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Kids Vancouver

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.

Seaside Stage: Bard on the Beach

By SHERI RADFORD

Photo by David Cooper

Jun. 6-Sep. 28, 2018 If the last time you experienced Shakespeare was while dozing through a high school English class, then it’s time to give his plays another try. Every summer, the Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival breathes new life into classics such as Macbeth and As You Like It (pictured), this year’s two mainstage productions, by incorporating music and costumes from different eras. As You Like It has been transported to 1960s Vancouver, complete with more than 20 classic Beatles tunes. This just might be the summer of love.

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.

 

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. 

Cirque du Soleil Hits the Ice

By CHLOË LAI

Photo by Matt Beard, costumes by Marie-Chantale Vaillancourt. Courtesy Cirque du Soleil

Apr. 11-15, 2018 For the first time ever, Cirque du Soleil is taking their gravity-defying show to a whole new level: the ice. Awe-inspiring acrobats are joined by skaters—coached by four-time world champion figure skater Kurt Browning—for Crystal, a groundbreaking ice show packed with synchronized skating, aerial trapeze, and ramp-jumping, back-flipping hockey players. It’s a new frontier for fearless fun.

Singin’ in the Rain: Springtime Activities

Put up your hood and open your umbrella for 20 activities that can be enjoyed rain or shine

By JILL VON SPRECKEN
Mar. 2018

The seawall is scenic in every weather. (Photo by KK Law)

1. Stroll through Stanley Park. The city’s 400-hectare (1,000-acre) forested oasis is a can’t-miss activity. On a drizzly day, skip the seawall and head into the park’s interior for extra protection from the green canopy above. (more…)

Cute Creatures at the Vancouver Aquarium

By JILL VON SPRECKEN
Feb. 2018

Hardy, one of the Vancouver Aquarium’s rescued sea otter pups, strikes an adorable pose. (Photos courtesy Vancouver Aquarium)

You don’t have to deep-sea dive to discover the wonders of the ocean—simply ride the tides to the Vancouver Aquarium. Inside, find 50,000 incredible animals ranging from sloths to sea otters. Roll up your sleeve and pet a stingray, pop over to Penguin Point, tour the tropics, and discover all the life flourishing right here on BC’s coast. And don’t just bring home memories—the gift shop carries an array of souvenirs such as jewellery, Inuit art, plush toys, local cookbooks and upcycled glass sea stars that are worth the suitcase space. Bonus: gift-shop purchases fund aquarium programs that keep oceans wonderful. Now that’s deep.

Kids: Booties for Cuties

By SHERI RADFORD
Feb. 2018

Adorable fox booties by Stonz.

As any parent knows, getting boots onto the tender tootsies of tiny tots can be a supreme struggle. Vancouverite Lisa Will experienced the challenge firsthand when her son was an infant. Out of that struggle, Stonz booties were born. Loosen the two adjustable toggles to slip them on, then tighten the toggles to keep them in place. The fleece lining ensures teeny feet stay warm and cozy, while the soft, non-skid soles help little ones to develop balance. Available at MEC or online.

Relive Vancouver’s Gold-Medal Glory

The 2010 Winter Games may have been eight years ago, but when it comes to Olympic activities, the city is ready for its victory lap

By JILL VON SPRECKEN
Feb. 2018

The Olympic Cauldron in Jack Poole Plaza was lit by hockey legend Wayne Gretzky. (Photo by KK Law)

In 2010, Vancouver had a gold-medal year. World-class athletes and their spirited fans crowded the streets to gasp and cheer over every triumph and defeat—from the mechanical malfunctions at the opening ceremonies to Sidney Crosby’s gold medal–clinching overtime goal.

From Feb. 9 to 25, the world is turning its attention to PyeongChang, South Korea, the official venue of the 2018 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. But in Vancouver, the legacy still lives on. Here’s where to recapture that Olympic spirit. (more…)

Onstage: East Van Panto’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarves

By SHERI RADFORD

Talk about a bad apple.

To Jan. 6, 2017 Get ready to cheer for the plucky heroine and boo the dastardly villain as East Van Panto: Snow White and the Seven Dwarves takes over the York Theatre for a month of puns, slapstick and sustained silliness. What challenges does Snow White face in the wilds of East Vancouver? Everything from riding the PNE’s wooden rollercoaster to confronting the evil Queen of North Vancouver. Will our heroine live happily ever after? You’ll have to see the show to find out.

Holiday Gift Guide: For Cool Kids

By SHERI RADFORD
Dec. 2017

Can’t figure out what wee ones might want to find under the tree? Part four of our five-part gift guide series has you covered.

Hudson’s Bay reveals its true stripes by donating the proceeds from Hudson—this year’s limited-edition Charity Bear—to Headfirst, which supports mental health initiatives across Canada. (more…)