Top Attractions in Regina

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Located in the southern part of the province, Saskatchewan’s capital city is teeming with must sees and dos. Plan a vacation to the Queen City and visit these top attractions:  

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Wascana Centre

One of the largest urban parks in North America, Wascana Centre is an oasis in the middle of the city and an excellent venue for walking, cycling and jogging. The park is also home to the 104-hectare Wascana Lake Migratory Bird Sanctuary, where you might spot some wild creatures, from painted turtles and wetland birds to pelicans and cormorants. Cool off from the Saskatchewan summer heat as you paddle out on a canoe, kayak or stand-up paddleboard to one of Wascana Lake’s many constructed islands, or take a leisurely cruise with  Ferry Boat Tours .

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Royal Saskatchewan Museum

In 2019, the Royal Saskatchewan Museum ’s newest star attraction made its debut. Scotty, the world’s largest and oldest Tyrannosaurus rex , calls the Regina museum its second home (the first is the T.rex Discovery Centre in Eastend). This scale replica is so massive that it required major redevelopment to the museum to allow for two-storey viewing of the dinosaur skeleton. Another new exhibit – HOME: Life in the Anthropocene – explores the human condition and its impact on the world . The museum's First Nations Gallery reflects the history and traditions of Indigenous peoples and their relationship with the land for over 10,000 years.    

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RCMP Heritage Centre

The RCMP Heritage Centre brings to life one of Canada’s oldest and most iconic stories, the story of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP). While the museum is modern, its setting on the grounds of the RCMP Academy, “Depot” Division, is steeped in history. Established in 1885, “Depot” Division is considered the “Cradle of the Force,” with all RCMP members from across Canada receiving their training in Regina. Explore over a century of history, from the formation of the North West Mounted Police in 1873 to the modern-day Mountie. In the exhibit hall, check out the Musical Ride virtual reality experience or get behind the wheel of the driving simulator .

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MacKenzie Art Gallery

Spend a leisurely afternoon browsing works of art at Saskatchewan's oldest public art gallery. The MacKenzie Art Gallery , located in the T.C. Douglas Building, features thought-provoking creations from around the world with nearly 5,000 pieces in its permanent collection. Wander through the 24,000 sq. ft. of gallery space and then stop in The Gallery Shop to purchase locally made, handcrafted and thoughtfully curated giftware.

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Government House

Experience life in turn-of-the-century splendour and admire its Victorian-era elegance while exploring Government House , which was built in 1891 to house the Lieutenant Governor of the Northwest Territories. Now it’s home to a museum, a conservatory and formal Edwardian Gardens. Engaging tours, programs and exhibits will take you back in time .

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Saskatchewan Legislative Building

Constructed in 1912, the Saskatchewan Legislative Building is one of the grandest buildings in Western Canada. Designed by the Maxwell Brothers of Montreal in Beaux-Arts style, the building was constructed with Manitoba Tyndall stone and 34 types of marble. View the grand staircase, rotunda, galleries and Legislative Assembly Chamber during a guided tour, offered multiple times daily. Learn about the vision that early leaders had for the province and the many famous Canadians who are a part of Saskatchewan's political legacy. To discover points of historical interest on the grounds near the Saskatchewan Legislative Building, take a 45-minute self-guided tour through Wascana Centre.

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Saskatchewan Science Centre

Igniting the scientific curiosity of young and old, the Saskatchewan Science Centre has more than 185 hands-on exhibits featuring history, nature and technology. It is also home to the IMAX movie theatre and Atom + Geek Science Shop . 

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Experience Regina apologizes following criticism over 'offensive' slogans

Experience Regina's new logo. The tourism organization is facing criticism online, following the release of several associated slogans such as "The City That Rhymes With Fun" and "Show Us Your Regina." (Source: Experience Regina Twitter)

Some residents of Saskatchewan's capital city have been vocal with their disapproval of Tourism Regina's latest rebrand, prompting an apology from the organization.

Tourism Regina, now named ‘Experience Regina’ as of March 16, is seeking to own a crude joke that has followed the Queen City for many years.

The joke, of course, being that “Regina” sounds a little like “vagina.”

The phrase ‘Experience Regina’ originally stemmed from a 2008 viral hit on YouTube.

The video featured a slideshow of Regina related google image results and a synth-wave score, seemingly posing as a low-budget tourism promotion film.

The song’s only lyrics aside from some spoken dialogue? ‘Experience Regina’ for two minutes and twenty-seven seconds.

