Before our guests from Hong Kong and India left Winnipeg we thought we needed to take them to the city’s most popular ice cream stand the Bridge Drive-In .The Bridge Drive In (known more commonly in Winnipeg as simply The BDI) has been serving ice-cream to patrons since May 1 1957 and on a warm summer evening there is always a line up of people waiting to get sundaes and milkshakes and a dipped cone. The crowd on the night we were there was modest.
But this is how it can look on a busy afternoon.
Dave and Anil cycled over to the BDI on Jubilee Avenue and we ladies took the car.
The Bridge Drive In has many flavors of soft ice-cream and you can get your cone dipped in butterscotch or chocolate and rolled in nuts.
Anil and I both opted for the Bridge Bar while Dave and the ladies had soft icecream. The bridge beside the ice cream parlor is The Elm Park Bridge but it is often called the BDI Bridge. The ice cream stand was named after the bridge when it opened and now 57 years later the bridge has come to be known by the name of the ice cream stand.The Bridge crosses the Red River and was built in 1912.The bridge used to have a 5 cent toll for pedestrians a 10 cent toll for vehicles and a 25 cent toll for trucks. The toll charges were stopped in 1946 and the bridge was closed to vehicles in 1974. The city did not tear down the bridge because it was too expensive to do so.The night of our visit there was even a saxophonist at the end of the bridge to serenade us.
Dave and I used to live one street over from the Bridge Drive In on Rosedale Avenue when we were first married and we visited the iconic ice cream stand regularly. It was fun to go back with our visitors and introduce them to a Winnipeg landmark.
Posts about showing other Hong Kong visitors Winnipeg………
The Winnipeg Art Gallery Roof
Leo Mol Sculpture Garden
Bison Up Close and Personal
Our friends Meena and Anil are visiting us from Hong Kong and we took them out to the Peasant Cookery, a favorite Exchange District restaurant of ours. The window ledges are decorated with artistic fowl sculptures in wood or ceramics and jars of canned fruits and vegetables.The Peasant Cookery boasts that it offers ‘real food from the land’ and we knew from our past visits that the food would be excellent and the service friendly.
We decided to order five different dishes from the eclectic menu and share them all. Our meal was first rate.
A beet salad with toasted seeds, goat cheese, arugula and a caramelized honey vinaigrette dressing
Tourtiere- a French meat pie with thick cut fries
aged cheddar gnocchi with sun dried tomato, spinach, red onion, piquillo peppers and basil oilLightly breaded mahi, mahi with fresh vegetables
and bread pudding with Guinness ice-cream and a caramel sauce for dessert.Despite his look of concern in this photo our waiter was attentive and very pleasant and earned extra bonus marks from us when my husband asked him who his favorite Winnipeg band was and he replied, “Royal Canoe,” the band our son plays in. After dinner we were off to the Trappist Monastery in St. Norbert to see this years’ Shakespeare in the Ruins production of The Comedy of Errors. It was a near perfect night. The rain held off and it was just cool and windy enough to keep the mosquitoes at bay. We had warm blankets provided by the theatre troupe. We moved around the monastery grounds to see the different scenes from the play. It was done in such an entertaining fashion, the humor bawdy and the acting a bit ‘over the top’ in a good way. The actors made it so easy to follow the rather complicated plot of mistaken identity that near the end of the play when it was revealed that identical twins had been mixed up throughout the drama, a little boy about three or four years old in the audience blurted out, “Why there’s two of them.” Even he understood the plot resolution. The Peasant Cookery staff and Shakespeare in the Ruins company helped us show off our city to our Hong Kong friends in first class style.
Other related posts……
Shakespeare in the Ruins- 2012
Are You Speaking English
Devour the District
I walk by this large crowned bird off to the side of the Air Canada building on Portage Avenue almost everyday. The other morning I decided to stop and take some photos and find out more about the sculpture.
The piece is called The Pigeon King and it was created by Curtis Wiebe who is a filmmaker, animator, musician and sculptor. He is also the founder of the Winnipeg Puppet Collective. Curtis teaches art at the Winnipeg Art Gallery and Canadian Mennonite University.
Curtis Wiebe with The Pigeon King -photo by Wayne Glowacki- Winnipeg Free Press
Curtis studied art at the University of Manitoba and I discovered from a 2009 article in the Winnipeg Free Press that he is from Drake, Saskatchewan, my mother’s home town.
Curtis’ pigeon is pretty plump and has enormous feet. I guess it is appropriate that a bird of flight is outside the Air Canada building although The Pigeon King’s size might hamper him during take-off.
Other sculptures in downtown Winnipeg….
Have You Lost Your Marbles?
James Bond Is From Winnipeg
I’ve been eating lunch regularly at Neechi Commons at 865 Main Street. A number of schools I serve as a faculty advisor for the university are in the area. I’ve discovered it’s a great place to go for lunch. The commons is an Aboriginal owned and operated cooperative and contains not only a restaurant but also a grocery store where I often stop after my school visits to pick up items I need for supper .There is also an art store called……..
The waiters are friendly, helpful and polite and the food at Niche Commons is always good. I especially enjoy the homemade soups. Last week I had a delicious cream of cauliflower and yesterday’s special was a beef barley. The bannock is wonderful and so are the salads. Yesterday I tried the wild rice salad. The restaurant has a full menu with all kinds of burgers and breakfast items as well.
Winding Staircase Leading to the Restaurant
Neechi means friend/sister/brother in Cree and Ojibwa.
Kitchen at Neechi Commons
Neechi Commons is the largest commercial employer of First Nations and Metis people. More than 50 people are employed by the store and the art shop represents the work of some 40 artists.
Tables are decorated with stones and little pine logs
If you’ve never been to Neechi Commons you should really drop in. But if you come for lunch come early. The place is often packed.
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Eating with The Stars
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