Vancouver Photos of the Week

December 24th, 2014 @ 9:30am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

Millions of twinkling lights, shopping streets decked out with garlands and ornaments, attractions and events with hot chocolate in hand, and time spent with loved ones young and old. This is the very last photo roundup of 2014 so I’ve decided to pick out the most festive images shared with the Miss604 Flickr Pool and #Photos604 on Instagram over the last week:

Vancouver Photos of the Week

VanKiss: Davie Street Tonight in Vancouver: An Oakridge Center Christmas
Photo credit: Philip Tong & Rikki / Julius Reque on Flickr

Steveston Village Panorama
Photo credit: Gemy on Flickr

Wonderland.
Photo credit: Nattawot Juttiwattananon on Flickr

Illuminations at Heritage Christmas
Photo credit: Ann Hung on Flickr

Selfie Silhouette - Enjoying the night view of the Lions Gate Bridge
Photo credit: Winson Tang Photocreative on Flickr

Festive Granville Island ~ Vancouver, BC
Photo credit: SeaSide Signs ~ Vancouver, BC on Flickr

IMG_8526
Photo credit: Gemy on Flickr

Harbour Centre's Christmas Tree Snow Family Accommodations
Photo credit: Demelo Photography & Philip Tong on Flickr

A photo posted by Stephanie Van Reeuwyk (@snv85) on

Totem Christmas
Photo credit: Jerry Meaden on Flickr

Watch Your Step Don't Swing the Bridge
Photo credit: Brigitte Mueller & Brigitte Mueller on Flickr

Vancouver Christmas Lighting
Photo credit: Ann Hung on Flickr

Vancouver Holiday Lighting at Vancouver Convention Centre
Photo credit: TOTORORO.RORO on Flickr

Christmas at Waterfront
Photo credit: Demelo Photography on Flickr

Van Christmas Tree, Van Christmas Tree...
Photo credit: Lisa Nixon on Flickr

As always, please click through on these images to view more work from the photographers and feel free to share your own photos with the Miss604 Flickr Pool or with the tag #Photos604 on Instagram. View all photo collections here.

15 Photos of Vancouver in 1915

December 23rd, 2014 @ 9:44am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

There is just over a week left in 2014 and as we look back at the year we just had, and look forward at what might come in 2015 — and we all still await hoverboards as shown Back to the Future‘s version of 2015 — I thought I would time hop back to Vancouver in 1915 to see what life was like 100 years ago.

15 Photos of Vancouver in 1915

In 1915 Vancouver saw the last spike of the Canadian Northern Railway (running from Quebec to Vancouver) driven at Basque, BC, near Ashcroft; the Vancouver Millionaires win the Stanley Cup in the Denman Arena, led by the scoring of Cyclone Taylor; the first Georgia Viaduct opened; the North Shore’s Marine Drive was opened by Premier Richard McBride; former US President Teddy Roosevelt and his wife visited Vancouver; and more. [Source]

englishbay1915
English Bay. Archives# CVA 1376-109.


Wooden road and sidewalk in Kerrisdale. Archives# CVA 660-329. John Davidson photo.


Car on the Georgia Viaduct, Sun Tower in the background. Archives# CVA 99-18.


Nelson Street, Downtown Vancouver. Archives# Str P181.2.


Vancouver Rowing Club in Coal Harbour, Denman Arena in the background. Archives# CVA 99-1029.


A parade on Hastings, looking east from Carrall. Archives# CVA 371-1022.


Hastings Street viaduct, BC Sugar Refinery in the distance. Archives# SGN 1125.


29th Vancouver Battalion marching on Pender Street at the C.P.R. crossing. Archives# Mil P98. Stuart Thomson photo.


Passengers boarding a North Vancouver ferry. Archives# SGN 1124.


A sea plane on the water in Coal Harbour. Archives #Air P73.2.


Portion of fire damaged section of Connaught Bridge [Cambie Street Bridge, collapsed in False Creek]. Archives# SGN 996.1.


University Avenue (4th Ave) Diversion. Archives# CVA 371-819.


Residences in the 4100 block of West 12th Ave. Archives# SGN 353.

Touring car at Hollow Tree in Stanley Park. Archives# CVA 677-75.

Capilano Suspension Bridge. Archives# CVA 660-276. John Davidson photo.

