Top 10 memories of Vancouver Outgames/Pride Week

So many great and fun activities and events happened over the last week of July with the North American Outgames and Vancouver Pride week combined it’s hard to choose a favourite so here’s my Top 10!

10. Seeing the Outgames Flag relay take off for Whistler on Helijet, bonus having my good friend as one of the flag runners.
9. Seeing friends at the many fun and community-minded networking events
8. Spending the day in the sun with friends watching the festivities of the Pride parade & festival
7. Commiserating, mocking and making the most of the little organizational delays and glitches (that happen at every large event) with friends, both old and new.
6. Seeing great performances and meeting some of the artists over the week like Sugarbeach, Wynter Gordon, Dragonette and Ace of Base.
5. Watching my friend Tyrell Witherspoon perform absolutely everywhere throughout the week, often multiple shows in the same day.
4. Meeting up and hanging out with friends from out of town an showing them Vancouver is a fun city…and hearing that they agree!
3. Going to parties and events from afternoon to morning, like Davie Street Party, Celebrities, Five-Sixty, IronRod, Outgames Opening, Showcase and Closing parties, Anthem Party…
2. Having had a blast at an Anthem Party, bumping into old friends on the street after, then not getting into one party to meet up with friends, only to have an unexpectedly fantastic night with different friends at another party.
1. Winning The Feud at Numbers with a dream team and beating the more seasoned (and trash talking) teams!

Wynter Gordon storms Vancouver!

Wynter Gordon – Anthem Party/Plaza Of Nations – July 31, 2011

Under a bright and sunny evening, the sensational Wynter Gordon turned up the heat further when she took the stage at the 2011 North American Outgames,  Anthem Party.
The New York native performed alone onstage but filled it with her presence. The party was already in full swing when she came on to perform “Til Death,” “Dirty Talk,” and “Toy Friend“.  Unfortunately, that was the extent of her set, just a quick three songs.  The audience was clearly disappointed and wanted more. She inquired about doing one more song but hadn’t brought the track for “Believer” or anything else with her so we were left craving more that hopefully Wynter will return to satisfy soon!

What’s on this Weekend! July 28 – August 1, 2011

What’s on this weekend? What’s NOT on this weekend!?
There’s so much happening, I can’t keep up!

Happening all week long is the Vancouver 2011 North American Outgames ; sports, culture and human rights conference all rolled into one event. Visit the Outgames website for all the activities happening around Vancouver, Whistler, Burnaby and beyond.

In case you haven’t noticed a few rainbow flags around town, it’s also Pride Week in Vancouver.  Parties and Parades and Persperation (if we’re lucky to see some sun) will be the order of the day, check out the Vancouver Pride website for details on the multitude of events.

There are a few events that I’m hoping to be able to check out, so maybe I’ll see you at one of the following:

Thursday July 28
Outgames Live Showcase at Five-Sixty featuring DJ G-Luve, Carole Pope, Armstrong Jr. and Peter Breeze
– strut your stuff at The Pride Ball on the east side at The Cobalt

Friday July 29
– The big event to start off the evening is the Caya Davie Street Dance Party powered by Telus ; stroll, strut and shake your thang as Davie Street is closed and transformed into one big party from Burrard to Bute Street.
DJ Dave Aude is mixing it up at Celebrities Nightclub
– Get out your IronRod and dance to the beats at Open Studios.
– I have a feeling the Four floors of Five-Sixty won’t be the only things stuffed as Bearracuda takes over.
– DJ Adam Dreaddy &  Lisa De Lux take The Helm for a Pride Edition of Bounce – Cool beats to bounce to!

Saturday July 30
– At Rogers Arena – grunge icons Soundgarden play with Queens of the Stone Age and Meat Puppets. (funnily the support acts seem quite appropriately names for Pride Weekend!)
– Taking the Bell Pitch at Empire Stadium, LA Galaxy (minus David Beckham) take on Whitecaps FC
– The Closing Party and Ceremony takes over the Plaza Of Nation Outgames Celebration Site for the day, performances by DJ Adam Dreaddy, Diversity Project, Carol Pope, Sugarbeach, Tracey Bell, Kim Kuzma, Dragonette, Ace of Base and more.
Celebration of Light Fireworks festival begins in English Bay at 1030 as China takes to the sky, followed by Spain on Wednesday Aug 3rd then Canada Saturday Aug 6th
– Make your own fireworks at Five-Sixty’s ultimate Pride Celebration – Rainbow Night aka Slut Puppy with Legendary DJ Frankie Knuckles and drag diva Lady Bunny.
– If hip hop is more your thing get to Pub 340 and the Pride edition of Big Primpin’

Sunday July 31
– the big event of the day is the Pride Parade, 140 parade entries and three quarters of a million people will take over the west end to take in the parade then the Pride Festival at Sunset Beach.
– after the parade head over to Plaza Of Nations for The Anthem Party with performances by DJ Abel (Miami), DJ Eddie Martinez (NYC), Wynter Gordon and Tyrell Witherspoon it’s sure to be a great day
– still looking for more? head east to The Waldorf and SPIT vs BLOW PONY vs YES YES Y’ALL pit the party people of Vancouver against Portland and Toronto to create and epic fest!
– if you still haven’t had enough hit the late night party at Gorg-o-mish for United: Pride with DJ Paulo and DJ Adam Dreaddy

Monday August 1
– find a patio, rest, chill, catch-up and compare notes with friends and sleep

Canada Place Sails Under The Rainbow

Look across Coal Harbour this evening and the rest of the week to see Canada Place awash in a rainbow of colour.

