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Events Vancouver

Vancouver Queer Film Festival

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Documentary In the Turn

Documentary In the Turn

Inspiring, reflective and just plain fabulous, the Vancouver Queer Film Festival takes over city theatres Aug. 13 to 23. Western Canada’s largest queer event, and Vancouver’s second-largest film festival, fêtes its 27th year with performances, panels, workshops and, of course, captivating cinema. From animated to experimental, the over 80 movies from 20 countries have one thing in common: LGBTQ folks are firmly in the spotlight. Catch all the action, including documentary In the Turn (pictured).

Game On!

Summer is an ideal time to check out spectator sports in Vancouver

By LUCAS AYKROYD

(Photo: KK Law)

On clear days, the roof of BC Place Stadium is opened up to let the sun shine in. (Photo: KK Law)

When you think about going to “the big game” in Vancouver, you likely think about NHL hockey. However, there’s more to this city’s spectator sports scene than Canada’s national winter sport. While the Vancouver Canucks are still in off-season training for another run at the Stanley Cup, you can enjoy exciting summer events, including soccer, football, baseball, horse racing and tennis. (more…)

Jon Bon Jovi in Stanley Park

By SHERI RADFORD

See Jon Bon Jovi and The Kings of Suburbia in picturesque Stanley Park

See Jon Bon Jovi and The Kings of Suburbia in picturesque Stanley Park

When you think of Stanley Park, you naturally think of totem poles, towering trees, ocean views—and rocking out with Jon Bon Jovi. On Aug. 22, the legendary rock star and his personal band, The Kings of Suburbia, take over the park’s Brockton Field for an outdoor concert filled with old favourites such as “Livin’ on a Prayer” and “You Give Love a Bad Name,” plus hits by some of Bon Jovi’s favourite musicians. Don’t miss this opportunity to see the rocker up close in one of Vancouver’s most stunning settings.

Squamish Valley Music Festival

By SHERI RADFORD

Canadian rapper Drake

Canadian rapper Drake

Once again, summer’s hottest ticket is for the Squamish Valley Music Festival (Aug. 7 to 9). The stellar line-up features headliners Sam Smith, Mumford & Sons, and Canada’s own Drake (pictured), plus a whole host of other acts: Of Monsters and Men, Alabama Shakes, Brandon Flowers, Kaskade and more. It’s three days of fun in the sun against a stunning natural backdrop.

“Weird Al” Yankovic at Queen Elizabeth Theatre

By SHERI RADFORD

(Photo: Robert Trachtenberg)

“Weird Al” Yankovic. (Photo: Robert Trachtenberg)

You might know him only from ’80s parody songs such as “Eat It” and “Like a Surgeon,” but the self-proclaimed weirdest man in pop music is still going strong three decades later. His recent hits include “Word Crimes” (which spoofs Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines”) and “Tacky” (which parodies Pharrell Williams’ “Happy”). Catch “Weird Al” Yankovic Sep. 8 at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre.

Wanderlust Festival

By SHERI RADFORD

Wanderlust Festival. (Photo: Jon Chiang/Wanderlust Festival)

Wanderlust Festival. (Photo: Jon Chiang/Wanderlust Festival)

The West Coast is known as a mecca for Zen-seekers who also like to work up a sweat. Each summer, Wanderlust (Jul. 30 to Aug. 3) takes over Whistler for five jam-packed days of yoga and meditation classes, guided hikes and runs, inspiring lectures, live music and superb local food. To get into the spirit ahead of time, pick up a copy of Wanderlust: A Modern Yogi’s Guide to Discovering Your Best Self (Rodale Books; $28.99) at local bookstores. Written by Jeff Krasno, co-founder of Wanderlust, the book overflows with ideas, recipes, writing prompts and exercises, all aimed at guiding the reader toward mindful living, creativity and enlightenment. Feeling inspired yet?

Vancouver Folk Music Festival

By SHERI RADFORD

Gorgeous views from the Vancouver Folk Music Festival. (Photo:  Joe Perez)

Gorgeous views from the Vancouver Folk Music Festival. (Photo: Joe Perez)

Said the Whale. Hawksley Workman. Blind Pilot. Adam Cohen. Phosphorescent. Taj Mahal. That’s just a small sample of the bands scheduled to perform at the 38th annual Vancouver Folk Music Festival (Jul. 17 to 19). Every year, this seaside fest takes over Jericho Beach Park for three days of fun in the sun, attracting 40,000 folks who want to shop at the artisan market, eat mouth-watering food from around the world and, most of all, hear great music.

Pemberton Music Festival

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

The Black Keys

The Black Keys

From Jul. 16 to 19, the mountains of Pemberton are alive with the sound of music. Simply swap out Julie Andrews’ warbling notes with lively hip-hop from Kendrick Lamar and Missy Elliott, blues-infused rock from The Black Keys and cheeky alt-rock from Weezer. With the scenic Mt. Currie as backdrop, the four-day Pemberton Music Festival features five stages with over 80 acts that range from crooners to comedians. It’s an event worth adding to your list of favourite things.

O2X: Rise Higher

By SHERI RADFORD

Participants test their limits in the O2X race

Participants test their limits in the O2X race

In an adventure race on a mountain, it’s impossible to improve upon Mother Nature’s challenges. What O2X (Jul. 11) does is craft a course that starts at the base and goes all the way to the peak, using only natural obstacles: riverbeds, ravines, rockfaces and, of course, elevation gain. The race has already been a success in Vermont, Maine, New Hampshire and New York, and now it’s coming to Grouse Mountain, attracting everyone from occasional exercisers to hardcore CrossFitters—anyone who wants to push themselves out of their comfort zone. The race ends the way all good events should: on a mountaintop, with live music, local food and copious amounts of beer.

50 Things We Love About Kitsilano

By SHERI RADFORD

Kids can't resist the allure of Kids Beach. (Photo: KK Law)

Kids can’t resist the allure of Kids Beach. (Photo: KK Law)

1. The elegant, art deco–style Burrard Bridge, which marks the eastern boundary of the Kitsilano area. The region is also bounded by the ocean on the north, Alma Street on the west, and 16th Avenue on the south. (more…)

TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival

By SHERI RADFORD

Buddy Guy

Performer Buddy Guy

Summer comes a few days early this year, as the TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival kicks off Jun. 18, enveloping the city with cool tunes and hot shows. The hottest tickets? Buddy Guy (pictured; Jun. 19), Erykah Badu (Jun. 23), Pink Martini (Jun. 27) and The Roots (Jun. 30). And because all good things must come to an end, the fest wraps up on Canada Day (Jul. 1).

6th Annual Vancouver Draw Down

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Budding artists at the Vancouver Draw Down

Budding artists at the Vancouver Draw Down

Delighted by design? Enchanted by illustration? Then make your mark at the 6th annual Vancouver Draw Down (Jun. 20), a day-long celebration of creativity. Sketch and scribble at over 30 free hands-on workshops found in art galleries, museums, community centres, parks and more. Plus, keeners prime their skills to Jun. 19 with the online daily drawing challenge. So go ahead: dare to doodle.