Sea to Sky Gondola Photos

December 23rd, 2014 @ 8:14am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

It was a big year for tourism is Squamish, which already has a the title of being Canada’s Outdoor Recreation Capital. In May this past year, the Sea to Sky Gondola opened to the public, offering new views and activities over 880 meters above sea level. Looking out at Howe Sound and the Stawamus Chief, the Sea to Sky Gondola’s Summit Lodge offers services, amenities, and craft beer after you’ve enjoyed your stroll, hike, or snowshoe. Many people have enjoyed this latest attraction and I’ve found photos that illustrate this beautiful new destination.

Sea to Sky Gondola Photos

Sea to Sky gondola base
Photo credit: Ian Fisher on Flickr

Sea to Sky Gondola Sea to Sky Gondola
Photo credit: Miss604

Squamish And The Howe Sound
Photo credit: Conrad Olson on Flickr

Sea To Sky Panorama
Photo credit: Bill Kwok on Flickr

Squamish Village Today at the Chief Viewing Platform - Sea to Sky Gondola - Squamish
Photo credit: Ann Hung & Patrick King on Flickr

The Chief Overlook Viewing Platform (Sea to Sky Gondola)
Photo credit: TOTORORO.RORO on Flickr

Sky Pilot Suspension Bridge (Sea to Sky Gondola)
Photo credit: TOTORORO.RORO on Flickr

Summit Lodge Viewing Deck (Sea to Sky Gondola)
Photo credit: TOTORORO.RORO on Flickr

Sea To Sky Gondola with Summit Lodge
Photo credit: Ann Hung on Flickr

Busy day at the Sea to Sky Gondola
Photo credit: Ruth Hartnup on Flickr

Sea to Sky Gondola Outtakes Squamish British Columbia Canada
Photo credit: kris krüg on Flickr

Sea to Sky Gondola Outtakes Squamish British Columbia Canada
Photo credit: kris krüg on Flickr

Sea to Sky Gondola, October 2014
Photo credit: Clive on Flickr

Sea to Sky Gondola
Photo credit: Pat (Cletch) Williams on Flickr

Trip 14-0810 Sea-to-Sky Gondola 01
Photo credit: McKay Savage on Flickr

Follow the Sea to Sky Gondola on Facebook and Twitter for information about their winter season.

Win a Winter Prize Pack from Rexall and Air Miles

December 22nd, 2014 @ 1:30pm (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

The holidays are here, which in Vancouver means damp weather, shopping crowds, ice skating, and gathering with friends and family for drinks, games, meals, and good times. Unfortunately this is also prime cold and flu season which is why Rexall has offered up a Winter Prize Pack for one Miss604 reader to navigate the holidays in good health.

Win a Winter Prize Pack from Rexall and Air Miles

The prize pack from Rexall along with Air Miles, which you can now collect in-store, includes $60 worth of Be Better products and accessories:

  • Be Better Argan Oil Body Wash
  • Be Better Argan Oil Hand and Body Lotion
  • Be Better Argan Oil Hand Soap
  • Be Better Argan Oil Balm
  • Be Better Argan Oil Lip Balms
  • Be Better Argan Oil Night Cream
  • Be Better Sunscreen
  • Body Loofah
  • Cotton Moisture Lock Gloves

Rexall

Here’s how you can enter to win:

  • Leave a comment on this post (1 entry)
  • Post the following on Twitter (1 entry)
RT to enter to win a Winter Prize Pack from @RexallDrugStore @AirMiles @Miss604 http://ow.ly/Gjjjx

Rexall has almost 40 stores all around BC with 3 in Downtown Vancouver. Follow Rexall on Twitter and Facebook along with Air Miles on Twitter and Facebook for more information about their offers this season.

I will draw one winner at random from all entries at 12:00pm on Monday, December 29, 2014.

Family Friendly New Year’s Eve Events in Vancouver

December 22nd, 2014 @ 9:33am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

It’s always fun to ring in the New Year with the ones you love, and if your nearest and dearest are too young to head to the hottest club party or themed ballroom bash, here are a few family-friendly options for saying goodbye to 2014 and welcoming 2015 all together:

Family Friendly New Year’s Eve Events in Vancouver

The Centre Of Attention
Photo credit: Wayneson Chan on Flickr

Robson Square

Where Robson Square Ice Rink, Lower Plaza (Robson between Hornby and Howe)
When December 31st from 4:00pm to 8:00pm with an early countdown at 7:30pm.
Cost Free
Details Ice skating, kid’s crafts (build your own noise maker), live music from Rumba Calzada, early countdown, then 8:30pm to 10:30pm The Freshest DJ’s spin for those who stick around to ice skate.