With almost 700,000 views to date, the video has kept popping up. Popularized by everything from TSN to Jimmy Fallon in the 14 years since its release.

“Our City has been living this brand for a while now, and we thought it was time to own it,” a tweet from Experience Regina read.

However, not all residents in the Queen City are entirely okay with the change, claiming that other associated slogans with the campaign such as ‘Show us your Regina’ and “The City that Rhymes with Fun” are inappropriate.

Rebranding to #experienceregina to appeal to some Regina residents' self-deprecating humour about how poorly they view their own city is definitely an odd choice for a tourism agency. Reinforcing the narrative Saskatchewan is full trashy, misogynist hicks seems counter productive

Tourism Regina rebranded itself “Experience Regina” @experiencereg with the tagline “The City That Rhymes With Fun”. Exactly what kind of tourists, businesses and residents are they hoping to attract? https://t.co/R8oMFcOD5R

I like the new updated Experience Regina. I don't like the juvenile "Show us your Regina" and "The City that Rhynes with fun". It seems beneath what we should be striving for. At the same time, it's embarrassing enough to feel even more Saskatchewan-like.

Hey, @ExpRegina . Lil’ challenge for you: Come to my daughter’s elementary school and explain, in a general assembly, why “Regina” rhymes with “fun” and how the kids can “make Regina sexy.” Have them pose for a photo to “show you their Regina” after. #seeyqr #experienceregina

Once you notice it, it's hard to imagine this made onto the internet. As Experience Regina's inaugural public engagement campaign no less. pic.twitter.com/oiDFjsjozh

However, with the criticism, came messages of support for the overall change in tactics for tourism in the Queen City.

This is well done, @ExpRegina . A fresh approach to tourism advertising that leverages a joke and showcases some of recreational and entertainment gems that makes YQR, despite everything else, a great city to visit and to live in.

It's about time. Who's ready to Experience Regina? https://t.co/f3srb2Sc1T

In a post following the announcement, Mayor Sandra Masters called the new branding “fun, genuine, and bold.”

“Its realigned vision focuses on playing where we excel, and leaning in so that we can seize every opportunity that comes our way and build a stronger tourism economy," the post read.

"I can't wait to see this new brand in action. Thank you to the Experience Regina team for your leadership, passion, and commitment to encouraging the world to experience our city.”

'WE APOLOGIZE'

In response to the criticism, Tim Reid, CEO of Experience Regina, released a statement Sunday afternoon, thanking community members for their feedback and apologizing for any negative impacts caused by some of the slogans.

"Thank you for using your voice, thank you for holding us accountable, and thank you for allowing us to be better," the statement read.

"There was such positive feedback around Experience Regina; however, it was clear that we fell short of what is expected from our amazing community with some of the slogans that we used. Regardless of our intent, the impact is valid and for that we apologize."

Thank you for using your voice, thank you for holding us accountable, and thank you for allowing us to be better. -Tim Reid, CEO of Experience Regina pic.twitter.com/VdS4NyYop3

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14 Top-Rated Things to Do in Regina, SK

Written by Michael Law Updated Dec 28, 2023 We may earn a commission from affiliate links ( )

Nicknamed the Queen City, Regina is Saskatchewan's capital city. Although it is perhaps not on most people's radar of places to visit, the city will surprise you with its friendly citizens, abundant green spaces, and an impressive number of things to do.

The city center is dominated by Wascana Lake , and many of the key tourist attractions are located nearby. Spend an afternoon walking from place to place or join the throngs of active, outdoorsy Reginians walking, biking, and strolling the extensive trail system.

The city has undertaken several revitalization projects and done an excellent job of re-energizing the downtown core. If you find yourself there on a summer weekend, be sure to swing by the farmers market on Saturday morning at City Square park.

For more ideas, see our complete guide to the best things to do in Regina.

1. RCMP Heritage Centre

2. provincial legislative building, 3. wascana park, 4. royal saskatchewan museum, 5. saskatchewan science centre, 6. mackenzie art gallery, 7. government house, 8. warehouse district, 9. regina floral conservatory, 10. stone hall castle, 11. regina farmers' market, 12. mosaic stadium, 13. regina climbing center, 14. regina globe theatre, where to stay in regina for sightseeing, map of things to do in regina, sk, regina - climate chart.

