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Alberta

A Look at the Craft Brewery Boom in Alberta

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The microbrewery landscape in Alberta is composed of a niche collection of local businesses, each offering a creative and completely unique approach to beer and dining. Each location tells a different story through its brews, taproom, artwork, product design and individual take on what makes Alberta beer the best. 

In this strange and creative world, there is something for everyone. Consumers can enjoy the favorite Super Saturation New England Pale Ale while sitting with friends beneath indoor wooden cabins at Cabin Brewing Company, Brewery of the Year winner at the 2020 Alberta Beer Awards. Those with an affinity for sci-fi might enjoy sampling a flight from Zero Issue while kicking back with a comic book. Patio enthusiasts can enjoy the sunshine while sipping on the 2020 Award winners for Patio Beers at Tool Shed Brewing Company, Sea Change Brewing Co. or Analog Brewing

Since 2013, the number of microbreweries in Alberta has skyrocketed. What was once one of the most sparsely populated craft beer industries in Canada has become one of the most exciting destinations for craft beer connoisseurs. 

According to Avenue Magazine, in December 2013, the Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission made adjustments to the “antiquated laws that made starting a brewery or brewpub a formidable undertaking,” opening the doors for Alberta brewers to pursue their passion. Since then, there has been a steady increase in craft breweries across Alberta, from no more than 13 in 2013 to 123 province-wide as of January 2020. According to Canadian Beer News, the Alberta brew industry now employs an estimated 3,000 people.

Although each brewery could not be more individual and unique, together these businesses form a tight-knit community built on support, collaboration and a mutual desire to see the craft beer market continue to succeed in Alberta and across Canada. According to Alberta Beer, “Alberta brewers know everyone wins when we support and nurture our communities.” 

In Calgary, the craft beer industry has also undergone an extreme expansion in recent years. There are over 30 brewery-taprooms throughout the city, which is also home to a number of collectives. These include the Barley Belt, a collection of breweries spanning several kilometres throughout Calgary’s southeast, and Brewery Flats, a craft beer tour featuring a number of breweries in the Inglewood area. 

Offering an ever-changing selection of local brews on tap, the breweries in Calgary push the limits with an ongoing series of strange and spectacular creations. Some stay for a while, some are gone before your next visit. 

Follow Todayville Calgary to learn more about Calgary’s unique breweries, now featuring exclusive weekly updates from Whats on Tap? 

Alberta

Kubalik nets 5 points as Blackhawks stun Oilers 6-4 in NHL qualifier opener

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EDMONTON — Rookie winger Dominik Kubalik scored two goals and added three assists, leading the Chicago Blackhawks to a 6-4 win over the host Edmonton Oilers in the opener of their best-of-five qualifying round series on Saturday.

Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews chipped in two goals and one assist. 

Connor McDavid had a goal and three assists for Edmonton.

It was a continuation of the torrid scoring pace set by Kubalik, a 24-year-old Czech forward and a Calder Trophy finalist. He racked up 30 goals and 16 assists before regular-season play was halted in mid-March due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In Wednesday’s exhibition game against St. Louis, he had two goals and an assist.

Kubalik and the Hawks took control early in the afternoon contest, the first in Edmonton as part of the NHL’s restart.

He notched three assists as the Hawks blitzed the Oilers with four goals in the first 13 minutes of the game to take a 4-1 lead.

Kubalik then scored twice in the second period, his first goal chasing starter Mike Smith from the Oilers net (five goals on 23 shots), and his second getting past Smith’s replacement, Mikko Koskinen, to make it 6-2.

Three of Edmonton’s goals came on the power play.

Things looked good for the Oilers, and their top-ranked power play, early in the first period. The Hawks took a penalty and McDavid walked in from the faceoff circle and fired a wrist shot over the right shoulder of Hawks goalie Corey Crawford to make it 1-0 at the 2:34 mark.

Then the wheels came off.

Smith, notorious as a wandering gambler out of his crease, coughed up the puck behind the net to Dylan Strome, who proceeded to bank it in off his pad and into the net at 5:51.

On the next three goals, Smith got very little help from this teammates, who wilted under the Blackhawks’ ferocious forecheck, often caught standing around or turning over the puck.

At 7:56, Toews, left alone in the slot on the power play, buried a wrist shot under the bar, glove side on Smith.

At 9:17, an Olli Maatta blueline wrist shot was double deflected in the slot to fly over Smith’s goalpad and in. Brandon Saad got credit for the goal.

