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British Columbia

Shoreside Bites

By TIM PAWSEY

(Front) Sexy Salad: crispy oysters, avocado, root vegetable chips and preserved lemon. (Back) Braised lamb shoulder. (Photo: KK Law)

(Front) Sexy Salad: crispy oysters, avocado, root vegetable chips and preserved lemon. (Back) Braised lamb shoulder. (Photo: KK Law)

Perched right on the promenade, small-plates specialist Ten Ten Tapas turns out a wide variety of tasty plates to share while you gaze at your dream yacht moored close by. Flavours are vibrant and dishes inventive, such as seared albacore tuna tacos with tropical fruit and ponzu ginger emulsion; butter chicken with peas, paneer and naan bread; and generous Dungeness crab cakes with lemon garlic aioli. Inside or out on the patio, all day until late night, the service is laid-back and friendly, with plentiful cocktails and wines that make for perfect lingering.

For more by Tim Pawsey, visit hiredbelly.com

Talk Like a Pirate Day

By SHERI RADFORD

Bring home your pirate-themed booty in a tote bag from Make

Bring home your pirate-themed booty in a tote bag from Make

No need to walk the plank: landlubbers and salty dogs alike take part in International Talk Like a Pirate Day, which happens every year on Sep. 19. And there’s a treasure trove of pirate-themed fun in Vancouver.

Brush up on your facts with I Wonder Why Pirates Wore Earrings by Pat Jacobs and Wow! Surprising Facts About Pirates by Philip Steele (at local bookstores). Put your new knowledge to use composing a sonnet or haiku with a Pirate Magnetic Poetry Kit—though perhaps a ribald sea shanty would be more apropos. Discover all sorts of nautical lore at the Vancouver Maritime Museum, and if swashbuckling swordplay is more your thing, visit Academie Duello to learn how to use a rapier, longsword and more.

Look the part in a skull t-shirt by Strellson (at The Bay), an anchor ring handmade by Vancouver company Lacar (at Cavalier) and an anchor pendant from Thomas Sabo. Deck out your abode with an anchor doormat from Kikkerland and a Jolly Roger from The Flag Shop. Carry your buccaneer booty home in a tote bag from Make.

Dress pint-sized pirates in super-soft clothes from Pineapple Pete Kids

Dress pint-sized pirates in super-soft clothes from Pineapple Pete Kids

Dress a pint-sized pirate in an adorable shirt made from ultra-soft bamboo/cotton by local company Pineapple Pete Kids and a Disney’s Jake and the Never Land Pirates watch by Flik Flak (at Swatch The Store). Then keep the rapscallions and scallywags busy with Pirate Adventure Dice (at www.amazon.ca), a sailing trip around False Creek with Pirate Adventures or a visit to the Gulf of Georgia Cannery, which on Sep. 19 features a pirate-themed scavenger hunt with the grand prize of a chocolate treasure chest. Also popular with the 10-and-under crowd is a Pirate Pak meal from White Spot, served in a cardboard boat.

Pillaging and plundering are hard work, so bring your appetite to the Burrard Bridge Marine Bar & Grill. Known as Vancouver’s pirate pub, this charming eatery goes overboard for International Talk Like a Pirate Day, with themed contests, drink specials, swag, trivia and a photo booth, plus a prize for the best-dressed pirate.

Trade in the usual grog for Crystal Head Vodka

Trade in the usual grog for Crystal Head Vodka

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum! If no grog is handy to wash down your rations, try some Crystal Head Vodka. Manufactured in Canada, this additive-free spirit was created by actor Dan Aykroyd and artist John Alexander, who designed the distinctive skull bottle (at local liquor stores).

Shiver me timbers, if only this day came around more than once a year!

Decked-Out Decor

By KRISTEN MORAN

Dine amongst beautiful decor, and all for a good cause

Dine amongst beautiful decor, and all for a good cause

September 21 and 22

Dining at lavish, whimsical tablescapes and sipping elegant cocktails while supporting a good cause? Monogram Dinner by Design really sets the bar high for an unforgettable culinary experience. The event sees 15 interior designers transform small spaces into inventive dining rooms, in themes ranging from ultra-chic to fanciful, creating a feast for the eyes. Come to the Cocktail Art evening (Sep. 21) for mingling, drinks and live entertainment, or opt for the Gala Dinner (Sep. 22) to enjoy a delectable meal at one of the extraordinary tables, with proceeds going to the Dr. Peter AIDS Foundation.