Grouse Mountain

Where Grouse Mountain
When December 31st from 5:00pm to 9:00pm
Cost Tickets are required to take the SkyRide up to then enjoy the included activities up top. Access to New Year’s Eve festivities is included with your Annual Local’s Pass, Y2Play or Winter Season Pass.
Details Entertainment and fun for all ages, with ice skating outdoors, a live DJ, fire dancing performances, a scavenger hunt, and along with a special 9:00pm early countdown. Dick Clark’s New Year’s Eve broadcast with Ryan Seacrest will be playing in the Theatre in the Sky until 10:00pm.

Mount Seymour

Where Mount Seymour Family First Night
When December 31st from 6:00pm to 9:00pm
Cost $15 per person (children two and under are free), includes tobogganing. Add-ons: $10 Snowtubing, $20 Chocolate Fondue Tour.
Details Enjoy tubing and tobogganing, live entertainment on the main stage by children’s performers, a magic show, a fire spinning routine, a daring highline balancing act or venture into the woods with your family on an intriguing Snowquest.Cozy up to the warmth of Mt Seymour fire pits and indulge in fresh hot apple cider and s’mores. Fireworks finale is at 9:00pm.

Bright Nights in Stanley Park

In case you missed the impressive holiday light display and Christmas train in Stanley Park, Bright Nights will be open on New Year’s Eve from 3:00pm to 10:00pm.

Ice Skating in Surrey

While there isn’t an early countdown or fireworks planned, the whole family can get together for a skate at the Winter Ice Palace in Cloverdale or the Snowflake Skate in Newtown, both open 12:00pm to 4:00pm on December 31st.

Gifts for Stanley Park: Vancouver Gift Guide

December 18th, 2014 @ 1:44pm (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

The Stanley Park Ecology Society (“SPES”) and its volunteers work hard to conserve, protect, educate and research to ensure that Stanley Park remains a bastion of natural wonder and beauty, and the Best Park in the World.

If you’ve followed Miss604 online — whether on the blog, Twitter, or Instagram — you’ll know how much I love Stanley Park, which is why I became a member of the Stanley Park Ecology Society almost three years ago. In fact, I was the first person to ever purchase a membership online and I have featured a monthly “SPES Saturday” series submitted by the Stanley Park Ecology Society since that time as well.

My Vancouver Gift Guide series wouldn’t possibly be complete without a list of ways that you support Stanley Park now, and throughout the year, thanks to the Stanley Park Ecology Society’s gifts that give back.

Supporting the Stanley Park Ecology Society

Every year 8 million people visit Stanley Park… to marvel at its forests, connect with nature, exercise along its seawall and relax on its beaches. Great blue herons, bald eagles, little brown bats and coastal cutthroat trout live here while thousands of overwintering birds shelter along its shores. For all that Stanley Park offers people and wildlife, SPES invites you to help us give back.

Your year-end tax deductible donation supports Stanley Park Ecology Society’s stewardship of Vancouver’s largest urban wilderness: Restoring habitat, monitoring wildlife, inspiring school children with quality environmental education programs, and connecting park visitors of all ages with nature.

Skimming
Photo credit: TylerIngram on Flickr

Gifts for Stanley Park

$16.50 buys one 5 gallon native plant to help restore damaged Park habitat.

$48 adopts a Great blue heron nest to support conservation of this Species at Risk.

$160 provides one pair of high quality binoculars for SPES’ popular public birding programs.

$500 subsidizes the school program fee for one inner city class to participate in Nature Ninjas, an empowering, unforgettable overnight camping fieldtrip in Stanley Park (read more about Nature Ninjas »).

You can also adopt and eagle nest or one whole acre of the park to protect.

In 2014, donations helped 5,401 elementary school students participate in SPES’ experiential education programs, helped remove over 325 cubic meters of invasive species from Stanley Park (equivalent of 217 wheel barrows-full), planted 850 native plants in habitat restoration efforts… and much, much more. To make a donation or purchase an annual membership call (604) 718-6523 or donate online.

