Introducing Adult-Only Playland Nights for 2017

Have you ever visited Playland and felt the dilemma of having to choose between sitting in the beer garden or enjoying fairgrounds? This July you no longer have to choose, with the introduction of Playland Nights : Adult-Only Friday Nights.

Now your only choice is what pairs best with craft beer – Beaver Tails or mini-donuts? Will you have red or white wine with your corn dog? Throughout July, Playland Nights – the first ever adult-only Friday nights run from 7 pm to midnight.  

Kicking off Friday, July 7, then every Friday for the month, Playland will host evenings dedicated to adults-only, complete with craft beer, wine, Playland themed cocktails like a candy floss martini, and fresh squeezed hard lemonade, food, midway games and of course, the exhilarating rides.

The whole Playland grounds will be licensed so 19+ guests can enjoy their favourite beverage anywhere onsite instead of being confined behind the walls of a beer garden. Mike McDaniel, President and CEO of the Pacific National Exhibition says, “we are thrilled to offer this new addition to our Playland schedule for the first time this year. We strive to continue to offer our guests new and exciting ways to enjoy Playland and we are sure these 19+ nights will be a huge success.”

Guest DJ’s, axe throwing, special activations and more will accompany the already exciting features Playland offers.  Advance tickets are $26 ($29 at the gate) and include unlimited access to 25+ rides and attractions around the Park.

Tickets for Playland Nights are on sale now online at: ticketleader.ca/events/playland-nights

Van Foodster’s Tasting Plates Stadium District coming July 12

The next in Vancouver Foodster’s busy summer of foodie events is, Tasting Plates – Stadium District.  The ever evolving and steadily growing neighbourhood is oft forgotten except during events at Rogers Arena or BC Place but there are plenty of tasty spots to visit year-round.

Roughly centred on Cambie & Robson, to Expo Blvd and Abbott Street, grab your friends and join other food fans as they explore the ‘hood on July 12 from 6pm to 10pm.  More than just pizza joints or fast food places to grab on the way to a concert or game, the area offers everything from fine dining to ethnic fusion cafes.  The line-up for Tasting Plates – Stadium District is still being finalized but a few restaurants have started planning their tasting plates and cups to show the tasting platers what their chefs and teams can create.

Signed up so far are:

  • Hendricks Resto-Lounge, 433 Robson (in Westin Grand Hotel)
  • Papparoti, 193 Keefer Street
  • Stretch Roman Pizza, 415 Abbott Street

More restaurants will be added in the coming weeks.

Tickets are on sale now on Eventbrite:
Early-Bird Tickets: $35 per person before June 30, 2017
Advance Tickets $45 per person after June 30, 2017
Regular $60 per person after July 9, 2017

For more information visit tastingplatesyvr.com

Hotel Calipolis – Sitges, Spain

On our recent vacation to the UK, we took a few days out to get some sun in Sitges, Spain, a quaint beachfront town on the Costa Barcelona.
Renowned for it’s 17 beaches, for our first visit we wanted to stay on the beachfront and selected Hotel Calipolis, and we’re pleased we did.

Hotel Calipolis; Sitges, Spain

Located centrally along the Passeig Maritim, Hotel Calipolis is a spacious, modern hotel, with plenty of amenities to make any stay more than comfortable.  Even though you won’t be spending a lot of time in them, the bright rooms, mostly with water views, are large and comfortable. The big balconies connect guests with the fresh air, retractable screens filter the beaming Mediterranean sun to allow the windows to be open all hours.

From the sumptuous breakfast buffet in the Mirador Restaurant, full of fresh local flavours and breakfast staples to the sunny, pool-side Terrace Bar the Hotel’s five restaurants, bars and lounges keep guests satiated throughout the day.  Passeig Maritim is filled with restaurants so there’s plenty of dining and drinking options nearby when you want to venture away from Hotel Calipolis.

The Hotel’s many meeting rooms were busy during our stay, businesses taking advantage of the quieter shoulder season to have conferences and meetings away from the big cities.  The small but well equipped fitness centre lets you get a workout before meetings or hitting the beach, across the street.  If, like during our stay, the wind picks up at the beach, move to the sheltered but sun-filled pool deck to work on your tan.

The Hotel’s location, 15 minutes walk from the train station, allowed us to easily explore the town’s central streets and the beautiful beach promenade.  Being about 30 minutes by train from Barcelona-El Prat Airport, and 40 minutes from the heart of Barcelona city centre, makes a visit to the City easy too.  We look forward to making another, and longer, visit to Sitges and Hotel Calipolis will be on top of our accommodation options.

Hotel Calipolis is located at the corner of Av Sofia and Passeig Maritim in Sitges, Spain.

Visit hotelcalipolis.com for more information.

Picks of the Week – June 14, 2017

As we countdown to Summer, let’s see what kind of entertainment is in our Picks of the Week.

Eats: Tonight, Tasting Plates Riley Park brings food fans out to see what the the Main Street area has to offer.

