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A celebration of local Hong Kongers and their culture is happening in Vancouver next month.
The inaugural Vancouver Hong Kong Fair, presented by HK House, will take place at SFU Harbour Centre on Saturday, May 14.
From 12 to 6 pm, guests can visit the free event to learn about the city’s Hong Konger community while also checking out the numerous vendors and activities.
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According to Heiky Kwan of HK House, anyone who is interested in supporting Hong Kongers and learning more about Hong Kong is invited to the fair.
“There’s a real lack of safe spaces for Hong Kongers to be themselves within the city,” Kwan told Daily Hive. “The fair is a free gathering of Vancouver-based Hong Kongers to celebrate and preserve their unique culture. It’s also a safe and welcoming space where folks can support the community’s artisans, creators and small businesses.”
Vancouver Hong Kong Fair will feature more than 50 booths and displays showcasing Hong Konger artisans, associations, products, Cantonese classes, and crafts. The volunteer-run event will also include movie screenings, painting parties, mahjong and games stationed throughout SFU Harbour Centre space.
Tickets for Vancouver Hong Kong Fair are currently sold out, though limited tickets will be available at the door on the day of the event.
Esther Yuen of HK House told Daily Hive that the group was formed in July 2020 when different folks within the diaspora realized there was a missing gap in the Hong Konger community.
“We didn’t know of any Hong Konger organizations that were predominantly English speaking, serving both those who grew up here and new immigrants who wanted to immerse themselves within the fabric of Vancouver’s society,” said Yuen. “A group of us founded the organization to actively support and enhance Hong Kong culture in Vancouver. HK House is a safe space for our community, where Hong Kongers and allies can be our full selves unapologetically.”
HK House has organized a number of events for the community over the past two years, including a neighbourhood cleanup, a scavenger hunt, hikes, an English conversation club, and more.
For Kwan and Yuen, it’s important for Vancouver’s Hong Kongers to celebrate and strengthen their cultural ties.
“Hong Kongers have a different language as well as different traditions and customs,” explained Kwan. “We play mahjong differently than Taiwanese folks, our food is different from other folks of Han ancestry, we celebrate weddings differently. This is all a part of our identity, and to lose it feels like we’re losing a piece of our soul.”
“We hope attendees will leave the fair feeling more informed about Hong Kongers and our distinct culture,” added Yuen. “We hope they’ll learn a bit about our food, music, and art while also celebrating the many values we have in common.
“Of course, one of our main goals is to support Hong Kong artisans, creators and small businesses, so we hope folks will come to the fair ready to shop.”
When: May 14, 2022
Time: 12 to 6 pm
Where: SFU Harbour Centre – 555 West Hastings, Vancouver
Cost: Free. Limited tickets will be available at the door on the day of the event