Canadian Country Music Awards 2009

Comments 2 by Rebecca Bollwitt

canadian country music awardsThis afternoon Vancouver is hosting the Canadian Country Music Awards at GM Place.

Thanks to Gabrielle Durning of the Uptown Giftbox Company, there will be a team of bloggers in the official Gift Lounge to cover a slice of the excitement happening all morning, noon, and night. A few weeks ago I put the call out to find some bloggers and some great talent stepped up.

Gabrielle has not only put together the entire Gift Lounge for the awards but she has opened it up for liveblogging and live Twitter coverage from this group. Throughout the day performers, nominees, celebrities, and legendary talent will make their way through the Gift Lounge, and the blogging squad will be there to document it. From host Jason Priestley, to Paul Brandt, Jann Arden, and Reba McEntire.

On top of that, each blogger will be getting their own gift pack which they can donate to the charity of their choice at the end of the awards. Gabrielle’s entire initiative is pretty innovative and dare I say a big step for blogging kind.

Unfortunately when I got home from Twestival last night (where we raised about $3,000 for the BC Childrens Hospital Foundation) a fever hit me and from about 8:00pm until about 6:00am this morning I’ve been fighting it. With laboured breathing I’m trying to determine if I can make it through the day at the Gift Lounge but I’m also taking into consideration the fact that I don’t want to give whatever I have to hundreds of people.

In case I don’t make it, you can check out any of the blogs listed here for coverage today and I believe everyone will be using #CCMA as the Twitter tag today.

  • Heather Watson
  • Fraser Valley Pulse
  • Stimuli Mag
  • My Urban Suburban
  • Allan Cole Roberts
  • Live Twitter Coverage of the CCMA Uptown Gift Lounge

    Update: The first photos are the day from the livebloggers are being posted.

    Photo credit: Fraser Valley Pulse on Flickr

    Update: Fashion blogger Terri Portratz is also at the CCMA’s in another capacity. You can follow her tweets, including her recent announcement of Jason Priestley’s arrival, on Twitter @tportratz.

    Terri and Rachel of Larry Designs with Jason Priestley – Photo: Hez

    Update: Erica Ehm is chatting with guests in the lounge. Check out Cole’s posts for some great photos.

    Update: The always fabulous Heather Watson (one of the livebloggers today) has some great coverage with plenty of photos.

    Update: Gearing up for the awards ceremony, here’s a quick list of what’s in store courtesy of Country Music Vancouver:

    CCMA Award Performers:
    Reba McEntire, Martina McBride, Terri Clark, George Canyon with Crystal Shawanda and Richard Marx, Doc Walker, Jessie Farrell, Aaron Pritchett, Emerson Drive, Johnny Reid, Gord Bamford, Paul Brandt and Jann Arden. There will also be special performances from Dean Brody, Victoria Banks and Tara Oram.

    CCMA Award Presenters:
    Martina McBride, George Canyon, Aaron Pritchett, The Higgins, Jason Blaine, One More Girl, Paul McGuire, Jillian Harris (from “The Bachelorette”), Amber Marshall and Graham Wardle (from the cast of CBC’s “Heartland”), The Wilsons, Shane Yellowbird, Patricia Conroy, Deric Ruttan, Jason McCoy, Colin James, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Hey Romeo and Ultimate Fan, Richard DeJonge.

    CCMA Awards’ Leading Nominees:
    Johnny Reid (six), George Canyon (five), Victoria Banks (five), Dean Brody and Gord Bamford (four).

    Hez with Mason Raymond

    Update: Heather Watson is reporting that some of the Vancouver Canucks have made it into the Gift Lounge.

    Update: More photos from Heather are available on her Flickr (above).

