44 free things to do in Vancouver in February

Jan 25 2017, 12:46 am

It’s February! And we’re guessing you’re saving your money for weekend ski trips, spa treatments or, you know, rent and food.

As usual, we’ve got your back and there’s still a ton of events happening this month in Vancouver, guaranteed to entertain you for free.

So here are 44 free things to do in Vancouver this February. Have fun out there!

Arts and Music

Love Art

  • What: A playful exhibition featuring more than 30+ works including original paintings and prints is an opportunity to experience the childlike world of kawaii (cuteness) Sleepless Kao has created plus the lighthearted artworks of Jodi Sam.
  • Where: Branches & Knots – 3128 W. Broadway, Vancouver
  • When: Friday, February 10 to Tuesday, February 28; from 11 am to 6 pm Monday to Thursday, from 11 am to 7 pm Friday and Saturday, and noon to 6 pm on Sundays. Opening reception on Friday, February 10, from 6 to 9 pm
  • Info: Online at jodisam.com/loveart

Emerging Artists: Inspired by material and process

  • What: An exhibition of works based in metal, ceramic and textile by emerging artists Jade Beck, Janet Harrison, Emily May, Laura Meyers and Christina Shimek, presented by the Craft Council of BC.
  • Where: Craft Council of British Columbia – 1386 Cartwright Street, Vancouver
  • When: Thursday, February 22 to Thursday, March 16, from 10:30 am to 5:30 pm daily
  • Register: On Eventbrite, totally free

Pet Portrait

  • What: Jewellery designer at Katami Designs, Luyi Wang, is offering to create your very own pet portrait for free. Bring in your four legged furry friend and any pictures you’d love to recreate or that show off their personality.
  • Where: Katami Designs Gallery and Studio – 138 East Broadway, Vancouver
  • When: Saturday, February 4, from noon to 5 pm
  • Register: On Eventbrite, totally free

Japan Unlayered

  • What: A free exhibition celebrating contemporary Japanese culture, design, and architecture.
  • Where: Fairmont Pacific Rim – 1038 Canada Place
  • When: Now until February 28

i spy wild

  • What: Artist Sarah Ronald shows new drawings, paintings, and installations which spur viewers to seek out the contradictions in our daily lives, specifically around our relationships with wild animals in both suburban and natural environments.
  • Where: Seymour Art Gallery – 4360 Gallant Ave, North Vancouver
  • When: From Thursday, February 2 to Sunday, March 5, from 10 am to 5 pm daily; artist talk on Sunday, February 19 at 2 pm
  • Register: On Facebook, totally free

Toy Babies

  • What: Artist Andrea Hooge is back with more doll-headed portraits, with hidden jokes and meanings, and a few surprises! These portraits of mid-century toys are created using cutout shapes to feature paintings and scratchboard illustrations.
  • Where: Hot Art Wet City – 2206 Main Street, Vancouver
  • When: From Thursday, February 2 to Saturday, February 25, from noon to 5 pm, closed Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday. Opening reception on Friday, February 3 from 7 to 11 pm.
  • Register: On Eventbrite, totally free

Beyond Nature II

  • What: This exhibition features acrylic on canvas paintings, mostly of flowers, by Katie Cheung. Although she does not subscribe to any one painting method or style, each of her works seem to exude a distinct splendour and a playful lushness.
  • Where: Art Beatus – 108 – 808 Nelson Street, Vancouver
  • When: From Friday, February 3 to Saturday, March 31, from 10 am to 6 pm, closed weekends. Opening reception on Friday, February 3, from 3 to 6 pm.

Enjoy Tuesdays at the Art Gallery

  • What: Make your Tuesdays a little more artsy, during the gallery’s ‘by donation’ night. But even if your pockets are empty, you can still check it out.
  • Where: Vancouver Art Gallery – 750 Hornby St. Vancouver
  • When: Every Tuesday night, from 5 to 9 pm


  • What: Flashion is a free youth-led community event focusing on fast fashion and its environmental impact, including a clothing swap, an eco-fashion show with pieces designed by youth, and guest speakers from eco-fashion and eco-art design industries.
  • Where: Heritage Hall – 3102 Main Street, Vancouver
  • When: Sunday, February 5, from noon to 3 pm
  • Register: On Facebook, totally free

Robb Hill

  • What: With influences ranging from Foo Fighters, The Doors, Tom Petty, Muse, Sam Roberts, Pearl Jam and Nirvana, Robb Hill’s music gives the listener a combination of high energy guitar, memorable lyrics, and a danceable element.
  • Where/When: 
    • The Regal Beagle – 2281 W Broadway, Vancouver, on Thursday, February 2 at 8 pm
    • The Brighton – 2471 East Hastings Street, Vancouver, on Friday, February 3 at 9 pm
  • Register: On Facebook, totally free