Vancouver 2011 Outgames Corporate Sponsor, Canada Place Corporation will light up the night sky during the Vancouver 2011 Outgames taking place July 25-31st 2011. Each night the Canada Place sails will be lit in the rainbow colours, in celebration of the upcoming Vancouver 2011 Outgames.

“Canada Place is pleased to support the GLISA North America Outgames as we light up our iconic sails in a rainbow of colour from July 25-30th,” said Robyn McVicker, Director Communications & Public Affairs, Canada Place Corporation. “Each night the sails will shine in celebration of this fantastic event and as a welcome to all the Outgames athletes and participants from around the world.

Watch for Canada Place to be awash in rainbow colours

Visible from most places around Coal Harbour, Canada Place generates over $1 billion per year in economic activity and is an inspiring national landmark welcoming local residents, visitors and ships to the West Coast. 
Look to the sails as you


And they’re off! The 2011 Outgames Flag Relay is on the move

From the Mountains, Sea and Land the 2011 Outgames Flag relay is making it’s way to the Opening Ceremony at the Vancouver Art Gallery at 6pm today.

Starting off at Vancouver City Hall for the joint launch of Pride Week Van Pride and Vancouver 2011 Outgames (11:00am – 1:30pm) this free event feature the Running of the Flags, BBQ, speakers, lawn games, In Council Proclamation and much more!

After the Raising of the Outgames Flag and the First Nations call out for the Athletes,  three runners will take the flags in ceremony to their respective starting points at UBC, SFU and by Helijet to Whistler & Grouse Mountain where 111 runners will carry the flags on to the Vancouver Art Gallery and the lighting of the Cauldron to open the 2nd GLISA North America Outgames.

The Opening Ceremony will also highlight some of the Outgames athletes and feature live performances by Destineak, Tyrell Witherspoon, DJ / drum performance with Waacouture, Out in Harmony & Friends Choir and Sugarbeach, who will perform their 2011 Outgames theme song ‘Come on Out’.

What’s on this Weekend! July 21-25

WOW! There’s so much happening this time of year that I want to check out, I can’t keep up…you all will have to attend some of these great events and tell me all about it.

Thursday July 21
– if you can get down to Venue and check out Cults, I saw them at NXNE and they are great!
– downtown TV On The Radio are playing the second of two nights at Commodore Ballroom, they’re worth a listen too!
– legend, Thurston Moore (Sonic Youth) is holding court over at the Rickshaw Theatre
– NY synthpop group, Cold Cave are at The Biltmore Cabaret
– Local Vancouver folk/blues artist Buckman Coe is performing with David Newberry at Media Club
– looking to get your dance on? Head to The Helm with another edition of We Like Boys
– for some good tunes and cocktails stop by 1181 for Cocky Thursdays with music by DJ Adam Dreaddy

Friday July 22
– Funny man Rob Schneider brings the laughter to The Vogue Theatre
– join NY indie rockers Les Savy Fav / Handsome Furs at The Rickshaw Theatre
– The Helm has Flaunt Fridays with DJ SKLA and the vocal talents of Tonye Aganaba
– for some ‘Family Values’ join Gene Simmons and his clan at the River Rock Show Theatre

Saturday July 23
– during the afternoon, hope for some good weather, and head over to Brockton Oval in Stanley Park for the Vancouver Pride Society’s Picnic In The Park : beer garden, children’s area, DJ’s, BBQ, games and more.
Yuck with Unknown Mortal Orchestra are at The Biltmore Cabaret
– at Five-Sixty it’s their Pride Week Kick-Off Celebration

Sunday July 24
even God took one day off, so rest up because it’s going to be a busy week coming up!

Monday July 25
– it’s the start of the Vancouver 2011 Outgames, the running of the Flags starts at City Hall at 1pm wrapping up at the Vancouver Art Gallery for the Opening Ceremony at 5pm. That evening head to The Outgames Opening Party at Five-Sixty
– your Monday night alternative is over at Keefer Bar for The Price Is Gay: prizes, drinks specials, music and fun are all on the menu

Grouse Mountain joins 2011 Vancouver Outgames

Grouse Mountain and the Vancouver 2011 Outgames have combined to provide a true west coast athletic experience for locals (in the know) and visitors yet to experience! The infamous “GROUSE GRIND” has been added to the line up of the Vancouver 2011 Outgames sports schedule as the 6K VERTICAL CHALLENGE.  Climbing nearly 2000m, racers will start the 6 km course on July 26th at 9am, from the foot of Grouse Mountain and race to the top of the most challenging hiking trail in the City commonly referred to as “Mother Nature’s Stairmaster”! This course will be one of the most (literally) breath-taking sport events at the Games!
The Vancouver 2011 Outgames will include 10 sport elements supported by GLISA (International Sports Association of North America) running from July 25 – July 31, 2011
The week-long festival also includes a Human Rights Conference and Cultural Celebrations