Conconi Challenge Donation Matching for Canuck Place

July 6th, 2015 @ 6:29pm (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

This summer you can support children with life-threatening illness in Vancouver by donating to Canuck Place Children’s Hospice. Throughout the month of July, your donation will go even further as the Robert L. Conconi Foundation has pledged $200,000 for a match campaign.

Conconi Challenge

All donations made through the Conconi Challenge link online or by calling 1-800-882-2288 will be matched throughout July, up to $200,000. You can donate $10 and you will have a $20 impact. Challenge friends to do the same and you’ve made an impact of $60 just like that!

Over 600 newborns, children and teens with life-threatening illnesses and their families receive care from Canuck Place through outreach programs and two provincial hospice locations; Vancouver and Abbotsford. Services include clinical respite and family support, pain and symptom management, 24-hour phone consultation support and in-house clinical care, art and education, recreation therapy, grief and loss counselling and end-of-life care.


Established in 2003, the Robert L. Conconi Foundation is a private family foundation started by Robert and Diane Conconi. Their mission is to inspire and empower individuals throughout British Columbia by supporting organizations in the areas of health, poverty, education and the arts.

Make your donation before July 31, 2015 and watch it have double the impact for a child, and their family, in BC. Follow Canuck Place on Facebook and Twitter for more information about ways to give.

Carnaval del Sol in Vancouver

July 6th, 2015 @ 11:44am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

The largest Latin American festival in the Pacific Northwest takes place this weekend as Carnaval del Sol welcomes all ages to its new festival location on the north side of False Creek. Carnaval del Sol is the signature cultural celebration of Latin American Week and over the last few years, over 100,000 attendees have enjoyed the festivities on Granville Street downtown. This year, Carnaval del Sol moves to Concord Pacific Place.

Carnaval del Sol

When Saturday, July 11th and Sunday, July 12th
Where Concord Pacific Place (88 Pacific Ave)

Attractions this year, in the new and expanded space, include:
Over 20 artists on the Main Stage such as Latin Grammy winner Alex Cuba, and the popular Cuban band Gerardo Cantino y ​Los Habaneros who are both flying in from New York. Bloco Energía with Brazilian ​Samba Fusion, Mariachi del Sol & Viva Mexico, and more entertainment from all over Latin America.

The Sol Y Playa Lounge is a 400 seat beer garden with 100 tons of sand for playing beach badminton. Relax and enjoy the main stage performances from their urban beach. The Kids Plaza will have a wide array of activities with a dance stage, sand art, bouncy castle, magician, workshops, and piñatas!

Enjoy the Travel and Education Plaza, the Arts and Cultural Plaza, the soccer tournament at the Sports Plaza, health and wellness at the Family Plaza, and of course spend some quality time at the Food Plaza with vendors dishing up vibrant flavours and dishes from every corner of Latin America.

CarnavaldelSolFor all of this information and more, follow Latincouver on Facebook and Twitter and learn more about Latin American Week in Vancouver online.

Miss604 is a proud media partner of Carnaval del Sol

Metro Vancouver Air Quality Advisory Due to Wildfire Smoke

July 6th, 2015 @ 8:32am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

The last time I wrote about wildfire haze over Downtown Vancouver was back in 2010, but I’ve never seen anything like what we’re experiencing right now. It’s not just a haze or smog-like plume of smoke drifting out of Burrard Inlet and hanging over the city, this is a fully enveloping cloud, from sidewalks up to tower cranes, that has engulfed the region and made everything, inside and outside of houses, smell like campfire.

Yesterday, NASA released a satellite image of the smoke hanging around Southwestern BC due to several wildfires on the island, around Sechelt, and Pemberton:


Two resources to rely on at this time are the BC Air Quality and BC Wildfire websites.

Air Quality

July 6, 2015 Sunshine Coast The Ministry of Environment in collaboration with the Vancouver Coastal Health Authority is continuing the Wildfire Smoke Advisory for the Sunshine Coast and surrounding areas because of forest fire smoke that is affecting areas from Powell River to Gibsons/Langdale and surrounding areas. Smoke concentrations will vary widely as winds, fire behaviour and temperatures change. This situation is expected to persist until meteorological conditions change. Avoid strenuous outdoor activities. If you are experiencing any of the following symptoms, contact your health care provider: difficulty in breathing, chest pain or discomfort, and sudden onset of cough or irritation of airways. Exposure is particularly a concern for infants, the elderly and those who have underlying medical conditions such as diabetes, and lung or heart disease.

