2014 - Lougheed House

Happy Holidays from Lougheed House!

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We thank all of our visitors who came to see the House this holiday season! The House glistened and sparked thanks to the Calgary Design Group and furniture provided by McArthur Fine Furniture.

We wish you a Happy Holiday and we look forward to seeing you in the New Year!

Lougheed House will be closed for the holidays on Dec. 22nd. We reopen on the 3rd of January.

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The Mission Room fully decorated. Photograph by George Webber.

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The exterior of the House in holiday lights. Photo by George Webber.

Behind the Scenes: Lougheed House Gardens 2014 In Review

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Head Gardener Marie Gattinger gave us her insight into what worked and what didn’t this year in the Lougheed House Gardens. Glean some gardening wisdom from her tips and tricks for your garden next year!

Some highlights on what worked:


Begonias (Super olympia red) grew well with the consistent moisture under the evergreens.  We mixed them

amongst the hosta, which created a very pretty combination.


Begonias (Super olympia red) and hostas

Our godetia was a stunning display of silky blooms.  Next year we will plant them right down the first leaves to prevent twisted stalks. The helichrysum (Silver licorice) worked very well as a cascade in our north facing urns and it did well last year as a mounding plant around the geraniums. Orach Mountain spinach (Atriples hortensis) did extremely well as a tall back drop and the burgundy variety grew the best. Sapiglossis (Painted tongue) received many inquiries and was admired.  We will plant this flower en masse next year as a feature.

Painted Tongue both colorsSapiglossis (Painted tongue) 

The Cosmos flower did its job, as we asked it to provide the feeling of constant motion in the flower beds.  The snow in September halted the ripening of their seed heads and we were not able to save any Cosmos seeds.  However, they were a beautiful backdrop for our wedding photos.


Cosmos flower

Flowering kale always received rave reviews and still intrigues our guests.  Every year we are told “They look so real”! Butternut squash was rampant and over 50 pounds were harvested for the restaurant, and the Yukon gold potatoes were huge and scab free. 


What didn’t work:

Gypsophilia (Gypsy deep rose) was very short and was not visible from afar, while our Eggplant only produced 1 flower and 1 small fruit. Artichokes produced very poorly, although they did well the previous year.

All in all this was a very successful season.  It was the second one with no hail and no early frost.  Keep your fingers crossed we can have the same conditions next year. Thank-you to all the volunteers and our visitors for appreciating our pride and joy. We have put our gardens to bed for the season.

See you next spring.






WWI Opening Reception

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The Opening Reception of our current exhibit, “A Family at War: the Lougheeds, Calgary and the First World War”, was an evening to remember! We were very honoured to have many local representatives and dignitaries attend. We are grateful to all volunteers, staff and supporters for making the evening possible. Take a look at some of the highlights!


The Calgary Opera sang traditional songs from the era, captivating the audience.



Attendees got a first peak at exhibit artifacts.


Lougheed House Conservation Society Chair Gerry Meek introduced the evening’s remarks.


Board Member Carol Howes, Stephen Lougheed, MLA Wayne Cao and Executive Director Kirstin Evenden.

Marie and Gardeners

Garden volunteer Cindy Graham, Head Gardener Marie Gattinger, Carla Gattinger and long-time volunteer Evelyne Middleton.


Curator Mary-Beth Laviolette, Mayor Nenshi and Executive Director Kirstin Evenden.


Irene Kerr, President of the Alberta Museums Association (AMA) gave her remarks on the exhibit, which was funded by the AMA.


Doors Open YYC and Alberta Culture Days Sept. 26th – 28th, 2014

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We had a wonderful time here at the House during Alberta Culture Days and Doors Open YYC 2014. Our Behind the Scenes tours gave visitors a sneak peak into what goes on in our archives and how the House today has changed over the years. Musical performances by Alex Boiselle, Lisa Anderson and the Calypso Steel Band wowed. We were also lucky enough to host mural making with Dean Stanton, Matt Hiltermann’s Metis sash making workshops, Leah Donald’s needle felting demonstrations and storytelling by Karen Gummo. If you missed this year’s event, take a look at some of the highlights and be sure to join us in 2015!


