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Events Vancouver

Spirited Sips

By TIM PAWSEY

Bring a friend or make new ones at the BC Distilled Festival

Bring a friend or make new ones at the BC Distilled Festival

The BC Distilled Festival (Apr. 8) is a testament to this town’s torrid love affair with craft distilleries, which continue to blossom across the province at a rate faster than anywhere else in Canada. At least 34 BC distilleries are on hand to sample everything from premium gin and vodka to BC’s first single malt artisanal whisky, at the Croatian Cultural Centre, a short walk from the Broadway SkyTrain. Not here on festival day? No worries, you can sample at several notable spots. They include Long Table Distillery, a tiny, intimate tasting room close to downtown; Liberty Distillery on Granville Island, offering tours plus tastings at a Prohibition-era wooden bar; Central City, a state-of-the-art distillery and brewery in Surrey; and Odd Society Spirits’ esoteric, well-crafted sips plus a cocktail lounge on the East Side in a reclaimed dockland warehouse.

Easter Egg-stravaganza

By SPENCER VAN VLOTEN

Easter treasures await. (Photo: AbsolutImages /iStockPhoto.com)

Easter treasures await. (Photo: AbsolutImages/iStockPhoto.com)

Easter is a time for family, bunnies, eats and adventures. Enjoy them all and have a good hare day with these fun holiday happenings.

Easter at Lonsdale Quay Kids earn a sweet treat bag by finding all five colours of eggs scattered across Lonsdale Quay Market (Apr. 16), then the Easter Bunny himself drops in for a visit. (more…)

A Song of Ice and Fire

By SHERI RADFORD

A concert as epic as its namesake.

A concert as epic as its namesake.

Apr 1 While you’re (still) waiting for the next book and TV season, immerse yourself in the GoT world at the Game of Thrones Live Concert Experience, complete with 3D designs that rise from the stage and an 80-piece orchestra conducted by the show’s composer, Ramin Djawadi. After all, winter is coming.

Dance Dance Fever

By SHERI RADFORD

San Francisco's Alonzo King LINES Ballet.

San Francisco’s Alonzo King LINES Ballet.

Newbies and aficionados alike always find much to love at the Vancouver International Dance Festival (Mar. 1 to 25). The 17th annual fest brings to local stages everything from ballet to butoh. Don’t miss Dairakudakan, Japan’s otherworldly ensemble; the visionary choreography of San Francisco’s Alonzo King LINES Ballet (pictured); and Post No Bills, a solo piece by Denmark’s Kitt Johnson that explores the transformative power of crisis.

Made For Each Other

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Postmark Blonde and Sevens IPA await the action.

Postmark Blonde and Sevens IPA await the action.

Beer and rugby—it’s a match made in sporting heaven. Especially when it’s a local brew, crafted to team up with the fast-paced HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series that takes the city by storm Mar. 11 and 12. The limited-edition Sevens IPA from Postmark Brewing can be found throughout the province, including at BC Place, the action-packed epicentre. The accessible IPA takes a balanced approach to hops, so it’s as easy to drink as the Rugby Sevens are exciting to watch. Sounds like the perfect pairing.

Get in the Action

By CHLOË LAI

Players run onto the field in a blaze of glory.

Players run onto the field in a blaze of glory.

Unleash your inner adrenaline junkie: the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series (Mar. 11 and 12) crams all the action of a standard 80-minute game into two seven-minute halves. This worldwide tournament throws down a game so fast-paced that you might forget to breathe. Diehard fans and newbies alike are encouraged to join the game-day chaos by donning their most outrageous costumes. And with more than half of Team Canada hailing from BC, there’s plenty to cheer about.

Breaking Boundaries

By SPENCER VAN VLOTEN

Aaron Davidman in Wrestling Jerusalem

Aaron Davidman in Wrestling Jerusalem

The Chutzpah! Festival (to Mar. 13) is back for another year of culturally diverse, boundary-pushing music, dance, comedy and theatre. This year’s fest includes performances from Abraham.In.Motion, who deliver a mixed repertoire of Kyle Abraham’s socially conscious hip-hop, jazz and African dance fusions. On the theatre front, Aaron Davidman grapples with identity, justice and history in his solo show Wrestling Jerusalem (pictured). And for those after something on the lighter side, Mark Schiff, one of Jerry Seinfeld’s favourite funnymen, has all the laughs you need.

