Calgary Stampede and the BMO Centre’s Butchery of Local Businesses 2021

man doing rodeo

When current Alberta premier Jason Kenney announced that the over 100 year old event known as the Calgary Stampede was going through despite the previous year’s pandemic and panic, local businesses, especially vendors and contributors of previous years had a reason to get their hopes up.

However despite the reduction in this year’s vendors due to social distancing ‘regulations’ and an extreme hit in ticket sales leading to less foot traffic, 7 days in, Stampede management has failed to put up significant signage showing viewers the market even exists this year in the BMO centre.

Nor is there any content shared to social media… A free platform with over 2 billion users worldwide…

Not to mention the construction, current bridge ravamp, and closed doors, making the building seem nothing more than a place for people to pee.

Which the Stampede should’ve definitely foreseen and budgeted for.

I understand not air conditioning the outdoors, but the cost of 90% less people in the market is hitting it’s vendors hard.
For something as simple as a lack of advertising…

Which is why we’ve chosen to cover this story as an advertising agency based in Calgary that cares about its local companies.

But why should the Stampede care what it’s vendors make or sell?

Two reasons:




Businesses are loathe to come back to an event where the costs of setting up and renting space far exceed the return. And customers are loathe to come to an event that doesn’t do anything to support local businesses.

Thus marks the fall ‘The Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth’.
Unless it can get its act together.

And the sooner the Stampede realizes this, the sooner they will see numbers like before.

Needless to say, vendors are disappointed, and highly reconsidering returning next season. Not to mention the Stampede’s inability to get local companies in their trade show and instead giving priority to companies from other cities and in some cases other countries.

Payday for most people in Alberta,
where the Stampede is offering half-price entry to incite ticket purchases and more people in the park.

In the photo above we see a children’s show set to perform 3 times per day with only one attendee.

Why The Stampede Needs To Start Caring About its Vendors

Local businesses are the backbone of the Calgary economy. Many of which employ several of its citizens and stand in good reputation with the customers they serve.

They also contribute a good chunk of change and significant points towards Calgarian pride and moral.

So at the end of the rodeo, it is up to management to decide whether or not they want ‘The Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth’ to remain ‘The Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth’, by supporting it’s vendors, and hiring workers that care about the community as much as their volunteers do.

Thanks for reading!

Mackenzie Andres


Author | Head of Copy


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2 thoughts on “Calgary Stampede and the BMO Centre’s Butchery of Local Businesses 2021

  1. Businesses are loathe to come back to an event where the costs of setting up and renting space far exceed the return. And customers are loathe to come to an event that doesn’t due anything for local …. ‘due should be ‘do’. Great article

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