Vancouver Icons: Planetarium Building

May 24th, 2012 @ 1:14pm (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

When searching for content for today’s Vancouver Icons or Vancouver History feature I put the word out on Facebook and user Raven Moon suggested posting about the Planetarium’s building. The Planetarium, officially known as the H.R. MacMillan Space Centre, is located in one of the city’s most recognizable buildings over in Kitsilano and is this week’s Vancouver Icons feature.

Photo credit: Andrew P.L. Wong on Flickr

The building was designed by architect Gerald Hamilton who made the roof in the shape of a woven hat worn by Haida men and women. It opened in 1968 and was originally to house the The Centennial Museum, and the Vancouver Museum did move in at that time as well. Due to financial backing of lumber magnate and philanthropist H.R. MacMillan, the planetarium was added to the design of the building.

Hamilton also designed the East Asiatic House in Vancouver, on Pender and Bute, as well as the Civic Centre and Frank Clair Stadium in Ottawa.

Kits Point, Vancouver ... looking North
Photo credit: Judy B – The Travelling Eye on Flickr

You’ll know if someone has lived in Vancouver since before the 1990s when they call the building the “Planetarium”. It was renamed the Space Centre in late 90s — with H.R. MacMillan prefixed to both names. The Vancouver Museum was re-branded as the Museum of Vancouver in 2009.

Each of these entities offers unique programming, events, and education on a variety of topics. Follow the H.R. MacMillan Space Centre on Twitter @AskAnAstronomer to find out more about activities in the building and in the outer reaches of the galaxy.

HR MacMillan Space Centre
Photo credit: H.R. MacMillan Space Centre on Flickr

Photo credit: www.metaphoricalplatypus.com on Flickr

Other Vancouver Icons posts include: Lord Stanley Statue, Vancouver Library Central Branch, Victory Square, Digital Orca, The Crab Sculpture, Girl in Wetsuit, The Sun Tower, The Hotel Vancouver, The Gassy Jack Statue, The Marine Building, and The Angel of Victory. Should you have a suggestion for the Vancouver Icons series please feel free to leave a note in the comments. It should be a thing, statue, or place that is very visible and recognizable to the public.

TED Talks Vancouver

May 24th, 2012 @ 11:04am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

TED has just announced that they will be hosting the TED Worldwide Talent Search in Vancouver (TED Talks) on May 31st at the Roundhouse in Yaletown.

Vancouver, B.C.
View of the Roundhouse in Yaletown. Photo credit: John Bollwitt on Flickr

This globally-recognized non-profit conference bills itself as being “devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading” and their roster of high profile speakers has included Steve Jobs, Stephen Hawking, Tony Robbins, Al Gore, Sir Ken Robinson, and more. Some of the people behind the conference include Larry Page, Ray Kurzweil, Craig Venter and Seth Godin.

TED Talks Vancouver will be part of a series of searches to bring together some of the most remarkable speakers in TED’s history. The theme of the next TED being: “The Young. The Wise. The Undiscovered.”

They have approved a range of local applicants who each embody one of the characteristics below:

  • THE INVENTOR: sharing an innovation with world-changing potential
  • THE TEACHER: sharing valuable knowledge in a memorable way to teenagers or adults
  • THE PRODIGY: young talent ready to break out
  • THE ARTIST: who can showcase their work in a compelling, new way
  • THE PERFORMER: music, dance, comedy, drama: or something entirely different
  • THE SAGE: wisdom the world needs from those who have learned it the hard way
  • THE ENTHUSIAST: with an infectious passion about a topic they can share
  • THE CHANGE AGENT: helping shape the world’s future with work that matters
  • THE STORYTELLER: vivid, original, meaningful: with a talent for connection
  • THE SPARK: with a powerful idea worth spreading

The selected Vancouver applicants will be vying for a spot on the official TED main stage. These are the only auditions taking place in Canada and you can attend the talent search in Vancouver by purchasing a ticket for $40.

TED is a nonprofit devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading. It started out (in 1984) as a conference bringing together people from three worlds: Technology, Entertainment, and Design. Since then its scope has become ever broader. Along with two annual conferences—the TED conference in Long Beach and Palm Springs each spring, and the TEDGlobal conference in Edinburgh UK each summer—TED includes the award-winning TEDTalks video site, the Open Translation Project and TED Conversation, the inspiring TED Fellows and the TEDx programs, and the annual TED Prize.

