Whoop-Up Days is bringing the Southern Alberta community together like never before by introducing free gate admission. A Lethbridge tradition for more than 125 years, Whoop-Up Days returns to the Lethbridge & District Exhibition campus from Aug. 22-26, 2023. With free admission, it is easier than ever for the community to come together to celebrate, experience, eat, laugh, and ride.
This year’s Whoop-Up Days will be further enhanced by the use of the new 268,000 square foot Agri-Food Hub & Trade Centre, which will be open and host attractions throughout the five days of the fair.
“Whoop-Up Days is everyone’s fair,” says Mike Warkentin, Lethbridge & District Exhibition CEO. “We’ve listened to our community and we are committed to making Whoop-Up Days a fun, friendly, and accessible celebration for all Southern Albertans. We could not take this step without the support of our corporate and community partners who have, and will continue to, come forward to be a part of Whoop-Up Days and make this possible.”
Along with free gate admission, visitors can expect a wide array of exciting programming in 2023, including the Whoop-Up Days Parade on Aug. 22; West Coast Amusements Midway; the Siksikaitsitapi Pow Wow and Princess Pageant; live music; Global Pet Foods’ SuperDogs; the Whoop-Up Days marketplace; food trucks, entertainment; beer gardens and much more.
Also back in 2023 is the Lethbridge & District Pro Rodeo, which returned as a Canadian Pro Rodeo Association (CPRA) sanctioned event in 2022. Taking place from Aug. 24-26, some of North America’s top competitors will face off with Duane Kesler Championship Rodeo Stock for more than $80,000 in prize money. Rodeo tickets are on sale now.
“Rodeo’s roots run deep in Southern Alberta and we are proud that the Lethbridge & District Pro Rodeo has quickly become one of the CPRA’s premiere events,” says Warkentin. “Rodeo and western culture are celebrated nightly in an exciting spectacle that keeps fans on the edge of their seats.”
Lethbridge’s location on Blackfoot Territory will once again be celebrated with a series of events through a partnership with the Blackfoot Confederacy. The Siksikaitsitapi Pow Wow and Princess Pageant take place from Aug. 22-24, with dancers, drummers and princess pageant contestants competing for more than $60,000 in prize money. As well, each night of the Lethbridge & District Pro Rodeo will be capped off with the always exciting Warrior Relay Races, a thrilling traditional Indigenous competition. New to Whoop-Up Days this year is the Blood Tribe Ag Society Finals Rodeo, which will take place on Aug. 22 and 23.
“The Blackfoot Confederacy has been incredible to work with and we are proud of the ways we have made these events a centerpiece of the Whoop-Up Days experience,” says Warkentin. “This is a great chance for visitors to experience Pow Wow, a princess pageant and Warrior Relay Races, and really get involved in traditional Blackfoot culture.”
More information on Whoop-Up Days, including the return of live music and entertainment, will be announced in the coming months. Applications for the parade, food trucks, marketplace vendors and buskers are open now. The community is also encouraged to get involved by becoming a partner, sharing their community event, or hosting an on-campus event during Whoop-Up Days. More information is available at whoopupdays.ca.
Confirmed programming for Whoop-Up Days 2023
Whoop-Up Days Parade (Aug. 22 9 AM)
Morning to Midway (Gates open early at noon on Aug. 22)
West Coast Amusements Midway
Whoop-Up Days Marketplace featuring Western Alley
Fireworks Finale (Aug. 26)
Whoop-Up Days Food Trucks
Global Pet Foods’ SuperDogs (free show, four times daily)
Lethbridge & District Pro Rodeo featuring Warrior Relay Races (Aug. 24-26)
Siksikaitsitapi Pow Wow and Princess Pageant (Aug. 22-24)
Blood Tribe Ag Society Finals Rodeo (Aug. 22-23)
And much more to be announced soon!