Your annual membership (for $15, $20, $30, or $40) includes quarterly newsletters; discounts on SPES Discovery Walks, programs and special events; special invitations to free preview nights in Stanley Park for Halloween Ghost Train, Christmas Bright Nights and Theatre Under the Stars; discounted admission to the Vancouver Aquarium; and voting rights at SPES’ Annual General Meeting.

For more information visit the Stanley Park Ecology Society website. Follow SPES on Facebook and Twitter for the latest updates.

Things to do in Vancouver This Weekend

December 18th, 2014 @ 10:14am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

It’s the very last weekend before Christmas and the city is alive with events, activities, and plenty of neighbourhoods showing off their very best light displays. The weekend event list is bigger than usual, packed with fun ways to get the most out of the city this holiday season.

Yaletown Holiday Festival in Vancouver BC Canada
Photo credit: TOTORORO.RORO on Flickr

Last Chance Craft Fair

This post is sponsored by Great Canadian Craft’s Last Chance Craft Fair, on Saturday, December 20th and Sunday, December 21st at the Croatian Cultural Centre (3250 Commercial Drive, Vancouver). Stop by this handmade stocking stuffer extravaganza for all of your last minute shopping needs and see over 150 talented artisans and crafters from all over the Lower Mainland and BC. Face painting, balloon animals, and Buddy The Elf will be on site for the kids. First 25 entrants each day receive a FREE swag bag loaded with goodies. Follow Great Canadian Craft on Facebook and Twitter for more information and get your free tickets online in advance.

Things to do in Vancouver This Weekend

Events that run for longer than three days in a row are highlighted in green below.

Friday, December 19, 2014
The 13th Annual Ugly Christmas Sweater Party
Vancouver Chamber Choir Presents: Dylan Thomas’ A Child’s Christmas in Wales
Musica Intima: A Christmas Story, Downtown
Don Pasquale performed by Venture Opera
Alicia Tobin’s Come Draw With Me: Special Edition Food Bank Fundraiser
Chor Leoni Men’s Choir Presents: All is Calm
The Shortest Day Film Festival
12 Bars of Christmas Pub Crawl Series
Vancouver TheatreSports: Christmas Queen
Carousel Theatre Presents: James and the Giant Peach
Goh Ballet Presents: The Nutcracker
Burnaby Village Museum Heritage Christmas
Pacific Theatre: It’s a Wonderful Life Radio Show
Karaoke Christmas Lights Vancouver Trolley Tours
Festival of Lights at VanDusen Garden
Vancouver Christmas Market
Bright Nights in Stanley Park Christmas Train
Canyon Lights at Capilano Suspension Bridge
The Arts Club Presents: Mary Poppins
Free Skating at Robson Square Ice Rink
The Cultch: Dylan Thomas Return Journey

Saturday, December 20, 2014
Last Chance Craft Fair
Historic Christmas Programs at Irving House
The Marcus Mosely Chorale at Ryerson United Church
Blim Holiday Market
Lovecoast + Friends Christmas Benefit at the Backstage Lounge
Dundarave Festival of Lights
Skate with Santa at Bill Copeland Sports Centre
Skate with Santa, New Westminster
Pacific Theatre: Christmas Presence, Valley
Winter Farmers Market at Nat Bailey Stadium
Surrey’s Winter Ice Palace in Cloverdale Opens
The Shortest Day Film Festival
Vancouver TheatreSports: Christmas Queen
Chor Leoni Men’s Choir Presents: All is Calm
Carousel Theatre Presents: James and the Giant Peach
Goh Ballet Presents: The Nutcracker
Burnaby Village Museum Heritage Christmas
Pacific Theatre: It’s a Wonderful Life Radio Show
Karaoke Christmas Lights Vancouver Trolley Tours
Festival of Lights at VanDusen Garden
Vancouver Christmas Market
Bright Nights in Stanley Park Christmas Train
Canyon Lights at Capilano Suspension Bridge
The Arts Club Presents: Mary Poppins
Free Skating at Robson Square Ice Rink
North Pole, BC at TRADEX in Abbotsford
The Cultch: Dylan Thomas Return Journey