TED Talks in Vancouver will take place Thursday, May 31, 2012 from 3:00pm to 5:00pm and from 6:00pm to 8:00pm. Follow the Vancouver auditions on Facebook and @TEDTalks on Twitter to see who will be speaking next week, and possibly at the next TED.

HSBC City of Bhangra Festival 2012

May 24th, 2012 @ 9:59am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

The 8th Annual HSBC City of Bhangra Festival is bringing a variety of events to Vancouver and Surrey from May 31st to June 10th.

PANJ Bhangra PANJ Bhangra
Photo credit: Dance Photographer – Brendan Lally on Flickr

International and local acts will perform, including over 200 Punjabi dancers, musicians, singers, break dancers, folk dancers and more. Headliners include percussionist Sunil Kalyan and vocalist JK from the UK, along with DJ Rekha and Bikram Singh from New York.

Free Events

Surrey will host a special “Celebrate the Harvest” event at the Central City plaza on Saturday, June 2, 2012. In Vancouver, Downtown Bhangra I (June 9th) & II (June 10th) will take over the Vancouver Art Gallery lawn June 9th and 10th.

Surrey will also host Bhangra House at the Newton Recreation Centre that will host a range of folk dances. Vancouver’s free Bhangra Village will be at SFU Woodward’s.

Free lunchtime concerts in both Surrey and Vancouver will take place Monday, June 4th from 12:00pm to 1:00pm (at Central City and at Robson and Howe).

Ticketed Events

rePercussion (Surrey), Bhangra on Main, Bhangra Love, Basement Bhangra: Vancouver, Ambassadors of Bhangra, and the Closing Gala all require tickets, which start at just $15, depending on the event. You can also purchase a festival pass, for access to all events, for $80.

City of Bhangra is presented by the Vancouver International Bhangra Celebration Society. Follow the VIBC on Twitter and Facebook for more information about festival events and more throughout the year.

Vancouver Heritage Foundation Heritage House Tour 2012

May 23rd, 2012 @ 1:24pm (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

The Vancouver Heritage Foundation presents their 10th annual Heritage House Tour on Sunday, June 3rd. This one-day self-guided tour leads participants through 10 different houses, a church that has been converted to strata units, Cedar Cottage homes, Shaughnessy mansions, and more.

Untitled Untitled Untitled
Photo credit: Martin Knowles for Vancouver Heritage Foundation on Flickr

Over 18,000 people have participated in the Heritage House Tour over the years which always features a different selection of privately-owned homes in a variety of neighbourhoods.

You can purchase your 24-page tour booklet (which is your admission ticket) for $40 (plus HST). Ticket purchases can be made online or by calling (604) 264-9642.

The Heritage House Tour is a fundraiser for the Vancouver Heritage Foundation which is a charitable organization that supports the conservation of Vancouver’s built heritage through public awareness, education activities and granting programs.

Follow the Vancouver Heritage Foundation on Facebook and Twitter for more information.

Trapp+Holbrook New Westminster

May 23rd, 2012 @ 11:51am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

Trapp + Holbrook is New Westminster’s latest real estate development that will build up modern living spaces along Columbia Street in our province’s original capital. This reconstruction of the historic Trapp building will be performed by Robert Fung and his team at The Salient Group who have transformed many prominent buildings in Gastown.

Trapp+Holbrook“The historic Trapp Block was built in 1899. Formerly home to Army and Navy, the site has sat empty since 1977. Facing Columbia Street and backing onto Front Street, Trapp Block is part of the historical Golden Mile, once a prosperous neighbourhood in New Westminster and once again, its charm is drawing us back!

What you can expect from Trapp + Holbrook is a marriage of the old and the new: 196 homes ranging from 500 to 1261 square feet, 20 storeys in height with panoramic views of the Fraser River. You will also find excellent value with homes starting at $219,900 and 100 homes priced under $299,000.” [The Salient Group Blog]

There has been an abundance of press coverage about the project, from the Georgia Straight talking about the revitalization of New Westminster, to the Royal City Record, and blog posts on 10th to the Fraser, BuzzBuzzHome, and Vancouver is Awesome.

