26 things to do in Vancouver this Thanksgiving weekend

Oct 7 2016, 10:07 pm

It’s Thanksgiving long weekend, so spend time with your family. Or, you know, do something fun (jokes).

If you’re short on ideas here are 26 things to do in Vancouver this long weekend.

Saturday, October 8

Go Ice Skating for free

  • What: Eight Vancouver ice rinks are offering free skating to welcome skate season in and to celebrate the Thanksgiving long weekend.
  • When: Saturday, October 8 and Sunday, October 9
  • Where: Various rinks. Click here for details.

Potters House of Horrors

  • What: Get ready to scream and cower in fear: Potters House of Horrors has reopened for the Halloween season.
  • Where: 12530 72nd Avenue, Surrey
  • When: Open now until October 31. Lil’ Haunters is from 4 to 7 pm, all-ages family hour is from 4 to 6:30 pm, and the regular ultra-scary show is from 7 to 10 pm.
  • Cost: Starts at $10 for tickets. Click here to purchase.

21st Annual Fort Langley Cranberry Festival

  • What: There is no better way to celebrate all things cranberries by visiting the 21st annual Fort Langley Cranberry Festival. Cranberries are BC’s largest berry crop and October is the best time to get your hands on this, tart, ruby red, antioxidant- rich fruit.
  • When: Saturday, October 8 from 8 am to 5 pm
  • Where: Fort Langley Village and Fort Langley Historic Site
  • Admission: Free (admission charged for Fort Langley Historic Site)

Vancouver International Improv Festival

  • What: The 17th Annual Vancouver International Improv Festival returns to Granville Island with over 30 interactive performances, inspiring workshops, an opening night gala and more.
  • Where: Performance Works – 1218 Cartwright St, Vancouver
  • When: October 4-8
  • Price: Tickets are $15-$18 online

New Forms Festival

  • What: The New Forms Media Society (NFMS) is a non-profit society and media arts organization founded in 2000 that exists to unite creative communities, push artistic and conceptual boundaries, and explore digital media as an art form. With their New Forms Festival (NFF), the organization aims to raise the profile of Canadian artists, media arts, underground and subversive arts movements and practices both in Canada and abroad.
  • Where: 560 Seymour, Vancouver
  • When: October 7 – 8
  • Price: Tickets are $40-$75 online

Vancouver International Film Festival (VIFF)

  • What: The Vancouver International Film Festival is going into their 35th year of showing some of the world’s best cinema and there is something for every taste. If the catalogue is looking too intimidating, be sure to check out our list of 10 films to check out at this year’s VIFF.
  • Where: Various locations
  • When: September 29 – October 14
  • Price: $13-$15

Fright Nights

  • What: The annual Fright Nights takeover Playland on select nights throughout October and feature seven haunted houses, 15 rides and two thrilling live shows.
  • Where: Playland – 2901 E Hastings Street, Vancouver
  • When: Various days and times between October 7-31
  • Price: Tickets are $22-$79 online

The Concierge of Vancouver – Matchmaker Productions

  • What: “Housing prices.” “Urgh, I know right?” In what’s become both a conversation starter and stopper in one of the most expensive cities in the world, it’s about time that we got our own homegrown comedy on the topic. The Concierge of Vancouver is a satirical take on the Vancouver housing crisis, and will probably feature more real estate buzzwords than another authoritative article on the effects of the foreign buyer tax.
  • When: October 7 to 16
  • Where: Studio 1398 (Granville Island)

Blueprint 19 Year Anniversary

  • The annual Blueprint Anniversary is back, and this year it’s celebrating its 19th year during the Thanksgiving Long Weekend – which means, it’s party time! Guests this year include Dillon Francis, RL Grime, GRiZ, What So Not, and Rezz!
  • When: Saturday, October 8 at 7 pm
  • Where: Pacific Coliseum – 2901 E Hastings Street
  • Tickets: Available online from $104.80 to $126.40. All ages

Teen Angst Night

  • What: Teen Angst Night is a comedic reading series where readers share embarrassing poetry, songs, letters, journals, diaries, essays, and stories from their teenage years. Hosted by Sara Bynoe.
  • When: October 8 at 8 pm
  • Where: Fox Cabaret (2321 Main Street)
  • Tickets: $10 in advance, $15 at the door, available here

West End Farmer’s Market Harvest Festival

  • What: Celebrate the bounty of fall at the West End Farmer’s Market Harvest Festival, and enter (or just enjoy the results of) their annual Fall Fruit Pie Competition. Other festival fun includes apple tastings, squash variety displays, and seasonal recipes.
  • Where: 1100 Comox St, next to Nelson Park, between Thurlow and Bute streets) – Vancouver
  • When: Saturday, October 8,  from 9 am to 2 pm
  • Info: Online at eatlocal.org

Sunday, October 9

Ghost Train in Stanley Park

  • What: This year’s Ghost Train is inspired by the Day of the Dead. Be serenaded by a mariachi band of cockroaches, ride the train through the tunnel of flames with the Aztec Lord and Lady of Death, and picnic with in a gorgeous graveyard where friendly souls return to dance with a twelve foot skeleton.
  • Where: Stanley Park
  • When: October 8-31 at various times
  • Price: Tickets are $6-$11 online