The Great Indoors

The weather outside is sometimes frightful, but the indoor activities are always delightful

By SHERI RADFORD

Take in spectacular views of Canada Place, skyscrapers, Stanley Park, the North Shore mountains and the Pacific Ocean from the Vancouver Lookout's observation deck, 169 m (553 ft) above the city. (Photo: KK Law)

Take in spectacular views of Canada Place, skyscrapers, Stanley Park, the North Shore mountains and the Pacific Ocean from the Vancouver Lookout’s observation deck, 169 m (553 ft) above the city. (Photo: KK Law)

1. Get an unparalleled 360-degree view of the city from the Vancouver Lookout.

2. Learn about balloons, bubbles, bodies, beavers, bears, butterflies, bugs and a whole lot more at Science World.

3. Paint your face blue and green and cheer for the home team at a Vancouver Canucks hockey game in Rogers Arena. Or do up your face in blue and white and root for the Vancouver Whitecaps at a soccer game in BC Place. (more…)

Cavalia: Odysseo Rides Into Vancouver

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Cavalia: Odysseo

A stunt-rider at Cavalia: Odysseo

Cavalia: Odysseo gallops into the big white top in False Creek, bringing 65 horses and 48 riders, acrobats, aerialists and musicians along for the ride. The show is making a big splash with viewers—and we’re not just talking about the grand finale, when the stage is flooded with 150,000 litres (40,000 gallons) of water. (more…)

24 Hours of Action at Grouse Mountain

By SPENCER VAN VLOTEN

Speed down the mountain while the stars come out. (Photo: Lijuan Guo/Dreamstime)

Speed down the mountain while the stars come out. (Photo: Lijuan Guo/Dreamstime)

Hit the slopes at sunrise and keep shredding through the night. On Feb. 11, Grouse Mountain is open around the clock for 24 Hours of Winter. Snow junkies can enjoy a full day of all their favourite alpine action, including skiing, snowboarding and mountaintop ice skating, while live music, games and giveaways provide plenty of fun between runs. Whatever your sport, make sure you don’t stop till you get enough!

Glorious Gluttony at Dine Out Vancouver

By TIM PAWSEY

Some of Vancouver's top food trucks are part of the Dine Out Festival.

Some of the city’s top food trucks are part of Dine Out

Jan 20-Feb 5 In this city’s dining scene, the start of the new year means one thing: Dine Out! Over the last 15 years, the 17-day Dine Out Vancouver Festival has turned into Canada’s biggest celebration of food and drink, and for good reason. With a wealth of special events, tours, tastings and, above all, dinner deals, this all-things-comestible festival adds up to one enormous celebration of Vancouver’s blossoming dining culture. Every year the number of restaurants offering set menus grows, with three-course dinners offered at $20, $30 and $40, as well as some lunches. Many include optional wine pairings, yielding a chance to discover BC VQA wines.

For more by Tim Pawsey, visit hiredbelly.com

Gung Hay Fat Choy!

By SPENCER VAN VLOTEN

Aberdeen Centre boasts activities galore for Chinese New Year

Aberdeen Centre boasts activities galore for Chinese New Year

The Year of the Rooster arrives on Jan. 28, and from the fiery to the tranquil, Chinese New Year festivities abound across the region. The annual Chinese New Year Parade fills the streets of Chinatown with lively lion dances and martial arts performances, while LunarFest’s cultural exhibitions, games and craft-making lessons are at Oakridge Centre from Jan. 17 to Feb. 5. In Richmond, a huge selection of festive goodies and beautiful flowers are on offer at Aberdeen Centre’s Chinese New Year Flower & Gift Fair, while the International Buddhist Temple’s restful New Year’s Eve celebrations are a great option for those seeking something Zen.