By Liam Atwood
This year, I had the opportunity to enjoy and be a part of the Queen City Ex in Regina Saskatchewan. QCX is a huge yearly fair that has been happening for 138 years, this year marking a record attendance of 278,000 people. This was a huge event as it was hosted during the recovery of a pandemic, the Canadian Association of Fairs and Exhibitions provided many tools for dealing with the post-pandemic difficulties of having such a large event.
This year, the fair took place from August 3rd – 7th, with lots to do; a midway, indoor marketplace, concerts, a rodeo, indoor and outdoor shows, a sports dome, and so much more. I got to be a part of setting up and running many of these events. My main responsibility was as a “team lead” for two areas of the fair: the Sportsdome and Mostos Indigenous Village. As the team lead, I would set up the area and ensure it stayed clean and safe and all was running smoothly. Each area had exhibitors who would set up shows or activities for the day. In the Sportsdome, I had a paintball shooting range, a golf simulator, NERF arena, mini golf, and a sports bar. In the Mostos Village, Terrence Littletent, a local who is famous for his awesome hoop dancing skills, had a troop of over 30 performers who put on shows like storytelling, dancing, and drum circles. The food at the fair had some of the most variety I’ve ever seen at one, there was just about every type of food you could imagine and crazy varieties of some fair classics. QCX even had their own food stands, serving their famous QCX Prairie Stack, which I of course had to try, and it was awesome. The last night there, I went on some rides and played lots of games around the midway. The staff went on the swinging boat ride together and got a picture as part of their yearly tradition to mark the end of a successful fair.
One of the biggest highlights of the trip had to be the Jason Derulo concert. It was an outdoor concert with tons of effects and Regina local, “Tesher”, opening, even those who didn’t enjoy the music loved the show. Over 6000 people attended, for a packed show, and despite a bit of rain, it was easily a highlight of the trip.
I for sure would jump at the chance for another experience like this! It was busy and stressful at times, but extremely rewarding. Getting to be a part of something so big, helping to run and set it up was . The Queen City Ex is an amazing fair and I hope to go again someday! The rides and food were awesome, the experiences and shows were amazing!