NHL player Jamie Oleksiak’s guide to Dallas: Where the Toronto-born athlete goes for fun in the city where he spent nearly a decade as a Dallas Star


Breakfast in Toronto, lunch in Dallas: It’s an itinerary that’s entirely doable, given that a direct flight between the two cities is just about 3.5 hours. Once cross-border travel gears up again, the rapidly growing American city is poised to be a draw. According to the latest available census stats, the population of Dallas climbed more than 12 per cent between 2010 and 2019. That influx has created a huge buzz, with new shops and services serving newcomers and tourists alike.

With six pro teams, sports events are among the big attractions. And ice hockey defenceman Jamie Oleksiak, 28, has been a Dallas fixture. The Toronto-born athlete (brother of Olympic swimmer Penny Oleksiak), nicknamed the Big Rig, was taken by the Dallas Stars in the first round of the 2011 draft. He’s played for the team for all but two years of his career (although, in breaking news, it was announced this week that Oleksiak has signed with the Seattle Kraken).

Like other NHLers, Oleksiak spends more than half the year in arenas, practicing or going toe to toe with the world’s best players. “I work a lot and I work hard, so I like to go out when I get the chance,” he says. When he does, here are some of his insider picks for visitors to Dallas.