BC Cultural Crawl 2009

July 29th, 2009 @ 9:36am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

The 8th annual BC Cultural Crawl kicks off this weekend from Barkerville to Victoria, Cranbrook to Comox. The goal of the cultural crawl is to highlight community art events around our province which are happening every day throughout the month of August.

Here’s a sample lineup of events happening across the province on BC Day, August 3rd:

Filberg Festival Photo: Keira-Anne

Bard on the Beach
Nelson Art Walk
Bard to Broadway
Stinking Fish Studio Tour
Filberg Festival
ArtsWells Festival
Harmony Arts Festival
Squamish Days
BC Cultural Crawl
MusicFest Vancouver

Check out the Van Dop Arts & Cultural Guide to British Columbia for a complete calendar and regional listing of events.

Container Gardening with Atlas Pots

July 28th, 2009 @ 5:12pm (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

Growing your own garden, beautiful flower beds, or cultivating that perfect shrub can be rewarding, especially if you don’t have much room to work with. Vancouver’s downtown “shoebox” living spaces make it difficult for green thumbs to live out their passions however it can be possible — even if you have the smallest of patio spaces.

Photo credit: jorge zapico on Flickr

I’m giving away a free container gardening consultation from Atlas Pots. They are a family business that knows all there is to know about container gardening, from fiberglass and fibercrete, to terrazzo. Seeing as how the snow last winter finally did in what little balcony garden John and I had, I’m assuming others out there might be in the same boat especially with this summer’s heat.

In this one-hour consultation from Atlas they will examine your growing space and give gardening advice. In particular they will focus on container gardening advice, such as which planters are best for which plants and space, suggestions on what plants to include, etc. Adding to that, the winner of this contest will also receive a $150 gift certificate to spend at Atlas to get their garden up and growing.

To enter to win this prize (valued at $250 total), please leave a comment on this post outlining what you’re currently growing (or would like to be growing). If you can fit all of that into a Tweet, you can @AtlasPots and @Miss604 to enter to win as well. Bonus points (meaning an extra entry) if you already have a container garden, which you’d like to improve, and you post a photo of it to the Miss604 Flickr group.

Update, August 17, 2009: I have drawn the winner of this giveaway and it is Susan Main. Congratulations, Susan & thank you for entering.

Vancouver History: Enjoy the Sunshine

July 28th, 2009 @ 4:11pm (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

We had what many called snowmageddon this winter and now we’re busting the thermostats with record heatwave temperatures across the Province. All this wonderful sunshine might be getting too hot and uncomfortable for most to bear as we hear grumbled complaints about the weather around town. The following history tidbits serve to remind us of the unpleasant and soggy days we’ve experienced throughout the City’s history (which will hopefully help us cool off a little in the meantime).

Sidewalks clearer than roads

  • 1853: The first dairy farm in Greater Vancouver was operated in Ladner by Alexander McLean. After being flooded out in 1853 McLean moved his family and their 50 cows to the west bank of the Pitt River in what is now Port Coquitlam.
  • May, 1894: The largest Fraser River flood occurred, flooding far and wide from Agassiz straight through to Richmond.
  • In 1948 the Fraser flooded the Valley again, impacting agricultural developments, two transcontinental rail lines and the airport that had been built in Richmond.
  • March 26, 1956: 1,000 facts about Vancouver were collected by UBC students for the Tourism Association. They noted that Vancouver get an average of 1,663 hours of sunshine annually.
  • As president of the Vancouver Tourist Association, Leo (Michael Leo) Sweeney (1886-1977) wore a straw boater hat when it rained “to prove it was liquid sunshine.”
  • October 28, 1921: A sudden flood wave at Britannia Beach crashed down on the village and swept away 50 of its 100 houses, killing 35 people.
  • October 18, 1934: Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Lefty Gomez, Charlie Gehringer, Heinie Manush, and Lefty O’Doul, played a game in Vancouver as “Babe Ruth’s All Americans,” against the “American League All-Stars.” It was pouring rain yet 3,000 fans showed up to watch these pros play knee-deep in mud. Said Lefty O’Doul in the dugout, “Say, this is some baseball town, isn’t it? Back in Portland there weren’t five hundred out and on a bright and sunny day.” [source]
  • October 12, 1962: Hurricane Frieda hits Vancouver. Frieda started out as a typhoon, became a hurricane, and is what some called an “extra” tropical storm.
  • June 1988: Record rainfall for June in the Fraser Valley this month saw 144 mm (5.7 inches) of rain pour down.
  • The source for these tidbits is the Vancouver History website. Please visit, browse, and consider sponsoring.
  • As an update to the first note, Vancouver currently gets between 1900 – 2200 annual hours of sunshine, meanwhile places such as the aptly-named Sunshine Coast see about 2400 hours.

    The Amazing Hunt Canada Line Race

    July 28th, 2009 @ 11:47am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

    The Amazing Hunt is coming to the Canada Line. A while back in my Amazing Hunt 2009 preview post there was mention of a Skytrain race and it’s now been confirmed that it will take place in October on the shiny new Canada Line. This will be the second transit race and this time participants will only be able to use the Canada Line (unlike the ability to use Skytrain and buses in the past).

