Stampede under the sea
Aqua ranch added to cowboy fun
The Calgary Stampede’s Bell Aqua Ranch was added this year, and featured three aquatic shows — H2X, a jet ski performance; the Fountain Shows, which occur every half hour; and the Out of the blue performance, which is a nightly spectacle.
The Fountain Show, which claimed to be “Just like Vegas” was not as advertised. A viewer, who was unaware of the claim, announced that “If you want to see a real water show, go to Vegas.”
The show was very short, running approximately five minutes. The music before and during the event was not necessarily suitable for all audience members, for example on Tuesday, it was seniors day, and the music chosen was mostly dubstep.
The show itself was a bit dull. A few streams of water rose at varying heights, and not much else happened. However, there were two advantages: First, the fountains provided a nice mist for people in the front seats, allowing them to cool off after a hot day of waiting in lines and Second — Bell offered one dollar for every person who attended the show for the entire Stampede towards flood relief.
For those who had seen the Fountain Show and arrived at the Bell Aqua Ranch later in the day for the Out of the Blue performance was a pleasant surprise.
At the beginning of the performance, the H2X jet skiers were out one last time, showing off a much shorter version of their performance, while people danced with fire in the background. A brief fire show was held while the jet skiers performed for the audience members before the water show began.
Perhaps the darkness made the water show better. The Out of the Blue show used the exact same streams of water at varying heights as the Fountain show did, but had brilliant lights of different colours shining upon the water. In the background, fireworks went off, lighting up the night sky.
The music was a remix of Coldplay’s “Paradise”, “We are Young” by FUN, “I love it” by Icona Pop, Imagine Dragons’ “Radioactive” and other pop hits that may appeal to a larger audience. The music, water, lights and fireworks all seemed to be perfectly timed.
The audience all applauded as the night sky lit up with the glow of the rides, the fireworks, and the show itself, concluding the night for many Stampede-goers.