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Weekend Events in Vancouver Things to do December 8-10, 2023

Add a Comment by Rebecca Bollwitt

There are holiday festivities around every corner of Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley with even more amazing events and activities launching this weekend. Miss604 is proud to sponsor Christmas at Canada Place and Heritage Christmas at Burnaby Village Museum – both free events! Find these and many more things to do around Vancouver listed below:

Friday, December 8th | Saturday, December 9th | Sunday, December 10th

Things to do in Vancouver This Weekend

Weekend Events in Vancouver
Things to do December 8-10, 2023

Friday, December 8, 2023

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Stocking Stuffers for Seniors at London Drugs

Add a Comment by Rebecca Bollwitt

You can make a difference in a local senior’s life this holiday season by participating in Stocking Stuffers for Seniors at London Drugs. They partner with local care homes and charities with a mission to bring more holiday cheer to seniors, in all the communities they serve.

Stocking Stuffers for Seniors London Drugs

Stocking Stuffers for Seniors at London Drugs

Supporters can visit their local London Drugs between now and December 14, 2023 to choose a tag from the Christmas Tree, which is usually in a prominent place but if you can’t find it just ask. The tags contain the wish list (including gifts and/or everyday essentials) for a local senior. Shop around for those items and bring the tag and your items to a check-out to make your contribution.

When seniors are lonely or isolated, it can significantly compromise their mental or physical health. When they receive a gift at Christmas, it reminds them that someone out there cares about them.

Your donated items don’t even need to be purchased from a London Drugs store — any new, non-gift wrapped item is accepted in-store. Check the signage beside the Christmas Tree to see exactly where your gifts are going. They will also have information on the signage from the care home on how they would like to manage the gifts. You still may see very specific instructions or timelines to quarantine gifts before Christmas. Gifts will be tailored to the needs and wants of each partnered care home.

Popular Gifts for Seniors

  • Books or magazines
  • Blankets and throws
  • Kitchen essentials
  • Candy or chocolate
  • Board games or puzzles
  • Slippers or warm socks
  • Toilet paper, paper towels, or tissues
  • Warm clothing like gloves and scarves
  • Travel mugs
  • Gift cards for groceries and toiletries

More information is available online and in-store. Follow London Drugs on Facebook for updates.

The Stocking Stuffers for Seniors campaign began in 2015, with one store location providing help for 500 inner city seniors. The campaign quickly caught on, growing in 2016 to multiple store locations helping more than 2,000 seniors in their communities. In 2017, Stocking Stuffers for Seniors went chain wide across all stores, in all locations — and with incredible support from all our communities, London Drugs has donated gifts to more than 75,000 seniors so far.

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Vancouver Polar Bear Swim 2024

Add a Comment by Alexis Miles

Swimmers and spectators are welcome to the 104th anniversary of the Vancouver Polar Bear Swim on January 1, 2024 at English Bay for the annual cold plunge.

Vancouver Polar Bear Swim

  • Date: January 1, 2024
  • Time: 12:00pm to 4:00pm (official swim time at 2:30pm)
  • Location: English Bay Beach
  • Registration: Participants are encouraged to register online in advance to receive a participation certificate.

Indoor spaces will be available including change rooms, washrooms and warming tents. Coat check, by cash or tap donation, will be available on-site, with all funds going to the Greater Vancouver Food Bank. Swimmers are encouraged to pack light and arrive ready to swim, as coat check space is limited. Portable toilets and fan-favourite activities like live music, entertainment, and food trucks will also be available.

Swimmers entering the 100-yard race should meet behind the start line. The first three swimmers to touch the marker buoy by the lifeguard boat should give their names to the lifeguard. After the swim, participants can pick up their commemorative button at the centre-tower Family Zone or Information Tents spread throughout the beach.

2024 Polar Bear Swim commemorative merchandise, such as hoodies, toque and t-shirts are available for purchase online with a limited amount available for purchase on site. 

Additional safety considerations:

  • Individuals with heart problems should only watch.
  • Children must be accompanied by an adult.
  • Dogs are not permitted in the swim.
  • Alcohol is not permitted. Consumption of alcohol increases the risk of hypothermia.
  • Limit water time to under 15 minutes to prevent excessive body heat loss.
  • Remove clothing only when it’s time to swim. The swim will start with a flag and siren signal.

History of the swim

In 1920, Peter Pantages and nine other brave swimmers started their New Year in style by plunging into the chilly waters of English Bay. The group became known as the Vancouver Polar Bear Club. Since then, the swim has grown into a much loved highlight of the holiday season.  

PeterPantages_Snow_Vancouver Polar Bear Swim
Polar Bear Swim Founder Peter Pantages. Photo 1927 by Stuart Thomson.

