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:

NASAWildFireSmoke

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.

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!

MeetMyMarkets

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! http://ow.ly/P9w7h

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

Things to do in Vancouver This Weekend

July 3rd, 2015 @ 8:11am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

It’s the very last weekend of the FIFA Women’s World Cup with England and Germany playing on Saturday followed by the USA and Japan playing at BC Place for the championship on Sunday. The Fan Zone will be open for free each day for viewing and there’s a special guest appearing on the 4th of July in honour of our American visitors.

It’s going to be another scorcher in Vancouver this weekend so whatever you get up to make sure you hydrate and limit your time in the sun so you can continue to have fun at one of these awesome events:

Canada Day 2015!
Photo credit: Alexis Birkill on Flickr

Things to do in Vancouver This Weekend

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

Friday, July 3, 2015
Sponsored by Miss604: Friday Late Night Movies at the Rio Theatre
Take Off Fridays, Free Fun at YVR Airport
Fresh Air Fridays at Highstreet in Abbotsford
Music at the Cannery
FVDED in the Park, Holland Park, Surrey
Canadian Open Fastpitch International Championships
Shipyards Night Market, North Vancouver
Surrey Night Market
International Night Market, Richmond
Latin American Week in Vancouver
Vancouver Greek Summerfest
The Arts Club Presents: Godspell
Disney’s The Lion King in Vancouver
Dancing on the Edge Festival

Saturday, July 4, 2015
4th of July at the VanFanZone with American Idol Nick Fradiani
We Stand on Guard, Book Release at Golden Age Collectibles
East Van Summer Jam
Comedy Shocker Presents: Downward Spiral
Bridgeview Community Festival
Session Cask Fest
Roller Derby Championships
Ready or Knot Bridal Pop-Up
FVDED in the Park, Holland Park, Surrey
TD Concerts at the Pier in White Rock
Burnaby Artisan Farmers Market
Trout Lake Farmers Market
West End Farmers Market
Vancouver, Plaza of Nations Night Market
Richmond Night Market
Surrey Night Market
International Night Market, Richmond
Latin American Week in Vancouver
Vancouver Greek Summerfest
The Arts Club Presents: Godspell
Disney’s The Lion King in Vancouver
Dancing on the Edge Festival
Canadian Open Fastpitch International Championships

Sunday, July 5, 2015
Vancouver Street Food Festival
Sunday Afternoon Salsa at Robson Square
Heart Wide Open Urban Retreat
Ambleside Artisan Farmers Market
Kitsilano Farmers Market
Richmond Night Market
Surrey Night Market
International Night Market, Richmond
Latin American Week in Vancouver
Vancouver Greek Summerfest
The Arts Club Presents: Godspell
Disney’s The Lion King in Vancouver
Dancing on the Edge Festival
Canadian Open Fastpitch International Championships

Check out the full July event listings here and if you have an event to include, please send it in by email for a free listing. The July event list will be up early next week. Follow Miss604 on Twitter for more daily updates.

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If you wish to receive this weekly/weekend event list right to your email inbox, please sign up for the new Miss604 Weekly Events Newsletter below. It will be sent once a week, only to those who opt-in, when it launches this summer.

July Late Night Movies at the Rio Theatre

July 3rd, 2015 @ 6:52am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

Cool off and enjoy a late night movie at the Rio Theatre this month with East Van’s best buttery popcorn, a margarita or beer. Tickets for the late night series are available online in advance or at the door for just $8 or $6 if you come in costume for the midnight shows.

RioTheatreJulyFriday, July 3, 2015
Mad Max 3: Beyond Thunderdome
(George Miller, 1985) A former Australian policeman (Mel Gibson) is rescued by a tribe of children when he is banished from a desert town and sent into the desert to die by the desert town’s evil queen (Tina Turner).

Friday, July 10, 2015
Galaxy Quest (Dean Parisot, 1999)
Thanks to hilarious dialogue and stand-out performances from its all-star cast – including Alan Rickman, Tim Allen, Sigourney Weaver, Tony Shalhoub, Sam Rockwell, Enrico Colanltoni, Justin Long, and Missi Pyle – sci-fi parody Galaxy Quest has officially taken on a life of its own as an out-of-this-world cult-comedy. Kitschy, campy, and fun, Galaxy Quest is a total send-up of both Hollywood and the enterprise of science fiction franchises.

Friday, July 17, 2015
The Outsiders (Francis Ford Coppola, 1983)
The Outsiders is based on the best-selling novel of the same name by S.E. Hinton (who also wrote the screenplay). Besides being considered one of the best “teen dramas” ever made, the film is especially notable for its remarkable ensemble cast – including C. Thomas Howell, Matt Dillon, Ralph Macchio, Rob Lowe, Emilio Estevez, Patrick Swayze, Tom Cruise, Diane Lane, Leif Garrett and Tom Waits.

Friday, July 24, 2015
Kung Fury (David Sandberg, 2015) and Manborg (Steven Kostanski, 2011)
Together as a Friday Late Night Movie event: Both of these indie short films have won legions of fans (and racked up crazy viral love) for their imagination and technical ingenuity, so we thought it was a good idea to pair them together for some big screen time. This will be a seriously fun Friday Late Night you do not want to miss.

Friday, July 31, 2015
Beavis and Butt-Head Do America (Mike Judge, 1996)
Following the enormous success of MTV’s animated series Beavis and Butt-Head, director Mike Judge (who created the series and provided many of the voices, including those of our two slacker heroes) made a feature length film that follows the dimwitted teens on a road trip across America as they search of their stolen television set. Featuring the voices of Bruce Willis, Demi Moore, Cloris Leachman, Robert Stack, Eric Bogosian, David Spade, David Letterman, and Greg Kinnear.

Miss604 is a media partner of the Rio’s Late Night Movie series.

These 19+ screenings can be complimented with a beverage from the theatre’s full service bar as you enjoy a night out with friends. The Rio Theatre is an independent art and movie house located at 1660 West Broadway, at Commercial Drive, and is easily accessible by transit. Follow along on Facebook and Twitter for more film screenings, comedy showcases, and special event information.