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Kids Vancouver

A Sweet Partnership: Meet the Twins Behind Loulou Lollipop

The twin sisters who created Loulou Lollipop are making the world a cuter place, one teether and swaddle at a time

By SHERI RADFORD
Jun. 2019

Angel Kho (L) and Eleanor Lee (R) in their Richmond office (Photo by KK Law)

Sometimes the sweetest ideas are born from a life event that seems cataclysmic.

Eleanor Lee was eight months pregnant when she learned her employer was bankrupt and everyone was out of a job. “It was a really scary situation,” Lee says, with a baby on the way and no post-maternity-leave job prospects. Lee and her husband knew they couldn’t survive on one income in the pricey Lower Mainland.

When the baby was about six months old and started teething, she often played with Lee’s necklaces, chewing on them and breaking them in the process. Lee worried whether the necklaces were safe for a baby—and she was upset to have her necklaces broken—so she started looking for wearable-teether alternatives. She wasn’t impressed with what she found. “Nothing really spoke to me,” she says. “They weren’t fun enough.” That’s when her interior-design skills kicked in, and the idea for Loulou Lollipop was born. (more…)

Get the Scoop: Local Artisanal Ice Cream

By JILL VON SPRECKEN
May 2019

Photo ©Zivica Kerkez/Shutterstock.com

Vancouver has a sweet side—and it’s stocked with artisanal ice cream. Handmade small-batch scoops crafted from local ingredients are common to this trend, as are fun flavour combos and vegan options. Rain or Shine serves up handcrafted flavours like Blueberry Balsamic. On Taco Tuesday, get it in a delightfully messy taco-shaped waffle cone. Expect round-the-block queues at Earnest Ice Cream, where hyper-local, seasonal scoops like Spruce Bud are complemented by classic from-scratch flavours like Salted Caramel. When the folks at Mister say “small batch,” they mean it—everything is made to order using liquid nitrogen. Plant-based and dairy-free gelato in an astonishing number of flavours are Umaluma’s claim to fame. On the other side of the spectrum, La Glace’s pretty parlour churns up French-style scoops, meaning more eggs and more cream. Founded by award-winning gelato maestro James Coleridge, Uno Gelato is always adding new flavours to perennial favourites like Akbar Mashti (saffron) and Amarena Cherry. Sweet stuff.

Swordplay 101: Academie Duello

By CHLOË LAI
May 2019

Unleash the warrior within with beginner-friendly courses at Academie Duello

Anyone who’s ever seen an episode of Game of Thrones has wondered what it might be like to prepare for battle. Gastown’s Academie Duello, the largest school of European swordplay in the world, has the answer. (Spoiler alert: it’s awesome.) Sign up for an Adventure program to get a 90-minute crash course in combat, wielding the weapon of your choice—anything from a mighty pole-axe to a two-handed longsword. To finish off, channel your inner Jaime Lannister or Brienne of Tarth in a daring duel against a fellow recruit. Fancy yourself a true knight? Head to Langley, just an hour’s drive away, for a longer session to hone your sword-fighting skills on horseback. For glory!

5 Adorable Easter Gift Ideas

Give the Easter Bunny a helping hand this year by filling a basket with these goodies

By SHERI RADFORD
Apr. 2019

A hand-painted bunny bank from Tiffany & Co. is the perfect place to stash loonies and toonies.

A mask sampler set from The Body Shop contains a bunny headband and a trio of masks, for purifying, plumping and pollution clearing.

A chocolate rooster from Koko Monk looks almost too adorable to eat.

A plush Jellycat rabbit from Indigo helps wee ones ease into naptime.  

A milk chocolate Easter egg from Mon Paris Patisserie has a tasty surprise inside: three more chocolates.

A Mirror Maze: Numbers in Nature Arrives at Science World

By SHERI RADFORD

A Mirror Maze: Numbers in Nature exhibit

To Sep. 3, 2019 However you add it up, the truth is inescapable: numbers are all around us, from the tiny nested spirals of a sunflower’s seeds to the layout of the universe. Learn all about it at Science World, where a visiting exhibit called A Mirror Maze: Numbers in Nature brings math to life in the most entertaining way possible. An enormous mirror maze (pictured) forms the centrepiece of the exhibit, where you can lose yourself—quite literally—in a pattern of endlessly repeating reflections.