RCMP Heritage Centre

A visit to the RCMP Heritage Centre is one of the top things to do in Regina. Housed in an impressive modern building, the center provides an overview of the history of Canada's first police force.

Displays and information tell a fascinating story of the force, starting from its inception in 1873 as the North-West Mounted Police . Six exhibits deal with the history of the force and how it has evolved through the years to the modern-day crime fighting group of today.

In addition, two interactive displays offer hands-on entertainment. These include a driving simulator where you'll get behind the wheel of a police car and try your hand at tracking down crime. The second uses augmented reality to put a Sargent Major in the same room as he watches you organize your dorm room for inspection.

A visit here can be easily combined with a quick stop at Government House, just down the street.

Address: 5907 Dewdney Ave, Regina, Saskatchewan

Official site: https://rcmphc.com /

Provincial Legislative Building

The Saskatchewan Provincial Legislative building occupies a stunning setting, with gardens leading into Wascana Park. It is perhaps one of the most beautifully situated legislative buildings in Canada, on par with those in Victoria, British Columbia.

Construction started in 1908 and was finished four years later in 1912. The building is clad in Tyndall limestone that glows in the afternoon sun. The building enjoys special status and has been a National Historic Site of Canada since 2005.

In front and leading down to Wascana Lake are the Queen Elizabeth II gardens , featuring the queen on her favorite horse in 1969.

Address: 2405 Legislative Drive, Regina, Saskatchewan

Official site: https://www.legassembly.sk.ca/visitors/

Bridge in Wascana Park

Wascana Park is Regina's signature park. Extensive walking and biking trails wind their way around 120-acre Wascana Lake. This extensive green space is in the heart of the city, and a visit here can be combined with stops at the Royal Saskatchewan Museum, Science Center, Legislative Building, or MacKenzie Art Gallery.

Surrounding the lake are large areas of trees and wide-open lawns, just perfect for tossing a football or having a picnic at one of the 70 sites. Public barbecues are available for use at no charge. The walking/biking trail system is extensive, and if you need a break to rest your legs, benches are strategically placed at scenic spots.

Several fun family things to do in Wascana Park include taking a ferry boat ride around the lake, renting canoes or kayaks, riding a Segway, or strolling through the Habitat Conservation Area . If the kids need to burn off some energy, swing by any one of the four playgrounds.

Royal Saskatchewan Museum

The Royal Saskatchewan Museum is located a short distance from downtown and is a perfect way to spend an afternoon with the family. The museum has five major galleries: Life Sciences, First Nations, Earth Sciences, Megamunch, and a gallery area for traveling exhibits.

Within the Life Sciences gallery, you'll find three sections that deal with the province as a whole, how the province fits into the global environment, and how humans have impacted the natural features of the province. The First Nations gallery deals with their history, past, and present.

In the Earth Sciences gallery, you'll find Scotty, which the museum claims is "the most massive tyrannosaurus rex in the world." Other displays in this gallery include giant reptiles and other dinosaurs, along with animals that flourished after the demise of the dinosaurs.

The most interactive gallery is called Megamunch , home to a robotic dinosaur that will be sure to delight the younger members of your group.

The Royal Saskatchewan Museum also has another location in Eastend. This location has multiple dinosaur skeletons; displays on the Cretaceous period; and pieces of a meteorite that landed near Buzzard Coulee in November, 2008.

Address: 2445 Albert Street, Regina, Saskatchewan

Official site: https://www.royalsaskmuseum.ca/

Saskatchewan Science Centre

Housed in a beautiful old building that fuses old and new, the Saskatchewan Science Centre is a must-visit when in town, especially if you have kids.

The center has five signature exhibits covering all manner of interesting things. The Richardson Ag-Grow-Land exhibit covers all aspects of farming and has an interactive display that lets you crawl to the top of a grain elevator.

The Building Connections exhibit examines the construction of homes and features an interactive display that actually allows you to build a home. Another fun exhibit is Mapping Mayhem, where you can move buildings around on a giant map on the floor.

Wild Saskatchewan covers aspects of the environmental situation presently in Saskatchewan and poses questions about the future. Critter Cave houses a collection of bats; the Science of Hockey provides an analytical view of Canada's favorite game plus allows you to take shots at a virtual goalie.

Outside of the building and free to use, is the Ukrainian Science Park. This playground incorporates elements of science into play.

Address: 2903 Powerhouse Avenue, Regina, Saskatchewan

Official site: https://www.sasksciencecentre.com/

MacKenzie Art Gallery

The MacKenzie Art Gallery has the distinction of being Saskatchewan's oldest public art gallery.