    Canada Line Preview Tour

    The “Back to the Transit” race will take place Sunday October 3rd from 10:00am to around 3:00pm. You can check out the Amazing Hunt blog for more information or see how I enjoyed the race over when I participated in 2007 and 2008. The Amazing Hunt is such a great time and can really help build a team, strengthen a relationship and well… it can also test your patience with each other. Register online (not on Facebook) to book yourself and a team member in for this event.

    If you’d like a sneak preview of the Canada Line, I was treated to a full line tour last week that you can read about here.

    Blogathon 2009 – We Made it

    July 26th, 2009 @ 6:00am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

    Post #49 of #49 – Over the next 24 hours I will be raising funds for the Union Gospel Mission during Blogathon 2009 by writing a blog post every 30 minutes. Please consider donating to my cause to keep my going until 6am PT July 26th.

    We made it. After 24 hours of blogging readers have donated and pledged over $3,000 to the Union Gospel Mission. The support in all forms has been overwhelming and I cannot say it often enough but I have the best readers in the world.

    There has been a group of bloggers here at the on-site event who have worked hard for their causes as well. Each and every one has put in an amazing amount of effort into their individual campaigns.

    I’ll be heading home soon with John and getting some sleep so the site won’t be updated for the next day or so, understandably. I will keep the donation page live until Tuesday at which time I’ll draw the winner of the Granville Island Brewing fireworks boat cruise experience as well as the $25 Kingston gift certificate donated by John Biehler.

    If you would like to re-live my 24 hours, you can read all of my Blogathon 2009 posts here. Thanks again everyone, and goodnight (good morning) from Gastown.

    Blogathon 2009 – For the UGM

    July 26th, 2009 @ 5:30am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

    Post #48 of #49 – Over the next 24 hours I will be raising funds for the Union Gospel Mission during Blogathon 2009 by writing a blog post every 30 minutes. Please consider donating to my cause to keep my going until 6am PT July 26th.

    Photo credit: UGM on Flickr

    23.5 hours ago I began blogging for a cause and thanks to my readers and their generosity, over $3,000 has been donated to the Union Gospel Mission through my campaign.

    With 12 facilities placed between downtown Vancouver and the city of Mission, UGM is ideally positioned to help those who need it the most. Employing a full-time staff of approximately 130 and relying on a broad base of loyal volunteers, Union Gospel Mission provides meals, shelter, education, counselling, housing and more to hundreds of people each day.

    From pancakes in the park, Easter dinner, clothing drives, and support services. I truly believe in the work the UGM is doing in all corners of the Lower Mainland and these funds will help support their efforts.

    Over the last 24 hours, and especially now in the wee hours before it all comes to an end, I found myself craving my own warm bed, a hot shower, and a change of clothes. I then realized that UGM supports people who simply may not have access to any of those things, all of the time.

    I would like to thank everyone for their contribution to my campaign – whether you re-tweeted a post, left a comment, stopped by Workspace, or donated to the cause. Your kindness kept me going this entire time and continues to motivate me to provide quality content on

    Blogathon 2009 – Bollwitt Time

    July 26th, 2009 @ 5:00am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

    Post #47 of #49 – Over the next 24 hours I will be raising funds for the Union Gospel Mission during Blogathon 2009 by writing a blog post every 30 minutes. Please consider donating to my cause to keep my going until 6am PT July 26th.

    BollwittsMy husband John joined us here at Workspace in the late afternoon and he’s pretty much here for the long haul at this point. He’s offered companionship, post ideas, a guest post, and support while my eyes became heavy.

    Once Blogathon is all over, and I’ve recovered my sleeping patterns, we’ll be heading to a tropical location for five days of sun, sand, and hopefully some good old fashioned disconnection time. John and I have never had a honeymoon and well, unfortunately this upcoming trip doesn’t quite qualify.

    You see 99% of all of our trips are working holidays and this is no exception. So even though I’ll be in the tropics for the first time in my life, with the love of my life, he’ll still be spending some time on the clock. I remain optimistic however that one day, this won’t have to be the case.

    Blogathon 2009 – What the Trend

    July 26th, 2009 @ 4:30am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

    Post #46 of #49 – Over the next 24 hours I will be raising funds for the Union Gospel Mission during Blogathon 2009 by writing a blog post every 30 minutes. Please consider donating to my cause to keep my going until 6am PT July 26th.

    If you use the popular microblogging service Twitter you’ll notice that it tracks the top trending topics at any given time around the world. These hot topics are listed on the sidebar of your profile page and also on their Search directory.

    But what happens when you see 10 topics trending and you have no idea what they mean or what their significance might be? Do what I do and check out What the Trend. Users can update and explain why topics are trending so that you’re not so lost and wondering why “NKOTB” or “cupcakes” are suddenly in the middle of the latest media buzz.