Local

If you’re in the Metro Vancouver area, you can find anything from dining, to shopping and other events. There’s lots to see and do in Vancouver, and you’ll find some of it here. Be sure to view the Events Calendar for local celebrations.

Cougars sneak into Port Moody Millennium Line station

While TransLink usually deals with human fare evaders, two cougars managed to bypass security and wander the tracks on the Evergreen extension of the Millennium Line on Friday morning. In the security footage below, TransLink stated in their Facebook post that the felines triggered the guideway intrusion alarm as they walked through the Inlet Centre station in Port Moody.

The late night visit took place just after 4:00 am PDT, well after transit service concluded for the day. Transit staff checked track-side fences and involved the BC Conservation Officers for assistance. Inlet Centre station sits below Barnet Highway and is not elevated.

Cat red-handed… A pair of cougars set off the intrusion alarm last night at Inlet Station on the Evergreen Extension. The meow-nificent pair were spotted on CCTV walking along the guideway through the station! Morning staff searched the line and were unable to find the animals before morning service began. We're not pawsitive how the duo gained access to the guideway, and we will be inspecting fencing along the line to ensure there are no holes or obvious ways for wildlife to get inside. All stations have closed circuit cameras which allow us to see what triggers intrusion alarms at any point. While this incident involving cougars is a first, it's not uncommon to see wildlife on the system. Our staff worked closely with Conservation Officers for guidance and will closely watch the station for signs of the clawver cats return. ^sk

Posted by TransLink on Friday, April 21, 2017

Source: TransLink

Welcome spring with Sakura Days Japan Fair 2017

The Tea Ceremony in 2016

The tea ceremony is the embodiment of poise and hospitality.

After a long, cold and snowy winter, the bright pink blossoms of spring are just around the corner with the Sakura Days Japan Festival. Returning to VanDusen Botanical Gardens, this two-event celebrates everything Japanese in a fun festival atmosphere.

Spend the weekend with Japanese culture through live performances, music, food, arts, demonstrations and crafts and more under the pastel sakura — the Japanese cherry blossom. The gardens host this celebration from 11:00 am PDT to 7:00 pm PDT on Saturday, April 8th and from 11:00 am PDT to 5:00 pm PDT Sunday, April 9th, 2017.

As the festival takes place in the outdoors, bring appropriate attire as it may be raining. Parking is limited, so save the hassle and take transit (either the #17 bus, or walk from the Oakridge-41st Avenue Canada Line Station west along 41st Avenue, and then north along Oak Street) to reach VanDusen Botanical Gardens (about a 15-20 minute stroll).

Paid admission is required and tickets are available for purchase online.

Dates and countries revealed for 2017 Honda Celebration of Light

The United States of America's show in 2016

The United States of America’s show in 2016

This summer, the evening skies over English Bay will light up with a trio of pyrotechnic performances for the 2017 Honda Celebration of Light.

The three teams representing their countries in the annual fireworks competition are:

  • Akariya Fireworks for Japan on Saturday, July 29th
  • Jubilee Fireworks for the United Kingdom on Wednesday, August 2nd
  • Royal Pyrotechnie for Canada on Saturday, August 5th

On each day of the fireworks, live music, food and other activities are available to entertain the crowds. In addition to watching (for free) from the beach, there’s paid seating available.

The organizers behind the event are hosting a vote for the top three Canadian songs as part of Canada’s 150th birthday. To cast your ballot, visit the Honda Celebration of Light web site.

Source: Honda Celebration of Light

Let TransLink know how you feel about fares

Compass Cards

TransLink wants your feedback on its current fare structure.

Are you frustrated with the cost of taking transit around Metro Vancouver? Does the current zone system confuse you? Now’s your chance to let TransLink hear your opinion with the transit fare review survey.

Current fares on SkyTrain, bus and SeaBus are determined by how many zones travelled. While all bus rides are one zone, SkyTrain has three zones — but the number of zones differs depending on the time of day (three zones during peak/rush hours and one zone for evening hours/weekend/holidays). This perplexes people not familiar with the system and those who use it infrequently.

This feedback aims to make adjustments to the fare structure based on distance travelled, time of travel and method of transport used.

So what would you like to see? Fares based on distance (such as paying less to travel from Joyce-Collingwood to Metrotown), time of day (more for travel during rush hour Monday morning instead of early afternoon on a Wednesday) or service (it’s cheaper to take a bus than it is to ride SkyTrain or the West Coast Express).

The survey closes on Friday, February 17th, 2017.