The gallery is proud of their diverse and extensive collection and promote it with the phrase: "5,000 Years of Culture" and "5,000 Works of Art." The gallery is especially well known for its indigenous artwork, known as the Kamplemarcher Collection.

The MacKenzie Art Gallery has a well-regarded café on the premises called Craft Services. Located throughout the café are the eclectic works of Bill Burns.

The gallery is located near the Science Centre, and the two can be easily combined for a pleasant afternoon of learning and culture.

Address: 3475 Albert Street, Regina, Saskatchewan

Official site: https://mackenzie.art/

Government House

Government House is set on grounds with century-old mature trees and extensive flower gardens. Also on the same property is the Lieutenant Governor's home . Admission is free .

The building is one of the oldest in the province and dates from 1891. It is a brick building in the Italianate style with a circular drive out front. In the early days of the province, it was the main place for society events.

Inside are five exhibits and galleries, including the Amédée Forget Museum, the J.E.N. Wiebe Interpretive Centre, the QEII Art Gallery, the Once Upon a Time Room, and the Sylvia Fedoruk Conservatory.

Outside are the Edwardian Gardens with beautifully arranged annuals, including an amazing assortment of over 5,700 tulips.

Address: 4607 Dewdney Avenue, Regina, Saskatchewan

Official site: http://governmenthousesk.ca/

Warehouse District

Regina has been at the crossroads of commerce in the prairies for well over a century. The result of this is a wonderful collection of restored historical buildings near downtown. An up-and-coming trendy area of the city, it is the place to be and be seen on weekend evenings.

Housed in these buildings are over 600 businesses. These include restaurants, shops, and other interesting retail offerings , including vintage clothing stores, home decor shops, and one-of-a-kind establishments. Most stores are locally owned and are found only in Regina.

Address: Between Albert Street and Winnipeg Street and 4th Ave and the railyards.

Official site: https://www.warehousedistrict.ca/

Regina Floral Conservatory

A bit off the beaten track, the Regina Floral Conservatory is not the easiest spot to find. Housed in a nondescript building tucked in behind a city services building, the Regina Floral Center doesn't look particularly intriguing from the outside.

However, it's inside where the interesting things grow. The permanent collection includes trees from around the world, colorful blooming plants, and succulents. The plants are rotated on a regular basis, ensuring that throughout the year six different displays are available for viewing.

There's nothing quite like stepping into a warm, humid, sunny building in the depths of a Regina winter, so if you need a hit of the tropics, swing by this free attraction .

Address: 1450B 4th Avenue, Regina, Saskatchewan

Official site: https://reginafloralconservatory.ca/

Stone Hill Castle

A short stroll from the Royal Saskatchewan Museum, Stone Hall Castle is one of Regina's more unique attractions. The story behind the construction of the house, which dates from 1926, relates back to a tornado that devastated downtown Regina in 1912. The home was built to withstand the fiercest storms the Prairies could throw at it. It even has a bomb shelter in the basement.

The interior is dark, with stone walls and dark wood ceilings. The masonry work is spectacular, with interior balconies, enormous fireplaces, and a stone hot tub. Be sure to check out the ornate four-poster hand-carved bed in the master bedroom.

Address: 2210 College Avenue, Regina, Saskatchewan

Official site: http://www.stonehallcastle.com/

Each Saturday throughout the summer and fall , Regina Farmers' Market takes place in the heart of downtown. Considering Saskatchewan is the breadbasket of Canada, there's no better place to get the freshest produce.

Street vendors set up at City Square Plaza along 12th street. If you are unsure of the location, just head for the Mosaic Tower, Regina's tallest building. Vendors sell all types of fresh and preserved foods, including baked goods, local honey, candy, and beverages.

Also on-site are food trucks should you work up an appetite. Picnic tables are nearby in City Square.

Official site: https://reginafarmersmarket.ca/

Mosaic Stadium

Fans of Canadian Football are passionate about their home team, and Regina is no exception. In fact, the fans of the Saskatchewan Roughriders are some of the best examples of hometown pride.

If you find yourself in Regina during the season, which runs from June until October, when the Roughriders are playing at Mosaic Stadium, it's imperative that you attend a game. You'll be surrounded by some of the friendliest folks on the planet, cheering on a team that over the years has both disappointed and thrilled its fanbase.

