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PHOTOS: Calgary Stampede kicks off with horses, hats and smiles

Parade marshal Mark McMorris gives a peace sign while riding a horse at the Stampede parade in Calgary on July 6, 2018. Photo from The Canadian Press.

PHOTOS: Calgary Stampede kicks off with horses, hats and smiles

Hold your horses: the 2018 Calgary Stampede is finally here.

The annual event affectionately known as the “Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth” began with a parade featuring some famous faces. Alberta Premier Rachel Notley, Olympic snowboarder Mark McMorris and Johnny Gaudreau of the Calgary Flames were among those in attendance Friday. 

The festival runs from July 6 to July 15 at the Stampede Grounds in Calgary’s Victoria Park. If you like to see horses, bull riding, shows, rides, food, drinks and parties, this exhibition won’t disappoint.

The first Stampede started in Calgary in 1912 and it has been a success ever since. CBC News reports approximately 150,000 visitors were in attendance for the parade to launch the 10-day event.