Vancouver Weekender: January 17 through 19, 2014

Dine Out Vancouver Festival (DOVF) officially kicks off this Friday, starting with a lunchtime soup-a-thon (that’s what we’re calling it anyhow). If you can, head over to the Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts by Granville Island and watch as 50 of Vancouver’s top chefs mix up batch after batch of soup, using their choice of 50 eclectic ingredients as part of the Chef Soup Experiment. Come dinner, we think you ought to nab a reservation for bites at one of the 260+ participating restaurants and indulge.

Also taking place on Friday and through the weekend is Canada’s Top Ten at The Cinematheque. Be sure to grab a few tickets to this annual celebration of Canadian film and get ready to tuck into an incredible showcase. Choose from a selection of short and feature length films and perhaps stick around for a panel or two. With Magali Simard of TIFF Bell Lightbox in town, as well as Toronto-based writers and directors on site, it’ll be one insightful night. 

Weather depending, you might want to rise and shine early and make your way up one of our local North Shore mountains – or zip up to Whistler. This past week has seen some fresh snow that translates to you having fun in a winter wonderland. Not into strapping in? No problem, make a morning of it and head over to the Baden Powell Trail with a thermos full of coffee for a mid-winter hike. 

If you’re looking to stay closer to home, but still want to get some fresh air, head down to Robson Square and lace up some skates – it’s the final weekend the free rink will be open.

Get fishy with it and dust off your PADI card for a day of underwater exploration at the Vancouver Aquarium. This Saturday and Sunday afternoon, celebrate the 15th Annual Divers’ Weekend, which means showing your card will get you half off admission.  On now at the aquarium, check out the Luminescence display, galleries, seminars and more. If there ever was an excuse to be a kid again and play tourist in your own town, this is it. 

Saturday night, our vote goes to heading down to Killjoy for a bit of funked-up fun with friends. The night (aptly dubbed Open House) is all about getting your groove on to some great old school house music; hosted by both the Slapfun All*Stars and YVR’s gal about town, Crystal Carson. Guaranteed, it’ll be one of 2014’s hottest little-big events you won’t want to miss.

Sunday, check out the newly opened Greenhorn Cafe for your morning fix and head out to the Seawall at English Bay for a sloth-like stroll. When you’ve had your fix of fresh air, head back to the Three Brits Pub for a bite of brunch (until 4pm), or sip a Mimosa at Cactus Club’s English Bay location (they’ve got a heated patio).

Scour the 21st Century Flea Market this Sunday as well and pick up a few new gems for your place that you never even knew you wanted. It’s one of the best-kept vintage troves in town and you’re guaranteed to sleuth out 50s and 60s memorabilia. With about 175 or so vendors setting up shop for the day, the hunt is guaranteed to be fun.

Given that the PuSh Festival is back for another entertaining year of performances, we advocate that you grab a pair of tickets to one of a handful of shows taking place around town on Sunday afternoon. Our Sunday Funday suggestions: A Brimful of Asha (at the Revue Stage) or Gob Squad’s Kitchen for starters.

Post theatre, grab a light ‘n easy bite at the West End’s Espana – it’s always bustling and full of energy, not to mention boasts a menu laden with tasty share plates. Unwind with a glass of Verdelho and rosily reflect on the action-packed weekend you just had while sinking into denial about the work you’ve got to face come Monday morning. 

Live Your Notable Life | #LYNL

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Top photo courtesy Espanya