The Top 5 New Year’s Activities in Edmonton and Sherwood Park!

Happy Holidays everyone! We hope you had plenty of time to catch up with your family and get some much deserved rest. If you’re looking for something to do on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day, we’ve prepared a list of options fit for the entire family.

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1) New Year’s Festival 

A staple in Strathcona County! Grab your winter gear, skates, and helmet and go skating with the family or grab some hot chocolate and build some snow sculptures. Afterwards, grab a snack from one of the many vendors before seeing the fireworks! The New Year’s Festival will take place on December 31st from 4-8PM at Broadmoor Lake Park, Community Centre and Festival Place. For a full list of activities, visit this page. Thanks to Strathcona County Transit, there will be two free busses that will take you to Broadmoor Lake park and Festival Place. Pasta Pantry is just a short walk away from Festival Place, so stop by and grab bite before you see the fireworks!

 

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2) New Year’s Day in Sherwood Park!

The fun doesn’t stop on New Year’s Day! From 1-4PM, Festival Place will have all kinds of crafts, games, and outdoor activities, while the Sherwood Park Sports Centre will have free public skating and hot chocolate for everyone to enjoy.  If you would like to go snowshoeing or cross country skiing, spend the afternoon at Strathcona Wilderness Centre. Also, make sure you bring a donation for the Strathcona Food Bank.

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3) New Year’s Eve at Churchill Square!

Many Edmontonians have vivid memories of seeing the fireworks at Churchill Square; this year, they’ll get to experience all of those same feelings again. From live entertainment and hay rides to crafts for the kids, there’s a reason why this is the place to be on New Year’s Eve. The event will take place from 7-12:15 AM. To avoid the heavy traffic and road closures, we recommend using public transit instead of your vehicle.

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4) New Year’s Eve Family Beach Ball!

 

Have you had enough of winter? Would you rather spend the last day of the year swimming with your friends and family in +31°C weather? Head over to West Edmonton Mall for their Family Beach Ball event! A unique take on the celebratory holiday, this party promises an indoor fireworks show and all kinds of other festivities. To get your tickets, head over to their website.

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5) Bissell Centre New Year’s Day Dinner!

Start 2016 off with some wonderful music and tasty food! The Alberta Symphony Orchestra will be performing at the Boyle Street Plaza downtown from 12-2PM. Everyone is welcome to attend, but we recommend you show up early. 1,000 people are expected to be there!

 

What are your plans for New Year’s Eve? Let us know on Facebook or Twitter! We will be closed on New Year’s Day and January 2nd, so stop by either on December 30 or 31st from 11-8PM to see what we’re cooking! Happy New Year from everyone here at Pasta Pantry!

Looking Back at 2015!

The end of December means many things: last-minute shopping for gifts, ample time to lace up your skates for some fun on the ice, and most importantly, great times with family over some delicious food. 2015 has been full of memories and we’re extremely thankful for your and your support. Before we sign off and get together with our loved ones, we wanted to reflect and say a few words about this past year. From working with Strathcona County for their Everyone Gets to Play program to attending the 3rd annual Cravings where we served gluten free foods, this year has been full of amazing moments. As a business that has always focused on giving back to the community, Pasta Pantry is committed to promoting local initiatives that bring people together.

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From everyone here at Pasta Pantry, we want to thank you for supporting our restaurant. Whether you’re a seasoned veteran who has been with us for years or you’ve only been to our trattoria a few times, we pride ourselves on giving our customers the best possible service every time they come through our doors. We’ve developed a reputation for being one of the best spots to grab a tasty Italian meal in the Edmonton and Sherwood Park area and it’s all because of you and your kind words!

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We’ll be changing our hours over the holidays (we’ve got an Italian feast at home that needs to be prepared!) so if you want to see when we’ll be open, visit our contact page. If you’re not following us on Facebook and Twitter, make sure you do so today! Also, we’re still taking orders for our prepared trays. If you’re looking to bring some Pasta Pantry home or for a New Year’s Eve party, give us a call at 780-467-3777. The end of the year is our busiest time of the year, so we would prefer if you gave us at least 48 hours notice to prepare your meal. Thanks again for coming to Pasta Pantry; we can’t wait to see what’s in store for 2016!

