The Eastside Culture Crawl is a now an expanded 4 day arts extravaganza which officially kicks off this Thursday, November 20th . During ‘the Crawl’, over 400 artists in and around the heart of East Vancouver open their studios to the public. The event comprises some 79 buildings from Main Street to Victoria Drive and First Avenue to Powell Street. The mediums vary and include painters, jewelers, sculptors, textile artists, furniture makers, weavers, potters, printmakers, wood carvers and photographers. There is no set schedule for this event, you go where your mood and interests take you. To help guide you, the Eastside Culture Crawl has a great rundown of all the artists on their website including a printable .PDF map to help you find your way. The Crawl runs November 20th and 21st from 5:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. and Saturday, November 22nd and Sunday, November 23rd from 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
For those with wee ones, this year there is an opportunity to bring them along and have them participate in artistic endeavours. With the support of the Eastside Culture Crawl and Opus Art Supplies, melk art & design has extended an invitation to parents to bring their children into the melk studio, 936 Clark Drive, to create screen-printed and stenciled works of art. This event encourages children’s participation during the Crawl while allowing them to experience their own creativity in a unique studio space with guidance from a working artist. This event will run from Noon – 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, November 22nd and Sunday, November 23rd. Cost is by donation.
If you wish to mix things up and do some side trips in and around the East Vancouver while on the Crawl, there are so many wonderful stops along the way. For instance, in Railtown there is Vancouver Urban Winery & Lounge for a bit of wine or beer tasting. There are more beer options if you head West a little ways including Parallel 49 Brewing Company, Bomber Brewing and Powell Street Craft Brewery. If Belgian beer is more up your alley Biercraft on Commercial Drive or if you prefer to try some beer from the Pacific Northwest, Stateside Craft is your spot (also on Commercial Drive). Or you could make a stop at Odd Society Spirits to give their East Van Vodka a try or any one of their specialty cocktails. Then there is les amis du fromage, 843 East Hastings, if you wish to do a little cheese tasting. If you find yourself there on the weekend, check out their Pop Up Shop featuring The Lemon Square, East Van Jam and The Salty Cookie Company. Lots of delicious samples will be on hand. For some more sweet stuff, the Licorice Parlour is a great stop with over 65 flavours on hand. If you are looking for coffee, there are many great options including the Wilder Snail in the heart of Strathcona, Pallet Roasters, 323 Semlin Drive and, of course, an array of excellent choices along Commercial Drive. But if you find yourself in the Stratchona area, don’t pass up a chance to stop by Crackle Crème at 245 Union Street. This sweet little dessert cafe serves up artisan crème brûlée and authentic Belgian liège waffles as well as coffee. It will certainly be one of our stops. There will be many local restaurants, breweries and coffee shops at the ready to help you recharge your batteries before, during or after the Crawl.
See you on the Crawl.