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Chloe Lai

Feel-Good Festival: Wanderlust Whistler

By CHLOË LAI

Photo courtesy Wanderlust

Aug. 2 to 5, 2018 Ever wondered what it might be like to meditate on top of a mountain? Head up to Whistler for Wanderlust. This four-day celebration of all things wellness includes guided meditations, yoga classes—hosted on stand-up paddleboards, aerial silks, slacklines and good old-fashioned mats—mindfulness-themed wilderness walks and more. And for music that moves your soul, find your zen on the dance floor, where local and international acts keep the good vibes going late into the night. Pure bliss.

Fireworks Festival: Honda Celebration of Light 2018

By CHLOË LAI

Fireworks light up English Bay (Photo by Rishad Daroowala/Tourism Vancouver)

Aug. 1 and 4, 2018 Summer nights kick off with a bang at the Honda Celebration of Light, when fireworks light up the sky over English Bay. Gaze up in awe as pyrotechnic pros from Sweden (Aug. 1) and South Korea (Aug. 4) compete for bragging rights by setting off stunning displays synchronized to music. Arrive early, because the party fires up in the afternoon: outdoor stages showcase hot acts like R&B queen Jully Black and fun-fuelled Five Alarm Funk. Plus, daredevil pilots blaze death-defying trails overhead during the nightly airshow. Talk about explosive entertainment.

The Scoop: Five Spots for Scream-Worthy Ice Cream

By CHLOË LAI
Jul. 2018

Photo ©Zivica Kerkez/Shutterstock.com

Ice cream fans, here’s the scoop: sink your sweet tooth into local, seasonal ingredients at Earnest Ice Cream and Rain or Shine, or take a walk on the wild side with Perverted Ice Cream to sample soft-serve with cheeky names like “Beg For S’more.” Artisanal offerings are flash-frozen with liquid nitrogen at Mister, while Umaluma brings impossibly creamy dairy-free gelato to the mindful masses, and packs it into crunchy gluten-free waffle cones. No wonder summer’s our favourite season.

Splash into Summer: Making the Most of Vancouver’s Ocean Playground

In this seaside city, there’s more than one way to hit the water

By CHLOË LAI

Ecomarine Paddlesport Centres’ kayaks provide the perfect vantage point for stunning souvenir snaps (Photo by KK Law)

Power Up Your Paddle

Truth is, the best seat in the house isn’t in the house at all: it’s out on the water. Set out on a kayak or stand-up paddleboard from Ecomarine Paddlesport Centres and glide through False Creek to soak up prime views of the city. Say hello to herons and seals as you navigate between the daydream-inspiring yachts and sailboats—as well as the occasional pirate ship—that cruise around Granville Island. For more peaceful paddling, join one of Ecomarine’s sunset tours, or head up to Deep Cove Kayak Centre to explore the tree-lined Indian Arm fjord. (more…)

Granville Island Stage: Once

By CHLOË LAI

The ArtsClub’s production of Once takes over the Granville Island Stage until Jul. 29 (Photo by David Cooper)

To Aug. 5, 2018 Eleven years ago, an indie film about Guy, an Irish busker, and Girl, a Czech immigrant, won hearts all over the world for its soulful songs. Now you can feel the love in person at Once on the Granville Island Stage. The Tony Award–winning musical features a multitalented cast who play every heartbreaking, foot-stomping song—including the Academy Award–winning “Falling Slowly”—on mandolins, violins, accordions and more. Plus, the pub set is a functional bar, so you can step onstage for a pre-show pint. Live music, drinks and a chance to fall in love with Guy and Girl all over again? We’ll raise a glass to that.

Seaside Social: Vancouver Folk Music Festival

By CHLOË LAI

Sun, sea and sweet, sweet music at the Vancouver Folk Music Festival at Jericho Beach Park (Photo by Erik Price)

Jul. 13 to 15, 2018 Whether you’re inspired by indie rock or blown away by bluegrass, the Vancouver Folk Music Festival’s eclectic line-up will sweep you off your dancing feet. Jericho Beach Park comes alive with the sweet sounds of more than 50 world-class acts, including JUNO Award–winners The Dead South and Quantum Tangle, Canadian siren Neko Case of The New Pornographers, and Australian folk legend Archie Roach. Take a break from all the action to explore the artisan market, or go for a dip in the nearby ocean. The beach is so close, you can still hear the music. It’s true: there ain’t no party like a West Coast party.