Don't worry if you don't know the rules or what's going on, just the feeling of being at the game is an experience you'll not soon forget.

Tickets are surprisingly affordable and easy to come by, unless it's getting near playoff time, then they become pretty scarce. The stadium itself is modern, and one of the best in Canada to not only see games but concerts and other major events.

Address: 1700 Elphinstone Street, Regina, Saskatchewan

Official site: https://www.evrazplace.com/facilities/mosaic-stadium

Climbing on an indoor climbing wall

As you drive across the endless flat lands of Saskatchewan, the furthest thing from your mind is probably mountain climbing; however, you may be pleasantly surprised that this endeavor is easily available in Regina.

The Regina Climbing Center has a variety of man-made climbing walls that are suitable for all ages. An ideal family thing to do while in town, these walls will provide hours of entertainment and are an ideal way to burn off some of the youthful energy of the younger set.

Day passes are available for climbing slots Tuesday through Friday. All first-timers are taught safety procedures and then watched over by certified climbing instructors.

Address: 606 B Solomon Cres, Regina, Saskatchewan

Official site: https://climbingcentre.ca/

The cultural heartbeat of Regina finds its home at the Globe Theatre. It's housed in the historical Prince Edward Building dating from 1909. There's no better place in town to see a play, musical performance, or comedy routine. Almost every seat has unobstructed views of the stage.

A regular rotation of shows find their way onto the Globe's stage; some are local, many are from out of province or even international.

The theater is undergoing a major renovation that will see its aging infrastructure replaced and repaired to a level required by today's bylaws. Until the renovations are complete, shows are taking place around the city at different venues. Location information is available online.

Luxury Hotels:

  • For a taste of history, consider staying at The Hotel Saskatchewan, Autograph Collection . Originally a Canadian Pacific Railway Hotel dating from 1927, this posh hotel offers a variety of rooms, many of which overlook Victoria Park.
  • For something a little more modern, just a few blocks away is the Delta Hotels by Marriott Regina with an indoor pool.
  • Also nearby is the Double Tree by Hilton Hotel & Conference Center Regina , with rooms on the upper floors featuring good views of Wascana Park.

Mid-Range Hotels:

  • For those looking for a bit more space and kitchen facilities, the Residence Inn by Marriott Regina is a good option. The hotel is one of the most recent additions to the accommodation scene in town.
  • If you have young kids or are young at heart, the Best Western Plus Eastgate Inn & Suites , with its waterslide and other fun water features, can't be beat.
  • Offering larger than average sized rooms, the Comfort Suites Regina offers good value in a convenient location.

Budget Hotels:

  • If you need to be near the airport, consider the Days Inn by Wyndham Regina Airport West.
  • The recently renovated Super 8 by Wyndham Regina is another good choice if you're on a budget.

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Failed Experience Regina tourism rebrand over as organization reverts to Tourism Regina

A third-party review will be conducted into the rebrand and the campaign.

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‘Experience Regina’ campaign faces backlash for sexualizing city

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After a month of criticism, ridicule and international media attention, Regina is pulling the plug on the failed rebrand of its tourism entity to Experience Regina.

It is going back to its original name of Tourism Regina and reactivating its website and social media channels under that name. 

The board of directors for Regina Exhibition Association Limited (REAL) — the organization in charge of tourism promotion in the city — announced the decision on Thursday.

Experience Regina failed to return multiple calls from CBC over the past two weeks. 

  • Regina city council not consulted about 'sexist' Experience Regina slogans: councillor
  • Regina Mayor Sandra Masters says she won't step down due to tourism slogan backlash

"The decision has been made to return to Tourism Regina's name," said Wayne Morsky, chair of REAL's board on Thursday. 

"This will allow us to return to work and support the local visitors economy as we head into a busy spring and summer season."

As a result of the consultations, REAL announced plans for a review, conducted by a third-party, to examine all aspects of the development of the Experience Regina brand and its launch. 

REAL is in the process of finalizing the contract with the third-party and would not disclose how much the review could cost or how long it could take. 

LISTEN | Mayor addresses concerns about Experience Regina's marketing campaign:

Morsky said no one has been fired or punished for the rebrand and Tourism Regina's CEO Tim Reid — who previously took responsibility for the campaign —  remains on the job. 

The board hasn't yet spoken about holding one person or multiple people accountable, he said.

"I think it's more important for us to have a quality review done … so that we can learn from it and make sure it doesn't happen in the future," he said. 

