Vancouver History Tidbits: Stanley Park Trail Names Part 2

Tuesday, April 10th, 2012 — 2:14pm PDT
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I love stepping under the canopy of Stanley Park‘s forest trails, detouring from the concrete paths of the Sea Wall and surrounding thoroughfares. A few years ago I profiled the origins of several Stanley Park Trail Names including Merilees, Rawlings, Tatlow, Thompson, and Tisdall. Tourism Vancouver recently launched their ultimate guide to Stanley Park (useful to visitors and locals alike) so I thought I would profile just a few more trail names in the hopes that some of you might be enticed to explore the mulch-covered routes through the park.

Avison Trail Namesake: Henry Avison, Stanley Park Superintendent 1888-1895
History: Henry Avison was the first employee of the Vancouver Park Board. He cut Stanley Park’s first trails and was its first zoo keeper, designed the park’s first gardens, and lived in a lodge by its entrance. [Source: VancouverHistory]

1898- Avison’s cottage at the entrance to Stanley Park. Archives item# St Pk P250.

Eldon Trail Namesake: G. Eldon, Park Board Superintendent 1896-1909
History: George Eldon was Park Board Chair from 1910-1911. In 1916, Eldon and other commissioners planted an oak tree near Pipeline Road to commemorate William Shakespeare’s tercentenary. There’s a monument for the bard to this day at the north end of the rose garden. [Source: Vancouver Archives]

1916 – A tree for Shakespeare. Archives item# Tr P24. Photographer: Frank Gowen.

Lees Trail Namesake: A.E. Lees, Park Commissioner 1902-1917
History: It took me a few minutes to find information about Andrew E. Lees but thanks to House Historian, James Johnstone, I came upon an incredibly interesting read about A.E.Lee’s old yellow house on Richards Street. Johnstone was hired to look up some history on the house before it was demolished to make room for a new development.

Photos from House Historian – James Johnstone

Here’s is just a snippet from Johnstone’s research that applies in this case: “Lees was Vancouver’s Parks Board Commissioner from 1902 to 1915… …During his tenure as Parks Board Commissioner, work commenced on both the Stanley Park Sea Wall and the Stanley Park Zoo. Lees lived at 909 Richards with his wife, Anna Elizabeth Lees, and their five children from 1890 to 1906.” [Source: House Historian]

Other trail names like Squirrel, Wren, South Creek, and even Bridle are pretty self-explanatory. Next time you’re in the park take a stroll down Lovers Walk, head up the Ravine Trail to the Beaver Lake Trail, or take the Raccoon Trail to the Meadow. You can take this handy PDF map along with you for guidance or plot your route on this interactive online map.

Concord Jersey Tuesday

Tuesday, April 10th, 2012 — 11:24am PDT
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Last Tuesday I launched a jersey contest series with Concord Social, an online community that engages Vancouverites and curates ideas in design, architecture, and technology. We had a fantastic response as hundreds shared how they will be watching the Vancouver team and cheering them on this season. Entries came from around BC, Canada, and the globe. We’re keeping the momentum going this week by giving away a #14 jersey.

A part of the Vancouver team 2005, #14 has become a fan favourite with his sharp wit, clutch goal scoring, and hockey with heart attitude. The team has named him “Most Exciting Player” in 2008, 2009 and 2010 and he currently sits on the team’s top line. Did you know he has also been inducted into the Canadian and International Ball Hockey Halls of Fame?

Here’s how you can enter to win and proudly wear number #14 on your back:

  • Leave a comment here naming who you think is the most exciting Vancouver player, past or present (1 entry)
  • Post the following on Twitter (1 entry)
RT to enter to win a hockey jersey from @Concord_Pacific & @Miss604 #ConcordJerseyTuesday

I will draw one winner next Tuesday that will be announced in the next Concord Jersey Tuesday contest post. Last week’s winner is Gary! Follow Concord Social on Twitter and Facebook for more information about their local and national developments.

Update The winner is @hannah_thud!