  • What: New York dream pop/electronic band Phantogram are touring their upcoming release, Three, which is out on October 7. Following the success of their two previous studio albums, Voices and Eyelid Movies, the band toured immensely for a few years. They also kept busy with their side project Big Grams, which if you’re a fan, you should definitely check out.
  • When: Sunday, October 9 at 8 pm
  • Where: Commodore Ballroom – 868 Granville Street

Check out a Thanksgiving sale

  • What: There are numerous sales taking place throughout Vancouver this weekend, so if you’re in the market to catch a deal, we suggest you hop aboard the consumer train. Check out this roundup of 10 sales happening this weekend.
  • When: Saturday, October 8 to Monday, October 10
  • Where: Various locations.

Harvest Haus 2016

  • What: Harvest Haus is back for another year and tickets are now on sale for the city’s largest Oktoberfest celebration that’ll have you clinking your steins and cheering “Prost!”
  • Where: Queen Elizabeth Theatre Plaza – 650 Hamilton Street, Vancouver
  • When: Until Sunday, October 9
  • Tickets: Start at $25. Click here to purchase.

Eastside Flea

  • What: Shop local, mingle with friends, enjoy a hot toddy, listen to live bands, eat some delicious food, and check out community art at the Eastside Flea market.
  • Where: The Ellis Building – 1024 Main St, Vancouver
  • When: Friday, October 7 to Sunday, October 9 and Friday, October 21 to Sunday, October 23; Fridays from 6 to 10 pm, weekends from 10 am to 4 pm
  • Admission: $3 for one day, or $5 for a weekend pass, on the door

James & Jamesy

  • What: Hailed as one of the most popular Fringe duos ever, these British maestros of theatre are back with In The Dark, a comedic adventure of discovery and creation, performed in darkness and lit exclusively by their illuminating costumes.
  • Where: Waterfront Theatre – 1412 Cartwright Street, Vancouver
  • When: Wednesdays to Sundays, from October 5 to October 16; shows at 8 pm, except on Sundays, when shows start at 2 pm instead.
  • Tickets: On Tickets Tonight, $18-$27

Visit a pumpkin patch

  • What: With Halloween just around the corner, it might be fun to spend a quality Thanksgiving long weekend Sunday with the family (or partner or roommate or whomever) choosing out the perfect pumpkin. We’ve compiled a list of 11 pumpkin patches you should check out.
  • Where: Various locations.
  • When: Sunday, October 9 (or any day your little heart desires)

Ridiculous Videos = Hilarious Scenes

  • What: Audio/Video draws inspiration from movies, suggested Youtube videos, or other prerecorded sketches to improvise a great show. When hilarious video and fantastic improv collide, you’re going to get some amazing results.
  • Where: Havana – 1212 Commercial Drive, Vancouver
  • When: Sunday, October 9; 9 to 10 pm

Streetfight Improv!

  • What: Streetfight is a hilarious hour of head to head short form improv. Every week, ten of the funniest improvisers in town compete back and forth with short scenes vying for your laughter.
  • Where: Havana Theatre – 1212 Commercial Drive, Vancouver
  • When: Sunday, October 9; 7:30 to 8:30 pm

All Together Now

  • What: Fake eyeballs, pinball machines, vintage artificial limbs: these are just a few of the off-beat collections you can expect to find at the Museum of Vancouver’s exhibition, All Together Now.
  • When: On display from June 23, 2016 to January 8, 2017
  • Where: Museum of Vancouver – 1100 Chestnut Street, Vancouver

Monday, October 10


  • What: Might want to sleep at the Commodore if you’re checking out Phantogram, because the next night, Grouplove takes over the venue. (Ok, we are kidding. Please don’t sleep over at the Commodore.) The indie pop band made us all dance and smile with their catchy single “Tongue Tied” back in 2011, and they continue to do so with their latest album Big Mess.
  • When: Monday, October 10 at 7 pm
  • Where: Commodore Ballroom – 868 Granville Street
  • Tickets: Available online at $30.50. 19+

Turkey Trot 10k run

  • What: This scenic and flat 10 km course starts at Granville Island and loops over the Burrard Bridge to the north side Seawall before turning at Science World and heading back along the south side Seawall to Performance Works on Granville Island.
  • Where: Granville Island on Cartwright Street
  • When: Monday, October 10; 8:30 am

Laugh Gallery with Graham Clark

  • What: Graham Clark hosts this wonderfully eclectic show where you get to laugh at jokes and you might win a great prize.
  • Where: Havana – 1212 Commercial Drive, Vancouver
  • When: Monday, October 10; 9 to 10 pm

Yoga at Hope

  • What: Join Live Well Yoga for a gentle yoga practice at the new Hope Centre for Mental Health and Psychiatric Study.
  • Where: The Hope Centre – 1337 St. Andrews Avenue, North Vancouver
  • When: Monday, October 10; 12:05 to 1:05 pm

Celebrate Thanksgiving

Whether you’re with your family or not, take time to spend Thanksgiving with your loved ones. Eat good food, and take the time to appreciate everything great in your life.