Any decision related to Experience Regina will occur once the review is complete and REAL said it will engage local community groups to ensure their long-term brand strategy is supported by everyone. 

The review will be finalized in a report and submitted to Regina city council, Morsky confirmed. 

What's in a name?

Rebranding Tourism Regina to Experience Regina was initially sold as leaning into an old joke that is often made about the city due to it sounding similar to a word for genitalia. 

When the Rolling Stones arrived in Saskatchewan's capital city in 2006, Mick Jagger even cracked a joke to the 40,000 fans in attendance.

"Someone told me, 'Regina, it rhymes with fun,'" he said .

A viral song popularized the phrase Experience Regina when it was uploaded to YouTube in 2008.

  • Why is Regina's name pronounced like that?
  • Regina mayor says Experience Regina slogans were a 'misstep'

A decade later the synth-heavy song fronted by an off-key vocalist found a new wave of popularity after Jimmy Fallon played the song on  The Tonight Show,  prompting laughs from Fallon's co-host, members of his band and its audience.

The relaunch on March 13 received substantial fanfare with Mayor Sandra Masters and Reid being joined by the federal Tourism Minister Randy Boissonnault as he announced nearly $6 million for tourism in Saskatchewan.

However, quite a few people raised concerns about the decision by a city-funded organization to employ a crude joke as its name.

The newly named Experience Regina continued to retreat as attention focused on the use of sexualized slogans such as "Show us your Regina" and "The city that rhymes with fun."

  • Experience Regina apologizes after criticism over new slogans 'sexualizing' the city
  • Saskatchewan's capital city leans into 'Experience Regina'

Hoodies that had been created in partnership with 22Fresh and emblazoned with "The city that rhymes with fun" sold out quickly but were scrapped entirely amidst the backlash.

The rebrand and the furor around it grew large enough that it attracted the attention of the  New York Post and Washington Post . 

Questions remain despite apology

Questions remain about who ultimately signed off on the slogans that drew the biggest flak.

Just five days after announcing the rebrand, Reid would apologize on behalf of himself and his team "for the negative impact" created by the attempt to lean into what many saw as a crude joke. 

"The city didn't appreciate it and our community didn't appreciate it and we just were wrong," Reid said.

A since deleted post from 22Fresh advertising merchandise as part of the Experience Regina rebrand. The sweaters featured the slogan "The city that rhymes with fun."

Masters has called the slogan sexist and wrong.

Masters also said the controversial slogans were not part of the preview given to city council ahead of the launch, a fact that was confirmed by multiple councillors. 

In the immediate aftermath of the backlash, Ward 1 Coun. Cheryl Stadnichuk said she was planning to gather six signatures from council members needed to request a special council meeting and attempt to hold those who came up with the campaign accountable. 

The City of Regina's clerk's office confirmed that as of Wednesday an application had not been received. 

Since the initial comments from Masters and Reid, Experience Regina has remained silent.

Other than issuing a statement it has not posted on its social media channels since March 20. 

The organization's website was wiped and it only showed a blue page. On Thursday, the website began redirecting all visitors to the now re-activated Tourism Regina web address. 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

tourism regina video

Alexander Quon has been a reporter with CBC Saskatchewan since 2021 and is happy to be back working in his hometown of Regina after half a decade in Atlantic Canada. He has previously worked with the CBC News investigative unit in Nova Scotia and Global News in Halifax. Alexander specializes in municipal political coverage and data-reporting. He can be reached at: [email protected].

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In the spirit of reconciliation

We would like to acknowledge that the land on which we gather is Treaty 4 territory and the traditional territory of the Anihšinābēk, Nêhiyawak, Dakota, Lakota, and Nakota peoples, and the original home of the Métis/Michif Nation. We recognize that both Indigenous and Métis people are the spiritual and cultural keepers of their traditional lands and still to this day, continue to practice their values, languages, beliefs and knowledge.

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As city walks back 'Show us your Regina,' some other odd tourism slogans

From 'The Happiest Place on Earth' to 'Stay Away!' travel destinations have used unusual campaigns to attract (and sometimes repel) visitors

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Article content

Regina no longer rhymes with fun.

As city walks back 'Show us your Regina,' some other odd tourism slogans Back to video

On Thursday the tourism agency of Saskatchewan’s capital city did what many had been calling for since it rebranded itself as Experience Regina a month ago. It re-rebranded itself as Tourism Regina. And it dropped the cheeky reference to the city rhyming with part of the female anatomy.

