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Walk For Reconciliation To Strathcona Park September 24, 2017

20 Sep

WeAreAllOneThe first-ever Reconciliation Expo will be held Sunday, September 24th.  The event begins at 10:00 am with a 2 km walk that starts at 650 Cambie Street and travels to Strathcona Park.  After the walk, there are a host of activities lined up for the day at the Expo that continues till 3:00 pm. The event will include community booths with information about reconciliation, cultural activities as well as presentations by community groups.  Along side the events, there will be an area dedicated to local artisans. This is a great opportunity to experience local Indigenous art and culture.  There will also be an area for children to play educational games and a space for Indigenous craft making. If you get hungry while there, a variety of Vancouver based food-trucks serving ethnically-diverse foods will be on hand.

The day also features musicians, dance groups and a host of activities and exhibits some of which we’ve set out below. To see a full rundown of events, we invite you to visit reconciliationcanada.ca: 

Exhibit: Site Unseen (Gitga’at and West Vancouver Youth – Mural of Merging Voices) 

A unique and innovative project supports links between different groups of coastal youth. To deepen the understanding of their unique cultures and lands, students from the District of West Vancouver and the Gitga’at Nation in Hartley Bay worked together to create a large art installation that explores reconciliation among youth.

Exhibit: National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation 

An exhibit from the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation that explores working together for a strong future and better understanding of reconciliation.

Exhibit: Carey Newman’s Witness Blanket (Full-Size Replica)

Inspired by a woven blanket, the Witness Blanket is a large-scale art installation, made out of hundreds of items reclaimed from Residential Schools, churches, government buildings and traditional and cultural structures including Friendship Centres, band offices, treatment centres and universities, from across Canada. The Witness Blanket stands as a national monument to recognise the atrocities of the Indian Residential School era, honour the children, and symbolise ongoing reconciliation.

Weavers Corner

Facilitated by the Earthand Gleaners Society and a diverse group of Indigenous and non-Indigenous weavers, this will be a tactile, interactive space to learn more about the craft of weaving from multiple cultural perspectives. The space will be hands-on, inviting participants to engage with plants native to this territory and learn more about the social history of weaving.

Kairos Blanket Exercise

The KAIROS Blanket Exercise is an interactive learning experience that teaches the Indigenous rights history we’re rarely taught. Developed in response to the 1996 Report of the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples, which recommended education on Canadian-Indigenous history as one of the key steps to reconciliation, the Blanket Exercise covers over 500 years of history.

On-site Mural Painting

The Vancouver Mural Festival will host an interactive mural site where with spray paint where participants can add their message of hope or reconciliation. There will also be several commissioned artists creating pieces during the Expo that aim to capture the energy and experience of the Walk for Reconciliation.

Commitment Gallery

Using the pre-existing infrastructure of the tennis court in Strathcona Park, Reconciliation Canada will facilitate the creation of a temporary Commitment Gallery. This will serve as an opportunity for participants to make a personal pledge towards reconciliation following their participation in the Walk. Commitment Cards will be exhibited on the fence to visually display and celebrate actions.

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Comedian Debra DiGiovanni At The York Theatre September 23, 2017

19 Sep

DebraDiGiovanniCanadian comedian Debra DiGiovanni is Canada’s favourite female comedian. Lucky for us she’s coming to East Van on Saturday, September 23rd. She will be performing her edgy playful comedy at the York Theatre.   If you aren’t familiar with her humour, you can easily find a YouTube video with her performance.  She was a finalist in NBC’s Last Comic Standing and her first stand up DVD “Single Awkward Female” is now on Netflix.  She is currently on comedy network’s revival of Match Game on which she is a panelist and you can often hear Debra on CBC radio’s Debaters’ program.  Tickets for the show are $25 and available through The Cultch.  This is one show we won’t be missing.