Top Ten Endangered Sites 2012: Heritage Vancouver Tour

Tuesday, April 10th, 2012 — 10:14am PDT
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Each year Heritage Vancouver lists their Top Ten Endangered Sites around the city. These are libraries, schools, motels, theatres, and other structures whose fate is uncertain or threatened. The 2012 list will be revealed exclusively during a bus tour next month.

Date: Saturday, May 5, 2012
Time: 1pm to 5pm (loading begins at 12:30pm and bus departs at 1pm sharp)
Location: Meet in the Vancouver Museum Parking Lot, 1100 Chestnut St.
Tickets: Available online for $30, Heritage Vancouver Members $25

Heritage Vancouver has been keeping a list of endangered sites since 2001. The 2012 list will be revealed to the public after the bus tours.

Top Ten Endangered Sites 2011

1. Vancouver Schools: Carleton (1896, 1908 to 1912)

Carleton Schoolhouse (1896)
Photo credit: Heritage Vancouver on Flickr

2. Vancouver Schools: Kitchener (1914 & 1924)

Demo - Kitchener Elementary School (1924)
Photo credit: Heritage Vancouver on Flickr

3. Vancouver Schools: Sexsmith (1912 & 1913)

4. Shannon Estate (1915 to 1925)

Shannon Estate (1915 to 1925)
Photo credit: Heritage Vancouver on Flickr

5. Strathcona North of Hastings

6. Gordon T. Legg Residence (1899) [updated]

Legg Residence (1899), South elevation
Photo credit: Heritage Vancouver on Flickr

7. Collingwood Library (1951)

8. Lower Mount Pleasant

9. Granville Street (1888 on)

10. 2400 Motel (1946)

2400 Court Motel
Photo credit: Arbron on Flickr

The first bus for the 2012 tour has sold out so they are currently filling up another. Get your tickets today to enjoy this informative guided tour in a Transit Museum Society (TRAMS) historic bus. Tour guides are Donald Luxton, well-known author and heritage expert and the President of Heritage Vancouver, and Anthony Norfolk, head of Heritage Vancouver‘s Advocacy Group.

Keep Vancouver Spectacular 2012

Monday, April 9th, 2012 — 2:00pm PDT
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Keep Vancouver Spectacular is an annual city-wide cleanup lead by community volunteers to help tidy up our streets and public spaces. From May 1st to May 30th you can organize or be a part of neighbourhood beautification efforts.

after the party
Photo credit: aloalo* on Flickr – Submitted to the Miss604 Flickr Pool.

From the City of Vancouver: “Last year, a record 18,500 volunteers in over 150 groups came together to fill thousands of bags with litter. Our clean streets and shorelines are among the reasons why Vancouver is one of the most livable cities in the world. We need your help to Keep Vancouver Spectacular.”

They are currently looking for block captains and volunteers to lead the charge this year. The City will provide teams with garbage bags, gloves, cleanup tools, and free pickup of litter and debris collected by volunteers.

The official kick-off event is April 28th from 9:00am to 12:00pm at John Oliver Secondary School and there will be a wrap-up event June 6th. You can also find out about year-round efforts including basics for busting litter.

Metro Vancouver Park Series: Royal Kwantlen Park

Monday, April 9th, 2012 — 12:56pm PDT
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It’s one of those days when, as a child, I would grab my bike from our garage and meet up with my neighbour on the corner where our two streets met. We’d spend the next few hours exploring the forest trails of a local park followed by laying out in the sun on a grassy hill speckled with dandelions. Condensation from Slurpee cups cooled our hands as we talked about our next adventure to another park or playground. It’s days like today that remind me how fortunate we are to have so many outstanding local parks and green spaces. As such, I’m adding a new entry to the Metro Vancouver Park Series: Royal Kwantlen Park.

park exploring

Surrey is formerly known at the City of Parks and Royal Kwantlen Park is one of the very first I ever explored as a child. Whether you’re a spectator at a soccer, softball, or baseball game, letting the kids enjoy the playground, or cooling off in the pool during the summer, there are beautiful mountain views to enjoy on a clear day.

