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Early Klondike DaysNorthlands Park’s Klondike Days Exposition is famous in Edmonton and across fair circuits in North America because of the ingenuity of its events. Many of the activities stem from Klondike inspired concepts and focus on the general public’s participation.

To start off the 10-day fair is the Klondike Days Parade, featuring an assortment of floats, bands, and antique cars. The sound of brass instruments and the cheer of crowds emanating, the parade can be heard as it travels its usual route on 102 Avenue. Downtown revelry can be heard early in the day as children and their families gather for the sight.

Battle of the BandsExposition activities, past and present, can be broadly categorized into several groups: sports, fashion, cultural, entertainment, and food. Sports have included King of the Klondike—a test of physical strength at Hawrelak Park, a Paddle Boat Derby Competition, a Klondike Rugby Game, a Canoe Regatta, and a Sourdough Raft Race ending in Terwilligar Park. These athletic events take place with public and corporate teams serving up entertainment for their fellow Edmontonians.

Dressing up for Klondike DaysKlondike era fashion extravaganzas make up another group of activities that overlap with everything else, as most fun can be pursued in Klondike dress. From bus drivers, to bank tellers, to couples on the street, some city residents can be found in frilly skirts, rugged vests, skinny ties, old-timer hats, and carefully arranged ribbons harkening back to the days of vaudeville and gold-panning.

Colin JamesIn terms of cultural events organized by Northlands Park, the Edmonton Klondike Days Association, and its partners, there are several remarkable happenings. Period melodramas, spirited talent competitions, and popular entertainers provide entertainment for everyone. With outdoor venues such as Telus Stage to play on, it is not uncommon for big name acts, as well as emerging performers, to surprise fairgoers. With the addition of feature countries in 1986, audiences now get an international sampling of ethno-cultural activities as well.

As for entertainment as a category, almost all Klondike Days activities could be listed here. Particularly popular is the midway. Whether in the air as a thrilled ride-goer, or on the ground as an amused onlooker, the midways rides and games are a key component of the fair’s success. Klondike Days MidwayChuck wagon racing, Chilkoot gold mining, AgriCom commercial exhibits, free downtown stage performances, Music In Motion at Telus Field, street dancing, a Klondike Promenade, and treasure hunts at Fort Edmonton have comprised past Klondike Days amusement. The chance to win big, whether through raffle tickets or the casino, also draws people optimistic about their luck.

AgVenture Fun ZoneFood cannot be underestimated as part of Klondike Days activities. Annual midway visitors often indulge in mini-donuts, while others favour toffee or pizza. Regardless of what treat is chosen, food is an event all to itself. Modern-day Klondike enthusiasts can sample sourdough pancakes following the raft race. Past years have also included a Mayor’s Lunch, and a Panhandler’s Lunch and Dinner.

With copious Klondike Days events to choose from, each year holds the promise of on-going favourites and new activities. With the collaboration of Edmontonians, the fair reaches past the exhibition grounds, and celebration abounds.


Featured Video: Klondike Days events Feature countries provide a theme for some major Klondike Days events, such as the cultural exhibitions. Watch Now

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