Trapp+Holbrook, New Westminster Trapp+Holbrook, New Westminster

The Revitalization

When I was young, my family spent every weekend in New Westminster and the Hyack Parade was an annual tradition for us. My first job in retail was at Royal City Centre shopping mall, and the first place I looked for a wedding dress was on Columbia Street. Since that time, I haven’t spent many days in New Westminster – we’ve just sped by on the SkyTrain on our way to the end of the line.

Day in New Westminster: May 2012

If you haven’t taken the time to explore New Westminster today, take an hour or two to discovering the changes along Columbia and the river. Towers now flank the SkyTrain tracks, there’s a full mini-mall of shops and services within the New Westminster SkyTrain station itself, a new movie theatre, and the Quay has been rebranded as River Market. The new Waterfront Pier Park will host a grand opening celebration June 16, 2012.

Day in New Westminster: May 2012 Day in New Westminster: May 2012

Day in New Westminster: May 2012 Day in New Westminster: May 2012
John took some great photos of the neighbourhood. Find them all on his Flickr.

Our Day Out

John and I took the time to explore New Westminster a few weeks ago, from coffee and tea shops, to the River Market and Antique Alley on Front Street. We even stopped to take a few photos from the parkade along the water where scenes from Jackie Chan’s Rumble in the Bronx were filmed (with mountains in the background and all).

Waves, New Westminster Waves, New Westminster
Waves Coffee House on Columbia, across the street from Trapp + Holbrook.

Day in New Westminster: May 2012 Day in New Westminster: May 2012
KJM Urban Gardens: Wide selection of small plants, gift items, and gardening supplies.

Day in New Westminster: May 2012

Day in New Westminster: May 2012 Drink Urban Lounge
Drink Urban Lounge: Great beer selection, ambiance, and ever purse hooks under the tables.

Day in New Westminster: May 2012

Day in New Westminster: May 2012 Day in New Westminster: May 2012
Wild Rice: Located in the River Market its fresh selection of west coast fusion menu items rivals that of its original downtown Vancouver location. John particularly enjoyed the lamb potstickers.

Day in New Westminster: May 2012 Day in New Westminster: May 2012

The Contest

If you would like to experience New Westminster for yourself, Trapp + Holbrook has offered up gift cards so that you can enjoy what John and I got to taste and sip in during our excursion.

This prize pack includes: $20 for Waves Coffee House, $50 for Drink Urban Lounge, and within the River Market the winner will receive $25 for KJM Urban Gardens, $20 for the Great Wall Tea Company, and $75 for Wild Rice. All of these establishments are within walking distance of each other.

Here’s how you can enter to win this ultimate “Day in New Westminster” prize pack valued at $190:

  • Leave a comment here naming a highlight of New Wesminster for you (could be a park, shop, fond memory, or a place you hope to visit) (1 entry)
  • Post the following on Twitter (1 entry)
RT to enter to win $190 in gift cards to spend in New Westminster from @TheSalientGroup #THLiving & @Miss604 http://ow.ly/b6E92

The Trapp + Holbrook presentation centre is located at 668 Columbia Street and is open from 12:00pm to 7:00pm, Monday to Thursday, and until 5:00pm on the weekends. They have staff on hand to answer questions and guide you through a display suite. Follow The Salient Group on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest for more photos and information.

I will draw one winner at random from all entries at 12:00pm on Friday, June 1, 2012. If you enjoyed the photo in this post, you can view more in John’s Flickr set.

Update The winner is Tintin!

Jessie Awards 2012: Nominations

May 23rd, 2012 @ 10:17am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

The nominations are in for the 30th Annual Jessie Richardson Theatre Awards which will take place on Monday, June 25, 2012 at the Commodore Ballroom. More than 120 individuals nominated performers and theatre companies in 25 different categories who all represent outstanding theatre in Vancouver.

2011 Jessie Richardson Awards

Leading the pack of nominations is The Arts Club Theatre Company with 17 nominations, with 9 of those for The Penelopiad. Neworld Theatre (in association with Vancouver Moving Theatre) received 7 nominations for The Idiot, and in the ‘Small Theatre’ category, The Electric Company (in association with the Vancouver Playhouse Theatre Company) received 8 nominations for All the Way Home. For ‘Theatre for Young People’, Carousel Theatre has racked up 11 nominations for productions like The Wizard of Oz and Aesop’s Fables.

Here are a few more of the nominations: