Archive for July, 2006

Pride Week, Homopalooza, Wet Spots

Vancouver Pride and Joy logo
Vancouver Pride and Joy logo

Tomorrow is the start of the nine-day Vancouver Pride Week, which runs from Saturday 29 July to Sunday 6 August. There are a ton of events on, which are on a pocket guide calendar of events–I won’t go reciting them all here. Some have already started. The well-known Pride Parade is on the last of these days, closing off the festival period.

The big opening of the week, though, is a first-time event, Homopalooza at the Plaza of Nations in False Creek. It’s a combination of giant beer garden, sex expo, and musical performances. Presumably, the usual gang of food vendors will be there too (the collection that seem to be the same at every festival–lemonade, pitas, Thai food, mini-doughnuts, etc.), plus the standard souvenir stand with t-shirts, hats, and other stuff. More unusual, and not seen at most other events, will be the tattoo artists, the piercers, and the dungeon area.

The beer garden and even the “Erotic Tent City” I don’t have much to say about. It’s the headline musical act that I want to highlight. You may know The Wet Spots as an Internet meme.

Sand Sculptures at Metrotown 2

Metrotown Sand Sculptures, 26 July 2006
Metrotown Sand Sculptures, 26 July 2006

Just a photo update to a previous entry about sand sculptures at Metrotown. The sand sculptures are more than two-thirds complete and are already impressive. There’s a lot of fine detail in the carving visible when you get up close.

Will try to remember to get photos when they’re done, and also to look up when the exhibit ends.

Luna Cafe coolness
It sometimes seems like there’s a cafe on every corner in Vancouver – or, on the corner of Robson and Thurlow, the exact same cafe on two corners. Starbucks, Seattle’s Best and Blenz seem to be the top contenders, with 7-Eleven and Tim Hortons outlets offering a steadily increasing array of coffee beverage options.

It’s a little tougher these days to find a cafe that isn’t a franchise or part of a giant chain. In Gastown, I like the Luna Cafe, right across from Storyeum. It’s cozy, the staff are friendly and the sign outside is a really cool piece of artwork.

In the interest of full disclosure, I am not associated with the cafe in any way, but I have gotten a free mug of coffee twice when I’ve brought my entire ESL class in while on a local history tour of the neighborhood. I’m not sure if that’s company policy or if they were just being nice in the hopes of repeat business, but there you go.

Lovely Rita, Meter Maid

It finally happened. I found a prime spot on West 4th, ready to run some errands and grab some dinner, so I pulled in, turned off the car, and reached for my wallet. Only to find… no change.

Living in a society that’s gone to an almost entirely plastic system of currency exchange, keeping enough change around for parking meters is a challenge, and I quite honestly usually chance the ticket rather than first find a bank machine that will give me cash (without the “not your bank, sucker” service fee), then a merchant that will make change.


The City of Vancouver has contracted Verrus to manage pay-by-phone parking at most meters in the city. I had my first experience using it the other day. Here’s how it works:

One free invite to Vox for a Vancouver blogger

As a long time TypePad member I got an invite to Six Apart’s new blog service Vox [vx]. Currently I’m playing around with it [jks], and though I haven’t blogged there yet there are some neat Web 2.0 squishy good features in it, especially community features.

I have a free invite to the Vox service which I’m going to give away to the first Vancouver based blogger who emails me. The deal though is that you actually have to intend on using it as a blog, I don’t care what kind, you become my Vox neighboor and that we can link to you from Metroblogging Vancouver. So if you’ve been thinking of trying out a new blog service drop me a line.

Sand Sculptures at Metrotown

Art is being created at Metropolis at Metrotown this week.

Sand sculpture in progress at Metrotown

An oversized sand diorama is being created in the Grand Court (the central area of the oldest section of the mall, which used to be called Metrotown Centre) by three artists, David Billings, Peter Vogelaar, and Craig Mutch. (Links on their names take you to their websites.) When complete, there will be a giant clock tower, face, shoe, game controller, and other items. All made of sand.


Mask of many faces

It’s time to break out your funny outfits and fancy lanterns for this Saturday’s (July 29th) Illuminares Lantern Procession at Trout Lake. The event is organized by the Public Dreams Society, and goes from 7 until 11 pm (procession @ 9pm).

As dusk falls over Trout Lake Park in East Vancouver, families and friends come together from far and wide to witness an extraordinary celebration of light.

On this night, the Illuminares Lantern Procession fills the air with music, and thousands of paper lanterns come alive with fire. A brilliant spectacle of weaving serpents, birds in flight, planets in orbit, schools of fish, and all sorts of glowing and shimmering creatures of the imagination.


Beachward Ho!

With this recent heatwave we’ve been experiencing it’s been incredibly difficult to get any work done when the sun is teasing you through the blinds. As such I suggest that we shut down the city and have a huge beach party. There is an abundance of beach real estate all around Vancouver.

With the upcoming Celebration of Light there will definitely be plenty of people already populating the downtown beaches throughout the next 2 weeks. How about checking out some of these other beaches?

West End Block Party

blockparty.gifSure it may be a little early to post about something in August when July is still here n’ kickin but I figure the more event info and fun stuff we have up on here, the better eh? Especially when it’s all FREE.

Gordon Neighbourhood House is holding their 8th annual West End Summer Block Party on Saturday August 12th, 2006 from 11 am – 2 pm on the 1000 block of Broughton Street….

One of our annual highlights include the Annual Summer Block Party which attracts over 500 residents of the West End and is a fun festival for people of all ages. The streets are closed off for children’s games, entertainers, food and information booths with representatives from many West End agencies.[gordon house]


An Electric ScooterTour

We’ve been thinking of buying an electric scooter for a while now. But first, we thought it would be smart to rent a couple of them for a day and see what they’re like. It wasn’t cheap (over $50 a day for each) but we thought of it as research.

There’s a lot of this city you can see on a single change. And if you’re the penny pinching sort, a full charge apparently only costs a few cents. So what can you see for a few cents (plus the hefty rental fee)? We hit downtown, The westend, Kits, Mount Pleasant, Commercial, Strathcona, and Gastown.

My scooter’s power started to dwindle a bit near the end, and it did need some extra help getting up the inclines on Quebec street and just off Commercial. We got some odd looks, a few people asked us what we were riding and where we got them, and one kid thought I looked bizarre (seriously, it was just the helmet). All in all though it was a lot of fun. Still not sure about buy them just yet though.






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