Tag Archives: East Vancouver

Indian Summer Festival Launches Public Art Street Banner Project with Punjabi Market

12 Apr

Vancouver’s Punjabi Market plays host to an exciting new visual art project and collaboration featuring colourful street banners that line the area. Curated by the Indian Summer Festival, in partnership with the Punjabi Market Regenerative Collective, banners feature high calibre artwork from Musqueam (Xʷməθkʷəy̓əm) artist, Debra Sparrow (θəliχʷəlʷət) and Jag Nagra, artist and Collective member. The project looked at the idea of place and placemaking in the context of the Punjabi Market being located on unceded, ancestral Musqueam territory and marking 51 years of existence as an important hub for the South Asian community.

The Indian Summer Festival asked the two accomplished artists to respond to the Punjabi Market’s call for ideas to celebrate cultural traditions in the community. The resulting street banners are installed on Main Street between 48th and 52nd streets and will adorn the neighbourhood from April 12, 2021, until 2023. The Musqueam Nation’s banners are installed on the first and last poles on the street as an ‘embrace’ of this project and the Punjabi Market.

“The two banners I designed comprise of a phulkari pattern and a peacock,” says Jag Nagra, artist and member of the Punjabi Market Regeneration Collective. “Phulkari is traditional embroidery from the Punjab region of India where individual stitches create bold, colourful patterns. And much like the phulkari, what makes up a community is the weaving of individuals. Thread by individual thread is intertwined to tell a story, one that connects us all.”

Roadways in our world today
Replace the rivers that were the roadways of the past
Where people congregate for food and gatherings
In Musqueam, the old people tell a story
Of a two-headed serpent making its way through the waterways
Leaving behind lilies…
Over the last two centuries, the story has disappeared deep into the bottom of the river
Only to reemerge in a vision by Isaiah Sparrow after the story was related to him
It is an honour to have such a young man following his history
Bringing back stories that are never ending and important for the places we live.
The geometric designs reflect the blanket patterns woven by Musqueam women,
And are as old as time…
The modern designed birds are filled with Salish elements
Like us, in this modern day world we adapt to.         
The colours are in keeping with Jag Nagra 
And her amazing reflection of her history,
Both as ancient as time
We walk together on this land

Debra Sparrow

Renfrew Ravine Park Spring Clean Up April 11th

5 Apr

Have some free time on your hands and wish to get involved in your local community? Still Moon Arts Society is hosting a spring clean up in Renfrew Ravine Park April 11th from 10:30 am to 1:30 pm. This is a great opportunity to give something back to a local park. On April 11th a group of volunteers will be picking up trash and doing a bit of weed maintenance, specifically culling a few invasive species like English Ivy. All ages are welcome to participate. Meeting location is 3958 Renfrew Street. For more information on what you should bring (outside of your mask), visit Still Moon Arts Society or email adrian@stillmoonarts.ca.

#TakeOutBC Support Local Restaurants

1 Apr

This past year certainly feels like a roller coaster ride with many ups and downs. So many local businesses and organizations are struggling during this pandemic. We’ve already seen a number of restaurants shut their doors permanently. Just the other day, we learnt a long-standing Greek restaurant in SE Vancouver shut their doors on March 5th. We expect there will be more to come, but of course we hope not. With the most recent Provincial Health Orders, we have learnt there is a temporary hold on indoor dining until April 19th and possibly beyond. It is now take-out and delivery for restaurants save for those that have an outdoor patio.

We know the rapid changes in Provincial Health Orders has made it difficult for many businesses to pivot on a dime leaving them holding inventory, cutting staff, etc. We appreciate not everyone is in a position to support local restaurants due to their own personal circumstances. For those that can, we encourage you to support local where and when you can. Whether it’s take out, delivery or patio dining. There are so many great spaces around the City and some hidden gems. Did you know a personal favourite Via Tevere Pizzeria on Victoria Drive has an outdoor patio in the back of the restaurant? Add to that, they have a great online ordering system. If it’s great coffee you seek, did you know Platform 7 Coffee on East Hastings has an outdoor space behind their restaurant? There are a also number of areas along Commercial Drive that have carved out sections for outdoor patios and, of course, some have always had them like Havana Restaurant. Main Street and Fraser Street have also created many outdoor spaces for patio dining. We hope you will join us in supporting our local restaurants and #takeoutBC when and where you can.

Still Moon Arts Society On The Hunt For Eco-Arts Program Manager

16 Mar

Do you have experience in project/program planning and community engagement? Are you passionate about the interaction between arts and nature? Still Moon Arts Society is on the hunt for an Eco-Arts Programs Manager that coordinates and oversees Still Moon’s Art Programs. You will be taking direction from the Artistic Director and supported by the Operations Manager. This role will have a Canada Summer Jobs (CSJ) student to support you in your responsibilities. Still Moon has recently received funding for large projects and requires support in detailed project planning and implementation. You will be passionate about arts, nature and community engagement. Program planning, supervisor experience and exceptional time management is required. You are invited to submit your resume with cover letter to lindy@stillmoonarts.ca by March 17, 2021. To learn more about the posting, visit Eco-Arts Program Manager. To learn about more job postings in East Van, visit our Job Board.