Spirit Wrestler’s Cool Carvings

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

"Once a Warrior" by by Rex Homan. (Photo: Kenji Nagai/Spirit Wrestler Gallery)

“Once a Warrior” by Rex Homan. (Photo: Kenji Nagai/Spirit Wrestler Gallery)

September 20 to October 11

Fifteen years and three acclaimed artists add up to one remarkable exhibition. Spirit Wrestler’s Wero: Pacific Challenge celebrates the gallery’s quindecennial as a leading venue of Maori art. The exhibit highlights wood and jade carvings by three renowned sculptors, including “Once A Warrior” (pictured) by Rex Homan. Like the Northwest Coast First Nations, aboriginals of New Zealand share a proficiency for carving, often using the works to share legends and cultural history. Fantastically detailed and always stunning, these pieces from across the Pacific are certain to inspire. Here’s to the next 15 years.

Take a Hike

By SHERI RADFORD

Trails abound throughout the Lower Mainland, everything from easy strolls to near-vertical feats of endurance. Local stores can outfit you with everything you need to tackle any terrain

The Crush Scoop from Icebreaker

The Crush Scoop from Icebreaker may be the perfect layering piece

The Crush Scoop from Icebreaker combines style with practicality and comfort in a soft, lightweight wool top that looks great on its own or layered. Bonus: it resists odours for days and dries quickly after washing—just like all of the company’s other merino wool garments.

Tackle trails in Helly Hansen's Odin Flow Hiker HT

Tackle trails in Helly Hansen’s Odin Flow Hiker HT

Put your best foot forward in Helly Hansen’s new Odin Flow Hiker HT, which blends cushioning, comfort and stability in an attractive technical boot. Waterproof yet breathable, this boot offers unprecedented temperature control thanks to the clever H2Flow technology.

The Nikka shorts from Fjällräven

Keep comfortable and confident in the Nikka shorts from Fjällräven

Form or function? There’s no need to choose with the attractive yet durable Nikka shorts from Fjällräven. Reinforced in all the right places, with well-placed pockets and a bit of stretch where it’s needed most, these technical shorts were designed for trekking and climbing.

Keep essentials close at hand with the Talon 6 from Osprey

Keep essentials close at hand with the Talon 6 from Osprey

Lighten up: carry your day-hiking or trail-running essentials—and nothing extra to weigh you down—in the Talon 6 from Osprey. This technical lumbar pack also includes two BPA-free water bottles, making hydration easy-peasy. Available at Atmosphere.

Choose your next trekking destination with Easy Hiking Around Vancouver

Choose your next trekking destination with Easy Hiking Around Vancouver

Both casual hikers and intrepid outdoor adventurers turn to Easy Hiking Around Vancouver, 7th Edition by Jean Cousins to discover picturesque new places to explore. Most of the 68 hikes described are located within an hour’s drive of the city. At local bookstores.

This pocket companion makes it easy for women to answer the call of nature

This pocket companion makes it easy for women to answer the call of nature

Gotta go? In the great outdoors, it’s awkward for women to answer the call of nature. Fortunately, the Pee Pocket can save the day. Small enough to stow in a pocket, this single-use, disposable funnel allows women to stand up to go. Purchase online at www.the peepocket.com.

Pleasantly Pubby

By TIM PAWSEY

Pork pie accompanied by  a pint of Guinness. (Photo: KK Law)

Pork pie accompanied by a pint of Guinness. (Photo: KK Law)

Pop by the West End’s Fat Badger and you’ll find more than a hint of what’s helped to put the UK back on the dining map. Chef and co-owner Neil Taylor hails from Berkshire, which bestows full licence for “serious” pub food with a local twist in a conversation-friendly, TV-free setting. Recent favourites include whisky-cured salmon, pork belly and terrine. But don’t miss the Scotch eggs; the trio of Yorkshire puddings with roast beef, gravy and horseradish; the sinfully good sticky toffee pudding—or the parade of appropriate taps, from Smithwick’s to Guinness to Kilkenny and more.

