Archive for December, 2006

Canuck Place Day of Giving

When I sponsored a local Canuck blogger during the Blog-a-thon I donated to Canuck Place. In turn, I’m now on their mailing list and have the following event to share.

canuckplace.gifCanuck Place Day of Giving: Our Day of Giving” began this morning on both TEAM 1040 and CFUN 1410 radio stations. Funds raised will be used to help support the various specialized programs offered by Canuck Place Children’s Hospice [CanuckPlace]

Listen to 1410 CFUN and The TEAM1040 any time today to find out how you can help support Canuck Place. You can also call Call: 1 866 480 KIDS (5437) or CLICK HERE to donate now.

Canuck Place provides a …”care option for children with life-limiting illnesses and their families – an option that would give families the added flexibility to access hospice care when hospital or home care could no longer meet their needs.

This vision became reality in November 1995 when Canuck Place opened as North America’s first free-standing children’s hospice. To this day, it remains the model for children’s hospices in North America providing hospice care free of charge to children and their entire families. Today, it is regarded as one of the leading children’s hospices in the world.” [CanuckPlace]

BC Hydro Billboard Peddles for Power

bc hydro billboard

Sadly I heard about this just a little to late to check it out for myself, though I’ve yet to be able to find out exactly where this was setup, so I likely wouldn’t have been able to find it anyways.

Apparently the folks from BC Hydro setup the billboard in a parking lot somewhere in downtown Vancouver. The billboard was up for 5-days and featured a reindeer encrusted with 1,500 LEDs, all of which were powered solely by people power!

What to do for New Year’s?

So, my lovely bride and I are trying to come up with something to do for New Year’s. Historically (and perhaps this verges on Too Much Information), we’ve had one crappy New Year’s after another.

But hope springs eternal!

So, what are you doing for New Year’s? Because I could really use some help here.

Webcam of the Day – Mt. St. Helens

No, I’m not starting a daily string of posts about webcams but some may want to keep an eye on Mt. St. Helens [wiki] which erupted this afternoon [fox] and sits at colour Code Orange

I was 5 months old when it had its last full-blown eruption, my parents say that ash fell from the sky up here and you could hear the rumble as well. With continuing mumurs like today’s who knows what we can expect to see from this active volcano, which lies just a couple hours South of Vancouver [googlemaps]

Joyeux Noel

caillou.jpgThe last person on my shopping list is my 6 year old niece. She’s in French immersion and is well above her reading and writing level in the language. I’d love to get her a book for Christmas but I can’t find one anywhere. Chapters doesn’t have any kids books in French, and I had no luck at Book Warehouse. I was told to try Sophia Books on Hastings so maybe I’ll have some luck there – is there any other place in town to get a kid’s book in French?

Vancouver Blogapalooza for December 18 the interest of giving some recognition to those blogs of note, here’s the latest from our local pundits:

Travis Smith craves that personal touch.

Rachael Ashe posts her latest photo that is at once pretty and comforting and creepy as all hell.

Corinna Carlson gives a behind the scenes view of working on a TV show in Vancouver.

Roland Tanglao of Urban Vancouver wants to know where you were when the lights went out.

Some mystery person (since they don’t have a profile on their own blog) writing for Sobria inebrietas describes the horrors of air travel. I sympathize. I’m flying out on Thursday.

If you got left out of this roundup, there are two possible reasons: you are a MetroBlogger (Ryan already does a roundup of our stuff from time to time – but if he doesn’t get around to it soon…) or I just didn’t get around to reading it. The rules are, I scan as many blogs from our blogroll as I can in 15 minutes, and the good stuff gets in. What’s the good stuff? Good question…

The next Vancouver Blogapalooza roundup is of the best posts about the holiday experience.

The Park is Closed

You don’t realize how much you appreciate something until you’re prohibited from enjoying it. Parts of Stanley Park and the Seawall remained closed today as the cleanup effort from the latest storm will take a very long time.

“The damage is extreme. I’ve been with the park board coming on 35 years and I’ve never seen anything comes even close to this,” said Eric Meagher, maintenance supervisor for the park… The park likely won’t be open again until mid-week, and full clean-up might take a year. [CTV]

I went for a walk with my husband and father this afternoon. When we got to the North side where the trail to Beaver Lake intersects with the Seawall all traffic (foot, vehicular, bike) had to turn up and cut through the Park along the road. No one was getting by and from what I could see up until that point, I could only imagine how much worse the damage was up near Prospect Point.

Trails were not closed because it was such a hazard and you simply couldn’t pass. Branches, twigs, trees teetering so loosely on others you feel as though any slight breeze would topple them over and send them crashing to the ground. Trees that were hundreds of years old lying across roadways, root systems 12 feet in diameter ripped from the ground, rolled over and exposed. The Park is quite clearly, a mess.

It’s pretty emotional as well – you come to love everything about the Park and appreciate so much about it. Then Mother Nature takes over and it looks like there’s been a clearcut.

Also, as a result, the Christmas train and light display, Bright Nights [mbv], will remain closed although they hope to re-open Monday. Proceeds from the event go towards the Firefighters’ burn fund [BCFF] so they are very eager to get up and running again.

Until we get the all-clear, I would advise against traipsing through the Park as we did today (pretty silly move, I know). Not only could there be hidden cables and wires amongst the debris, but you can’t really get anywhere… unless you want to get really dirty and carry a chainsaw.

(Photos are property of Audihertz on Flickr – Tagged: Park Damage)

Update: Some roads as well as the Bright Nights Christmas display/train are now open [VancouverParkBoard]

Where to go see Christmas Lights

So as many people in the lower mainland are still without power, they’ve diligently kept the power going to all the Christmas Light displays around town. It should be noted that most of them do use LED lights these days which significantly cuts back on the amount of power they consume in relation to a few years back when they were less popular.

The big boy of Christmas lights is at the VanDusen Festival of Lights. With over 1.4 million lights this place draws the crowds. It’s pretty much busy every night. Open from now till December 31st everyday from 5 – 9:30pm and closed on Christmas day. Pricing is $9.90 for adults and various prices for youth, kids, seniors, groups of adults, and families.

So much funnaka to celebrate Chanukah

Happy Chanukah, Vancouver! Since it is now past sundown, it’s official: today is the first day of the holiday when Jewish people around the world celebrate the festival of lights.

To most people in the Lower Mainland, Chanukah is known as the December holiday that isn’t Christmas. Some, like me, will have fond memories of Adam Sandler singing on SNL about the holiday (lyrics here). Vancouver is Canada’s third-largest Jewish community (about 25,000 strong), so there’s a good chance that if you aren’t Jewish, you know someone you knows someone who knows how to spin a dreidel.

Size does matter

Today I saw a Hummer inch its way into a gated parking garage, the driver apparently fearful of scraping the side view mirrors on the entrance, and hit it’s roof on one of those horizontal bars that shows the maximum height allowed. I didn’t see if there was any damage, but the monster-sized “car” kept slinking forward and the gate closed behind.

I laughed and laughed and laughed.

No one in Vancouver needs to drive a Hummer. Actually, no one outside of a combat zone really needs to drive a Hummer. Those who claim that they drive big vehicles because they are safer make me want to puke. If that were a logical position, everyone who could afford it would be driving semi-trailers. Fortunately for planet Earth, we don’t.

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