I’m already in for Reykjavik, 2012 – this week I’m putting my name down for Scotland, 2013. See you there!

Family Day Weekend In Alberta

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Along with no PST, and a healthy economy, you can toss an extra holiday in the month of February as one of the benefits of living in Alberta. The third Monday of the month is celebrated as Family Day.

This holiday was first observed in Alberta in 1990, followed by Saskatchewan in 2007 and Ontario in 2008. Family Day becomes an official holiday in British Columbia in 2013.

So what to do with the Family on this Day? Here are some options:


Calgary Zoo’s Penguin Plunge – the penguins have arrived at the Calgary Zoo and this weekend is their big coming out party. More than 40 penguins from 4 different species have been brought from around the world for the exhibit.

Free Fishing Day February 18, 11am to 3pm. Free outdoor family fun including snowshoeing, fishing games and demonstrations. Explore indoors in the Fish Hatchery and Discovery Centre for a special price of $5 per person (children 4 and under – free!).

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Tobogganing – If you want the best best hill in all of Calgary to go tobogganing, look no further than St Andrews Heights. It’s long, it’s fast and you’ll wish there was a chairlift when you have to hike back up to the top.

Winter Carnival at Fort Calgary – February 20, 10am to 4pm. Carnival games, crafts, treasure hunt, storytelling, cartoons and movies, face painting, balloon magic and outdoor games. Come on down and make your own maple syrup candy outside.

TD Winterfest at Olympic Plaza – February 20, 11am to 5pm. You’ll be treated to live music, live ice sculpting, ice café, snowman and ice castle building. Meet, skate with and have your photo taken with Calgary Hockey Greats Jamie Macoun and Colin Patterson!

Intact Family Day at the Olympic Oval – 12Noon to 4pm. There will be Free Public Skating with the Donation of a Non-Perishable Food item, two bouncy bounce houses, and face painters.

Geocaching at Lac Des Arcs

Geocaching – with sunny skies and temperatures above zero, it’s a perfect time to get out and explore the greenspaces of Calgary and look for hidden treasures. If you’re new to geocaching, it’s as simple as getting the iPhone app and going for a walk – that’s it. Some great places to start that have dozens of caches close by and include beautiful scenery are The Weaselhead or Griffith Woods.


Royal Tyrell Museum in Drumheller – there’s free admission on Family Day to get in and see the amazing collection of dinosaurs, but a trip to this valley is so much more. You can climb the largest dinosaur in the world, check out the mysterious hoodoos and wander an old suspension bridge.

Nanton Bomber Command MuseumA trip to Nanton is a great way to spend the day. The Bomber Command Museum is pretty special on it’s own because of the huge collection of aircraft inside their hangar. In addition to the Lancaster centrepiece, there are other planes the kids can climb over and awe at. Nanton is also home to a rather quaint candy store, a popular train store, and a great classic burger joint.

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Head Smashed In Buffalo Jump – There’s a great interpretive center just west of Fort Macleod that tells how the First Nations used the geography to hunt buffalo. The center is built into the ridge and as you climb you get a true idea for what happened here. You can wander the area and also head down into Pincher Creek past huge windmills in this very breezy part of the province.

Big Rock in Okotoks – If you just want to get out and get some fresh air, why not check out this huge erratic. It’s a glacial rock carved from the Rocky Mountains and then dumped in the plains. It’s how Okotoks, and a famous brewery, got their names.

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West Edmonton Mall - there are some package deals that you can get with hotels that will include family passes to the attractions. I like to call Edmonton the “Tacky Las Vegas of the North“. You can play in the water park, go to an amusement park, ice skate, take a deep sea adventure, shop, dine, club, and gamble all in the same place.

Whatever you do this weekend, do it together – it’s FAMILY DAY!

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