Celebrating the Lunar New Year in Vancouver

By SHERI RADFORD

Photo courtesy Coast Mountain Photography/Tourism Vancouver

Multiple Dates, 2019 Usher in Lunar New Year by going whole hog—it’s the year of the pig, after all. On Feb. 10, the Spring Festival Parade winds through Chinatown, as traditional lion dancers join dance troupes, martial artists and more. The annual Temple Fair at Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden (Feb. 10) fetes the occasion with a full line-up of activities. And the celebrations at International Village Mall (Feb. 8 to 10) include souvenirs, live entertainment and delectable bites. Gung hay fat choy!

Like a Local: Ice Skating at Robson Square

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Robson Square Ice Rink (Photo by KK Law)

To Feb. 28, 2019 Besides saying “sorry,” ice skating may be one of the most Canadian activities out there. Take part in this patriotic tradition at Robson Square Ice Rink, which appeals to aspiring Sidney Crosbys and Patrick Chans alike. And aside from showing off your triple lutz to all your new (and very polite) Canuck friends, the best part is entry is free and skate rentals are only $5. Prefer to stick to the sidelines? Watch all the action with a warm drink from the concession. Get ready to glide.

Mind-Bending Magic: The Illusionists

By CHLOË LAI

The Illusionists dazzle audiences at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre from Jan. 15 to 20

Jan. 15 to 20, 2019 The explosive entertainers behind The Illusionists have more than a few mind-blowing tricks up their sleeves. Styled as eccentric characters with names like The Escapologist and The Anti-Conjuror, these masters of deception have been astonishing sold-out audiences all over the world with their high-tech hijinks, fiery pyrotechnics and seemingly impossible physical feats. Catch their amazing act at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre—and try not to let your jaw hit the floor too hard.

Happy, Healthy New Year: Vancouver Edition

Making New Year’s resolutions is easy—keeping them is a little harder. Here’s how to make them stick while enjoying the wellness-friendly West Coast

By JILL VON SPRECKEN
Jan. 2018

YYoga’s airy Northshore Elements studio is ideal for breaking a sweat or finding your Zen (Photo by KK Law)

EXERCISE

Yoga Ready to get your om on? Mat-toting locals abound in yoga-obsessed Vancouver. At YYoga, say namaste to sleek studios that offer more than a dozen different styles of yoga, 800 classes per week, and (at select studios) infrared sauna. Prefer to mix it up? Spin classes, Pilates, floor barre and more can be found here, too. Semperviva also boasts bright and airy studios around the city, with 10 different styles of yoga on offer. Our advice: salute the sun at the Sea Studio on Granville Island where gorgeous waterfront views can be enjoyed from your mat. (more…)

Seasonal Sparkle at Capilano Suspension Bridge

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Festive holiday photo opportunities await at Capilano Suspension Bridge’s Canyon Lights

To Jan. 27, 2019 For that festive feeling, head to Capilano Suspension Bridge’s Canyon Lights. There, brilliant light displays take hundreds of thousands of twinkling bulbs to new heights—from the glittering bridge to dazzling decked-out Douglas firs, eight of the world’s tallest Christmas trees. To keep the whole family merry and bright, there’s gingerbread decorating, scavenger hunts and sing-along carols. And with partial proceeds supporting the BC Professional Fire Fighters’ Burn Fund, the real spirit of the season is celebrated, too. Very merry.

Good Tidings! A Good Noise Gospel Christmas 2018

By CHLOË LAI

Maureen Washington performs with the Good Noise Vancouver Gospel Choir

Dec. 14 and 15, 2018 Vancouver’s favourite hand-clapping, foot-stomping holiday concert is back. Follow your dancin’ feet over to Good Tidings! A Good Noise Gospel Christmas. The 90-voice gospel choir—which has performed with the likes of Barbra Streisand and Josh Groban—joins forces with award-winning Canadian jazz powerhouse Maureen Washington to belt out beloved Christmas songs in the spectacular Christ Church Cathedral. It’ll have you dancing in your seat (or in the aisles).

Spirited Sightseeing: Halloween-themed Tours and Activities

By CHLOË LAI
Oct. 2018

The Gastown Steam Clock is located on Water St., one of the most haunted streets in town (Photo ©James Wheeler/Dreamstime.com)

It’s officially spectre-seeking season. Revel in eerie tales of local hauntings with Ghostly Vancouver Tours, hop aboard Haunted Vancouver Trolley Tours to see spooky sites—including the city’s first morgue—or solve a cold-case murder with Vancouver Mysteries. Forbidden Vancouver’s Lost Souls of Gastown tour weaves grisly historical anecdotes into a roving theatre experience, while nightmarish characters, haunted houses and scream-worthy rides await at Fright Nights at Playland. For family-friendly frights, ride The Stanley Park Halloween Ghost Train. Happy haunting!