Photo Credit: Zhaozhong Zheng

The Cultch Presents Out Of Order March 18 – 21, 2021

9 Mar

The Cultch invites you to a very different online experience with Out Of Order. This is a ground-breaking contemporary circus collective that features spectacular acrobatics from the Montreal based troupe 7 Fingers. During this past year, art has been transformed and this production highlights just that. With theatres empty, meeting places and cultural venues no longer permitted to open, physical contact prohibited, artists have been forced to meet secretly in forsaken spaces. The big top used to be a space where they practiced their craft but was achingly deserted. Out of Order showcases this post-apocalyptic setting with ten gloved and masked characters who scrutinize one another, prepare, approach and avoid contact. They come from all walks of life. These amazing performers forgotten during the pandemic, cling to their vocation and create an apocalyptic new reality. To catch this awe inspiring video streamed performance, visit The Cultch to grab your ticket.

Sauvignon Blanc Cheese Tasting March 28, 2021 With les amis du FROMAGE

19 Feb


On the success of their recent Facebook Live tasting event, les amis du FROMAGE has lined up another event for cheese and wine lovers. Host Allison Spurrell will again be leading this 1 hour tasting which features the wine varietal Sauvignon Blanc. The tasting package is featured for 2 people and includes:

Cheese (8 types)
Crackers
Olives
Accompaniment
Tasting menu

Heads up, the wine is not included in the ticket price, but they have partnered with Marquis Wine Cellars who have helped choose the best pairings as well as a discount. After you purchase your ticket, you will be contacted by les amis du FROMAGE with a discount code for the suggested wines which we’ve set out below.

The Sauvignon Blanc Cheese Tasting event happens Sunday, March 28th at 6:30 pm. To purchase your ticket, visit les amis du FROMAGE. Note, cut off for ticket sales is March 21st.

Local Love This Valentine’s Day

10 Feb

We know not every one gets behind Valentine’s Day. Some see it as a made up day. Even if that’s your view, considering what a struggle this past year, why not show someone special a little love just because. It can be your partner or a good friend who has been a great support for you this past year, your sister, mother, brother. Or what about that next door neighbour or isolated senior? Whomever it might be, there are so many ways to say “I Care”. As we love our local businesses, we wanted to highlight a few you can throw your support behind this Valentine’s Day.

Soprasotto

Pizza Love

A few East Van pizza joints (and likely more) are doing heart shaped pizzas for Valentine’s Day. Check out Lombardo’s Ristorante and Soprasotto on Commercial Drive and Pizza Farina on Main Street.

Flowers

Who does not love to get flowers? There are so many great options in East Van whether it’s local florist shops like the Flower Factory at 4285 Main or Full Bloom on Commercial Drive. If you are lucky enough to have a neighbourhood corner store, be sure to check them out. They often have a nice selection on hand. If you are in River District this Sunday, you can also stop by the Brock Floral Cart which will be on site at the foot of Kerr Street near Romer’s Burger Bar. This is a mobile floral cart that will have a selection of flowers available from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm or until sold out. It won’t be quite as pictured, but you get the idea.

Sweet Treats

Oh Sweet Day

So many great local businesses are offering sweet treats for Valentine’s Day whether it’s chocolates at Beta 5 or the Purdy’s outlet store on Kingsway. If it’s cookies you are after, Oh Sweet Day, Bench Bakehouse and many others have a great selection. To see a full list of our Favourite East Van Bakeries, click the link. If you are looking for sweet treats for the kids (big and small), don’t forget the Licorice Parlour. They’ve added some new items so not just licorice.

Jewellery

White Sapphire Anna

If this is the year, you are going big on the jewellery front, we invite you to check out Era Design Jewellery at 1795 Venables Street near Commercial. They design some beautiful jewellery whether custom or ready made.

Love Songs

Jill Barber

If you are looking to set the mood with beautiful love songs, you will want to catch Jill Barber’s live streamed performance from The Cultch on February 14th.

Whether you celebrate the ‘day’ or not, be sure to show your local businesses some local love this weekend.

It’s Back …. Do You Want What I’ve Got? A Craigslist Cantata Returns Feb 5-7, 2021

11 Jan

Did you miss The Cultch’s presentation of A Craigslist Cantata in November? You are in luck, it’s back for a short run February 5 – 7, 2021. If you haven’t already heard about this fun virtual show it’s your personal ads set to music and streamed to your living room. You are invited to join a cast of wild and wacky characters from the Craigslist community as they attempt to buy and sell online, all the while longing and searching for human connection. Do You Want What I’ve Got? A Craigslist Cantata. The production touches on social isolation and is live-streamed from The Cultch’s Historic Theatre. You can expect a witty and poignant exploration of physical distancing along with original songs such as 300 Stuffed PenguinsChili Eating Buddy and Decapitated Dolls. The production features the incredibly talented local cast including, Meaghan ChenoskyJosh EpsteinChirag NaikAmanda SumAndrew Wheeler and choreography by Amanda Testini. The production is written by the talented Veda Hille, Bill Richardson and Amiel Gladstone. Tickets start from $29 for a 1 viewer household and $58 for a 2 viewer household. To grab your ticket(s), visit The Cultch.