Merry Christmas from Pasta Pantry!

We can’t believe 2015 is almost over! This year has been full of memorable events and one of the reasons we love the holidays is because we get to spend time with our families. As a second generation family owned business, we’re proud to be in a position to serve the people of Edmonton and Sherwood Park since 1992. Many of our customers love coming by our restaurant to enjoy a meal, but what some might not know is that we also do catering, regardless of how many people you’re with.

One of the reasons that our catering services are so popular during this time of the year is that we want our customers to have the time to see each other. Many of us are traveling or busy with other activities; when you come home to an affordable, comforting meal, it’s one less thing that you have to worry about. Also, it’s an easy way to ensure that everyone gets a nutritious meal before indulging on some holiday goodies. As one of our favourite mottos go, “when it comes to good food, we’re all Italian at heart!”

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Whether you end up spending time with your friends and family at a party, or you just want to spend a relaxing time at home with your loved ones, our prepared trays are the perfect way to celebrate the season. If you want the full Italian experience, we recommend our signature dish: the Pasta Pantry Pasticcio. Made with a mixture of short pastas, sauce and a combination of 5 different cheeses,  this baked delight is a favourite of everyone who has come through our doors  (if you want to learn more about the historical importance of pasticcio in Italy, check out this post). Besides our pasticcio, we’ve also got our soft and chewy Mac N’ Cheese and our smooth, rich Baked Penne Alfredo.

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But we’ve got more than just pasta. Desserts are commonplace with the holidays and we’re not holding back. If you’re not a fan of baking but you still want something sweet over the next couple of weeks, you can’t go wrong with either our Death by Chocolate or our Tiramisu. The former has layers of chocolate cake smothered in pudding and joined together by whipped cream, while the latter features three layers of espresso-soaked ladyfingers that are covered in mascarpone and cocoa. Regardless of which tray you choose, we promise you that you, your friends, and your family will love it from the first bite to the last.

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If you’re looking for one of our trays during the holidays, you’ve come to the right place! Head over to our Catering page to see what we can cook up for you. The holidays are a busy time for us, so we would prefer that you give us a minimum of 48 hours notice. Also, make sure you’re following us on Facebook and Twitter to stay up to date with everything going on at your favourite trattoria! Happy Holidays!

Introducing the Tuscan Grilled Chicken!

Christmas came early at Pasta Pantry! December is a busy time for everyone, especially with all of the holiday preparations going on. If you want a healthy alternative to all of the Christmas sweets that will be enjoyed in the upcoming weeks, then you need to sink your teeth into this brand new dish. After a single bite, we’re confident that you’ll be in love with our Tuscan Grilled Chicken!

We start off by marinating a chicken breast in our signature Italian dressing. Just like with our Chicken Parmigiana, the Tuscan Grilled Chicken is made from a breast that is fresh and organic. While the chicken is marinating, we fire up our cast iron grill until it’s smoking hot before giving it a beautiful sear on each side. Besides making it a feast for the eyes, this also gives it a slight char flavour; if you want to enjoy a smokey, summertime-style chicken in the middle of winter, you’ve come to the right place.

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After giving the chicken some beautiful grill marks, we place it in the oven to let it cook. Once it’s finished, we let it cool and then slice it into bite sized pieces. The chicken then goes on top of either one of our salads (you get to choose between our Pasta Pantry Caesar Salad and our Creamy Italian Salad) for only an additional $5! After trying our Tuscan Grilled Chicken, it’ll be impossible to pass up during your next Pasta Pantry visit!

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For more on our Tuscan Grilled Chicken, stop by Pasta Pantry today! We pride ourselves on being the go-to spot for Italian cooking in the Edmonton and Sherwood Park area and we’d love to see you at our trattoria. Also, make sure you’re following us on Facebook and Twitter to see more mouthwatering pictures of what we’ve got at Pasta Pantry!

Give the Gift of Pasticcio Over the Holiday Season!

We’re less than 3 weeks away from Christmas! Back in Italy, Christmas is also known as Natale. It’s a time for family and friends to gather around the table to celebrate the season with good food and camaraderie. Whether you’re traveling across the country to spend some time with your loved ones or you plan on staying in the Edmonton and Sherwood Park area to see the family, we hope that you can spend some time with the people you care about the most.

