The Pulse: Aug. 5, 2022

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  • 17°C: Rain ending late in the morning then clearing. Wind northwest 30 km/h gusting to 50. High 17. UV index 6 or high. (forecast)
  • 91-94: The Edmonton Stingers lost to the Saskatchewan Rattlers, bringing the team's 2022 season to a close and dashing hopes for a third-straight championship win. (details)
  • Red: The High Level Bridge will be lit red for the Cariwest Caribbean Arts Festival. (details)
  • 8pm, Aug. 6: The Edmonton Elks will play the BC Lions at BC Place. (details)

A man walks past the large, street-level windows of The Helm menswear store downtown

The Helm opens bigger flagship downtown while others shy away

By Brett McKay

When the team behind The Helm started talking about expanding to a bigger space, there was no question about where it should be.

"Our entire DNA is based in the downtown core of the city," said owner Chad Helm. "We love the downtown core. We want to see it prosper, not die. It was a conscious choice that we made to stay and grow."

The upscale men's clothing company's new flagship store is just a block east of its former home on 104 Street, where it spent a decade. The new spot features an impressive multilevel layout at the base of Encore Tower, a luxury highrise that Helm says offers more than just additional space for its dress shirts and casual wear.

"Not only bigger, but more interesting spaces, spanning three different floors and allowing us three different opportunities to provide unique concepts to our client," Helm said.

Plans for the new store started in April 2020, "right in the heart of the mess that was going on," Helm remarked. Helm was confident the timing was right to double down on downtown, despite the retail lull caused by the pandemic, and the departure of clothing giants Holt Renfrew and Hudson's Bay,

"We've seen a lot, and we've seen the ups and downs of downtown and being a small business," Helm explained. "And ultimately, the city has been pretty good to us. Over the past 10 years, we've been growing, and despite some hiccups with the pandemic and whatnot, we were confident in the demand for what we have to offer in the city."

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By Kevin Holowack and Mack Male

Smiling councillors Amarjeet Sohi and Ben Henderson in feathered headdresses and neon yellow costumes at Cariwest in 2010

Weekend agenda: Aug. 5-7, 2022

By Debbi Serafinchon

This weekend sees the return of Edmonton's Caribbean arts festival, as well as a festival of Japanese animation, an event with the author of psychological thrillers, a ball hockey tournament celebrating diversity, equality, and inclusion through sport, and music of the outdoor and indoor variety.

Find even more things to do in the Arts Roundup.

Photo: Mayor Amarjeet Sohi, seen here in 2010 when he was a councillor, will once again join the Cariwest parade, this time as parade marshal. (Mack Male/Flickr)