The venue in Calgary is alright. I've been there once. The sound wasn't very good when I was there, and I've heard that the sound is never that good. Basically it's laid out as a big open room, which in itself is alright as there's lots of floor room and nothing to obscure the view of the stage if you want to stand off to the side or near the back. The barrier to the stage is really low, so if you're at the front and the crowd is crushing you forward, you're probably going to get your junk squished pretty good (if you're male). I'm not kidding about that. The barrier is about waist height on me, whereas most barriers tend to come up to the bottom of my ribcage. The stage is also quite small. Beyond that, an advantage is that the lineup to get inside the venue is actually right inside the university. (So if you're there when it's cold out, or raining, or even really hot out, you get to stand inside). I found it difficult to find exactly where I was supposed to be going to get to the venue from where I'd parked, but I am not familiar with the University of Calgary campus at all. Once inside the venue, the smoking area was off to the side of the stage, through some doors and onto a pretty large patio area. So at least that was convenient. The bar is not in the same room as the stage is. You have to go out the doors at the back of the room and down some stairs to get to the bar area. That part sucks, as you're not allowed to take beer back up the stairs (although if you get water or something else to drink, you are allowed to take it back up). I'm not sure if this is the setup at all events, but I have heard that it is. So don't plan on drinking beer while you're actually watching bands play. Also, another thing that I didn't really like about the venue was that there were no tables or chairs anywhere for those who didn't want to go into the pit. I usually wouldn't care about something like that, but when I was down in Calgary for a show I'd injured my back and couldn't handle standing for the entire show, so I had to sit on the steps at the back of the room. Overall, I'm not a huge fan of the venue, but it's alright. Metal is art.: Yeah, I'm from the Edmonton area. I've been to the Events Center for many shows and find it to be an okay venue. Like Physicx said, the pillars in the middle of the floor really are a big disadvantage from the vantage point of many areas in the building. If you want to sit, I'd suggest lining up early and rushing in to grab one of the tables at the back of the room from the stage as they're higher up than the rest of the floor, offer a decent vantage point if you get the right table and are close to both the bars and the bathrooms. The pillars have never been an issue for me as I usually try to be on the rail, or I'm sitting at one of the tables drinking. But many people complain about them, and the layout in general of that venue is pretty stupid. While the venue itself is inside West Edmonton Mall, the line-up to get inside will be outside. As for separating minors from those over eighteen: The way they do it, and the area where they put the minors, is so stupid that you might as well find another venue to go see a band at. You won't have a good view of the stage if you're under 18, and unless you're really sneaky or have fake ID, you won't be getting anywhere near the pit or the front of the stage. You'll get to watch the entire show from the side of the stage (and far enough to the side that you'll mostly be seeing the side of the amps and what not, and not the band). To me, it looks as though it's not even worth buying a ticket if you're under 18, but I've never had the misfortune of being stuck in that area. If you want to smoke, it's a huge pain in the ass, as you have to go out the main doors and possibly be checked by security to get back in. You're not allowed to have beer in certain areas of the venue either, like at the merch table. The sound in there has always been okay when I've been there, but it's hard to make a good evaluation of that when you're on the rail. The biggest thing that pisses me off about the venue is the staff that they have working it. They've never even come close to opening the door on time every time I've been there. We stood outside for hours in the winter before a show when it was -30C and at the time when the doors were supposed to open, the security staff was standing on the other side of the doors actually taunting us with their coffees and KFC takeout. They should have been preparing to open the doors, but instead they were filling their faces and laughing at everyone standing outside. I've always found their security to very disorganized, and often they've been downright assholes when you do something as simple as ask them a question. They have a rule about no moshing in the venue, and will attempt to throw you out if you do. However, the same rule doesn't apply to crowdsurfing apparently. I figure if you're going to have a rule against moshing, have one against crowdsurfing as well. Personally, I don't appreciate getting kicked in the back of the head repeatedly by the same crowdsurfer while having the sweaty armpits of some fat security guard in my face who is trying to make sure the crowdsurfer doesn't fall on his head on the cement floor. Overall, it's an okay venue if you realize the limitations. I haven't had a problem when I've chosen to either be on the rail or to sit at the tables and drink. I would give the advice of getting there quite early though in order to ensure that you get a spot with an unobstructed view. That was longer than it was intended to be, but those are my thoughts on both the venue in Edmonton and the one in Calgary.