Source: TransLink

VanDusen Gardens glows for Festival of Lights 2016

Once again, the lovely VanDusen Botanical Gardens in Vancouver is beautifully decorated as part of their annual Festival of Lights.

Thousands upon thousands of colourful bulbs wind along the trees and flower beds to create stunning Christmas displays. The snow left over from the storms earlier in the week made for an even more magical experience.

Additional photos from Saturday evening’s walk are online in Gallery.

The Festival of Lights is on until Monday, January 2nd, 2017. Tickets are available online or in person at the gardens.

Evergreen Extension to open December 2, 2016

Evergreen ExtensionThe much awaited Evergreen Extension to the Millennium Line opens to passengers on Friday, December 2nd, 2016. This addition to the SkyTrain network links Coquitlam and Port Moody into the rest of the rapid transit system that serves Burnaby, New Westminster, Surrey and Vancouver.

Service begins at 12:00 pm PST with festivities held at the Coquitlam Centre station. Updates to TransLink’s web site with transit routes and schedules go live on Monday, November 28th, 2016. Changes to bus service come into effect on Monday, December 19th, 2016. TransLink will also have added staff from Monday, November 21st through to Thursday, December 22nd, 2016 to help with questions on bus service, connections and schedules.

Source: The Buzzer Blog

Service changes for the Expo and Millennium SkyTrain Lines on Oct 22

TransLink unveiled some significant changes with the way trains travel over the Expo and Millennium Lines. On Saturday, October 22nd, 2016, all Millennium Line trains will run between VCC-Clark and Lougheed Town Centre stations while Expo Line trains run Waterfront to King George and Waterfront to Production Way-University.

These changes relate to the upcoming introduction of the Evergreen Line linking Port Moody and Coquitlam up with the rest of the SkyTrain system, which is expected to open before year’s end. The Evergreen Line no longer becomes its own separate line, but extending the Millennium Line into the afore-mentioned communities.

This means that the Millennium Line no longer runs to or from Waterfront station in downtown Vancouver and that Columbia is not the last point of transfer between the two lines; these are now Production Way-University and Lougheed Town Centre.

So, to remember:

Expo Line

  • Waterfront (Vancouver) to King George (Surrey)
  • Waterfront (Vancouver) to Production Way-University (Burnaby)

Millennium Line

  • VCC-Clark (Vancouver) to Lougheed Town Centre (Burnaby)

A visualization of how the two lines will appear when service changes on Saturday, October 22nd, 2016. Omitted from the diagram are the Evergreen Extension and Canada Line.
Updated SkyTrain Service Map

These changes do not affect service on the Canada Line.

Source: TransLink

Evergreen Line to open before end of 2016

The Burquitlam Evergreen Line station under construction.

The Burquitlam Evergreen Line station under construction.

Beset with delays over its planned opening, the Evergreen Line was to begin service the summer of 2016, then pushed into 2017. Today, the Ministry of Transportation made public a new date: service is to start before December 25, 2016. However, a specific day was not mentioned.

The new SkyTrain line links Port Moody and Coquitlam up to the existing Millennium Line through the Lougheed Town Centre station in Burnaby.

The ministry states that over 90 percent of the Evergreen Line is built.

Source: CBC

Pokémon GO trainers can enter the PNE free on August 20

The Pacific National Exhibition opens this Saturday, August 20th and for one hour between 11:00 am and 12:00 pm, Pokémon GO trainers can enter for free by showing the Pokémon GO app on their mobile phone.

The Fair at the PNE runs Saturday, August 20th through Monday, September 5th, 2016 and is closed on both Monday, August 22th and 29th. Gates open at 11:00 am.

Source: Twitter

Eat! Vancouver Food + Cooking Festival returns fall 2016

The 14th annual Eat! Vancouver Food + Cooking Festival is back for another delicious year with a smorgasbord of dining events October 4th through 7th, 2016.

This year there are new experiences designed to get you up and close with some of Canada’s best chefs. 2016 edition of EAT! Vancouver will be highlighted by a Dinner Series over October 4th and 5th, BETA 5 chocolate demo on Monday, October 4th and a Food Trends Tasting Panel on Tuesday, October 5th, the Eat! Harvest feast on Thursday, October 6th, and lastly, An Intimate Evening with Chef Michael Smith on Friday, October 7th. Proceeds from these benefit the Greater Vancouver Food Bank.

Unlike earlier years, there is no one central location hosting a marketplace of vendors, restaurants and seminars. Each event is designed to create an a more inclusive atmosphere where patrons get to know their chefs and have an intimate involvement with their creations and techniques.

Tickets for these culinary sessions are available online through the Eat! Vancouver web site.

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