Rock: Hard rockers Tool take to the stage at Rogers Arena on Thursday night

Electro: Vegas EDM duo The Crystal Method brings their big beats to VENUE on Thursday night

Tents: Head to Vanier Park as another season of Bard on the Beach gets underway, Much Ado About Nothing opening on Thursday night.

Roar: The BC Lions 2017 home season gets underway at BC Place on Friday when Saskatchewan Roughriders come to town for pre-season play

Concerts: The 2017 Red Truck Beer Truck Stop Concert Series gets underway on Saturday with Cut Copy playing under the Water Tower at Red Truck Brewing on East 1st Ave in Vancouver

Afterparty:  Late night at Celebs Underground join Cut Copy for a special after party DJ Set

Artifacts: The Museum of Vancouver has a quirky, new exhibition Unbelievable demonstrating the stories behind some unique artifacts

Kicks: Saturday at BC Place Whitecaps FC play host to FC Dallas

Stage: The Arts Club Theatre Company has a pair of shows on now; Million Dollar Quartet at The Stanley Stage, until July 9th, Hand To God at The Goldcorp Stage, until June 25th and Bittergirl The Musical opening Thursday running until July 29th at Granville Island Stage

Audi of Richmond Flagship Opens

This week, Audi of Richmond opened the doors to its stunning, new state-of-the-art, building at 5600 Parkwood Cr. in the Richmond Auto Mall. At over 100,000sq feet the new building is the largest in new car showroom in Metro Vancouver and one of the largest in the country.  

Owner’s Cowell Auto Group, which is celebrating its 50th Anniversary, are in the process of redeveloping all of their Richmond Auto Mall locations, Audi of Richmond is first out of the gate.  At the glamourous opening night event, Cowell Auto Group President Rand Cowell welcomed their opening night guests; customers, staff, family and friends, to the stunning new Audi Terminal.  Audi of Canada President Daniel Weissland reaffirmed Audi’s stature as the most-progressive luxury brand in the Canadian market, with 13 new models arriving this year.  Audi of Richmond’s massive showroom is poised to bring customers the ultimate one-stop-shop for all things Audi. 

Cowell Family Members & Audi Canada President Daniel Weissland cut the ribbon to open the new Audi of Richmond

From the one-of-a-kind Audi Direct Reception, the covered drive-in entry way keeps visitors out of the elements. Then flows into the sleek and modern terminal comfortable customer experiences await in all directions; Parts, Service or Sales. The overheight ceilings and windows provide a bright, natural backdrop to the new car showroom.  Space for more inventory on site makes the Audi of Richmond shopping experience seamless.  Even the Certified Pre-Owned shoppers get the largest showroom in Metro Vancouver. The unique to Audi of Richmond Audi Sport Customization Lounge allows personal touches to be added to new Audi Sport purchases.
Customer waiting areas on each of the three levels ensure every moment of a visit to Audi of Richmond is never far comfort.  European Coffee machines, instant filtered chilled water dispensers, cafes and more, elevate the service most other auto stores.  The luxury treatment is throughout the store, gone are the days when the service and parts department are relegated to a grimy, backdoor.
Even if you’re just browsing, the new Audi of Richmond building is worth a visit next time you’re in the Richmond Auto Mall.

Museum of Vancouver brings an Unbelievable new exhibition

After digging through their vaults, the Museum of Vancouver (MOV) is ready to unveil a new and “Unbelievable” exhibition. Unbelievable is a quirky new exhibition curated from the Museum’s own collections, on display at MOV June 24 – September 24, 2017.

Diving deep into the vaults of MOV, Unbelievable assembles iconic artifacts, storied replicas, and contested objects for an exploration of the role stories play in defining lives and communities – and what happens when we question the tales we’ve long relied upon. “Stories are how we create our community and nation. They are literally a matter of life and death, possessing the power to bring us together or tear us apart,” explained Gregory Dreicer, MOV’s Director of Curatorial and Engagement and the creative mind behind Unbelievable. “A shockingly diverse collection of objects will provoke laughter, nostalgia, and fear. What unifies them is not the physical objects themselves – but the contradictory and unbelievable stories that surround each of the treasures on display. We are taking people deep behind the scenes – in order to explore the creation of stories and how they define our past, present, and future.”

A carved wooden bear with open jaws. Collected at Nootka Sound by Midshipman Thomas Dobson on HMS “Discovery” under Captain George Vancouver 1791-1795. Dobson was brought onboard as a Spanish translator.
A carved wooden bear with open jaws. Collected at Nootka Sound by Midshipman Thomas Dobson on HMS “Discovery” under
Captain George Vancouver 1791-1795. Dobson was brought onboard as a Spanish translator. (MOV Collection)

The first large Unbelievable object that visitors will encounter is the Thunderbird totem pole. It appeared in controversial filmmaker Edward Curtis’ 1906 work In the Land of the Head Hunters. The totem pole has since been replicated in fiberglass, as well as re-carved to stand in Stanley Park – but the original has been tucked away within MOV’s vaults. The pole’s complex histories lay the groundwork for an exploration of stories, symbols, and struggles that follow.

