Inglewood: Best Neighbourhood in 2018

Best of Calgary is a celebration of the people, places and voices that make Calgary an amazing place to live and call home.

Written by: Kelsey Woods

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Whether you’re a born-and-raised Calgarian or simply visiting for the weekend, Inglewood is a must-see. Established in 1875 and still flourishing today, Inglewood is Calgary’s oldest, boldest neighbourhood around. Ninth Avenue that runs through this community was Calgary’s first ever ‘main street,’ once upon a time. Today, you’ll find boutiques, microbreweries, high-end eateries and public art displays up and down every street. Inglewood is known as much for the 200+ trendy businesses that are found here as it is for the arts and culture scene. It is home to countless festivals, live music venues, art galleries, markets and city-wide events attended by all. Inglewood is and remains to be a commercial, residential and institutional hub for all things happening in Calgary.

Let’s meet one of the creative minds behind running and maintaining Calgary’s first neighbourhood!

Rebecca O’Brien 

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Are you a born and raised Calgarian?  

I was actually born on Cape Breton Island in Nova Scotia, and was then raised in Ireland as well as Halifax.

What was your dream job growing up? How has this influenced who you are today?

I don’t recall having a dream job growing up - I was far too lazy for that! As soon as I finished university, I moved to the British Virgin Islands where I crewed on beautiful sail boats (and drank a lot of Danish beer). That was as close to a dream job that I had! I’m not sure how it influenced me, but I did realize that all the sun and heat turns my brain to mush and that I have a visceral need for changing seasons.

What is your favourite thing about Calgary?

I love solitary walks along the river with my dog on the very coldest days of winter, looking at the dawn sky when snow coats everything, steam rises from the river and the ducks on the river move quietly, reserving their energy.

If you could describe Calgary in one word, what would it be?


What does being a Calgarian mean to you?

I have mixed feelings: being far away from family and missing the ocean is hard for me. However, I have tremendous affection for the feeling of being in a young city, where people are open-minded and the spirit is dynamic and inclusive. I love the art and music scene here.

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Do you have a favourite watering hole in Calgary?

All of the microbreweries in Inglewood!

What is your favourite Calgary event/activity or thing to do?

Playing ice hockey with the my ladies hockey team at our local rink or playing tennis at the courts by my house.

Where is the best place to people watch in Calgary?

Hands down, the Blackfoot Truckstop Diner.

If you were an emoji, what emoji would you be?

An emoji for business in the front, slept in and forgot the meeting in the back.

Tell us about your business.

I am the Executive Director of the Inglewood Business Improvement Area.

Anything special coming up we should know about?

Inglewood is special every day - that’s what is so cool about the area. It is the antidote to getting shack whacky in the winter or feeling claustrophobic after 10 minutes in the mall. There is live music throughout the main street, jazz walks, art walks, an amazing art gallery (the Esker), Sunfest, Night Markets, Sled Island Block Party and Alberta’s first outdoor microbrewery Oktoberfest featuring Calgary’s musical talent, which was a huge success. The street is full of great food, locally owned businesses with character and characters up to all sorts of business. Come check it out!  

Connect with us on Instagram: @inglewoodyyc

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Kelsey Woods is the Content & Editorial Manager for Best of Calgary.

Kelsey Woods