Top 5 things to do in Winnipeg this weekend

There are a bunch of fun, relaxing things you can check out this weekend that definitely edge out watching movies on the couch in your pajamas for two days straight.

Hometown rivalries on ice in Fort Garry, nature documentaries at Fort Whyte and dinner off Corydon

Channel Bob and Doug McKenzie (Rick Moranis and Dave Thomas) at a Manitoba Bison's hockey game this weekend. Plaid optional, tuques not. (Handout photo/The Canadian Press)

Oh man. This is going to be a tough weekend to rally, guys. The weather has kicked our butts this week and all the hoopla from the holidays has left us exhausted.

But there are a bunch of fun, relaxing things you can check out this weekend that definitely edge out watching movies on the couch in your pyjamas for two days straight.

WHAT: SPORTS – Bisons hockey

When: Friday at 7 p.m. or Saturday at 6 p.m. and 7 p.m.

Where: Wayne Fleming Arena at the University of Manitoba

Cost: $10 general admission, $5 for students

This is a good weekend to go watch some hometown heroes face off against their archrivals on the ice — and not drop hundreds of dollars on tickets.

The men's and women’s Bisons hockey teams will be playing the Saskatchewan Huskies Friday and Saturday night, and for only $10 you can go check out a game.

There’s something very Manitoban about going to check out your local under-appreciated but super talented hockey team play a game against a nearby province, and if you’ve ever been to even a rec league game to watch someone you sort of care about skate around, you know it’s actually a fun time.

Dress warm, do your best hoser impression and watch our Bisons beat the pants off the Huskies.

My top pick from the four games? The Friday night women’s game (they’re doing slightly better than the men’s team and are very deserved of your raucous cheering this weekend).

WHAT: ACTIVITY – Night skating at Assiniboine Park

When: Friday, Saturday or Sunday

Where:  Assiniboine Park at 55 Pavilion Cres.

Cost: FREE

I am the last person to advocate going outside for extended periods of time when you don’t have to, nevermind for physical activity. But skating at the park after dark is pretty cute.
Assiniboine Park opens up its duck pond for free to skaters during the winter. Even at night! (Assiniboine Park Conservancy/Canadian Press)

The Assiniboine Park rink is all lit up at night and dozens of people strap on skates and glide around, and it’s just really beautiful.

There’s a pavilion where you can warm up, a welcome centre where they host weddings you can gawk at and a whole bunch of lovely light features.

Plus, not far away (honestly just a few feet) is a toboggan hill that is loaded with families braver than my own.

Bring a mug full of something warm, extra socks in the trunk and someone who will pick you up off your butt when you inevitably fall down.

WHAT: ART – Edge Gallery resident artist showcase

When: Friday, Jan. 3 at 7 p.m.

Where:  The Edge Gallery at 611 Main St.

Cost: FREE

If you’ve got a car and some fancy duds that didn’t get enough wear during the holidays, head down the Edge Gallery on Main Street this weekend.

The gallery is holding their first-ever resident artist exhibit (and gala!) on Friday night, with work from KC Adams, Crystal Nykoluk, Mike Astill and Monica Martinez.

The event will have food, drinks, music and a raffle. You’re supposed to dress up because it’s a fancy-themed thing, so you’ll probably want to take a car out to the North-Main gallery, or at the very least, hop in a cab.

The event is part of First Fridays, which has a ton of galleries in the Exchange District open their doors to the public for free, so if you aren’t super into the Edge scene you can pop over to any other gallery before you call it a night.

WHAT: FILM – People of a Feather at Fort Whyte

When: Sunday, Jan. 5 at 1 p.m.

Where:  Fort Whyte Alive at 1961 McCreary Rd.

Cost: $7

If you have a Wolseleyite, hipster, nature nerd or hippie in your life, you may want to bring them to Fort Whyte Alive this weekend.

The wildlife preserve is having a really cute nature documentary matinee on Sunday, complete with free popcorn.

They’re showing a film on the impact of hydroelectric dams on sea ice, which sounds boring but is actually really compelling and obviously very relevant to any Manitoban. Think Planet Earth meets every other nature documentary about environmental issues.

If you’re not convinced, check out the trailer.

The flick starts at 1 p.m., and your popcorn is included in the $7 admission fee. The admission fee also gets you access to the whole site, so you could go snow shoeing or check out the bison after you're done.

WHAT: FOOD – Café Carlo

When: Friday, Saturday and Sunday

Where:  Café Carlo at 243 Lilac St.

Cost: $20-$35 per entrée

Café Carlo is a cute date spot tucked away on Lilac Street just behind Corydon Avenue.
Cafe Carlo is open until 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and open until 9 p.m. on Sundays. (Facebook)

It’s the kind of cozy place that makes you want to stick around for hours drinking wine, and it’s the perfect spot to go this weekend to escape the cold and enjoy some great company.

What’s especially great about this place is if you’re stuck with a picky or unadventurous eater, they can probably find something on the menu they like (eg: szechuan linguine, lemon-pesto chicken or tenderloin and fries).

It’s not cheap, but it’s also not over-the-top expensive, and the food is genuinely good.

They bill themselves as unpretentious, which I really enjoy, but you’ll probably want to dress up just a little bit.