Published Sep 05, 2013In our annual Hangout Handbook, Exclaim! asks some of our favourite artists to discuss the hidden gems in their hometowns. Here, Samantha Savage Smith outlines her picks in Calgary, Alberta.
Broken City (613 11 Ave. South West)
A bit of a dive bar that always has great bands playing there. It has a sweet rooftop patio, the staff is great, and it's a wonderful place to stumble out of at 3 a.m. (www.brokencity.ca)
The River and My Bike
So if our river doesn't go crazy and flood our downtown, it's a pretty nice time. Just cruise along the pathways till you find a nice spot where you can sit right next to the water. It's Calgary's ghetto beach.
My Front Porch
So I guess this makes it tough, because you don't know where I live, but I highly recommend finding someone with a front porch and grab your pals, get a ton of beer, and stay in that spot all night. I do this more often than any of the other things on my list. Especially if you get a porch downtown, it's the best people watching experience.
The Bear & Kilt Freehouse (110 8 Ave. South West)
It's run-down and awesome. It's been around for ages. They have a rad happy hour, and only play the best songs from the '90s. They are caught in a vortex of time. I hope they never escape.
I almost made this all about my favourite pizza spots. I'm deeply passionate about pizza. Awesome Kitchen (205 12 Ave. South West) is greasy and delicious and the owner is super sketchy but hilarious. Manie's Pizzeria (819 17 Ave. South West) has crazy good Greek-style pizza. Inglewood Pizza (25 9 Ave. South East) is pick-up only, in one of the nicest, oldest parts of our town. Una Pizza + Wine (618 17 Ave. South West) is fancy pizza: super nice and small with a pretty neat wine selection. 4th Spot Kitchen and Bar (2620 4 St. North West) used to be Karouzo's; their pizza recipe was legendary so it remained on the menu after changing owners and name.
Samantha Savage Smith is a Calgary-raised songwriter and member of the band Lab Coast. She plans to release a new solo record in the near future.