Curator Ian Rogan gave tours of our archives and provided a glance at treasures like the Lougheed family Bible.


Lead Interpreter Jessica Wiklendt was on hand to answer questions about House history.


Matt Hiltermann guided colorful Metis sash making workshops.


Dean Staton prepped murals to be painted by visitors in bright colors.


Rustick Designs displayed their refurbished creations.


Leah Donald was hard at work demonstrating needle felting.

sept27karengummoKaren Gummo delighted and entertained with her tales of the Lougheeds from Lady Lougheed’s perspective.

DSCF0963The Antique Photobooth was a popular activity among visitors.



Lougheed House Community Survey

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The Lougheed House Community Survey was created to better serve our supporters, visitors and community members. We strive to  provide the best programming and heritage experience possible. Lougheed House wants to hear from you on what we can do to improve! We’d also like to know through our survey how to best communicate with you.


Complete our survey of only 9 short questions by September 26th to be entered to win a FREE Lougheed House membership for yourself or a friend!

The benefits of a membership include:

  • One-year unlimited free admission to Lougheed House during regular operating hours when regular admission charges apply
  • 10% discount in The Restaurant at Lougheed House (conditions may apply)
  • 10% discount at Museum Shop on regular priced items
  • Newsletter, providing advance notice of programs, exhibitions and events at Lougheed House
  • Discounted event and program fees
  • Invitation to AGM and reception, with voting privileges

Thank you for your feedback and support!

Head Gardener Marie Gattinger On Lily Beetles

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flowersblogThe 2014 Lougheed House Gardens

Our Head Gardener Marie Gattinger knows how to get a garden in tip-top shape. She has worked hard this year with her team of volunteers to create a garden rich in colour and symbolism.  She calls her inspiration for the year’s garden “beds in motion”. Commemorating the WWI centennial, the gardens reflect the movement of flags and include flowers symbolic of WWI, such as Ladybird Poppies.

Creating and nurturing a large garden presents many challenges, one of which is the Lily Beetle pest. Marie explains this problem, and how her team has remedied it:

We have discovered within our gardens a nasty little pest call the Lily Beetle in our Gardens.  It was discovered in the United States in 1945 and has spread throughout North America since then.  Lily leaf beetle (Lilioceris lilii) is known to lay its eggs and develop only on true lilies, Lilium species (Turk’s cap lilies, tiger lilies, Easter lilies, Asiatic and Oriental lilies) (not daylilies), and fritillaria (Fritillaria sp). Although lilies and fritillaria are the primary hosts, lily leaf beetle also feeds, sometimes just lightly, on a number of other plants, including lily of the valley (Convallaria majalis), soloman’s seal (Polygonatum sp.), bittersweet (Solanum sp.), potato (Solanum tuberosum), hollyhock (Alcea) and various hosta species. It is however, a devastating pest to true lilies.

lilliessLilies in the Lougheed House Gardens. Photo by Lia Kozlik
Red Lily BeetleThe Red Lily Beetle. Photo by The City of Calgary

Luckily, we have found them going about their business only on the lilies.  Some damage has been done in our west bed and the wildflower garden. Our volunteer Heather Lowe first spotted them and we have been removing the insects individually, removing the infested leaves, applying talc powder and washing the stems with a strong water stream.  Once the irreversible damage was done the plants are cut back to bare stems.  We will continue to monitor them and divide the bulbs in the fall and relocate them to uncontaminated areas.

The good news is that this is the only insect problem we currently have.  Ants are under control and the flowers are thriving.  A magnificent display this year and we encourage you to come to view the hard work that has gone into them.

– Marie Gattinger

Ride Through Time 2014

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Ride Through Time 2014 celebrated our neighborhood and city’s heritage with a Royal Union Flag raising by the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry (PPCLI). Old-fashioned fair activities manned by our volunteer team were available for the whole family. If you weren’t able to attend, fear not! We’ve included photographs of the highlights here. Ride Through Time is an annual Mid-Summer fair, and the next one is only a 354-day wait away!