Fallacy of the Fist

  • What: This unique bilingual evening features a staged reading in English with Chinese surtitles of Fallacy of the Fist, which tells the story of a siege during China’s Boxer Rebellion in 1900, and the absurdity of war which has trapped both the besieged and the besiegers. The reading will then be followed by a performance of the play in Chinese, with English surtitles, and a post-show talk.
  • Where: Dorothy Somerset Studio – 6361 University Boulevard, Vancouver
  • When: Wednesday, February 8, from 7 to 10 pm
  • Register: On Eventbrite, totally free

Poetry, with a chance of rain

  • What: An intimate poetry reading from Kara-lee MacDonald (Eating Matters), Jane Byers (Acquired Community), Elizabeth Bachinsky (The Hottest Summer in Recorded History), and Leanne Dunic (To Love the Coming End, BookThug.)
  • Where: Notional Space – 1523 East Pender Street, Vancouver
  • When: Wednesday, February 22, from 7 to 10 pm
  • Register: On Eventbrite, totally free

12 Minutes Max Studio Showing

  • What: The Dance Centre is holding a free studio showing, previewing a series of new works by Gail Lotenberg, Liliane Moussa, Monica Shah, all lasting 12 minutes or less.
  • Where: Faris Family Studio at The Dance Centre – Level 6, 677 Davie Street, Vancouver
  • When: Tuesday, February 7, at 6 pm

Food and Drink

Nat Bailey Stadium market

  • What: Find local produce, meat, seafood, artisan cheese, bread, herbs, baked goods, artisanal crafts, and more.
  • Where: Nat Bailey Stadium – 4601 Ontario Street, Vancouver
  • When: Saturdays from 10 am to 2 pm, January 7 to April 22

Hastings Park

  • What: Find a great selection of local produce, fish, meat, dairy, artisan prepared foods, baked goods, local crafts, and food trucks.
  • Where: Hastings Park Centregrounds – 2901 East Hastings Street
  • When: Sundays from 10 am to 2 pm, January 8 to April 30

Vancouver Hot Chocolate Festival

  • What: Now in its seventh year, the annual Vancouver Hot Chocolate Festival finds cafes, sweet shops, and restaurants serving up special cocoa-y creations that hot chocolate lovers can enjoy and tick off their Festival must-do list.
  • Where: There are 29 locations taking part – read our special guide here
  • When: Began in January, but runs through February 14
  • Register: Free to attend… but bring some money to try the delectable drinks!

Dough’nya Wanna Have Coffee?

  • What: Cartems is joining forces with Platform 7 coffee, and to celebrate they’re throwing a party. They’ll be giving out free donut and coffee samples. And if you post a photo of your coffee and donut on Instagram, you’ll get a whole free donut on them.
  • Where: Platform 7 Coffee – 2300 West Broadway, Vancouver
  • When: Saturday, February 4, from noon to 3 pm
  • Register: On Eventbrite, totally free


Nisga’a New Year – Hobiyee 2017

  • What: Hobiyee is an annual celebration of the waxing crescent moon, during the latter part of winter, celebrated by Nisga’a people wherever they live – including Vancouver. The Nisga’a invite the general public to share First Nations culture and dance, and celebrate the strength, beauty and diversity of indigenous cultures.
  • Where: PNE Forum – 2901 East Hastings Street, Vancouver
  • When: Saturday, February 3 and Sunday, February 4, from 10 am to 9 pm both days
  • Full schedule: Online at tsamiks.com/hoobiyee-2017

CF Lunar New Year

  • What: Marvel at large-scale and eye-catching lantern displays suspended from the ceilings of the Pacific Centre, and enjoy a traditional Lion Dance, eye-dotting ceremony and Lucky Red pockets with a chocolate coin for shoppers.
  • Where: CF Pacific Centre – 701 West Georgia St, Vancouver
  • When: Friday, February 3, from 10 am to 7 pm

Lunar New Year Celebration

  • What: Enjoy a lion dance at Wesbrook Community Centre, tea tasting, fortune telling, Korean drumming, karate demos, and Chinese tie making at this New Year celebration – and leave with a red envelope of your own too.
  • Where: CF Pacific Centre – 701 West Georgia St, Vancouver
  • When: Saturday, February 4, from 12:30 to 4 pm
  • Info: Online at discoverwesbrook.com


  • What: Granville Island’s Winterruption Festival returns with lots of free events in the mix this year, including a look behind the scenes of theatre magic, a groove-heavy performance from the Robin Layne Band, and a winter-themed art exhibit.
  • Where: Multiple locations on Granville Island, Vancouver
  • When: From Friday, February 17 to Sunday, February 19, various times
  • Full schedule: Online at granvilleisland.com/winterruption