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When it comes to holiday meals during this time of the year, there are three important meals which are part of the Italian tradition: Christmas Eve dinner on December 24th, Christmas Day lunch on December 25th and Santo Stefano’s lunch on December 26th. All of these events generally include dishes that have been prepared within the family for many generations. One of the most popular dishes to serve in Southern Italy is a food you might be familiar with. Made with all kinds of delicious flavours (including a mixture of 5 different cheeses), the pasticcio, a baked pasta which is known for its delicious cheese flavours has been commonplace year after year (for more information about our pasticcio, check out this blog post).

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At Pasta Pantry, we honour the tradition of serving quality fresh pasta and sauces using family recipes. Like the Southern Italians, we want to make sure everyone can enjoy a plate of pasticcio, our signature dish and a favourite amongst every person that has come through our doors. We can cater any home or office function over the holidays; all you have to do is give us a call at least 48 hours prior to your event so that we’ve got enough time to prepare your special order. We have a wide variety of freshly made pastas to choose from. If you want to make an already delicious meal even better, you can pair any item on the menu with a trio of mouthwatering meatballs. Trying to cut back on eating gluten or know someone with celiac disease? Don’t worry; we have gluten-free options that are carefully prepared and are equally as delicious as our regular pastas.

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During this holiday season, we wish you joy in sharing your own traditions with family and friends. If you want to include some Italian traditions in your Christmas feast, give us a call at 780-467-3777. We’ve also got a special promotion going on until December 24th, 2015: when you buy a Pasta Pantry gift card worth $25 or more, you’ll also get a $5 gift card that can be used in the new year! Happy holidays from your favourite trattoria!

Teaming Up with Strathcona County for Everyone Gets to Play!

As a business that has had a long history of supporting local sports in the Edmonton and Sherwood Park area, we believe that everyone should have access to sports. Whether that means an after school pick up game or getting involved with a minor league,  we never want price to be a concern for families and their children.  That’s why we’re proud to announce that Pasta Pantry has teamed up with Strathcona County to spread awareness about their Everyone Gets to Play program.

In order to learn more about how this program can impact the community, we’ve reached out to Nadine Wright, Strathcona County’s Program Coordinator, to ask her a few questions.

Tell us a bit about yourself and your role within Everyone Gets to Play. How long has the program been running for?

My role is to connect residents with accessing the program and its funding. Part of Everyone Gets to Play’s goal is to give low income families free access to our recreation facilities; we also subsidize some of the recreation and cultural programs and allow them to participate in minor sports. We’ve been running this program since 2007.

Besides eating at Pasta Pantry, what are some other ways that people can get involved with the program?

The easiest way people can help Everyone Gets to Play is through a direct donation, which can be made at any of our recreational facilities. The best part about this type of donation is that all of the funds raised go directly to kids and their families for recreational services. Strathcona County takes care of the administrative costs, so donors can see see their contributions being used in the most efficient way possible throughout the community.

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If someone wants to apply for the program, what steps should they take to do so?

For those who are interested in Everyone Gets to Play, we get them register through Family and Community Services by calling 780 464 4044. That way, they can access all of the other available services we have to offer.

What’s something about this program that most people don’t know about?

There are approximately 4000 people in Strathcona Country who are living on low income and I feel that this often gets overlooked. People wouldn’t associate this because it’s an affluent community, but there definitely are people who can benefit from the program.

Is there anything else that you’d like to mention about Everyone Gets to Play?

Recreation is really important in order to build strong families and healthy communities. The program gives people that feeling of belonging and allows them to have a better relationship with those around them.

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What’s your favourite food at Pasta Pantry?

I’m a big fan of the baked pastas, especially the pasticcio!

Want to help us in providing recreational services to everyone?  All you have to do is stop by Pasta Pantry between December 1st-5th, 2015 and grab a large pasta or pasticcio. For every order you get, we’ll give $1 to Everyone Gets to Play. Before you come to Pasta Pantry, make sure you’re following us on Facebook and Twitter to see what we’re cooking up! For more information on Everyone Gets to Play, visit this link on their site.