Fresh Mountain Flair

By CHLOË LAI
Jun. 2018

Adventure-ready apparel decked out in colourful art? Yes, please. (Photo by Travis Kayes)

If you feel like Whistler’s turquoise lakes and gorgeous glaciers put the “awe” in “awesome,” you’re not alone: local artist Vanessa Stark feels it, too. She channels this sense of wonder into whimsical paintings, as well as eco-friendly, locally produced apparel. Her tank tops, hats and custom-made leggings (pictured) are perfect for outdoor adventures of every kind. Find her creations at the Whistler Farmers’ Market or online at www.vanessastarkart.com.

Canada Day 2018: How to Celebrate in Vancouver

By CHLOË LAI

Perfectly punny cup from Indigo

Jul 1, 2018 Canada Day kicks off festivities across the city, many of them glorious and free. Swing over to Granville Island for live music courtesy of the TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival, or to Creekside Park, where hopeful percussionists attempt to set a new Guinness World Record for most nationalities in a drum circle. Then dance your way down to Canada Place for crowd-pleasing concerts and a fireworks finale. Need Canuck swag? Indigo is a treasure trove of True North–themed souvenirs, from fun pillows to campsite-ready mugs.

Sounds of Summer: TD Vancouver International Jazz Fest

By CHLOË LAI

Crowds gather to enjoy free concerts at David Lam Park, one of the festival venues (Photo by Jon Benjamin Photography)

Jun. 22-Jul. 1, 2018 For 10 days and nights, the TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival puts a swing in the city’s step, with more than 1,800 musicians playing 300 concerts—150 of which are free. Get down to the legendary sounds of heavy hitters like Robert Plant (Jun. 29), Macy Gray (Jun. 28) and the undeniably sax-y Kamasi Washington (Jun. 24), or fall head-over-dancin’-feet for one of the many hot up-and-comers. Groove on.

Truck Stop Concert Series: Coleman Hell

By CHLOË LAI

Gather beneath the water tower at Red Truck Beer for live music and craft beer on Jun. 16

Jun. 16, 2018 Want to party with the locals? You’ll find 1,800 of them at Red Truck Beer’s Truck Stop Concert Series. This month, catch headliner and Juno-nominated artist Coleman Hell, creator of the impossibly addictive multi-platinum hit single “2 Heads.” Warming up the crowd for Hell’s latest dance-inciting tracks are Seattle-based Pickwick, self-described as “space soul,” and local rising stars Sam the Astronaut. Don’t miss Aviator Shades, winners of the 2018 Truck Stop Talent Search and cheerful ambassadors of classic rock. Two stages, top-notch tunes, food trucks and craft beer aplenty—this is how Vancouver does summer.

15 Things to Love About Summer in Whistler

Fall head over heels for summer activities, from sunny skydiving to serene spa retreats

By CHLOË LAI
Jun. 2018

Peak to Peak gondola (Photo by Mike Crane/Tourism Whistler)

1. Snapping photos of local bears—from a safe distance, of course—on a wildlife viewing tour.

2. Sabering a bottle of champagne at Bearfoot Bistro.

3. Ooh-ing and aah-ing over the incredible views from the world-record-breaking Peak 2 Peak Gondola. (more…)

Melancholia Dreamland at Art Beatus Gallery

By CHLOË LAI

“Tangled” by Simone Guo (Photo courtesy Art Beatus)

To Jun 22, 2018 For many, the natural world is an escape from everyday life. It’s a sentiment we share with traditional Chinese landscape painters of centuries past, who sought refuge from social and political unrest in the permanence of mountains, rivers and trees. In Melancholia Dreamland, award-winning Vancouver artist Simone Guo uses acrylics and mixed media to tap into—and reimagine—this age-old idea. Rather than recreating the real world, Guo says she “paints landscape as a concept,” producing colourfully compelling works such as “Tangled” (pictured). Find your sanctuary at Art Beatus.