Opinion Column

Waldorf take on alt-Canada Day bash a success


For those who wanted to celebrate the nation's b-day without compromising their east Van street cred, the Waldorf parking lot was the place to be on Sunday. That's where the historical hotel set up its first annual Canada Day Block Party - complete with a diverse selection of food trucks, a stage set up for local live music and of course, a well-stocked beer garden.

Thankfully, the weather cooperated, so it didn't take long for the free, family-friendly makeshift festival grounds to fill up. Sure, there were lineups for almost everything - it wouldn't be an outdoor festival without them. But no one seemed to mind. Twas too sunny to be agro. Plus, the indie-spirited crowd seemed grateful to have an alternative to the usual mainstream Canada Day events.

That said, partygoers still showed their patriotic love for the Great White North - they just did it with slightly less fanfare.

And judging by the success of this inaugural event, I'm guessing it's going to become an annual tradition. So if you decide to go next year, heed my warning: Don't eat beforehand - the food is just way too good to miss out on.

Jessie Awards

The Vancouver Playhouse may be out of commission, but the city's theatre scene is still very much alive and well. Thanks to Bard on the Beach, the Arts Club Theatre Company and the Firehall Arts Centre, to name but a few, theatre-goers have an abundance of first-rate local productions to choose from.

So it's always nice to fete the dedicated, not to mention insanely talented, people who keep pumping out all those great works of art. And that's what the Jessie Awards at the Commodore Ballroom last week were really about.

True, there were "winners" who took home trophies and nominees who left empty-handed, but the overall vibe of the event felt more like a warm get-together among friends and colleagues - all cheering each other on.

P.S. If you haven't seen the Arts Club spoof on Olivia Newton-John's 1980s camp classic Xanadu, and you're looking for a good laugh, I highly recommend checking it out this hilarious production. I went to the opening and the comically gifted cast had the crowd in stitches.

Email: sarah.rowland@sunmedia.ca