There’s a reason why I have a history category on my site, I love sharing about where I live and how it’s changed, re-shaped and grown over the years.
I think I’ve turned into a decent resource for West End history (although I’m constantly exploring and learning) but with over 20 other neighbourhoods in the city, there’s so much more to explore — this is where Jane’s Walk comes in.
Last May, Think City, along with 600-plus Vancouverites celebrated the legacy of urban activist and writer Jane Jacobs with a series of free walking tours called Jane’s Walks. Over 30 Jane’s Walks were held in neighbourhoods all over the city â€“ from Strathcona to the West End, Commercial Drive to Kitsilano, the Renfrew Ravine to False Creek and including famed Vancouver landmarks such as Nat Bailey Stadium and Wreck Beach.
Each walk was hosted by a citizen who donated their time to bring stories, history and awareness to their place in our city. These hosts included such Vancouver notables as John Atkin, Gordon Price, Wendy Pederson and Ned Jacobs. The result was overwhelming enthusiasm on the part of Vancouverites, with many people attending multiple walks over the two days, despite the rain. Jane’s Walk is held simultaneously in 11 cities across the country and this past year was a first for Vancouver
This year citizen volunteers will have the opportunity to lead a walk in their community, sharing their personal history tidbits or where you can find the best cup of coffee or even explaining the differences between Kerrisdale and Marpole, or the Downtown Eastside and the Downtown Lower Eastside. The walks will take place the first weekend in May, and you can find all the details here.
Leading up to the walks there will be a fundraiser called “Vancouver Stories” at Heritage Hall on Main Street March 19th at 7:00pm, tickets are $50 each and can be purchased through Think City.
It’s a cocktail party and silent auction hosted by Bill Richardson of the CBC and will also feature Andreas Schroeder, Shirley Chan and Vancouver history guru John Atkin.
If you would like to attend this party please leave a comment below including a small note about your own neighbourhood or perhaps if you lead a walk, where you would go. I’ll select a winner who will get a ticket to the cocktail party and I’ll also try and expand on their note in a dedicated blog post about their neighbourhood.
Update March 12, 2009 – the winner of the ticket to Vancouver Stories is Jen B