Story Story Lie At The Rio Theatre September 21, 2017

18 Sep

storyStoryLieInLightsCan you spot a liar? How about putting it to the test and checking out Story Story Lie? This is an interactive show with one simple premise: Vancouver’s best intimate share. The stories are often hilarious as well as embarrassing and just a little to strange to be true. What’s the catch? Well someone’s lying of course. The audience gets to take part in the interrogation to reveal who the liar is. And the first audience member to guess who the liar is, wins the grand prize, as well as the respect, admiration of the crowd and bragging rights. The Westender calls this show “One of the most inventive events on the Vancouver arts calendar” Story Story Lie now moves to a bigger space at The Rio Theatre for its first show in this venue on Thursday, September 21st.  They have a great line up for their first show at the Rio including Leo and Gemini Award winner Erica Sigurdson, TJ Dawe and comedian Patrick Maliha. Tickets are available in advance online at Rio Theatre for $10 online or $12 at the door.

What’s On East Van: September 15, 2017

15 Sep

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Lots happening in East Van this next week.  Our weekly feature What’s On East Van sets out cool events for the upcoming week. Beyond the week, we invite you to check out our Event Listing which is updated daily and features events for the month and beyond.

Tango Lessons – Italian Cultural Centre – September 15, 2017

Looking for a perfect date night?  We suggest trying out a tango lesson at the Italian Cultural Centre. This is currently a weekly event happening on Friday nights until the end of October. Classes run from 6:00 – 7:30 pm. Cost is $20 per person per class, or you can register by the month at a cost of $60.

Vancouver Fringe Festival – September 7-17, 2017

This is the last weekend to catch the Vancouver Fringe Festival.  In East Van, you find shows at The Cultch and Firehall Arts Centre. To see a full listing, visit Vancouver Fringe Festival.

First Pick Handmade – Heritage Hall – September 16 & 17, 2017

First Pick Handmade brings together 27 Canadian men’s and women’s fashion accessory designers. The Heritage Hall will be transformed into a 3,300 square foot pop up boutique with a variety of items for men and women. Event runs Saturday (11:00 am – 7:00 pm and Sunday (10:00 am – 6:00 pm). Admission is $3 at the door.

Drive-In Movie – River District – September 16, 2017

After a false start last weekend with a last minute cancellation, Drive-In Movies are back at River District. The evening starts off this Saturday with a showing of Wonder Woman at 7:30 pm, followed by The Transformers The Last Knight at 10:00 pm.  Cost is $20 per carload for one movie and $30 per carload for 2 movies.  Gates open at 6:45 pm and is first come first serve

Tailgate Party – Whisky Six BBQ  – September 17, 2017

Whisky Six BBQ at 826 Renfrew Street invites you for a Tailgate Party with BBQ, beer and cocktails. We hear the good folks at Bomber Brewing and Odd Society Spirits will be on hand.  Event runs from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm.

Yoga In The Park – Grandview Park – September 17, 2017

Ocean and Crow Yoga will be hosting free yoga in the park this Sunday, September 17th. Bring your own towel and yoga mat and you are set.

Story Story Lie – Rio Theatre – September 21, 2017

Can you spot a liar? Story Story Lie is an interactive, live and laughter filled show with one simple premise: Vancouver’s best share intimate, hilarious and often embarrassing stories that seem too strange to be true. The catch? Someone’s lying. The audience takes part in an interrogation to reveal who it is. The Westender calls this show “One of the most inventive events on the Vancouver arts calendar” Story Story Lie now moves to a bigger space at The Rio Theatre for its first show in this venue on Thursday, September 21st.  Tickets are available in advance for $10 online or $12 at the door.

Entertainment, Comedy + Live Theatre

If you are looking to listen to music, Columbian group Breaking Boundaries will be performing at Café Deux Soleils on Friday night. Cover is $5-10. If it’s saucy and sexy you are wanting, you may wish to check out Dan Savage’s Hump Festival Tour 2017 happening at the Rio Theatre all weekend.  To see more of what’s on, check our Events Listing. 

