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Vancouver 2010 Torch Relay Video

March 3rd, 2010 @ 5:48pm (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

Just when I thought I had wrapped up my Vancouver 2010 coverage, I discover an amazing video on YouTube by director Trevor Meier, featuring the Olympic Torch Relay. Comissioned by VANOC, they have an entire series of videos from the relay, the following is from Days 64 – 70.

The Torch Relay was one of my favourite, if not the best, highlights of the Vancouver 2010 Olympics. I was lucky enough to ride along in my hometown of Surrey and that memory will be with me always. The Paralympic Torch Relay began today and the flame it will find its way to Vancouver again March 12th.

Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival 2010

March 3rd, 2010 @ 4:00pm (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

With the cherry blossoms already making an appearance during our Winter Olympics, the city is gearing up for the annual Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival taking place throughout the month of April.

Stanley Park Trek

Cherry Blossom Festival Events
2010 Haiku Invitational: Write & submit a haiku about cherry blossoms until May 31st.

Bike the Blossoms: Partnering with the Vancouver Area Cycling Coalition these will be bike tours for cherry blossom viewing around town.

Birthday Blossoms: Celebrate Vancouver’s 135th birthday next year by purchasing & planting a tree this year so that it will be in bloom to celebrate in 2011.

Check out the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival’s viewing map for tress and parks nearby. The first event coming up on March 22nd is a lecture about cherry blossoms by Douglas Justice, of UBC Botanical Garden.

Should you snap some photos of the blossoms, please feel free to add it to the Miss604 Flickr Pool. I’ll have a photo feature post up within the next few weeks.

First Weekend Club: Last Train Home

March 3rd, 2010 @ 2:03pm (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

The First Weekend Club is a non-profit organization and cross-Canada movie club that is dedicated to promoting and raising awareness for great Canadian films. I am pleased to announce that I have signed on as a partner with the First Weekend Club and will post monthly features about their screening series along with other special offers and events.

This month’s Canada Screens feature is the documentary, Last Train Home which will be shown tomorrow night at the District 319 theatre.

The film then opens March 5th in Vancouver (The Ridge), Richmond (SilverCity Richmond Hill), and The Varsity (Toronto). This screening is currently sold out but First Weekend Club tickets are normally available each month in advance through their Canada Screens website.

The Art of Being Together by L’Arche

March 3rd, 2010 @ 9:00am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

A few months ago I was asked to emcee an event put on by L’Arche, an international organization that supports those with developmental disabilities. I gladly accepted and The Art of Being Together will take place this Saturday in Burnaby.

The Art of Being Together
Saturday March 6, 2010 from 1:00-5:00pm
6688 Southoaks Crescent, Burnaby, BC


From the Finalists Gallery: Meditations on Integration by Rocio Graham

For the last 35 years, the people in the L’Arche Greater Vancouver community have experienced each other’s joy, pain and the challenges of walking together every day. We need to be together to build mutual relationships and maintain them. There is an art in living together in L’Arche and this art can be a model to the wider community. We acknowledge that we need each other and that together we are stronger.

Last weekend judges selected eight finalists from the contributed pieces that will be showcased and auctioned off. The public will also be able to vote on their favourite piece for a “People’s Choice” award. During the event everyone is invited to create their own painting that will be donated to South Burnaby Neighbourhood House as well. Artwork has been contributed by those living with and without developmental disabilities and it will be up for sale alongside silent auction items.

Please feel free to join us on Saturday. Admission is only $5 and there will be some great works showcased and available for purchase all befitting a wonderful cause.

Vancouver 2010 Paralympics Guide

March 2nd, 2010 @ 1:00pm (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

The 2010 Winter Paralympic Games are coming to Vancouver, March 12th until the 21st, as our city hosts the world once again celebrating athletes who are the very best in their sport. In case you were wondering just what exactly the Paralympics entail, I thought I would put together this quick reference guide.

