Last summer, Yelp and the Waldorf Hotel hosted the first-ever Vancouver Food Cart Fest, which attracted about 5,000 people. Now that the Waldorf Hotel has changed management, the Food Cart Fest has new organizers--Arrival Agency--and a new location: 215 West 1st Avenue (between the Cambie Street Bridge and the Olympic Village).
The Vancouver Food Cart Fest features 24 top Vancouver food carts--including Vij's Railway Express and Holy Perogy--plus community markets, DJs, and kids' activities. Admission is $2 per person, free for kids 13 and under.
The Food Cart Fest runs every Sunday from 12pm to 6pm, June 23 - September 22, 2013.
Image Courtesy of Food Cart Fest / Arrival Agency
Don't forget to celebrate Dad this Sunday, June 16: Top 10 Things to Do for Father's Day in Vancouver.
- Bard on the Beach
It's the first weekend for Vancouver's favourite Shakespeare festival, Bard on the Beach. This summer's plays include Twelfth Night and Hamlet. Runs through Saturday, September 14.
- Vancouver Draw Down
The annual Vancouver Draw Down gets everyone drawing, regardless of age or skill level. During the Draw Down, 18 different arts and cultural organizations across Vancouver will host a total of 35 diverse, hands-on drawing workshops; go to one or try to go to as many as you can. Happens Saturday, June 15.
- Car-Free Community Festivals
Since 2005's first Car-Free Festival and street party (on Commercial Drive) was such a success, Vancouver now hosts four community Car-Free Festivals--free street parties with fun for the whole family--on the Drive, Main Street, in the West End and in Kits. Happens Sunday, June 16.
When my uncle, a major beer connoisseur, visited me in Vancouver for the first time, I took him to St. Augustine's for their Sample Paddle (four half-glasses of different beers, perfect for newcomers who want to try a variety of local beers) and I couldn't get him to leave. Every night (and one afternoon) of his three-day visit was spent at St. Augustine's; he didn't just love the beer, he loved talking about the beer to the incredibly well-educated bartenders and waitstaff. I had to pry him out of there to make his flight home.
Vancouver's craft beer industry is flourishing, and the best Vancouver beer pubs and taprooms offer extensive menus featuring a wide range of local and craft beers. If you're thinking of taking Dad out for beers this Father's Day (it's one of the Top 10 Things to Do for Father's Day in Vancouver), use my new Guide to the Best Vancouver Beer Pubs & Taprooms to plan your trip!
Share your picks for Vancouver's Best Beer Pubs & Taproooms here.
Image Courtesy of Tap & Barrel
Father's Day is Sunday, June 16, and there are lots of ways to celebrate Dad in Vancouver, from special Vancouver events and activities to gift ideas tailor-made for Vancouver Dads.
- Top 10 Things to Do for Father's Day in Vancouver
- Father's Day Gifts for Vancouver Dads
- Unique Vancouver Gift Ideas
Photo © Muhannad Fala'ah / Getty Images
You can spend all weekend at free, outdoor cultural festivals with Downtown Bhangra and Italian Day on the Drive!
The annual City of Bhangra Festival reaches its climax this weekend with a free, two-day extravaganza at the Vancouver Art Gallery Plaza, which includes "hundreds of dancers," live music, and more. Runs Friday, June 7 - Saturday, June 8.
Vancouver Craft Beer Week
Vancouver's popular Craft Beer Week ends this Saturday, June 8.
Italian Day on Commercial Drive
The Drive celebrates its "Little Italy" heritage with a day of free festivities, including food, live music, sports, kids' activities and more. Happens Sunday, June 9.
A few years ago, I took a friend to the Trout Lake Farmers Market. Even though she grew up in Metro Vancouver and lived in Yaletown for years, that was her first time at Trout Lake! (I remember her saying, "There are so many kids here!") I lived in Vancouver for six years before my first visit to Lynn Canyon Park.
The point is: Even longtime locals don't get out to the best Vancouver parks as often as they'd like. Our lives are busy, and many people stay close to their neighbourhoods (if you live on the west side, you probably don't get to Trout Lake often; if you live in East Van, it may have been years since you actually spent a full day at Stanley Park.) But there's an upside to that scenario: When you do visit one of Vancouver's great parks--for the first time or for the first time in years--it's like a mini vacation; it becomes an "event" and a special way to spend time with family and friends.
Take advantage of the great summer weather and plan a Saturday at one of the best parks in Vancouver. Get all the info you need to plan your trip here: Guide to the Top 5 Vancouver Parks. Maybe you'll see something you've never seen before, and you won't have to spend any money: all these parks are free!