First Pick Handmade At The Heritage Hall September 16 & 17, 2017

13 Sep

First Pick Postcard jpegThis weekend you are invited to First Pick Handmade YVR happening at the Heritage Hall at 3102 Main Street on September 16th and 17th. This is a curated event of 27 Canadian men’s and women fashion accessory designers. They will be on hand with a limited run of their fall picks.  First Pick Handmade will transform Heritage Hall into a 3,300-square foot pop up boutique department store for the person that values Canadian design and quality materials.   The event will include a combination of long standing designers as well as newer start ups.  The common thread all these designers share is high quality construction and materials. The event will showcase clothing, jewelry, hats, winter accessories, shoes and bags, for both men and women.  Some of the local designers featured include Westerly Handmade Shoes, Friday Socks, Bill Would, Winterluxe, Anderson Boots, Daub and Design, Lana Betty and Buruko Bags and Zed Handmade just to name a few.

First Pick Handmade was created and curated by Janna Hurtzig  who is the founder/designer behind Winterluxe Recycled Cashmere and Astrosatchel labels.  Hurtzig has been part of Vancouver’s handmade scene since 1988 in a variety of roles including co-organizer of Shiny, Muddy Fuzzy.  So we are expecting to see some great things at this upcoming first ever market.  First Pick Handmade YVR runs this Saturday from  11:00 am to 7:00 pm and Sunday from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm. Entrance is $3.00 at the door.

A Little East Van History – Motel Row On Kingsway

11 Sep

MotelVacancyTraveling along Kingsway through Collingwood, I noticed some inconspicuous street signs the City installed a few years back. Designed in the style of 1960ʼs era Trans Canada Highway markers, the signs proclaim Indigenous Trail and Wagon Road. This was done as an acknowledgement of Kingsway as a historical route into and out of Vancouver for indigenous and non-indigenous people.

These signs got me thinking about my own use of the route. In particular how I had designated some navigational points along Kingsway which I used to gauge my progress entering or exiting the City. These points are or were motels that stand out against the shifting commercial landscape of Kingsway. I set off to rediscover my motel route.

Heading east the starting point was always the Biltmore at 12th and Kingsway. Once a Howard Johnsonʼs Hotel, and previously various others, it is now social housing. The next point is the Days Inn at Kingsway and Victoria. This place has been there for 70 years and in the early days was considered quite upscale. I know because the hotel is where my mom stayed on her wedding night. Either that or my Dad really was the cheapskate he was suspected of being.

Continuing east to Kingsway and Nanaimo, where there once stood a vast motel with beer parlour and off-sales called the Eldorado. It has since been replaced by several condo towers although the motel name lives on with the small Eldorado liquor store on the corner. I wonder if the owners actually did their research on the name. The beer parlour with off-sales was called Mulhernʼs Pub, named after the family that owned the Eldorado. A curious side note about the pub is that a family member apparently attempted to pull a stick-up of Mulhernʼs, but had a little problem with the stocking over their face and was recognized. Always helps to have a proper disguise when robbing family.

Past the old Eldorado site is the iconic and hard to miss 2400 Motel. This city owned 3 acre enclave of 18 cottages has been a frequent film location for everything from the X-Files to Smallville. The 2400 also briefly hosted Ahmed Ressam the Millennium Bomber, who fortunately didnʼt overcook anything during his stay. After the 2400 Motel is the last point before Boundary the Mr. Sport Hotel at Kingsway and Battison. This placeʼs marquee always seemed to advertise it as the last stop for strippers and off-sales before the wilds of Burnaby. The Mr. Sport eventually became a Ramada and then like the Biltmore was bought by the City and turned into social housing. A painted over Ramada sign and faded “Lobby “awning stand as a reminder of its intimidating previous lives. The Mr. Sport looked then and still looks to me now like a place you went into and instantly got shit kicked.

