What: Original bands and artists will be performing free, outdoor concerts in Cates Park again this summer, so bring a picnic and spend your Saturday afternoons enjoying the immense local talent that Vancouver has to offer.
What: With only three dates this summer (one has already passed!), this food truck festival is a limited time engagement. Featuring food trucks like Rocky Point Ice Cream, Zee’s Grilled Cheese, and This Little Piggy, you won’t want to miss the next dates on July 30 and August 27
When: June 11, July 30, and August 27 from 11 am to 7 pm
Where: South Arm United Church, 11051 No.3 Road, Richmond
Price: $2.50 admission or free admission with a non-perishable food item for the Richmond Food Bank (one item per person), free for kids under 10
What: Vancouver’s annual celebration of Japanese culture and the largest event of its kind in Canada. Headliners include Australian koto virtuoso Miyama McQueen-Tokita and Tutchone-Japanese Tlinget-Scottish folk singer Diyet – all totally free.
Where: Oppenheimer Park and surrounding streets and venues – Vancouver
When:Saturday, July 30 and Sunday, July 31, from 11:30 am to 7 pm
What: Come down on the 23rd of July for our Ping-Pong tournament, a fundraiser for our members in need. La Boussole will supply equipment, food, and drinks for a relaxed, fun event in our brand-new space at 651 East Broadway, near the intersection with Fraser Street.
What: The festival will feature two large stages with continuous music provided by 15 live bands from the Lower Mainland’s Caribbean community, featuring Reggae, Calypso, Salsa and Soca music. There will also be a variety of food vendors onsite.
Where: Maple Ridge Fairgrounds – 23448 105 Avenue, Maple Ridge
When: Saturday July 30 and Sunday, July 31; 1 to 10 pm
What: Tomboy Pride is back once again and is here to celebrate the LGBTQ+ community in all it’s beautiful glory. Tomboy Pride welcomes all to join them for a night of uncensored debauchery at the legendary Astoria, featuring DJs, burlesque babes, best friends, beers, boobs, dance offs, pool, tacos, contests and most importantly in light of recent events, all the Pride.
Where: The Astoria – 769 East Hastings Street, Vancouver
What: Show your true colours at Vancouver’s 38th annual Pride Parade. The family-friendly event is fun for everyone and is an important way to show diversity and love. Plus, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will be marching – how can you resist?
When: Sunday, July 31; noon
Where: West End, Vancouver
Pride Festival at Sunset Beach
What: Browse more than 100 exhibitors in the Pride Market, including local artisans and community organizations. Bands, drag performers, and speakers will be featured on the main stage, with DJs spinning in the beer garden throughout the day.
Where: Sunset Beach Park – 1204 Beach Avenue, Vancouver
What: Salsa dancing returns to Robson Square for the Summer 2016 season, offering free lessons, performances and social dancing. Swing by and check it out – it’s fun just to watch if you’re too scared to hit the dancefloor!
Where: Robson Square – 800 Robson Street, Vancouver
When: Every Sunday in July and August; lessons at 3 pm, performances at 5 pm, social dancing all afternoon
What: Cheer on those jockeys and their steeds at the horse racing track in Hastings – entry is always totally free. The race schedule runs through October.
Where: Hastings Racecourse – 188 N Renfrew St, Vancouver
When: Mostly Saturday and Sunday afternoons with 1:50 pm start times. In August, Friday night races start at 7 pm, while two Monday afternoon races start at 4 pm.
Whatever you’re looking for, the Eastside Flea probably has it. With over 50 vendors, five artisan showrooms, DJs, and even a pinball machine, it’s a great way to spend a summer Sunday afternoon. It’s now open for the season.
What: Whereas other successful improv troupes in Vancouver are comprised of dozens of performers, these guys opt to keep it simple – the Sunday Service is five top-notch performers that have been nationally recognized so many times they’ve lost count (just kidding, it’s 21). They perform every Sunday at the Fox Cabaret in Mount Pleasant and never fail to bring down the house, making it a popular spot for comedians and regular folk alike to take in a night of guaranteed laughs.
What: This night photowalk begins at the magical hour of twilight, where we capture the rich blue sky and continue with darker night photography. This is more of an intermediate level tour, but beginners are welcome. A DSLR camera with manual settings is required, as well as a tripod (both are available for rent). In addition to a kit (or wide angle lens) we also recommend that you bring a prime lens (50mm f/1.8 or wider), but any wide aperture lens will work.
Where: Canada Place Welcome Centre – 999 Canada Place, Vancouver
Popular among chefs, home cooks, and local gastronomes, farmers’ markets have become an integral part of Vancouver’s food landscape. Not only do these community events grant local farmers, growers, and bakers the opportunity to connect with urban folk but they also provide them with a space to show off their seasonal favourites. Here’s a quick list of a few – for full details check our guide to Vancouver farmers’ markets.
In addition to a variety of farmers’ markets, the city and surrounding areas boast a collection of night markets that showcase the city’s best food trucks, bakers, and artisans. These night markets bring together communities for entertainment, shopping, and wonderful food. Here’s a shortlist of a few – for full details check our guide to night markets in Vancouver.
Vancouver’s best and only nude beach is, well, an experience. Even if you don’t feel comfortable stripping down (you won’t know until you try it), Wreck offers a variety of fun things, interesting people, and cool vendors.
What: This event takes place on the MV Britannia, and has been nicknamed the industry cruise – this boat tends to be much more chill and laid back compared to Sunday, and is known for hosting many locals, industry staff, The Vancouver Pride Board, extended visitors and special out of town guests.
When: Monday, August 1; boarding is at 3 pm, sailing 4 to 8 pm
Where: Harbour Cruises – 501 Denman Street, Vancouver
What: It’s a Pokémon showdown at the BC Sports Hall of Fame. Get 50% off when you show your Pokédex at the door, visit Pokéstops within the stadium, and watch out for lures that will be activated throughout the day.
Where: BC Sports Hall of Fame – 777 Pacific Boulevard, Vancouver
What: Since its humble beginnings in 2011 the Lift-Off Film Festival Network has spread around the world, bringing new independent cinema to global audiences. Lift-Off’s motto is in its name. We focus on supporting emerging talent in independent cinema, providing platforms for new voices, a network for them to grow and the fuel to launch their careers.
Where: Vancity Theatre – 1181 Seymour Street, Vancouver
When: Monday, August 1; Various times. Click here for more.