Connecting conference-goers with Canadian food producers, down on the farm
When conference planners select Canada for their international events, they’ve got an almost endless choice of unique networking venues and dining experiences to wow their delegates — from gourmet catered events in hotel ballrooms to gorgeous receptions in art galleries, from interactive events held in museums dedicated to Canadian culture, to science centres, aquariums, and more. When groups convene in Edmonton, conference planners can add “farm” to that extensive list.
Prairie Gardens Farm, less than an hour beyond Edmonton’s downtown core, is a 3,000-acre, family-run vegetable farm, where corporate groups, and international delegates gather to connect over a shared table — no better way to forge bonds than by sharing a meal together. From 800-person festival-style events, to gourmet long-table gatherings, to corporate team-building the farmer’s way, these event options are only limited by your imagination.
Fire Roaster Culinary Adventure
In an elegant twist on the usual banquet experience, Prairie Gardens offers gourmet long-table dinners in the field, amongst the hay bales, in marquee tents, or, our favourite spot, in the greenhouse. Suitable for groups of 60 to 400, each five-course gourmet menu is paired with Canadian wines and features ingredients grown within steps of the table. By partnering with area entrepreneurs, Prairie Gardens offers groups a variety of ways to amplify engagement, while connecting guests back to the land: a welcome and storytelling by a local moonshine-maker, a lesson in making herb-infused salts to take home in locally-made pottery, a medicinal plant walk through the forest with a member of the Treaty Six First Nation, or a Métis First Nation drumming circle before settling in for a feast.
The northern-most pumpkin farm in the world has been connecting large groups with Canadians through its year ‘round calendar of festivals. Now, when groups of 400 - 800 take over the farm they can choose from a casual picnic, a Canadian cookout, or a full-on festival experience, complete with entertainment provided by artists from the acclaimed Edmonton Street Festival. Add in hands-on, engaging farm activities, a 5-km corn maze, a haunted house, and more, you’ve got the makings of an outing to remember.
A-maize-ing Races — Team Building
Behind-the-scenes farm tours kick off an afternoon of high-energy skill-building activities designed to get teams working together. At Prairie Gardens Farm, groups can put their leadership and communications skills to the test maneuvering the five-kilometer corn maze, blindfolded, using only verbal clues. The ticking clock adds an element of intensity as teams compete in physically challenging farm chores, pitted against their colleagues. In summer it’s hay bale tossing, sack races, and tug of war. In winter, teams take part in snowshoe rally, or, the most Canadian of all sports: pumpkin curling. It’s harder than you think, and that’s half the fun.