The campaign included such slogans as “show us your Regina” and “We are the city that rhymes with fun,” a joke that was already old when Mick Jagger made it in 2006  when the Rolling Stones played Saskatchewan for the first time at Mosaic Stadium, home of the Roughriders.

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The Experience Regina name was taken from a video that went viral on YouTube in 2008 , of an earworm song that told people to “experience Regina.” But after significant public and political backlash, the municipally-funded agency reverted to Tourism Regina on Thursday, with all websites and social channels going back to its original name.

“Over the past few weeks, we have been working with Tourism Regina, the city council and external stakeholders to determine the best path forward for our tourism agency,” said Wayne Morsky, chair of the Regina Exhibition Association Limited board of directors, which oversees the agency.

The board said in a news release it will undertake an independent review, led by a third-party consultant, to examine all aspects of the development of the Experience Regina brand and launch.

Tim Reid, the agency’s CEO, apologized and said in a statement on social media that the campaign “fell short of what is expected from our amazing community with some of the slogans that we used.”

Get a dash of perspective along with the trending news of the day in a very readable format.

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This is hardly the first time a tourism slogan has drawn ire, unintended chuckles or downright confusion from the public. Bhutan’s slogan is “Happiness Is a Place,” but the birthplace of GNH — Gross National Happiness — actually ranked 95th the last time it was mentioned in the annual World Happiness Report.

Meanwhile, Denmark’s “The Happiest Place on Earth” tag line may surprise nearby Finland, which has ranked first on the index for the past six years. It might also make Disneyland unhappy — though perhaps not as much as would Turkey’s decision to use the slogan Be Our Guest, better known as a song from Disney’s Beauty and the Beast.

Cameroon once branded itself as “All of Africa in One Country,” which seems to lean into the idea held by some that Africa is a nation, not a continent. In any case, it seems to have now adopted “Africa in Miniature.”

Slovakia’s “Good Idea” seems unduly modest, as do the slogans for Costa Rica — “Only the Essentials” — and Belize: “A Curious Place.” Jordan once went with “Yes, It’s Jordan,” which sounds like you’re trying to reach it by phone. And there’s no arguing with “Italy Is Better in Italy” or its previous tag line: “Made in Italy.”

And from Africa to Asia, tourism boards seem to be competing to be first with slogans like “Come to Where It All Started” (Mozambique), “Land of Origins” (Ethiopia), “Where It All Began” (Egypt) and “Land of Creation” (Israel).

Closer to home, Yukon was home to controversy in 2016 when the territory’s Department of Health and Social Services rolled out a campaign focused on ensuring residents were getting enough vitamin D . The department’s “We all need the D” campaign was short-lived.

Here are some other unusual travel marketing campaigns.

El Salvador: The 45-Minute Country

From 2015, this slogan played off the fact that the Central American country is so small — just 21,000 square kms, two-thirds the size of Vancouver Island — that pretty much everything is a 45-minute drive away or less. Though it does suggest that (A) you can see the whole country in under an hour and/or (B) you don’t want to stay there very long.

Djibouti: Djibeauty

Grammatically fun, the slogan for this tiny nation on the Horn of Africa — roughly the same size as El Salvador — was a nod to its spelling and pronunciation. Though it did cause some internet wags to suggest the alternate spelling Djibooty. Reginans, no doubt …

Albania: Get Taken By Albania

Here’s an odd campaign, apparently aimed at just one potential tourist — Irish actor Liam Neeson, whose nemeses in the popular 2008 movie Taken were Albanian criminals. The southeastern European country hit back four years ago with a splashy video extolling its virtues and beauty, and exhorting Neeson to “Call us, email us or just find us — we know you know how!”

Amsterdam: Stay Away!

On the other end of the marketing spectrum, the city of Amsterdam recently created a series of ads specifically targeting young British males who see the Dutch city as something of a hedonist’s playground. Over images of ambulances and police cars, they spell out a clear message: “Coming to Amsterdam for a messy night + getting trashed = 140 euro fine + criminal record = fewer prospects. So coming to Amsterdam for a messy night? Stay Away.” Ironically, the video then ends with a cheery chime over the Amsterdam logo.

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University of Regina swimmer representing his home country of Mauritius at 2024 Olympics

Ovesh Purahoo qualified to swim the 100-metre freestyle in Paris

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In travel guides or Wikipedia pages, Mauritius looks idyllic and an absolutely beautiful place to visit.