A photo posted by Rebecca Bollwitt (@miss604) on

Wildfire Info

All open fires are currently banned in BC, this even extends to charcoal barbecues on beaches. Follow BCForestFireInfo on Facebook for the latest news. If you see a wildfire — not just smoke clouds in the city — call 1-800-663-5555 or *5555 on your mobile. For Wildfire information, call 1-888-3FOREST.

Thoughts are with those in the affected communities and also with those battling massive the blazes across our province.

Orange Morning Sky in Vancouver

July 5th, 2015 @ 9:25am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

A veil of smoke from forest fires across the province has covered Vancouver this morning, blocking out the sun and painting the sky orange and grey. There are dozens of fires in BC, with 17 major fires of note. Smoke is flowing out from inland origins but also from the west, from Sechelt and Port Hardy fires. Across the province, 180 fires in total are currently burning.

A photo posted by vjm. (@whoisvjm) on

This timelapse by François Péladeau shows the sun disappearing, barely revealing itself at sunrise:

I walked around the Coal Harbour Sea Wall at around 8:00am and took a few photos with my phone to capture the eerily dark morning:

A photo posted by Rebecca Bollwitt (@miss604) on

Orange Morning Sky in Vancouver

Orange Morning Sky in Vancouver

Orange Morning Sky in Vancouver

Orange Morning Sky in Vancouver

Fire information officers say 134 of the 180 fires have been started by lightning strikes, which is unusually high for this time of year. [Source: CBC]

Meet My Market Month at BC Farmers Markets

July 3rd, 2015 @ 1:44pm (PT) by Guest Author

This July, friends all over BC are heading to their local farmers market to celebrate Meet My Market Month. With a chance to win a three night getaway — with wine touring — to the Okanagan’s beautiful Sparkling Hill Resort, it’s clear this could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship with your local BC farmers market!

Meet My Market Month at BC Farmers Markets

Introduce a friend to your favourite farmers market in July and you could win big!


Here are five great reasons to bring a friend to your local BC farmers’ market for Meet My Market Month:

  1. The eats. BC boasts an amazing array of locally grown food, and it’s all at the market. Whether you’re looking for a sweet fix of blueberries, local gelato, tender cuts of meat, or home grown tomatoes, the farmers’ market is a great place for fresh, quality local food.
  2. Meet your maker, along with your market. Surprise: the farmers’ market is run by… actual farmers! “Farmers’ markets are pretty much a second home for me,” says Rachelle Zelaney, farmer and owner of Zelaney Farms in Vernon, BC. “My family has been growing food for the Vernon community and selling at our local markets for more than 25 years. We’re very excited to meet some new faces at our booth during Meet My Market Month in July!”
  3. The price. People who regularly load up on local food at the farmers’ markets know the farmers’ market is an affordable (and wonderful) way to buy local…without making your savings go south.
  4. Making memories: BC’s farmers’ markets are the perfect place to bond with someone special. Enjoy the festive atmosphere (there’s often live music), sample different foods and consider the market a sight-seeing activity in your own backyard.
  5. Easy access. Across the province, more than 125 farmers’ markets offer an abundance of locally grown food and locally made goods. They foster community fun including musical entertainment, children’s activities, cooking classes, artisan workshops and a gathering place for neighbourhoods.

During Meet My Market Month you could win a resort getaway just for taking a friend along on your next market visit.

From the Okanagan, fresh and organic!
Photo credit: Eric Flexyourhead on Flickr

Here’s how it works: Meet My Market Month kicks off on July 1 and runs until July 31, 2015. Throughout the month, anyone in BC can participate by bringing a friend to their local market. People can enter the grand prize giveaway in one of two ways:

  1. In person: bring a friend to your favourite BC farmers’ market, head to the market info booth and fill out a ballot! Check out participating markets on the website.
  2. Via social media: simply snap a photo at your favourite BC farmers’ market with your purchase and post it on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook, tagging @bcfarmersmarket and add #MeetMyMarket to enter.

All entries will be automatically entered to win one of two grand prizes: A three-night getaway (+ wine touring) for two to Sparkling Hill Resort in the Okanagan. Social media entrants will also be eligible to win one of five weekly random prize draws for $50 to spend at the farmers’ market of their choice.

Miss604 Giveaway

In case this awesome prize isn’t enough incentive to bring a friend to a farmers market in July, I have a giveaway just for Miss604 readers for a Home Canning Starter Kit. Simply help me promote the #MeetMyMarket campaign on Twitter and you’ll be entered to win:

July is @bcfarmersmarket #MeetMyMarket Month!

Be sure to use the link provided in the Twitter text above (copy/paste/post) and you’ll be entered to win one of the canning kits. I’ll draw two winners at 12:00pm on Monday, July 6, 2015.

Disclosure: Sponsored Post

This post is sponsored by the BC Association of Farmers Markets