Valentines Day

Valentines Day Yoga

Yoga / Shutterstock

  • What: Ready for something different this Valentine’s Day? This class starts out as a yoga class and turns into a yoga dance party and chocolate feast, celebrating life and love. Come alone or with a friend, and be prepared to laugh, dance, sweat and sing.
  • Where: Semperviva Yoga City Studio – #110-1985 West Broadway, Vancouver
  • When: Tuesday, February 14, from 7:30 to 8:45 pm
  • Register: Online at semperviva.com


  • What: The Dinner Party and Big Love Ball are teaming up to hold this free Valentine’s Day event for singletons, all about flirtation, fun and the potential for love. Dress code – wear pink. And prepare yourself to “practice connection.”
  • Where: Zend Conscious Lounge – 1130 Mainland St, Vancouver
  • When: Wednesday, February 15, from 7 to 10 pm
  • Admission: Totally free, but to gain entry you must bring two members of the opposite sex that you are not romantically involved with. And wear pink.


PuSh Festival: Human Library

  • What: Borrow a ‘human book’ from a curated collection of topics such as: recovering hoarder, battered woman and same-sex marriage warrior. The 20-minute one-on-one conversations take you on a personal journey with personal stories.
  • Where: Vancouver Public Library – 350 West Georgia Street
  • When: February 4 and 5, noon to 4 pm

Saturday Morning Lecture Series

  • What: A series of lectures open to the general public on a huge range of topics presented by TRIUMF, UBC, and SFU. February talks will address the search for other planets, and the quest for the Higgs Boson, among other scientific matters.
  • Where:
    • TRIUMF Auditorium at UBC – 4004 Wesbrook Mall, Vancouver
    • SFU Surrey Room 2975 – 102nd Avenue, Surrey
  • When:
    • Saturday, February 18, from 10 am to 12:15 pm
    • Saturday, February 25, from 10 am to 12:15 pm
  • Register: On Eventbrite, totally free

Ski Touring School

Ski touring (frantic00/Shutterstock)

Ski touring (frantic00/Shutterstock)

  • What: Come learn exactly how you can conquer peaks safely and experience the draw of the wilderness for yourself. Mountain guide Brian Jones will be regaling guests with tales and photos of his own ski touring trips and explaining how to do it yourself.
  • Where: Arc’teryx Vancouver Brand Store – 2033 W 4th Ave, Vancouver
  • When: Wednesday, February 8, from 7 to 10 pm
  • Register: On Eventbrite, totally free

Aboriginal Storyteller in Residence

  • What: Jules Koostachin, the 2017 VPL Aboriginal Storyteller in Residence is holding several different meet and greet events in libraries around Vancouver, for anyone who wants to learn about he experiences.
  • Where: Various Vancouver public libraries
  • When: Throughout February
  • Info: Online at vpl.bibliocommons.com

Organic Gardening Intensive

  • What: Want veggies this spring and summer? Crunchy homegrown lettuce and hearty kale and other greens? West End Urban Garden Club presents this two-part in-depth workshop covering the basics of planning, preparing and starting a food garden.
  • Where: West End Community Centre – 870 Denman Street, Vancouver
  • When:
    • Sunday, February 12, from 1 to 4 pm
    • Sunday, March 5, from 1 to 4 pm
  • Info: Email Ross Moster at [email protected]

Peacetalks: Racism In Canada

  • What: Canada is neither free from oppressive and divisive ideologies nor immune to their open resurgence—and the country is struggling to confront this reality. Peacetalks will explore how to talk about racism in Canada to affect positive change, with a panel of speakers who have deep experience in confronting racism.
  • Where: HiVE Vancouver – 128 West Hastings Street, Vancouver
  • When: Wednesday, February 8, from 6 to 7:30 pm
  • Register: On Eventbrite, totally free

Salish Singing and Drumming

  • What: Join instructor, composer, producer and traditional Lil’wat singer, Russell Wallace, to learn social songs, drumming and dance. Workshops are free and open to everyone.
  • Where: Djavad Mowafaghian World Art Centre, Goldcorp Centre for the Arts – 149 W. Hastings St, Vancouver
  • When: Thursday, February 16, from 7 to 9 pm
  • Register: On Facebook, totally free

Health and Fitness

Qui Gong Saturdays 

  • What: Qi Gong is a gentle flowing movement class taught by master Hing Tse.
    This is a class that everyone can participate in from youngsters to seniors. Hing will show you how to move your body for greater flexibility, balance and well-being. Wear loose, comfortable clothing and flat shoes. All levels welcome.
  • Where: Vital Health Medical Clinic Kitsilano – 1855 West 4th Avenue, Vancouver
  • When: Saturday mornings, from 9 to 10 am
  • Register: On Eventbrite, totally free