At 12:57, Kubalik swooped around the net and dished the puck to an unmolested Toews in the crease, who redirected the puck past Smith.

The Oilers showed some life early in the second period. They made it 4-2, again on the power play, when McDavid, behind the end line, passed the puck to Leon Draisaitl, who one-timed it past Crawford.

Kubalik quickly got that one back, on the power play, taking a cross-ice pass and shooting from the top of the faceoff circle to Smith’s left, sniping the puck over his shoulder and into the net. That was it for Smith.

With time winding down in the period, Kubalik, standing in front of the net, deflected a Duncan Keith blueline slapshot to make it 6-2.

The Oilers scored two goals with less than four minutes to go in the contest to make things interesting.

Edmonton’s James Neal scored on a goal-mouth scramble and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins tipped in an Oscar Klefbom point shot.

The game was played in front of tarps, massive video screens, and empty seats at Rogers Place, which is hosting the 12 Western Conference teams as the NHL completes the 2019-20 season.

While Edmonton, with a better regular season record, was technically the “home team” the sights and sounds of the game were neutral. Goal horns would sound when either team scored, and there were revved-up announcements over the loudspeaker when the Hawks or the Oilers went on the power play.

Goaltending for the Oilers was a question mark heading into the series.

Both Smith and Koskinen had put up similar numbers working in a platoon in the regular season. Smith was 19-12-6 record with a .902 save percentage. Koskinen was 18-13-3 with a .917 save percentage.

The real goaltending question mark was supposed to be Crawford.

The veteran goalie is seen as critical to Chicago’s success, given its leaky defence this year, but only began skating again last week after contracting COVID-19. Crawford was 16-20-3 with a .917 save percentage in the regular season. 

Crawford looked sharp Saturday but didn’t see too many dangerous shots. Chicago outshot Edmonton 43-29.

The Blackhawks, 32-30-8 in the regular season, were decided underdogs.

They were trending out of the playoff picture and finished 23rd overall when regular-season play was suspended. They are the bottom seed among the 12 teams playing in the Western Conference elimination round.

The Oilers, seeded fifth with a 37-25-9 record (12th in NHL), were seen as the favourite, especially given they have the two top point-getters this season in the NHL: Draisaitl (110 points) and McDavid (97 points).

Game 2 goes Monday.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published August 1, 2020.

Dean Bennett, The Canadian Press

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Alberta

Minnesota Wild defenceman Matt Dumba kneels for American anthem

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EDMONTON — Minnesota Wild defenceman Matt Dumba became the first NHL player to kneel for a national anthem during the league’s restart on Saturday.

The Regina native made a speech about social and racial justice prior to Edmonton’s first game of the NHL restart — the second overall — before he kneeled for “The Star Spangled Banner.”

Players from the Oilers and Blackhawks stood around the centre-ice circle for both anthems prior to the Edmonton-Chicago game.

Oilers defenceman Darnell Nurse and Blackhawks goalie Malcolm Subban each put a hand on Dumba’s shoulder as he kneeled for a recording of the American anthem. All three players are Black.

Grammy Award-winning singer Michael Buble sang “O Canada” on a video recorded at Vancouver’s Rogers Arena. Dumba stood for that anthem, played after “The Star Spangled Banner.”

Dumba wore a “Hockey Diversity Alliance” shirt for the ceremony, which also paid tribute to front-line workers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Racism is everywhere, and we need to fight against it,” Dumba said.

A similar ceremony was planned for Saturday night’s game between the Montreal Canadiens and Pittsburgh Penguins in Toronto. No players appeared to kneel during anthems prior the first two games in Toronto.

Social justice has been a theme in sports restarts.

Almost all NBA players have kneeled for the American anthem since the league resumed play Thursday in Orlando, Fla.

Major League Baseball also had players kneeling during its opening games last week, though it was not as big a percentage.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 1, 2020.

The Canadian Press

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august, 2020

fri07augAll Daymon17WALK TO BREATHE from Calgary to Edmonton(All Day)

thu27aug(aug 27)12:00 amsun30(aug 30)11:59 pmHUGE Garage Sale for Crime Prevention12:00 am - 11:59 pm (30) PIDHERNEY CURLING CENTRE, RED DEER, AB, 4725 43 St, Red Deer, AB T4N 6Z3 Event Organized By: The Central Alberta Crime Prevention Centre

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