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What to See Vancouver

Coastal Peoples Fine Arts Gallery: All in the Family

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

“The Space Between” by Corrine Hunt

Nov. 17 to Dec. 29, 2018 Some vases hold water, others hold history. Such as “The Space Between” (pictured) by famed First Nations artist Corrine Hunt. The vibrant wood-and-acrylic vessel features an inherited raven crest, a treasure included in the dowry of Hunt’s great-great- grandmother. Her ancestor was also considered the first notable artist in a long line of celebrated artists—a legacy also captured in the vase’s design. For more of Hunt’s remarkable works—and history—see Resilience at Coastal Peoples.

Meet the Artists: Eastside Culture Crawl

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

“Suspended Disbelief” by Vanessa Lam (Photo by Kris Graves)

Nov. 15 to 18, 2018 Want to get up close and personal with Vancouver’s vibrant art scene? Peek into the homes and studios of local talent. No, it’s not snooping. It’s the 22nd-annual Eastside Culture Crawl, where 500-plus artists open their doors to more than 35,000 art admirers. Start your self-guided tour by downloading a map from the Crawl’s website, then peruse one-of-a-kind pieces by artists like Vanessa Lam (“Suspended Disbelief,” pictured).

Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Photo courtesy Premier Exhibitions, Inc.

To Jan. 11, 2019 On April 14, 1912, the unthinkable happened: the unsinkable ship sank. But the enduring story of the ill-fated ocean liner lives on in Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition. Embark on your journey using a replica boarding pass, which tells the story of a real passenger. Read the bio to see whether the model first- or third-class cabin would have been your lodging. Then peruse the 120 remarkable artifacts recovered from the bottom of the Atlantic, including Canadian currency and a diamond ring. And just try to resist touching the real iceberg on display. Trust us: it’s the trip of a lifetime.

Queen Elizabeth Theatre: Beautiful – The Carole King Musical

By CHLOË LAI
Oct. 2018

Photo by Matthew Murphy

Nov. 13-18, 2018 She was the first woman to receive the Gershwin Prize for Popular Song. She’s won four Grammy Awards, and been inducted into the Hall of Fame for songwriting and rock ’n’ roll. At the Tony Award–winning Beautiful – The Carole King Musical, fans sing along to the pop icon’s greatest hits—including “You’ve Got a Friend”—while retracing her humble beginnings. It’s got us feeling “Some Kind of Wonderful.”

Downtown Eastside Heart of the City Festival 2018

By CHLOË LAI

Balkan Shmalkan at Victory Square (Photo by Tom Quirk)

Oct. 24 to Nov. 4, 2018 Craving a true community vibe? The 15th annual Downtown Eastside Heart of the City Festival celebrates the neighbourhood’s triumphs, challenges and ongoing activist efforts with over 100 events. Take a deep dive into powerful accounts of the violence faced by Indigenous women in Material Witness. Or kick up your heels with Balkan Shmalkan (pictured)—a self-described “sweet dance party orchestra”—between performances by gospel and blues singers, fiery poets and captivating speakers. Bring a friend, or better yet, make new ones.

Dreamy Designs at the Vancouver Fall Home Show

By CHLOË LAI

Love It or List It, Vancouver’s award-winning host Todd Talbot headlines this year’s Vancouver Fall Home Show

Oct. 18 to 21, 2018 A cozy escape from the world. A place to entertain family and friends. A staging area for creative projects. Dream homes take many forms, so it’s no surprise that design devotees flock to the Vancouver Fall Home Show for how-to guidance. Get tips, tricks and insights into the latest trends from industry experts such as Todd Talbot (pictured) of HGTV Canada’s Love It or List It Vancouver, then be inspired by products from more than 300 vendors. Welcome home.

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!

Geek Power: Fan Expo Vancouver 2018

By SHERI RADFORD

Fan Expo Vancouver gathers more than 30,000 dedicated fans for four days of faraway-galaxy fun

Oct. 12 to 14, 2018 Whether you belong to the “May the Force be with you” or the “Live long and prosper” galaxy of geekdom—or another one entirely—you’re sure to find likeminded uber-nerds at the annual Fan Expo Vancouver. More than 30,000 fanboys and fangirls don elaborate costumes and line up to meet celebs such Lou Ferrigno (The Incredible Hulk), Pom Klementieff (Guardians of the Galaxy) and Ron Perlman (Hellboy). Will you try to be there? As Yoda said, “Do or do not; there is no try.”

Clowning Around: Cirque du Soleil’s Corteo

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Costumes by Dominique Lemieux

Oct. 10 to 14, 2018 Corteo is staged around a once-in-a-lifetime event: the funeral of Mauro the clown. The colourful character dreams his own circus-themed celebration of life, which includes acrobats bouncing off beds, a live marionette, aerialists swinging from chandeliers, and a performer who floats above the crowd aided by gigantic helium balloons. It’s all the death-defying feats, eye-catching costumes and mesmerizing music that Cirque du Soleil is famous for. Definitely worth adding to your bucket list.

Show-Stealing Walruses at the Vancouver Aquarium

By CHLOË LAI
Sep. 2018

Photo courtesy Vancouver Aquarium

Move over, adorable otters. Make way, pint-sized penguins. Magnificently moustachioed walruses have arrived at the Vancouver Aquarium, and they’re a big deal in more ways than one. The first walruses to ever live at the aquarium, Lakina and Balzak are as enormous as they are charming: once fully grown, Lakina could weigh up to 1,700 kg (3,750 lbs) while her half-brother may tip the scales at 3,700 kg (8,150 lbs). They’re also talented “singers,” serenading visitors with deep roars, train-like whistles and more. And did we mention that they’re capable of sucking clams right out of their shells? Get a glimpse of these talented behemoths at the Research Outpost, which is open to the public for the first time. Talk about making a splash.

Double Take: Film & TV Landmarks in Downtown

Hollywood North’s leading architectural landmarks are ready for their close-up

By CHLOË LAI
Sep. 2018

Photo by KK Law

Hotel Europe

Built 1909

As seen in Legends of the Fall, The NeverEnding Story, Twice’s “Likey” music video

The iconic flatiron-style building that dominates Gastown’s Maple Tree Square isn’t just the oldest reinforced-concrete structure in Vancouver: it’s the oldest in all of Canada. (Naturally, it’s also rumoured to be haunted.) If it feels like a little slice of New York City, that’s because the design echoes Manhattan’s famous Flatiron Building, constructed in 1902. Elegant original features—including Italian tile floors and granite columns—make it an ideal location for historical films. Originally a hotel for business travellers, the heritage building is now home to residential units and quirky shops. The best spot to snap a selfie with this landmark is from across the street, facing the Gassy Jack statue. (more…)

Grand Finale: Personal Highlights from the Vancouver Art Gallery’s Long-Time Curator

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

“Fall (Modality 16)” by Jock Macdonald (Image courtesy the Vancouver Art Gallery)

Sep. 22 to Mar. 17, 2018 Thirty years, more than 80 exhibits and one Order of Canada all add up to one extraordinary career for curator Ian Thom. In the Vancouver Art Gallery’s A Curator’s View: Ian Thom Selects, the esteemed retiree presents a final round-up of personal highlights from the permanent collection, including works by Jock Macdonald (pictured), Emily Carr and many others.