Image Courtesy of Lynn Canyon Park
When you think of Vancouver farmers markets, you likely think of the consortium of markets run by the eponymous Vancouver Farmers Markets (e.g., the Trout Lake Farmers Market, the West End Farmers Market), but there are even more options for shopping local in the summer, including the Granville Island Farmers Market and the "luxury" Shangri-La Farmers Market in downtown Vancouver.
Opening for summer 2013 on June 6, the Granville Island Farmers Market is the oldest farmers market in Vancouver. Featuring loads of fresh produce and flowers, the Granville Island Farmers Market takes place in Triangle Square (between the Net Loft shops and the Public Market), 9 am to 3 pm, every Thursday, June to October. It probably gets less press because it's so close to the Public Market, which sells a lot of local products year-round.
For those who like their farmers markets to be as upscale as possible, the Shangri-La Farmers Market runs every other Sunday (twice monthly) through Sunday, September 22. (The next Shangri-La Farmers Market is on June 16.) Held in the plaza between the Shangri-La Hotel and Urban Fare, this market specializes in gourmet, local prepared foods.
For info on all local farmers markets: Guide to Vancouver Farmers Markets.
Image Courtesy of granvilleisland.com
Chinatown Night Market 'Grand Opening', International Children's Festival & Craft Beer Week - Weekend Picks
There are events for all ages this weekend!
- Chinatown Night Market Grand Opening
The "soft" opening of the newly re-vamped Chinatown Night Market happened a few weeks ago, but this Friday is the "Grand Opening," a full celebration of all the changes: food trucks, artisan stalls, ping pong and more. Grand Opening happens Friday, June 1.
- Vancouver International Children's Festival
A world-renowned festival of performing arts for young audiences, the Vancouver International Children's Festival on Granville Island has been educating, entertaining and inspiring young audiences since 1978. The festival features music, theatre, dance, storytelling, puppetry, circus acts, and more. Ends Saturday, June 2.
- Vancouver Craft Beer Week
Vancouver's popular Craft Beer Week is back for 2013 with 60 breweries, over 30 venues, and more beer events than you can imagine. Runs through Saturday, June 8.
Summer in Vancouver is packed with free things to do, and June gets the party started with free cultural festivals, music festivals, dancing, and tons of fun for all ages!
10 Free Things to Do in Vancouver in June 2013
- Check out the major changes at the newly re-imagined Vancouver Chinatown Night Market (food trucks, artisan stalls, ping pong and more) at its Grand Opening, Friday, June 1.
- Celebrate all things Italian at Italian Day on Commercial Drive, Sunday, June 9.
- Practice your artistic skills at the Vancouver Draw Down arts fest, Saturday, June 15.
- Take back the streets at the annual Car-Free Community Festivals, Sunday June 16.
- Dance through Gastown at the Make Music Vancouver festival, Friday, June 21.
- Watch the Dragon Boat races at the 25th anniversary Rio Tinto Alcan Dragon Boat Festival, Saturday, June 22 - Sunday, June 23.
- Enjoy outdoor concerts at the Vancouver International Jazz Festival's kick-off Downtown Jazz Weekend, Saturday, June 22 - Sunday, June 23.
- Party like the Greeks on W Broadway for Greek Day 2013, Sunday, June 23.
- Learn a new ballroom dance every Friday night with Free Ballroom Dancing in Robson Square, June 28 - August 30.
- Salsa at Sunday Afternoon Salsa in Robson Square, every Sunday, June 30 - August 25.
Image Courtesy of Coastal Jazz
June is almost here, which means the official season of Vancouver Water Parks is almost here, too!
Families with young kids already know to head to the free Granville Island Water Park and Variety Kids Spray Park in Stanley Park when the weather is warm enough and the young kids need to run around and get soaking wet, but did you know that we're also within driving distance of two giant water parks for all ages?
Splashdown Park in Tsawwassen is just 45-minutes south of downtown Vancouver and is packed with water slides for all ages (it also has separate children's slides and kids' areas, so it's great for multi-generational parties). There's also Citrus Lake Water Park near Chilliwack, about an hour-and-a-half from downtown Vancouver. Both parks open for summer season 2013 on June 1.
For all the details, check out my new Guide to Vancouver Water Parks.
Have an opinion on Vancouver Water Parks? Please share in the comments!
Image Courtesy of Splashdown Waterparks Inc