    Invent the Future with BC Hydro

    Add a Comment by Rebecca Bollwitt

    The Invent the Future contest is looking for your latest and greatest ideas on energy conservation, sustainable energy creation, a sustainable product, or even a sustainable lifestyle choice.

    inventthefutureHere are some of the basic details of the contest:

  • Open to young people ages 13 to 24
  • Individuals or groups (of no more than 2 people) can enter
  • Submission must be in the form of a video or essay
  • Essay submissions should be between 350- 500 words
  • Video submissions should be between 30 to 60 seconds in length
  • There is a ton of prizes to be won, from $2,500 to Flip video cameras and tickets to the 2010 Winter Olympics. There will be a people’s choice category and the grand prize winners will be selected by a panel of judges (which is where I come in).

    I’m on the prestigious panel of judges for Invent the Future along with big name film and television industry player, digital media innovators, and the Vancouver Canucks own Ryan Kesler. We’ll be judging entries based on their concept plan, feasibility, cost effectiveness, originality, and the quality of the submission (writing style or video production).

    You can check out the 2008 Invent the Future grand prize winners to get an idea of the submission styles. Below is the winning video entry by Sacha Husband (16, Vancouver) and the winning essay by Cameron Ring (14, of Fort Nelson) can be downloaded here.

    Entries for 2009 are already flowing in and can be viewed in this gallery online. I know I’m going to have a really fun time going through these.

    You can follow @InventTheFuture on Twitter and should you know any inventive and creative individuals (13-24) be sure to pass along this information. The contest closes November 8, 2009.

    Biographies of the Dead and Dying at Vancouver Fringe Festival 2009

    Add a Comment by Rebecca Bollwitt

    Andrew Templeton’s Biographies of the Dead and Dying was my first Fringe Festival show in about 10 years. Taking place at the Havana Theatre on Commercial Drive, tucked behind the Havana Restaurant, the two actors on the minimalist set sure do pack an emotional punch with their powerful performance.

    Biographies of the Dead and Dying is chilling but not in the way you may expect. It’s frank, open, and a little bit crazy but that’s the point… aren’t we all. I don’t want to give too much away but Heather Lindsay does a remarkable job of deconstructing her character before our eyes.

    A few items to note. The first is that the play features nudity as well as mature language so it’s not quite suitable for the kiddies. The second is that the savory roasted garlic aroma from the restaurant will drive you crazy if you haven’t had dinner. I recommend having a bite at Havana before the show, but leave yourself enough time as it’s a very busy place.

    The Vancouver Fringe Festival will run until September 20th and host performances in dozens of venues across town in venues that range from trailers, hotel rooms, and stages. You can purchase tickets online and you’ll need a Fringe membership as well (which is just $5).

    Spread the Net Student Challenge 2009

    Comments 3 by Rebecca Bollwitt

    For the third year Rick Mercer is challenging high school, college, and university students across the nation to raise awareness and funds for his Spread the Net initiative through UNICEF Canada.

    Rick Mercer at SFU Rick Mercer at SFU

    At SFU this morning Mercer announced he was pitting the East versus the West to see who can raise the most funds for the cause. The winning school on each coast will play host to an episode of the Mercer Report in 2010. The goal this year is to raise enough for 500,000 bed nets ($275,000) or enough to deliver 27,500 nets to children and families.

    Spread the Net - SFU Rick Mercer at SFU

    Founded by Belinda Stronach and Rick Mercer following their trip to Africa in 2005, Spread the Net aims to ease the devastating impacts of malaria through an affordable solution. The funds raised by students will go toward the purchase of insecticide-treated bed nets for locations in Liberia and Rwanda.

    2008 Finalists – Mercer Report

    Registration opened today and if your school isn’t already signed up, you can register online and campaign until February 2010. Registered schools will appear in the Spread the Net directory and can accept donations online.

    You can follow the initiative on Twitter @SpreadTheNet for updates or follow Rick’s hi-jinx, @RickMercer.

    Vancouver History: Before and After Photos Part Five

    Comments 7 by Rebecca Bollwitt

    Last week I didn’t realize how long I had been running the “then and now” photo series so we had Part Three, twice. I’m back on track this week and I’ve decided to feature transit and bus transport.

    Vancouver 1948 – Photo credit: Jack Lindsay

    With everyone heading back to school and with commuting options changing, let’s take a look back at what Vancouver bus travel looked like when the city was young. Continue reading this post ⟩⟩