University of Regina swimmer representing his home country of Mauritius at 2024 Olympics Back to video

“It’s like Hawaii, only nicer,” said Ovesh Purahoo, nodding agreeably to the description of his home country, a collection of islands in the Indian Ocean off the southeast coast of Africa. “Once you get there, you might not come back.”

Purahoo left Mauritius — but only temporarily — to pursue an education and work towards becoming a world-class swimmer. He’s doing that at the University of Regina , making the Dean’s List as a Faculty of Kinesiology and Health Studies third-year student majoring in human kinetics while qualifying to represent Mauritius in the upcoming Paris Olympics.

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Purahoo will be the only male swimmer from Mauritius competing at the 2024 Games, earning his berth in the 100-metre freestyle by posting a time of 52.40 seconds last month at the Mel Zajac Jr. International Swim Meet in Vancouver. His personal best of 52.25 seconds came in May at the Olympic time trials in Toronto.

His dad is a swimming instructor, so Purahoo started swimming recreationally as a youngster before advancing to nine structured, weekly workouts and deciding as a teenager it was the sport he really wanted to pursue.

“Swimming was the sport I was worst at,” said Purahoo. “I was pretty talented in the others, like volleyball and track, but that’s what kept me going: Trying to do the hard stuff.”

About three years ago, after not being able to qualify and watching the Covid-delayed Tokyo Olympics , Purahoo committed himself to swimming internationally. Because universities at home were jam-packed, he checked out other institutions in Australia and the University of British Columbia. He chose Regina, 34 hours of flights from home, and arrived in July 2021.

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“Covid hit so we didn’t have (Olympic) trials,” said Purahoo, who wasn’t high enough in the Mauritius rankings to qualify for Tokyo. “That was a little bit of a disappointment. I was, ‘OK, I’m gonna take it seriously for the next few years.’

“I was doing online schooling and Regina was beautiful in the pictures. It’s a perfect place, with a good swimming team, good coaching, strong competitions to attend and not too many distractions. There’s not much to do, lots of time to recover and rest. I think that played a big role.”

With another year of schooling ahead before moving towards either a chiropractic or medical degree, Purahoo also swims 50-m freestyle and on the Cougars relay teams. He represented Mauritius recently at the world aquatic championships in Qatar , where China’s Pan Zhanle set the current 100-m record of 46.80 seconds.

“Ovesh has made huge improvements in the consistency and control of his skills,” said Cougars swimming coach Baylee Munro . “He has always been a student of the sport and this year there were lots of lessons learned on the path to Olympic qualification.”

The 100-metre freestyle heats and semifinals are scheduled for Tuesday, July 30 at the Paris La Défense Arena with the final set for the following day. Purahoo is scheduled to fly into Paris this weekend, where he’ll again meet friends from Mauritius who will also be competing in the Games, including female swimmer Anishta Teeluck, triathlete Laurent Lentete and badminton player Julien Paul.

“It’s going to be Olympic pressure, so some of the (athletes) will isolate as much as they can,” said Purahoo. “It’s about their professionalism, reaching their career goals, so I’ll try to watch what they do, how they train, how they warm up.

“With all their support, my family is more thrilled than I am. It’s gonna be a great learning opportunity. I’ll learn the best way, try to observe everything and come come back to Regina and put that into practice.”

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Country Thunder kept Sask. RCMP busy over the weekend

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    Experience Regina Tourist Board Sask 387 subscribers Subscribed 4.6K 789K views 15 years ago The Tourist Board of Saskatchewan presents Experience Regina ...more

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  8. Tourism Regina Launches New Promotional Video for Regina

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    On March 17, 2023, the organization was rebranded as Experience Regina; the branding originated from a 2008 music video that had been produced as a parody of tourism commercials, and popularized as a viral video by TSN SportsCentre hosts Jay Onrait and Dan O'Toole, and by Jimmy Fallon (who performed it in a "Do Not Play List" sketch on The ...

  12. Saskatchewan's capital city leans into 'Experience Regina'

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    Regina offers exhilarating festivals, fascinating museums, and the nation's most passionate sports enthusiasts. It's the home of the Canadian Football League's Saskatchewan Roughriders! Website Tourism Regina Information Kiosk, Main Floor, Regina City Hall, 2476 Victoria Avenue, Mon to Fri 10 a.m. - 4:45 p.m.

  16. Tourism Regina

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