How to Get There
The park is located at 13035 104th Ave with a parking lot on the corner of Old Yale Road and 104th (near the lacrosse box) and another parking lot off 106th Ave near the fields. Kwantlen Park Secondary is on the corner of 104th and 132nd, the park is just West of the school. You can take Highway 1, exiting onto 152nd and turning West onto 104th Avenue or turn onto 104th from King George or Scott Road to reach the park that is bordered by Old Yale, 106th, 132nd, and 104th.

Courtesy of

After talks with all parties involved, Surrey purchased the 40 acre reserve in 1954 for $40,000 from the Kwantlen First Nation. The municipality used a 10 acre strip on the east side to give the school board a new school site [KB Woodward — West Whalley Junior Secondary was then built in 1957]. After much planning, hard work and repeated requests, in 1959 Surrey decided to use the remaining portion of the former Kwantlen Reserve to create a park for Whalley.

There are remnants of an old wading pool at the top of the park’s highest hill and in the 1980s an adventure playground was installed along with a fitness circuit in the forest. In the late 90s the adventure playground was replaced with a more modern installation, a skate park was added on the south side and the tennis courts were expanded to accomodate a basketball court.

playground excitement trails johnnnnyyyyyyy


The park has a full playground, washrooms, two soccer fields, baseball diamonds, two all-weather (gravel) sports fields, tennis court, basketball court, skate park, lacrosse box, walking paths and forest trails. In the summer, I believe opening July 1st each year, there is a free outdoor pool on the south side, off 104 Ave. The forest is home to racoons and the occasional bunny, there is a patch of daffodils on the south side that pops up every spring, and the lacrosse box works just as well as a street-hockey venue.

Check out all 50 entries in my Metro Vancouver Park Series for fun, recreation, and local day trip ideas.

Vancouver Street Food Carts 2012

Monday, April 9th, 2012 — 8:49am PDT
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Last year the City of Vancouver approved and expanded street food selection that went beyond hot dogs and chestnuts to fish tacos, brisket, and fresh juice smoothies. As of May 1, 2012, twelve new vendors can now roll out becoming part of the fleet of 103 street food carts around downtown.


Food selections from Ukraine, El Salvador, Thailand and India will join the likes of Roaming Dragon, TacoFino, and Re-Up BBQ. The new trucks include:

French Stew and Sandwiches Ze Bite: North Side of W Cordova, East of Burrard
British Sandwiches Pig: Mid-Blog, West Side of 700 Howe St
El Salvadorian Guanaco Truck: East Side of Seymour, North of West Georgia
Seafood Kaboom Box: North Side of West Georgia, East of Thurlow
Seafood Feastro – The Rolling Bistro: South Side Canada Place Way, West of Thurlow
Chinese Le Tigre: North Side of Alberni, East of Bute
Thai Rimfoodbaht: East Side of Hamilton, North of Robson
Italian Slingers: East Side of Thurlow, North of West Hastings
Perogy Perodie Perogy: East Side of 700 Homer, Mid Block
Indian Soho Road Naan Kebab: South Side of 800 Smithe
Japanese Mogu: West Side of Howe St, North of Dunsmuir
Burgers The Burger Bus: North Side of Davie, East of Seymour

Once again, you can check out two mobile applications to find out where food trucks are located and if they’re open.

The Vancouver Street Vendor App:

Vancouver Street Food Vendor App Vancouver Street Food Vendor App Vancouver Street Food Vendor App Vancouver Street Food Vendor App

The Eat St. App for iPhone & Android:

Eat St iPhone App Eat St iPhone App Eat St iPhone App Eat St iPhone App

About 15 street food carts will be added per year, for the next two years. The City of Vancouver will also be conducting a pilot project to see how well food carts do in public parks. Finalists who applied to the street food cart program and were not selected can apply for the stationary food cart pilot program in Stanley Park, Queen Elizabeth Park, and Vanier Park.