Falling for YYC: The Best Things To Do This Autumn in Northwest Calgary

September 6, 2017

Calgary’s changing season might be the perfect time to be out and about in the city— it’s easy to fall in love with YYC every time autumn hits.

The return of flannels, cider, and campfires (when permitted) are celebrated by many, and we find ourselves firmly in the camp of Calgarians waiting for the perfect pumpkin-patch photo-opp.

Beyond the thirst for pumpkin-spice flavored everything and the seasonal urge to cocoon in oversized sweaters, fall in Calgary comes with a huge roster of activities and events for almost every taste (pumpkin spice or not).

Here are some of our favourite things to do come fall in Northwest Calgary.


Forget worrying about a beach body — the pursuit of wellness doesn’t need to end when summer does. Instead of hanging up your runners for the season, consider participating in one of NW Calgary’s many cause-based races. It’s a great way to bring fitness and community-giving together in a single activity.

Across the street from University District, University of Calgary is giving runners the chance to stretch their legs and benefit student athletes. The 2017 Dino Dash takes place on Saturday September 9, with proceeds helping fund University of Calgary’s varsity track and field and cross-country teams. Since 2004, the race has raised $60,000 to help student athletes fund scholarships, uniforms and more. The course is flat and it offers an easy, smooth, seemingly quick run for those opposed to hilly treks. If this wasn’t enough to convince you, all participants go home with a tech T-shirt and a dino-inspired medal. To find out more about start times and how to sign up for the 5 and 10 kilometre races, check here.

Our neighbour, Ronald McDonald House, will be hosting their own Rock the House Run on Sunday, September 17th, to fundraise for a very worthy cause. The cost to participate is between $20-$55 and registration fees will benefit families of patients at the Alberta Children’s Hospital by helping them stay together at Ronald McDonald House. Runners can choose to participate in a 1, 5 or 10 kilometre race lined with with live music, street performers and dancers along the way. Find out more about the race and how to sign up here.

On Sunday, September 24, RBC Race for the Kids will host runners and walkers of all ages and abilities for a 1k Kids Dash or scenic 5k Family Fun Run, with proceeds benefitting specialized programs for teens and children with mental health needs across the community. The all-ages event welcomes all to participate, offering a post-race pancake breakfast at Heritage Park Historical Village —an ideal way to round out a September focused on fitness and philanthrophy.


Admiring the city’s changing colours is a great reason to step outside this autumn, and Calgary’s Northwest offers no shortage of picture-perfect places for taking it all in.

NW Calgary’s Baker Park, is made up of 12 beautiful acres of sprawling paths, grassy patches and numerous recreational areas prime for autumn strolls, with informational maps and monuments scattered throughout. As a bonus, the park offers prime views of Bowness Park from across the Bow River, giving explorers a great view of changing leaves on the water.

For an impressive look at the changing seasons, head up to McHugh Bluff, located on Crescent Road NW. With a lengthy set of stairs leading up to the treed bluff, this spot offers a considerable climb rewarded by sights of the city’s skyline—the perfect spot to catch an autumn sunrise or sunset. We recommend a visit earlier in the fall before the stairs ice over and potentially get too slippery for the trek.


Would any fall be truly complete without a pumpkin-hunt and a resulting photo-opp? NW Calgary’s Butterfield Acres offers a host of autumn-loving activities on weekends throughout October, including hay rides, petting zoos and of course, pumpkin-patch visits. As tickets go quickly, we recommend purchasing them online ahead of time here.

Ahead of the October pumpkin-rush, Butterfield Acres is open for drop in visits during September from 10am – 2pm Monday-Friday and 10am- 4pm on weekends.


There’s never been a better time than fall to support the arts here in YYC!

The Northwest is home to the Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium, and countless opportunities to see live acts, plays and concerts that come through Calgary. This fall, keep an eye out for acts like Foreigner, Tegan and Sara and Jersey Boys. From September 26-October 1, you can also catch The Sound of Music.

From October 16-21, the YYC Comedy Festival will be on to provide laughs in venues across the city, including multiple places within the Northwest like Kensington’s Plaza Theater and Oak Tree Tavern.


Are you settling into a new home or just in search of some new-to-you decor inspiration?

Look no further than The Hillhurst Community Market—the ideal place for those in search of one-of-a-kind vintage treasures. From classic record-collections to antique china and vintage-era homewares, the market offers something for everyone and has forever changing inventory thanks to its many vendors, ensuring that no two trips will ever be the same.


Even if your school days are behind you, it’s always a good time to learn something new.

Whether fashion, fitness or food-based, a class is a great way to enrich your everyday. Taking a aclass offers a chance to build new skills, make new friends, and discover new interests.

Fitness-enthusiasts have the opportunity to partake in a host of active classes in the Northwest, and can take it a step further by joining Sewletics — a class that offers students the chance to sew their own athletic-wear, including yoga pants, tank tops, and sports bras. Offered at Crescent Heights High School in NW Calgary, the class runs from October 18-November 22.

For those looking to put their culinary chops to the test and learn to make a meal guaranteed to impress dinner guests, we recommend Cuisine et Chateau in Kensington. With classes for all abilities, would-be chefs can choose between hands-on classes where students are guided as they make their own three course meal, and hand-off classes that are less interactive and more about showcasing food and wine. Kensington’s The Spice Chica offers a stress-free cooking class that will take you far from Calgary to destinations like Mexico, Japan, Italy and beyond. Photo-friendly classes take place at Raw Canvas in Kensington where you can also sign up for paint nights.

What are you looking forward to this fall in Calgary? Have an event we should check out or an activity worth trying? Let us know by tagging us on FacebookInstagram, and Twitter!

Join the Discussion

Comments are moderated before being posted. Your email address is required but will not be published.

