Active Tech Electronics
I’ve been going to Active Tech way back since Grade 10 when they were still at the 32nd Avenue NE location. I was going to Lester B. Pearson High School and for the Innovative Tech class, I was making a “robot”. It turned out to be a 2 motor thing with 2 wheels housed in a playing card box tethered to a case with two DPDT switches. It did work and I got full marks for it! I still have and use the wire strippers and needle nose pliers that my dad got me from here. Active Tech is where I would go to buy small electronic components and sensors such as Arduino and Raspberry Pi stuff. They stock a good selection of electronic breakout boards from Adafruit and Seeed.
I would go to BE-Electronics more for electrical things as opposed to electronic components. So they’re good for things like power supplies, audio jacks, barrel plugs, Amphenol connectors, heat shrink, wire, banana plugs, etc. There is a small selection of Arduino sensors from Seeed if you need. If you have the part number you’re looking for, you can ask the sales desk for electronic components like capacitors, transistors, resistors, etc. I was a little shocked they stocked LM386 for my experiments with audio amplifiers. BE-Electronics has a good stock of MG chemicals like contact cleaner.
Doing what I do, I do have a Fluke 87V multimeter, but more often than not I’m probably using PowerFist test equipment from Princess Auto. They’re cheap and does the job. My favourite ratchet in my ammo/tool box is the 3-in-1 that accepts 1/4″, 3/8″ and 1/2″ sockets. You can get a good selection of organizers, hand tools and cables from Princess Auto. The surplus section often has small speakers and motors for cheap.
Caesar’s Steak House
Caesar’s Steak House was the first fancy steak house that I remember going to with my wife. It was everything that I imagined a classic steakhouse to be like, just like the ones in the movies. They’ll even do a table-side steak diane (the one with the flames), at least the last time I was there.
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The Cattle Baron steak house is the image of Alberta steakhouse if there ever was one. This is a more casual steak house, but that doesn’t mean the steaks aren’t every bit as good as the fancy ones. I probably prefer the Cattle Baron actually. According to their menu, they only serve AAA ALBERTA BEEF! This is where I’d take visitors if they’re asking for Alberta beef.
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Hy’s Steak House is an upscale modern take on the steak house. The steaks are excellent and the decor and environment are much more contemporary. Located at The Core downtown, parking isn’t too much of a problem, but you’ll probably have to pay. Hy’s also has table-side steak diane and they even have beef wellington for the Hell’s Kitchen fans.
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Scotsman’s Hill in the neighbourhood of Ramsay is the iconic postcard view of Calgary downtown with the Calgary Tower and Saddledome in the foreground. This place is amazing for fireworks during the Calgary Stampede. You can’t drive here during those 10 days in July, but you can walk. Well worth it. This photo was taken during the Great Flood of 2013 where all of downtown Calgary was flooded and the power went out. Everything was quiet there that day except for the roaring power of the Elbow River. Just weeks later, Calgarians still put on the Calgary Stampede come hell or high water. I still have that t-shirt kicking around.
St Patrick’s Island
When you think of Calgary, you don’t really think of waterfront usually. We’re not by any great body of water, but Fort Calgary was built at the confluence of the Elbow and Bow River. Go to St. Patrick’s Island by the Calgary Zoo for this somewhat odd view of Downtown Calgary. I especially like this when there is a mix of water and ice. We are in the North after all. I remember finding this spot and taking this photo while testing out the camera on my Samsung Galaxy S7. I was pleasantly surprised by what cell phone cameras could do these days. Especially since it now has image stabilization for shaky people like me.
Tom Campbell’s Hill
There aren’t too many places where you can get a picture of Calgary downtown and have those light streaks from traffic, but there is at least one near the Calgary Zoo on Tom Campbell’s Hill. If the conditions are right, you can probably see the Rocky Mountains in the background too. Pretty much anywhere in Calgary, if you can look West you can see those beautiful mountains.