Peter’s granddaughter, Lisa Pantages, will also be joining for her 62nd swim – all but two have been at English Bay.

“I’m so excited for another year of celebrating at English Bay, and to experience the energy of everyone who participates,” said Pantages. “Whether it’s your first Polar Bear Swim or your 50th, everyone goes in with the same spirit, and comes out with a fresh outlook on the New Year.”

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Gifts That Support Stanley Park Ecology Society

Add a Comment by Rebecca Bollwitt

You can support Stanley Park education, conservation, and research by bidding on an item in the Stanley Park Ecology Society’s silent auction, on now until December 15th.

Stanley Park Auction items

Gifts That Support Stanley Park Ecology Society

There’s a wonderful array of items that include: A Helijet flight for two; art by Susan Point; hotel stay packages with Times Square Suites and the Westin Bayshore; a Vancouver Canucks bundle;  tickets to the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and Vancouver Opera; bike rentals; Patagonia swag, a fine art print by David Wilson; tickets to the Capilano Suspension Bridge; gift cards for local dining; and so much more!

You can also bid on exclusive Stanley Park Ecology Society (SPES) experiences like a private wildlife walk with their conservation team, a birding walk, and also children’s winter EcoCamp tuition.

You can help become part of a brighter, greener future, for this fundamental park that is enjoyed by over 18 million visitors a year. 

SPES’s Impact

For over 35 years, SPES has provided education, conservation, and research rooted in Stanley Park. They’ve helped conserved habitats and wildlife, creating a haven that captures the hearts of visitors from around the world.

“Invasive species are the second leading threat to biodiversity and improving biodiversity is the strongest natural defense against climate change,” says Executive Director Tricia Collingham. “This year our team removed 500 cubic meters of invasive material which equates 50 dump trucks worth and planted over 1,800 native plants (37 species)!”

  • SPES Public Education and Community Engagement Programs reach more than 50,000 community members
  • SPES co-hosted Vancouver Bird Week Celebration welcomes 40,000 visitors and birding enthusiasts each year.
  • 800 dedicated volunteers, along with nonprofit and corporate partners, contribute over 6,000 hours annually with SPES

“We conduct regular habitat and wildlife monitoring to study trends in the Park’s health and our team educates thousands of people each year,” adds Collingham. “In 2023, we engaged over 5,000 children in environmental education – we are inspiring the next generation through connection with nature!”

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Rebecca Bollwitt/Miss604 is on the Stanley Park Ecology Society’s Board of Directors.

Wreath Giveaway – Aunt Leah’s Christmas Tree Lots

Comments 24 by Rebecca Bollwitt

It’s time for Miss604’s annual Aunt Leah’s Christmas Tree Lots wreath giveaway! Tree lots are now open in Burnaby, and Coquitlam until December 17th with a selection of fresh-cut trees, potted trees, and wreaths.

Aunt Leah’s Christmas Tree Lots

All profits go towards preventing children in foster care from becoming homeless, and mothers in need from losing custody of their children.

Aunt Leah's Christmas Tree Lots

Tree Lot Locations & Hours

  • Vancouver: St. Stephen’s United Church 7025 Granville St, Vancouver
  • Hours: Monday through Sunday from 10:00am to 8:00pm
  • Burnaby: All Saints Anglican Church 7405 Royal Oak Avenue, Burnaby
  • Hours: Monday through Thursday from 1:00pm to 8:00pm; Friday and Sunday from 10:00am to 8:00pm; Saturdays until 5:00pm
  • Coquitlam: Eagle Ridge United Church 2813 Glen Dr, Coquitlam
  • Hours: Monday through Thursday from 1:00pm to 8:00pm and Friday through Sunday from 10:00am to 8:00pm

Youth make up the fastest-growing population of homeless people in Canada. As they try to transition into adulthood, their needs are more diverse and ever-changing, requiring deeper, more customized support. The Aunt Leah’s tree sales are a major source of revenue for the housing and programs Aunt Leah’s provides for vulnerable foster youth and young moms and babies.

Wreath Giveaway

I’m giving away a beautifully handcrafted holiday wreath from Aunt Leah’s, here’s how you can enter to win:

Win a Wreath from Aunt Leah’s Christmas Tree Lots

Aunt Leah’s  started selling Christmas trees in the 1990s when government funding was cut. The Christmas tree sales have increased every year and the Tree Lots have become Aunt Leah’s most successful fundraiser raising over $800,000 with 100% of the profits from tree sales going to support its programs. For many Metro Vancouver families buying an Aunt Leah’s tree is a cherished part of their holiday tradition.

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