As part of Historic Calgary Week running from July 25th to August 4th, Ride Through Time had the pleasure of offering booths from the following partner organizations: Chinook Country Historical Society, the Calgary Heritage Initiative, the Firefighters Museum of Calgary, the Calgary Public Library, the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry Regimental Museum, and Memory Lane Fashions. We’d like to thank all of our partners, volunteers and participants for making the day a huge success!

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Executive Director Kirstin Evenden,Captain Alan Younghusband CD – Regimental Adjutant, Warrant Officer Jason Yardley CD – PPCLI Museum Manager, Captain Dave Peabody PPCLI Museum General Manager, Corporal Andrew Mullett PPCLI Museum Registrar, MP Joan Crockatt, Secretary Treasurer Len Polsky, General Manager Cathy Olson

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Warrant Officer Jason Yardley and Corporal Andrew Mullett 

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Stiltwalker Carisa Hendrix with members of Memory Lane Fashions

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Our magician James Jordan entertained the bustling crowds!

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Music from WWI and the 1920s were played by local act Mantis with a Fork.

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At the Garden Tent, Head Gardener Marie Gattinger and volunteers Mary and Heather gave tours of the Gardens.

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Fiddler Bruce Leinan filled the fair with great music.

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The Upal family traveled back in time at the Antique Photo Parlour.

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Kesia Kvill, Shannon Quigley and Owen Melenka from the Firefighters Museum of Calgary showed off a 1929 fire truck from Saskatchewan.

Visitors browsed the heritage organization booths available during the fair.

Visitors browsed the heritage organization booths available during the fair.


Summer Happenings: The 20th AGM and Collecting Culinaria Summer Launch

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Our 20th Annual General Meeting presented the efforts of members, staff, volunteers and donors to maintain the success of the Lougheed House. The AGM commenced with Chair Gerry Meek outlining the highlights of 2013 achievements. In 2013, almost 70,000 people used our Gardens and Park spaces. As a non-profit society, we rely on donations and the work of our dynamic volunteer team to serve our visitors.

Executive Director Kirstin Evenden announced her vision to see community partnerships and visitors grow. We are proud to be an active member of the Beltline community providing a one-of-a-kind heritage experience. Joe Lougheed, a past board member, received the Ron Robertson Leadership Award from the Lougheed House Conservation Society.


Gerry Meek (Chair), Kirstin Evenden (Executive Director), Joe Lougheed (Past Board Member), Andrew Tavender (Treasurer)


Lougheed House Conservation Society members voting during the AGM.

To enjoy voting privileges at the next AGM, along with other benefits, be sure to become a member. Following the AGM, all were treated to Lougheed House Restaurant fair, cocktails and the summer launch of our Collecting Culinaria exhibit. Curators Merrill Distad and Caroline Lieffers were present to offer an introduction to the exhibit and their personal connections to culinary history. Merill Distad’s late wife Linda Miron Distad amassed an impressive collection of cookbooks that were later donated to the University of Alberta. Selected cookbooks from this collection are present in the Collecting Culinaria exhibit. Caroline Lieffers grew up on the prairies and co-curated Collecting Culinaria to showcase the culinary roots of this region.

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Curators Merrill Distad and Caroline Lieffers.

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Lougheed House Curator Cassandra Cummings and Lead Interpreter Jessica Wiklendt

The formal gardens are being planted!

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The formal gardens are being planted by our Head Gardener, Marie Gattinger, and her wonderful volunteers.

The theme of this year’s garden is the 100th anniversary of the start of the First World War and below is a photo of one of our formal beds with a stylized “VP” in yellow marigolds.

Victoria Patricia Helena Elizabeth, who was known as Princess Patricia of Connaught, was the grand-daughter of Queen Victoria. Her father was the Duke of Connaught, one of Canada’s Governor Generals.  Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry was named after Victoria Patricia, hence the VP logo in our Dome bed.

These photos were taken by Jim Pihulak, who is one of our volunteers.


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