Looking For Something To Do? Murals In Mount Pleasant Await You Anytime

29 Dec

If you have a little extra time on your hands this week and are looking for something to do, we have an idea that’s free and outdoors. If you haven’t yet wandered the murals that are dotted around Mount Pleasant, we highly recommend it. The Vancouver Mural Festival may be over for 2020, but the amazing art is there for you to see anytime. Just bundle up, maybe grab a hot drink from a local business to keep warm while wandering. The local businesses will appreciate your support and you won’t be disappointed by the art. Here’s a sampling of what you will see, but the photos don’t do it justice. We recommend checking them out in person.

Buy Local This Holiday Season

26 Nov

We don’t have to tell you it’s been a rough year for small business. On recently updating our Places We Love listing, we were saddened to remove some favourite spots no longer in business like Doctor Vigari Gallery and The Flower Box. These were two long time staples on Commercial Drive. As you’ve likely heard, it’s important to shop local this holiday season if you wish to see these businesses on the other side of the pandemic. We have always been passionate about supporting our local business community and wish to remind folks these local businesses are the ones that provide donations for your school fundraisers, sports clubs and other community events. Now they need YOU.

Local business woman and social entrepreneur, Elizabeth McKitrick, who owns Second Nature Home in Cedar Cottage, was recently featured on CTV News discussing her thoughts on shopping local. McKitrick said she’s hoping people “just don’t go to Amazon.” “It’s like a black hole, really, for cash,” she said. “It’s going into Jeff Bezo’s pocket. He’s the wealthiest person in the world, and I just think, ‘Why?’ We have other ways of helping out communities.” And if you missed the recent CBC Marketplace episode showing where all your Amazon returns go, you may wish to enlighten yourself.

When gift shopping this holiday season, you have the opportunity to make a difference and support those makers and creators living among us. They are those micro businesses, side gigs and entrepreneurs trying to stay afloat and stores like McKitrick’s support these businesses. So instead of lining the pockets of the richest man in the world, how about lining the pocket of your neighbour down the street or across town?

To give you a starting point, we’ve set out a few of our favourite stores for shopping local in East Van. One of the many reasons we likes these stores is because they all support other local artisans, makers and small business.  So visit them in person or online and see what items they have that might make that perfect gift for someone special this holiday season.

Second Nature Home

Second Nature Home is a home décor boutique located at 3565 Commercial Street in Cedar Cottage.  The store has a wide range of items outside of home décor including  jewellery, gifts for the foodie in your life, something cute for the new baby or new mom and much more. They are open Tuesday to Saturday from 11:00 am to 6:00 pm and Sundays from 2:00 pm to 6:00 pm. They will also be open till 8:00 on Wednesday in December.

Plenty + Spare

Plenty + Spare is located at 2168 East Hasting Street. It’s easy to miss by the smells of their neighbour Delish Gluten Free Bakery which can draw you in by your nose literally, but do stop into Plenty + Spare. They create an array of beautiful handmade bath and beauty products and stock a number of other items perfect for gift giving. Added bonus, they’ve just updated their website for online shopping and offer store pick up as well as free shipping for orders over $60.

Giving Gifts

Giving Gifts is a beautiful space located at 4570 Main Street. The store tucked between 30th & 29th Avenue is made of up 5 rooms packed with items from over 100 local as well as fair trade artists from around the world.  It is a gift giving boutique so you will easily be able to pick up a few gifts for just about any age. They are open Monday to Saturday from Noon to 6:00 pm and Sundays Noon to 5:00 pm.

Jackson’s General Store

Jackson’s General Store located at 1490 Kingsway (at Dumfries) near Knight Street. This space is the epitome of cool with a distinct retro vibe. Store owner, Mike Jackson, has created an eclectic mix of unique items in store which features clothing, gourmet food, books and if you are looking for a candy fix that is a blast from the past, this is your spot. Jackson’s General Store has also created some Care Boxes which support local brands and can be delivered to your door. Jackson’s General Store is open Monday to Saturday 11:00 am to 5:30 pm and Sundays 12:00 to 5:00 pm.

The Coast Goods

The Coast Goods has just opened their doors in the last couple of months. They are located at 1302 Victoria Drive. This is great neighbourhood shop that focuses ethically sourced home decor and giftware again supporting our local independent artisans. They are open Tuesday to Sunday, closed Mondays. Be sure to check them out and give them a follows on Instagram.

Olive & Wild

We would be remiss if we didn’t mention this beautiful shop located at 4391 Main Street. They have an amazing array of home decor items and lots of great things on hand for gift giving. They feature local as well as international artists. Olive & Wild is open 7 days a week.

Why we should Shop Local.

For every $100 you spend with a local business, $46 is re-circulated back into the BC economy (vs $18 for multi nationals). Small business re-circulates 2.6 times more revenue in the local economy as do chains. 

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