Unbelievable will also include a search for other contemporary ‘totems’, each with contrasting stories about a point in time in Vancouver. These include the original ‘R’ from Arbutus Street’s ‘The Ridge’ sign (a replica now adorns condos); a full-scale bronze-cast model of Stanley Park’s derivative Girl in a Wet Suit; and opposing and battling Quatchi costumes from the 2010 Olympic Winter Games – one an official costume, the other an anti-mascot built by protestors.

Elephant foot table from prominent Vancouverite, Alexander Bruce Robertson’ taxidermy collection now housed at the museum. Mr. Robertson hunted the elephant himself while on safari in Africa, and the table was probably prepared at RJ Pop, a local taxidermy store Mr. Robertson used to mount his animals.
Elephant foot table from prominent Vancouverite, Alexander Bruce
Robertson’ taxidermy collection now housed at the museum. Mr.
Robertson hunted the elephant himself while on safari in Africa, and
the table was probably prepared at RJ Pop, a local taxidermy store
Mr. Robertson used to mount his animals. (MOV collection)

The artifacts will also illustrate the tangled threads of narrative around Vancouver’s relationship with First Nations communities. Pieces include a carving given to George Vancouver’s crew, a large mask of a bird depicting the European-brought disease of smallpox, and Pauline Johnson’s ‘Indigenous’ dress, a fantasy garment for a cultural celebrity with a vivid imagination.

Finally, more surprising items ask visitors to create their own stories about unique artifacts found within the MOV collection, such as a side table crafted from an elephant foot, a chair cobbled together from cattle horns, and favourite pieces of garbage salvaged by the City of Vancouver’s sanitation workers. This interactive component of the exhibition will encourage visitors to share their thoughts about how each object came to be, and then later present them with the opportunity to compare their narrative to MOV’s documentation of each artifact.

Inspiration for Unbelievable originated last fall in the wake of the American election, which highlighted an astonishing aspect of human nature: people reject facts that don’t fit their story, even if the information is true. MOV concluded an exhibition exploring the notion of truth – including the museum’s role as one of Canada’s most trusted institutions – could not be more timely or relevant. Essentially, lack of trust, the reach of the web, the crisis in journalism and democracy have sparked Dreicer to embark on a quest for stories to believe in. “We live in an age of information where alternative facts and absolute falsehoods have run rampant.” continued Dreicer, “In an era where nothing can be taken at face value, MOV wanted to create an exhibition that raises questions. With Unbelievable, we ultimately hope visitors will walk away awed by the power of story – with a different understanding and possibly skepticism – about the tales they encounter and the stories they tell themselves.”

Unbelievable run June 24 – September 24, 2017 at Museum of Vancouver at 1100 Chestnut Street.  Visit museumofvancouver.ca for more information on Unbelievable and the rest of the exhibits at the MOV on now.

Vancouver Foodster Best Chicken Wings Challenge

There will be no ‘winging it’ when the winner of the Vancouver Foodster Best Chicken Wings Challenge is crowned.

Starting June 8 and running until June 29, The Best Chicken Wings Challenge will bring out the best wings the city has to offer. Participating restaurants are entering their favourite Chicken Wings from their menu or have devised a new unique recipe for their Best Chicken Wings Challenge entry. The imaginative entries may range from simple to elaborate, feature unique and innovative ingredients, they may be breaded or naked; saucy or dry seasoned; baked or fried.
As with all of Vancouver Foodster’s food challenges, the public will vote for a People’s Choice Winner and the judges will choose who is the Judges’ Choice Best Chickens Wing.  The public is invited to try any or all of the entries, then vote for their favourite Chicken Wing creation on vancouverfoodster.com/chicken-wings-challenge.  The top vote getter will be crowned People’s Choice.  Alongside the public vote, a panel of judges, including myself, will be trying all of the entries to select the Judge’s Choice.
The participating restaurants & locations are:

Vancouver

Preston’s at Coast Coal Harbour Hotel, 1180 West Hastings Street

House Special, 1269 Hamilton St 

Storm Crow Tavern, 1305 Commercial Drive 

U & I Thai, 3364 Cambie Street 

North Vancouver 

Maru Korean Bistro, 125 2nd St E

Surrey  

Sabai Thai Restaurant, 10391 150 Street 

Mission

U & I Thai, 33261 1 Ave 

Langley

Ban Chok Dee, 20563 Douglas Crescent

Maple Ridge

Ban Chok Dee, 20395 Lougheed Hwy

For more details on the Best Chicken Wings Challenge visit vancouverfoodster.com/chicken-wings-challenge . Follow #ChickenWingsChallengeYVR on Social Media to see all the great dishes people are eating during the run of the challenge, then get out and taste for yourself then Vote for your favourite.