Join our email list for more information and our newsletter.
I'm interested in learning more about:
Popular Keywords
Summer Wellness Checklist: Essential Activities for a Healthy Summer
The Latest 2024 Design Trends: Q&A with Jayman BUILT’s Expert Team
Discover the Best Weekly Deals on Retail Main Street at University District!
The Best Picnic Spots In and Around U/D
See All Blog Posts
2023, A year in review, active, Activity, Age-friendly community, Aging in place, Alberta, Alberta Children's Hospital, All ages, ALT Hotel, Alt Hotels, amenities, Ana Cummings, apartment rental, Aria, Artist, August, Bakeries, baking tips, Balcony, Balcony Decor, BBQ, beard grooming, Bike routes, BILD Awards, Block Party, blockbuster movie night, Bookstores, Bragg Creek, Breakfast, Brenda Stafford Foundation, Brenda Strafford Foundation, Brookfield Residential, Brunch, Bubble Tea, Bucket List, Budget, Budget conscious, Builder Launch, Building Industry and Land Development, Business, Calgary, Calgary Activities, Calgary Art, Calgary bakeries, Calgary business, Calgary community, Calgary Drinks, Calgary events, Calgary Fitness, Calgary Hearing, Calgary LRT, Calgary Parks, Calgary Real Estate, Calgary restaurants, Calgary staycation, Calgary tourism, Calgary Trails, Calgary Transit, Calgary Women, Cambridge Manor, Canada, Canada Day, Canmore, Capella, Cartwright lighting & furniture, Celebration, centerpieces, Central Commons, Charcut, charity, cineplex, Classes, Cochrane, comfort food, Community, community festival, Community Living, condo life, condos, connections, contest, cookie baking, cooking, cooking together, Creative, Crystal Creek Homes, Curious Hair, Curious Salon, Date Ideas, Date night, Decor, Decor Shops, Decor Tips, Denim & Smith, Dental, dental care, design styles, Dining, Discounts and Deals, Discovery Centre, DIY, dog park, Dogs, Downsize, downsizing, downsizing tips, Easter, Eco decor, eLearning, Entertainment, environment, events, exercise, Explore, Fall, Fall Decor, fall design, family, Father's Day, Financial, fitness, fitness as we age, food, food waste, Functional Fitness, Garden Maintenance, gardening, gift guide, giving back, golf, Green Calgary, Grey Cup, Group Germain Hotels, Guide to Northwest Calgary, gym, hair grooming, Health, Healthy Eating, Healthy Foods, Hearing loss, hobbies, holiday, holiday activities, Holiday Budget, holiday memories, Holiday movies, holiday parties, holiday season, holiday traditions, holiday wines, home, Home Automation, home decor, Home Maintenance, home office, Home organization, Home Ownership, Home Technology, homemade pizza, Homeowners, hosting the holidays, housing, I Can for Kids, IBI Group, Ice Cream, Ice Cream Shops, Ice Rink, inclusive, Interior Design, Interior Design for your pets, Interior Design Tips, interior lighting, International Womens Day, Isolation, Jayman, Jayman BUILT, Kananaskis, kids learning, Level Playing Field, lighting, local, local business, local good, Love on Main Street, love your pet, made in Calgary, Magna, Maple, Market Wines, McKinley Burkart, meal prep, meals, mens grooming, mental health, mindful spaces, Mother's Day Brunch, Movies at home, moving, multi-generational, Nature, New at UD, New homes, New Projects, New Resident, Night Market, North Calgary, North Hill Mall, North Pond, Northwest Calgary, Northwest Calgary Brunch, Northwest Commons Park, Northwest neighbour, Northwestival, nutrition tips, NW Calgary, Office, Olympic Oval, online learning, Orangetheory, Organization, outdoors, Park n' Play Design, Parks, Partners, party hosting tips, Patio Decor, pet care, pet love, Photography, Picnic, plant, plant care, play space, Playcore National Demonstration Site, playground, Programs, puppy love, rafting, real estate, recipes, redecorating, rent to own, rentals, restaurant, Retail, Retail Main Street, retailers, Rightsize, Romance, Ronald McDonald House Charities, Save-On-Foods, seasonal maintenance, senior health, Senior living, Seniors, sensory gadgets, shop local, Skating, Smaller space living, Smart Home, Sports, Spring, Spring Cleaning, Staples, Staycation, Summer Activities, Summer Food, summer getaways, sustainable design, table setting, tablescape, Thanksgiving, The Space Reclaimers, things to do, tips, Tips and Tricks, tourism calgary, townhome, townhome living, townhouse living, Trails in Northwest Calgary, travel, travel alberta, TREC Dental, U/D, UCalgary, UD Events, UD Life, UDLife, University District, University District Dental, University of Calgary, Urban Balcony, urban dog park, Urban Garden, Urban Patio Decor, Valentines Day, Vegan Cuisine, Vegan Food, Vendors, vermicomposting, Village Ice Cream, Volunteer, Volunteerism, Walking, West Campus Development Trust, Wine, wine experience, Winefest, Winsport Zipline, winter, winter activities, winter festival, Winter Fitness, winter fun, winter memories, winter pet care, winter pet care tips, winter traditions, winter warm up, Winter workout, women grooming, Women Leaders, workouts, Yard, year in review, YYC Events, YYC Hot Chocolate Fest

Discover NW Calgary's most interesting places, people and things

Visit Our Channel

Looking for something to do in NW Calgary?

Check Out Our Event Calendar

The University District blog is a resource for Calgarians who want to live, work, play, visit or buy in the northwest. We will provide you with information, stories, news and a closer look at the things that matter so you can live a more inspired, active and connected life in NW Calgary at University District… Life works here.