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Calgary's secret culture of high society parties

When rumours started swirling about Enmax’s lavish and celebrity-filledparties, how many of you asked yourself, “Why don’t I work at Enmax?” <br />

When rumours started swirling about Enmax’s lavish and celebrity-filled parties, how many of you asked yourself, “Why don’t I work at Enmax?”

Unfortunately, Mayor Nenshi misunderstood our jealously and put an end to the parties that featured the likes of Gord Downie and Tom Cochrane.

Cutting back parties during the holidays? Talk about a Grinch. To be honest, I don’t care that Enmax CEO Gary Holden was hosting the parties, I’m more upset that I wasn’t invited. After all, it was our tax dollars he was spending, don’t we all deserve an invite?

In reality, Calgary has always had a secret culture of high society parties. Just like in high school, us “regulars” usually don’t find out about these parties until months later when pictures show up in Avenue Magazine. Even if you’ve heard of events like Vehicles and Violins, and other parties that are disguised charity events, inflated ticket prices typically scare away the middle class. The unofficial class system of Calgary is never more evident than during Stampede, with uber-exclusive events like the Stampede Roundup and the Doggie Do, which are so fancy, not even their ridiculous names can keep away the city’s elite.

During the rest of the year, residents of the Mount Royal, Crescent Heights and surrounding areas regularly get together and throw one party after another. Whether it’s the Grave Gala, last week’s ARTwear or the Lawson Lundell Celebrity Hors d'Oeuvres. You can’t forget the Big Rock Eddies and anything at Brett Wilson’s house.

I can’t help but assume that this small group of people are sick of talking to each other at these events. I don’t know about you, but I can only talk about my summer home in the Shuswap and the condo in Arizona so much.

Don’t these elite Calgarians eventually wonder what the rest of Calgary is talking about? Perhaps event planners should look at inviting a bigger variety of people to these events and fundraisers. Why not spice it up and put some tickets to these events under seats on the C-train and see who finds them and decides to show up? Maybe donate them to strangers walking through Marlborough Mall or post it as an open event on Facebook.

Or you could just do what Nenshi really wanted in the first place and invite him. As the song always said, “Mayors just wanna have fun, oh mayors just wanna have fun.”

 
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