World Cancer Day Hike

  • What: If you have ever been diagnosed with a cancer or have been directly impacted by cancer join the Summit Vancouver group to mark World Cancer Day as they hike Quarry Rock in North Vancouver – then enjoy champagne at the top!
  • Where: Meet in Panorama Park in Deep Cove at the base of the walk – Panorama Dr, North Vancouver
  • When: Saturday, February 4, from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm
  • Register: On Eventbrite, totally free

Ninjitsu Sundays

  • What: Ninjitsu is the ancient art of the ninja shadow warriors of Japan. Through the practice of Ninjitsu you’ll learn to move your body & mind in a more poetic way, through breath & traditional exercises.
  • Where: Email [email protected] for details
  • When: Every Sunday, from 10:30 am to noon
  • Register: On Eventbrite, totally free

Robson Square Skating Rink

  • What: The Robson Square Ice Rink, located in downtown Vancouver, is open all through the Christmas Holidays, including Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. Skating is free with your own skates, otherwise, rentals are available. The rink also features a concession stand with snacks and warm drinks.
  • Where: Robson Square – 800 Robson Square, Vancouver
  • When: The rink is open daily from 9 am to 9 pm Sunday to Thursday, and from 9 am to 11 pm Fridays and Saturdays, until February 14.

Go tubing or tobogganing

Snow tubing (Image: Syda Productions/Shutterstock)

When there’s snow on the ground, there are numerous mountains in Metro Vancouver to try your hand at snow tubing and tobogganing:

Go snowshoeing

Whether you’re a regular or a beginner, snowshoeing is a fun and easy way to get outside in the winter, see some marvellous scenery, and have some exercise. See our list of snowshoeing trails near Vancouver, or places to snowshoe with your dog if you want to bring your best friend out.

More fun stuff

Women, Wine & Tech

  • What: Break up the work week and join these ladies for an early evening of networking, snacks, wine and great conversation from some of today’s leading ladies in Vancouver’s tech and business community.
  • Where: iQmetrix – #1210 – 250 Howe Street, Vancouver
  • When: Tuesday, February 28, from 4 to 6:30 pm
  • Register: On Eventbrite, totally free

Puzzled Pint 

  • What: Love solving puzzles? With friends? While eating and drinking? Then Puzzled Pint is for you. All you have to do is solve a puzzle to figure out where it’s being held… then when you get there, do more puzzles!
  • Where: It’s a mystery – to figure it out, solve the puzzle, which will be posted online on February 10
  • When: Tuesday, February 14, at 7 pm
  • Register: Free to attend… but bring some cash for some food and drink.

Afro Hair Savoir Faire

  • What: To celebrate Black History Month, this is a free screening of the film, In Our Heads About Our Hair, which examines issues black women confront regarding hair and self-esteem. Followed by live tutorials and one-on-one consultations.
  • Where: The Waterfront Theatre – 1412 Cartwright Street, Vancouver
  • When: Sunday, February 19, doors at noon, show starts 1 pm
  • Tickets: Email [email protected] with subject line: “Afro Hair Savoir Faire”.
    Limit of four free tickets per household.

Family Day on the Drive

  • What: Ice skating, face painting, balloon twisting and fun for everyone.
  • Where: Britannia Ice Rink – 1661 Parker Street
  • When:Monday, February 13, from 1 pm to 3:30 pm

Kitsilano Family Day Celebration

  • What: Celebrate Family Day at Kitsilano Community Centre with fun for grown ups and children alike.
  • Where: Kitsilano Community Centre – 2690 Larch Street
  • When: February 13, from 10:30 am to 1:30 pm
  • Admission: Free

Destination Wedding & Honeymoon Expo

  • What: Learn everything you need to know about planning a stress-free
    honeymoon and destination wedding. Included in the schedule are a food and trade show, presentations, prizes and Q&As.
  • Where: Executive Airport Plaza Hotel – 7311 Westminster Hwy, Vancouver
  • When: Tuesday, February 28, from 5:30 pm to 9 pm
  • Register: On Eventbrite, totally free for brides, grooms and guests

Happily Ever After

  • What: Enjoy an exclusive event hosted by the wedding and honeymoon travel experts of Flight Centre Weddings & Groups, with free drinks and appetizers, prize giveaways, and special offers.
  • Where: PIER 7 restaurant + bar – 25 Wallace Mews Road, North Vancouver
  • When: Wednesday, February 22, from 6:30 pm to 9 pm
  • Register: On Eventbrite, totally free

The Bitter End

  • What: No censors, no apologies, The Bitter End is a hard edged, intelligent and aggressive approach to the issues of the day. Enjoy a live taping of a talk show like none you’ve ever seen before. Hosted by Simon King with guests TBA.
  • Where: Rickshaw Theatre – 254 E. Hastings Street, Vancouver
  • When: Wednesday, February 15, at 7 pm
  • Tickets: On TicketFly, totally free
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