Paralympic History
“In 1948, Sir Ludwig Guttmann organized a sports competition involving World War II veterans with a spinal cord injury in Stoke Mandeville, England. Four years later, competitors from the Netherlands joined the games and an international movement was born. Olympic style games for athletes with a disability were organized for the first time in Rome in 1960, now called Paralympics.

In Toronto in 1976, other disability groups were added and the idea of merging together different disability groups for international sport competitions was born. In the same year, the first Paralympic Winter Games took place in Sweden.” – International Paralympic Committee

Sports
Alpine Skiing, Biathlon, Cross-Country Skiing, Wheelchair Curling, Ice Sledge Hockey.

Venues

  • BC Place
  • Paralympic Village Vancouver
  • Paralympic Village Whistler
  • UBC Thunderbird Arena
  • Vancouver Paralympic Centre
  • Whistler Creekside
  • Whistler Media Centre
  • Whistler Medals Plaza
  • Whistler Paralympic Park
  • Events
    The Cultural Olympiad is still going strong as well, presenting performances until March 21st. Nightly medals ceremony concerts in Whistler are listed here.

    Pavilions & Attractions
    From my master list of pavilions the following will still be open:

  • Canada House: Until March 21st
  • LiveCity Downtown: Until March 21st
  • Canada’s Northern House: Until April 17th
  • Robson Square Ice Skating at GE Plaza: Until March 21st
  • CentrePlace Manitoba: Until March 21st
  • Olympic Line free streetcar: Until March 21st
  • Olympic cauldron in Coal Harbour
  • Cultural Olympiad: Until March 21st
  • Robson Square Zipline: Until March 21st (Daily 10am – 9pm)
  • Royal Canadian Mint: Until March 21st (at a new location, 350 W Georgia – Vancouver Public Library)
  • BC Hydro Power Smart Village: Until March 21st
  • BC Pavilion: Until March 21st
  • Transportation
    The following routes will continue to have “no stopping” regulations through March 21, 2010

  • Hastings St between Main St and Burrard
  • Smithe St between Expo St and Howe St
  • Nelson St between Thurlow St and Beatty St
  • King Edward Ave between Oak St and Sophia St
  • Cambie St between King Edward Ave and 37th Ave
  • 2nd/6th Ave between Hemlock St to Main St
  • Main St from 2nd Ave to Terminal Ave
  • There is a full Paralympics transportation plan available from the City of Vancouver.

    Tickets
    Event tickets start at around $15 or $20 so if you didn’t have the chance to go to an Olympic sporting event, this may be your chance to get in on some world-class athletic competition.

    Torch Relay
    The Paralympic Torch Relay will begin March 3, 2010 and conclude at the Opening Ceremony March 12th in Vancouver.

  • Ottawa, Ontario — Lighting Ceremony on March 3, 2010
  • Quebec City, Quebec — March 4, 2010
  • Toronto, Ontario — March 5, 2010
  • Esquimalt/Victoria, British Columbia — March 6, 2010
  • Squamish, British Columbia — March 7, 2010
  • Whistler, British Columbia — March 8, 2010
  • Lytton, British Columbia — March 9, 2010
  • Hope, British Columbia — March 9, 2010
  • Vancouver Paralympic Centre, British Columbia — March 10, 2010
  • Maple Ridge, British Columbia — March 10, 2010
  • UBC Thunderbird Arena, British Columbia — March 11, 2010
  • Vancouver (downtown), British Columbia — A 24-hour event will start around Robson Square in downtown Vancouver as the Paralympic Flame is continuously carried and passed between torchbearers — March 11, 2010
  • Vancouver (downtown), British Columbia — The 24-hour event continues and concludes around Robson Square, prior to the Opening Ceremony of the Vancouver 2010 Paralympic Winter Games at BC Place — March 12, 2010
  • Torchbearers
    CBC’s Rick Mercer will represent the province of British Columbia as a torchbearer in the 2010 Paralympic Torch Relay Lighting Ceremony on March 3 in Ottawa. There will be other recognizable names along the way which you can look up online.