Aside from these motels, there are two other strange atolls of accommodation along the Kingsway route. One, almost directly across from the old Mr. Sport, is the Deluxe Hotel. I suspect it is as deluxe as that burger you get from the cafe gas station garage in Boston Bar. One the other hand the Deluxe, which has been around since 1958, recently changed hands. It has a nice new sign and may be slowly drifting towards the boutique style. Although youʼll probably never find out as it is probably booked full of would be novelists trying to get that gritty East Van feel.

More suspect is the Cassandra at 3075 Kingsway. While it advertises itself as a “comfortable and connected 3 star”, youʼve got to wonder what it’s doing there. From the outside it definitely has that must be a front for something feel. Certainly if you are in a witness protection program,  or generally have at least one hand gun stuffed into your saggy baggy jeans, you might not feel out of place.

By Contributing Writer Al Tee

Vancouver Fringe Festival September 7-17, 2017 – East Van Picks

6 Sep

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The Vancouver Fringe Festival is an annual event that kicks off September 7th and runs till September 17th at various venues in the Lower Mainland.  East Van is hosting quite a few of the productions this year namely The Cultch, Firehall Arts Centre, Havana Theatre and Ocean and Crow Yoga. This year over 700 performances will be featured by over 90 artists over the 11 day festival.  Ticket prices are $14 for each show with a $3 processing fee after payment of your Annual Fringe Theatre Society Membership of $5.00.  We invite you to check out some of the amazing local talent and have set out a few of the productions that caught our eye happening in East Van.  

OBIT At The Cultch Historic Theatre

OBIT is a dark comedy written by first time playwrights, Cathy Collins and Simon Roberts, takes you on a morbid look through the obituary notices. In three wryly funny, character rich scenes, Collis and Roberts peel back the public face of the tributes to soccer coach and divorcing dad Derek, suburban Mom Shirley and pillar-of-society businessman Richard now battling Alzheimer’s, to reveal their real lives and their sometimes buried pasts. OBIT opens Saturday, September 9th at 7:35 pm. You can also catch it September 12th at 7:45 pm, September 14th at 5:00 pm, September 16th at Noon and September 17th at 8:30 pm.  Tickets available at Vancouver Fringe Festival.

Cry Baby At The Firehall Arts Centre

Cry Baby The Musical is Romeo and Juliet meets The Outsiders with everyone’s tongues planted firmly in cheek. The show features  1950s Baltimore, the conservative squares face off against the leather-clad delinquents in a rockabilly musical based on John Waters’ cult film. The show is filled with such great songs, we hear you will want to dance your heart out. Cry Baby The Musical features a cast of 16 emerging new artists who will kick off their run on September 7th at 6:45 pm.   You can also catch the show on September 9th at 9:30 pm,  September 10th at 1:45 pm, September 11th at 6:00 pm (1/2 price show), September 13th at 6:00 pm, September 16th at 3:15 pm and September 17th at 2:00 and 7:15 pm.   To get your tickets, visit Vancouver Fringe Festival.

Bombay Black At The Vancity Culture Lab

2017 Jessie Award and multiple Fringe Award recipient Rohit Chokhani delves into a blind man’s world as he reimagines Anosh Irani’s Bombay Black. Bombay Black is a searing play set in the bitter reality of present-day India. The iron-willed Padma takes money from men who watch her daughter, Apsara perform an erotic dance. When a mysterious blind man named Kamal arrives for an appointment, his secret threatens to change each of their lives forever.  The show features a culturally diverse cast which takes the audience members on a journey into a blind man’s world. Note, the audience is  initially blind-folded as they come into the theatre. Bombay Black kicks off on Thursday, September 7th at 8:50 pm. You can also catch it September 9th at 6:45 pm, September 10th at 1:55 pm, September 11th at 7:00 pm, September 13th at 8:50 pm and September 16th at 7:05 pm. To get your tickets, visit Vancouver Fringe Festival.

Photo Credit: Zahida Rahemtulla

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