Reason #63 of '101 Reasons Why I Heart Edmonton'


By Emil Tiedemann

I’ll admit it, I choked up singing along to “No One Needs to Know” at the 2015 Shania Twain concert at Northlands’ Rexall Place. Judge me all you want, I don’t care! I couldn’t help it, after all...I had some sort of weird gay crush on Shania when she was one of the world’s superstars back in the ‘90s. 

I knew all of her songs by heart and I knew everything there was to know about the Canadian icon, and now there I was, singing her lyrics right alongside her to a glowing audience tipsy on expensive booze and the sounds of their high school days. 
The Edmonton EXPO Centre is the backbone of Northlands.

But that certainly wasn’t the only time I stood in the aisles of Rexall belting out to the songs of one of my favourite singers or bands. Nope, it all stemmed back to when I was 12 years old and went to the Paula Abdul concert with my buddy Peter. Again, judge me all you want, it doesn’t phase me! It was one of the fondest memories I have of growing up. 

Since then, I’ve had the chance to see everyone from Jay-Z and Tim McGraw to Bob Dylan and Kings of Leon at Rexall, as well as a few Oilers games and some other roaming events here and there. In other words, lots of memories! 

But, Rexall - the former Coliseum and Skyreach Centre - is just one part of Northlands, “Edmonton’s entertainment destination.” Northlands is also the Edmonton EXPO Centre, where conferences, expositions, and trade shows are hosted throughout the year, such as the Edmonton Comic & Entertainment Expo, Taboo Naughty but Nice Sex Show, and Oktoberfest! Northlands is also the Park Raceway & Casino, where you can watch and bet on world-class thoroughbred racing (up until 2016), play the slots, or grab a bite to eat. 
The giant swings over at K-Days, which takes over Northlands every July.

Northlands is also K-Days, the most popular and longest-running festival in Edmonton, and where hundreds of thousands of visitors come for the rides, music, and food each and every July. 

And Northlands was the home of the Edmonton Oilers from the very beginning, when Wayne Gretzky was changing the game of hockey as we knew it. But, to me, it is most importantly those memories forever etched into my mind as a child, then as a teen, and now as an adult(ish). That goes for the countless other Edmontonians who surely feel the same way too. #northlands


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