For more by Tim Pawsey, visit hiredbelly.com

Happy Feet: Scotiabank Dance Centre Open House

By SHERI RADFORD

Kinesis Dance. (Photo: Chris Randle)

Kinesis Dance. (Photo: Chris Randle)

Were you born to boogie? Made to mambo? Compelled to calypso? Then head to the Scotiabank Dance Centre Open House on Sep. 13. Each year, this free day of workshops and open classes satisfies budding ballerinas and modern dancers alike.

Fall Beauty Favourites

By SHERI RADFORD

Féline Eyeshadow Quartet by Lise Watier

Féline Eyeshadow Quartet by Lise Watier

As the days get shorter and the nights grow longer, the minimalist beauty regime of summer shifts into the bolder, more polished looks of autumn. Lise Watier’s Féline Eyeshadow Quartet features four ultra-pigmented colours (champagne, luminous taupe, lace pink, coppery brown) in a cream powder formula that delivers impressive staying power, keeping eyes looking enticingly exotic until well into the evening.

NARS's Audacious Lipsticks in Geraldine

NARS’s Audacious Lipsticks in Geraldine

NARS’s Audacious Lipsticks, launched for the company’s 20th anniversary, deliver intense colour while locking in moisture and making lips look fuller; François Nars named the 30 pigment-rich shades after women who have influenced him throughout his career, including Raquel, Greta, Grace and Brigitte. Philosophy’s No Reason to Hide is an all-in-one transforming serum that treats everything from acne marks, dark spots, and redness to blotchiness, rough texture, and darkened and enlarged pores.

Correct eyeliner errors with the Prestige Makeup Eraser Pen

Correct eyeliner errors with the Prestige Makeup Eraser Pen

In case of a beauty mishap, the Prestige Makeup Eraser Pen saves the day, easily correcting eyeliner errors and mascara mistakes. Find the eyeshadow and makeup eraser pen at London Drugs, and the lipstick and transforming serum at Sephora or The Bay.

Rocket Man

By KRISTEN MORAN

(Photo: Rebecca Taylor)

(Photo: Rebecca Taylor)

After five decades of chart-topping hits and unforgettable performances, the Rocket Man has still got it. Don’t miss the chance to see Elton John light up the night at Rogers Arena, in back-to-back performances Sept. 13 and 14 that are guaranteed to evoke feelings of nostalgia and have you swaying to the sounds of his timeless classics. Grab your best dance partner and get ready to rock the night away.

Blacktail Florist’s Elevated Plates

By TIM PAWSEY

Salad of spring vegetables and mushrooms. (Photo: KK Law)

Salad of spring vegetables and mushrooms. (Photo: KK Law)

Up a few stairs off Gastown’s Water Street, Blacktail Florist, a casual but polished haunt, brims with local taste and creativity. Myriad choices may roam from Humboldt squid with rhubarb and celery slaw, to wild mushroom poutine, to roasted duck breast with sunchoke, onions and watercress. A well-chosen wine list of BC’s top drops makes for perfect—and still very regional—pairings.

For more by Tim Pawsey, visit hiredbelly.com

Pop Star Katy Perry

By SHERI RADFORD

Pop superstar Katy Perry

American pop superstar Katy Perry

She’s sung about kissing a girl and unforgettable “California gurls.” She isn’t afraid to colour her hair pink or purple and dress up in a gown shaped like a carousel or Christmas tree. And she had a highly publicized—if brief—marriage to comedian Russell Brand. Katy Perry definitely knows how to attract attention, and this time it’s for her tour in support of her newest release, Prism. Don’t miss her over-the-top shows Sep. 9 and 10 at Rogers Arena.

Jann Arden: Songs and Stories

By SHERI RADFORD

Canadian singer-songwriter Jann Arden

Canadian singer-songwriter Jann Arden

September 6

“Will You Remember Me.” “I Would Die for You.” “Insensitive.” “Unloved.” Though Jann Arden is best known for her heartbreaking ballads overflowing with angst, the Canadian singer-songwriter sparkles in her live shows, telling frank, funny stories and just generally charming the audience. Find out for yourself why she’s been a local favourite for more than two decades when her cross-country tour hits the Orpheum Theatre this month.