Highlights from the 2014 Calgary Stampede
CALGARY – Another Stampede has come and gone, with millions of people packing the grounds.
In 2014, there were 1,263,428 people who passed through the park gates, an increase of over 130,000 from last year’s overall attendance.
Global News takes a look back at some of the biggest moments during the 2014 Calgary Stampede:
Those attending the Stampede were treated to some amazing weather in 2014. The high varied from 23°C to 30°C, and the low never dipped below 9°C from July 4th – 13th.
“To go from last year, to go to what I consider the best weather I’ve seen in decades and decades at the Calgary Stampede… 2014 was really a great, great hot sweaty celebration of what we do in the city,” says Bob Thompson, President CEO Calgary Stampede
Relaxed liquor rules
On the day before the Stampede officially kicked off, the Alberta government announced they would authorize bars, restaurants and lounges in Calgary to begin alcohol service at 8 a.m. (instead of the usual 10 a.m.) from Saturday, July 5th until Sunday, July 13th.
Country superstars Shania Twain, Paul Brandt, Keith Urban and Reba McEntire performed at the Saddledome as part of the Virgin Mobile Stampede Concert Series.
Meanwhile, bands like The Trews, Billy Talent, Tokyo Police Club and A Great Big World played free shows at the Coca-Cola Stage.
In addition, big names like Gord Bamford, Aaron Pritchett, The Road Hammers and Nitty Gritty Dirt Band played at Nashville North.
Officials unveiled 32 new food options for the 2014 Calgary Stampede, including deep fried sushi and scorpion pizza.
Officials set up four staffed cab stands around the Calgary Stampede grounds in hopes of easing traffic congestion and making it easier for people to get home safely.
One of the most popular attractions at the Calgary Stampede is their nightly fireworks display. However, a sudden windstorm on Wednesday, July 9th forced officials to cancel the fireworks due to safety concerns.
Canadian cowboys held their own on Showdown Sunday, winning three of six events at the Calgary Stampede rodeo.
Injures and animal deaths
Tim Haroldson of Melfort, Sask. was injured when the chuckwagon he was riding on rolled while turning around a barrel. He was taken to hospital in serious but stable condition.
A 12-year-old thoroughbred named Denny died after collapsing during morning training.
Meanwhile, a steer had to be euthanized after suffering a severe neck injury during the steer wrestling event.
Animal rights protest
Two animal rights activists from Vancouver locked themselves to the railing on the inside of a chuckwagon race track before a race was scheduled to start.
The group called for the event to be banned, calling it “abhorrent.”