    Coverage
    The Opening Ceremony will not be aired live Friday night on CTV. According to their website: “The opening ceremonies will not be broadcast live. Instead, they’ll be tape-delayed by CTV until Saturday, and packaged with Canada’s first sledge-hockey match.”

    “The good news is that social media and the internet are picking up where traditional media is failing. Paralympic Sport TV — the Internet TV channel of the International Paralympic Committee — will offer free live broadcasts worldwide via Internet.” – Via Glenda Watson-Hyatt.

    Update There are some reports that the Opening Ceremony will air live only in BC. This is yet to be confirmed by CTV however News1130 has spoken with them. They have been assured that the Opening Ceremony will air live, locally.

    I have not been accredited to cover the Paralympics, due to late application, however this event will be a part of our city over the next month and anything that keeps the Olympic spirit alive is worth documenting and promoting in my books.

    Update: VANOC has approved my accreditation, so it looks like I’ll be able to cover this even more. Thanks for all the support!

    Vancouver 2010 Paralympics Whistler Concerts

    March 2nd, 2010 @ 11:30am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

    The Olympic flame will be lit again for the Paralympic Games in Vancouver and Whistler starting March 12, 2010 which means the party isn’t over yet. You will have time to check out some of the pavilions once again and many acts will be hitting stages during the Paralympic medal ceremonies.

    Whistler Medals Plaza

    Whistler Concerts

    March 13, 2010 – Kathleen Edwards
    March 14, 2010 – The Weakerthans
    March 15, 2010 – Antoine Gratton
    March 16, 2010 – The Trews
    March 17, 2010 – Justin Hines
    March 18, 2010 – Serena Ryder
    Nightly – DJ Chili Thom

    via The Straight

    From March 19 to 21, Whistler event medals will also be awarded in-venue so the plaza can prepare for the Closing Ceremony. The concerts will be free, Whistler Medals Plaza gates will open at 5:30pm daily, and the venue can accommodate 5,000 spectators. More information is available on the Vancouver2010 website.

    Oscar-Nominated District 9 Prize Pack

    March 2nd, 2010 @ 10:11am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

    District 9, co-written by Vancouver Film School graduates Neill Blomkamp and Terri Tatchell, is up for Best Picture this weekend at the 87th annual Academy Awards.

    It’s no secret that Vancouver Film School students are mighty talented and this Oscar nod is a pleasant (and warranted) surprise. To celebrate, VFS has given me a District 9 prize pack to give away to a reader this week.

  • The District 9 DVD, autographed
  • Mini poster autographed by Director/Co-Writer Neill Blomkamp and Co-Writer, Terri Tatchell
  • 1 InFocus Newsletter – District 9 Special Issue, autographed

  • To enter to win this prize pack, please leave a comment naming your favourite movie that has Vancouverites in the credits (or was filmed in Vancouver). This could be the star, the writer, director, or one featuring the recognizable Marine Building.

    I’ll do the draw tomorrow night at 5:00pm and the prize pack will be mailed out to the winner. The Oscars will be shown on CTV this Sunday and there are a few parties in town (at Players Chophouse or the OPUS Hotel) where you can join in the fun.

    Update: I have just drawn the winner randomly and it’s Dale, congratulations!

    Fine print: Participants must live within BC and be able to confirm their prize within 48 hours.

    Hearts for Haiti 2010

    March 2nd, 2010 @ 8:30am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

    Hearts for Haiti: An evening of Art and Jazz is an upcoming event that involves an art auction in support of the Canadian Red Cross‘ relief efforts in Haiti.

    Over 50 pieces of art will be available for auction at the Pacific Palisade Hotels on Robson, including paintings, sculptures and ceramics.

    Marla Guloien, a local jazz artist, will entertain throughout the night as well. The fundraiser takes place March 6th, 2010 with doors at 7:30pm. Tickets are $25 and they include a drink and appetizers.

    Hearts for Haiti is on Twitter @heARTS_4_haiti and you can also find them on Facebook.