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Chloe Lai

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.

Douglas Coupland Makes Waves at the Vancouver Aquarium

BY CHLOË LAI 

Douglas Coupland’s “Vortex” is on display at the Vancouver Aquarium until spring 2019 (Photo courtesy Vancouver Aquarium)

To spring 2019 Decades ago, when Vancouver-based artist Douglas Coupland first started working with plastic, the material seemed “eternal, shiny and happy.” That changed when Coupland discovered plastic bottles from Tokyo washed up on the remote beaches of Haida Gwaii. His newest exhibit, Vortex, uses plastic marine debris collected along BC’s coast to reimagine the Pacific Trash Vortex—also known as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch—in a series of playful, thought-provoking installations. The centrepiece, a small Japanese fishing boat set adrift in the 2011 tsunami, is now home to four figures, including a tweed-jacketed Andy Warhol. In a tank nearby, tiny fish dart through a multi-coloured LEGO “reef.” Across the room, blue blubber jellyfish and yellow-capped plastic bottles bob and drift in perfect harmony. Long shelves showcase assorted flotsam and jetsam, such as a plastic Snapple bottle cap emblazoned with the company’s slogan: “Made From the Best Stuff on Earth.” Intrigued? Dive into this thought-provoking exhibit at the Vancouver Aquarium.

 

Morija Designs: One-of-a-Kind Silk

By CHLOË LAI
May 2018

Photo by Joseph Cruz/www.cherryblossomportraitstudio.ca

Coco Chanel once said that “in order to be irreplaceable, one must always be different.” Local textile artist Morija Reeb more than meets that challenge: every item in her collection is crafted entirely by hand, ensuring unique patterns and textures. Using natural dyes and ethically sourced raw silk fibres, Reeb creates singularly stylish scarves, necklaces, earrings and floral pins that you’ll never want to take off. Discover Morija Designs online, or in person at the Silk Weaving Studio.

Royal Canadian Family Circus Spectac! Comes to Metro Vancouver

By CHLOË LAI

The S. Caleb Carinci Asch equestrian acrobats are, quite literally, lit.

May 17 to Jun. 10, 2018 It takes a certain kind of human—the word “super” comes to mind—to leap through a flaming hoop onto a galloping horse, juggle a world-record-breaking number of ping-pong balls with their mouths, or contort themselves into human pretzels. The incredible performers at Royal Canadian Family Circus Spectac! do all that and more, led by a larger-than-life ringmaster who’s headlined every circus show from Cirque du Soleil to the Ringling Brothers. Don’t miss crowd favourites Duo Guerrero, internationally acclaimed high-wire walkers who perform their death-defying balancing act while wife Aura sings to her husband, Werner—sometimes while doing the splits. Talk about going above and beyond.

Show dates and locations:

May 17 to 21: Guildford Town Centre, 10355-152 St., Surrey.

May 25 to 27: Tsawwassen Mills, 5000 Canoe Place Way, Tsawwassen.

May 31 to Jun 3: Lansdowne Centre, 5300 No. 3 Rd, Richmond.

Jun 7-10: Tradex, 1190 Cornell St., Abbotsford.

Stars on Ice Skates Into Vancouver

By CHLOË LAI

Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir photo by Julie Larochelle

May 17, 2018 Summer’s nearly here but Vancouver is as cool as ever, thanks to Investors Group Stars on Ice presented by Lindt. This national tour features a star-studded cast of Canada’s most-decorated figure skaters, including three-time world champion Elvis Stojko. It’s also the perfect opportunity to gaze adoringly at Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir (pictured), whose steamy ice dance routine won the gold medal at the 2018 Olympics just a few months ago—and melted hearts across the country. Feel the magic in person at Rogers Arena. 

Pink: Beautiful Trauma Tour Comes to Rogers Arena

By CHLOË LAI

Rock on, Pink. Rock on. (Photo by Solve Sundsbo)

May 12, 2018 Almost two decades after her debut album went double-platinum, Pink is still one of the world’s bestselling music artists—and with good reason. Not content to settle for just being a powerful vocalist, the Grammy-Award-winning singer delivers live performances so athletic, they’re practically a Cirque du Soleil act. Singing while dangling from a trapeze? Check. While doing the splits on aerial silks? Check. While being flung into the air on bungee cords? Of course. There’s no telling what kind of jaw-dropping acts Pink has lined up for her Beautiful Trauma tour, but it’s safe to say: expect to be amazed.