Tag Archives: Our Past Matters

Love Independent Bookstores!

April 29th is Canadian Independent Bookstore Day. If you buy a book at your favourite indie bookshop this Saturday, you can enter a contest to win a $1000 gift certificate.

We genuinely appreciate these stores and thank our hometown favourites: Shelf Life, Pages, and Owl’s Nest, for stocking and selling literally hundreds of copies of our books: Our Past Matters and What Narcissus Saw.

Kevin in front of Shelf Life Books in 2018

Browsing the bookshelves, talking to informed staff, and bumping into people you know, are all good reasons to shop in indie bookstores. {Also: social snacking is good for our health!} The stores have online shops as well, so there is no need to support booksellers that are foreign corporate behemoths.

The following Saturday, May 6th, you are invited to Twisted Element for the Chinook Fund Variety Show Fundraiser. Tickets are only $20 and go to the great cause of the Chinook Fund. This endowment fund, housed at the Calgary Foundation, disperses grants to local queer community organizations under the direction of a volunteer steering committee. So come out for a good cause and be entertained at the same time!


Shop local with @yycgayhistory

{The Calgary Gay History Project is on hiatus in December. Look for new queer history content in 2023—happy holidays!}

‘Tis the season for holiday shopping. If you are looking for a good read, check out our two award-winning books from our in-house imprint, ASPublishing.

Our books with faux holiday additions

Our Past Matters: Stories of Gay Calgary hit #1 on the Calgary Herald bestseller list in 2019 and has been selling ever since. John Ibbitson, from The Globe and Mail, explains: “You are going to read about some amazing people, places, and times in these pages… There is no one better equipped than Kevin Allen to give us a tour.”

What Narcissus Saw is Gordon Sombrowski’s second book of fiction exploring life in Fernie, BC. It was selected from hundreds of contenders as a finalist in the Whistler Independent Book Awards this past October. The awards jury wrote: “Sombrowski’s linked short stories immediately draw in the reader. He deftly breathes life and intrigue into his settings and characters with language to be savoured.”

Books are available in Calgary at Pages on Kensington and Shelf Life Books. You can also purchase books and have them shipped to you from our online store.

Happy holidays!


Gay History Walk—Take 2

Thanks to everyone who attended Kevin’s reading of Our Past Matters at Shelf Life Books last Saturday. As the event started a deluge broke over the Beltline and drowned Pride in the Park which also cancelled the scheduled Gay History Walk that afternoon.

Minutes after this photo was taken on August 27, the storm clouds broke.

We will try again this Saturday, September 3rd for a gay history walk through the Beltline. The weather forecast looks fine! The walk begins at 2:00 PM in Central Memorial Park (meet at the Boer War Memorial in the centre of the park) and ends at 3:30 PM at Lois Szabo Commons, a new city park celebrating LGBTQ2 history. Learn about the City’s fascinating queer past.

Spaces are limited; please register in advance through Calgary Pride or by emailing: calgarygayhistory@gmail.com and write in the subject line “history walk.” Free event.