Posts Written On February 16, 2019

Peppa Pig at Calgary Zoo

Calgary in the winter is not for the faint of heart. I heard on the radio that this is the coldest snap we have had since 1998. However, we’ve got Peppa Pig coming to town and according to the simple monthly budget template I use, there is a little bit left for entertainment (or maybe “frivolous” is the better word, but I digress).  So today with a -17C but feels like -28C with windchill forecast we headed out to the Calgary Zoo.  

When we arrived it’s clear that it’s going to be an easy day. The parking lots were virtually empty amidst the billowing snow. There were no lines at the front gates so we basically walked right in. However as we crossed the bridge towards the pavilion, more and more  little people gathered, chanting “Peppa Peppa  Peppa”.

When we got there we were met with a timed ticket for our slot for photos. Any parent who has done this for Santa photos knows what a blessing it is. It cuts the actual wait time down to 10 minutes or less.

While we wait for a chance to meet with Peppa and George we watch Peppa Pig’s “Chinese new year” episode on a continuous loop on a giant TV, with the kids doing crafts at the same time.

My oldest made a Chinese paper lantern while the younger ones cut and coloured Peppa pictures.

There was a Games Station with giant connect 4’s, tic-tac-toe and Jenga set up on the other side in the beautiful garden.

At last it was the long awaited moment. It was our turn to meet Peppa. My boys declined being in the photo as they felt like they have done their brotherly duty escorting their sister to the front of the line. My daughter  confidently walked up after declaring she was “doing this by myself”. She gave Peppa a big hug then turned around and smiled for pictures with Peppa and George. This is as good as it gets for a three year old.

After pictures we headed out to see the pandas is well. We then made the trek back to the car. By then the wind had died down so it wasn’t quite so treacherous. A wonderful morning and a well attended event despite the cold. It’s no wonder that kids are starting to speak in a British accent.  Peppa and George is a wonderful draw. Thanks for a great morning Calgary Zoo! 



MAPPLETHORPE evokes tangible time and place in its every frame. A phenomenal performance from lead Matt Smith and arresting historical deference. Mapplethorpe was a complicated person, and the film admirably leans into that complexity.”

Lena Wilson, SLATE

“Timoner’s gutsiness is shared (and then some) by her star Matt Smith. Nothing holds Smith back from making Mapplethorpe come alive again, in every sense.”

Dan Callahan, THE WRAP

“A superb performance by Matt Smith. A bold and brilliant performance, an act of possession, really.”


Robert Mapplethorpe is arguably one of the most important artists of the 20th century. Mapplethorpe discovered himself both sexually and artistically in New York City throughout the 70’s and 80’s.

The film depicts Mapplethorpe’s life from moments before he and Patti Smith moved into the famed Chelsea hotel, home to a world of bohemian chic. Here, he begins photographing its inhabitants and his new found circle of friends including artists and musicians, socialites, film stars, and members of the S&M underground.  Mapplethorpe’s work displayed eroticism in a way that had never been examined nor displayed before to the public. Exploring the intersection of his art, his sexuality and his struggle for mainstream recognition, MAPPLETHORPE offers a nuanced portrait of an artist at the height of his craft and of the self-destructive impulses that threaten to undermine it all.

Directed by: Ondi Timoner

Written by: Ondi Timoner, Mikko Alanne

Cast: Matt Smith, Marianne Rendón, John Benjamin Hickey, Mark Moses, Carolyn McCormick, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Kerry Butler

Release Date:  March 1st, 2019

Distributor: Samuel Goldwyn Films

TRT:  102 min.

Producers: Eliza Dushku, Ondi Timoner, Nate Dushku, Richard J. Bosner

Executive Producer: Peter Palandjian, Sam Maydew

Composer: Marcelo Zavos

Director of Photography: Nancy Schreiber

Editors: Lee Percy, John Allen, Ondi Timoner

Samuel Goldwyn Films will release MAPPLETHORPE on March 1st, 2019