Sunday, December 21, 2014
Last Chance Craft Fair
Winter Solstice Lantern Festival
J.S. Bach’s Christmas Oratorio – Cantatas 1, 3, 6
29th Annual Blues for Christmas
Vancouver Chamber Choir Presents: A Charlie Brown Christmas
River District Winter Craft Fair
Bill Nye at the Vogue Theatre
Surrey’s Winter Ice Palace in Cloverdale
The Shortest Day Film Festival
Vancouver TheatreSports: Christmas Queen
Chor Leoni Men’s Choir Presents: All is Calm
Carousel Theatre Presents: James and the Giant Peach
Goh Ballet Presents: The Nutcracker
Burnaby Village Museum Heritage Christmas
Karaoke Christmas Lights Vancouver Trolley Tours
Festival of Lights at VanDusen Garden
Vancouver Christmas Market
Bright Nights in Stanley Park Christmas Train
Canyon Lights at Capilano Suspension Bridge
The Arts Club Presents: Mary Poppins
Free Skating at Robson Square Ice Rink
North Pole, BC at TRADEX in Abbotsford
The Cultch: Dylan Thomas Return Journey

View the full monthly event list to plan ahead at any time. Follow me on Twitter and Facebook for frequent updates about local events and community happenings.

Book Giveaway: Live at the Commodore

December 17th, 2014 @ 1:44pm (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

If I was Miss Sheilds from the beloved holiday film A Christmas Story I would legitimately give Aaron Chapman’s new book Live at the Commodore an “A Plus-Plus-Plus-Plus…!” It arrived by courier last week and I immediately sat down to read it.

I didn’t budge as the sun crossed through the sky and the hours passed. I pulled out my sticky notes and began marking off my favourite lines and references so I could bring them up later when gushing to John about the book. I would read a passage, close the book, and hold it to my chest — just like the fictional teacher who read Ralphie’s theme — then open it again to read more.

Live at the Commodore by Aaron Chapman

“Who’s playing tonight?”

What made the book so brilliant? I felt as though I was reading what could easily be turned into a moving and captivating Ken Burns documentary about Vancouver’s entertainment history.

Live at the Commodore starts out “Once Upon a Saturday Night”, telling the tale of Granville Street, then moves into a chronological history of how the Commodore Ballroom came to be, how it thrived, how it almost died, how its doors were shut and opened again as chapters of music history in Vancouver were written.

I went from imagining my Oma and Opa out dancing on a Saturday night (which they did in the 1950s) to looking at legendary rock photographer Bev Davies’ photos of D.O.A., some of the founders of hardcore punk. I learned about Drew Burns and the place where a who’s-who of music greats — like The Police, The Clash, Blondie, Talking Heads, Nirvana, New York Dolls, U2, Tom Waits, and the White Stripes — took the stage.


1930 – Commodore Ballroom. Archives# CVA 99-3855.

In Live at the Commodore, Aaron Chapman (author of Liquor, Lust, and the Law, a bestselling history of Vancouver’s Penthouse Nightclub) delves into the Commodore’s archives to reveal stories about the constellation of characters surrounding the club over the last 80-plus years, as well as startling, funny, and outrageous anecdotes about the legendary acts that have graced its stage. Filled with never-before-published photographs, posters, and paraphernalia, Live at the Commodore is a visceral, energetic portrait of one of the world’s great rock venues.

If you enjoy reading about Vancouver, history, music, and can appreciate some pretty rocking photography, pick up your copy of this untold story of Vancouver’s rock ‘n’ roll landmark for $28.95 online or look for it in your local book store.

Win a Copy of Live at the Commodore

I received my review copy of the book from the publisher Arsenal Pulp Press and I have another to give away to a lucky Miss604 reader to enjoy. Here’s how you can enter to win:

  • Leave a comment naming the best concert you’ve ever seen in Vancouver (1 entry)
  • Post the following on Twitter (1 entry)
RT to enter to win a copy of #LiveAtTheCommodore by @TheAaronChapman from @ArsenalPulp + @Miss604 http://ow.ly/G4gB5

I will draw one winner at random from all entries at 12:00pm on Monday, December 22, 2014. Follow Arsenal Pulp on Twitter and Facebook for more information about their BC titles and follow author Aaron Chapman on Twitter.