BC Adventures – Our To Do Picks for July 24 – 30

This week in BC: Bliss out for Camp Moomba, fundraise for the Knights of Columbus, cheer on the Abbotsford Rugby 7s and get crafty in Comox

2,000 people are expected at the eighth annual Camp Moomba Yogathon & Blissfest

What to do in BC this week

See the Lion King at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre – July 13-Aug 8

Hard to know if that roar raising the roof off Queen Elizabeth Theatre is coming from the characters in Disney’s The Lion King or just from a really enthusiastic audience. We’re guessing the latter, considering that this Tony Award-winning Broadway blockbuster, running from July 13 to August 8, had Newsweek declaring it “a landmark event in entertainment,” and The New York Times raving, “There is simply nothing else like it.” Sounds like it’s worth making a night out of, so why not check out the special Lion King package at Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver (791 W. Georgia St.), featuring one night of luxury accommodation and premium Saturday-night seats for the show. For more info on this package, call 604-689-9333 or visit fourseasons.com/vancouver. 

Book a Kooza Package at the Fairmont Hotel
 – July 22 – Aug 22
How can you top a night under the Big Top? It’s pretty hard to outshine Cirque du Soleil’s Kooza, but you can up the entertainment ante by bedding down at The Fairmont Hotel Vancouver (900 West Georgia) and Fairmont Pacific Rim (1038 Canada Place), now offering special packages on selected dates from July 22 to August 22. From $449 per night, The Fairmont Hotel Vancouver invites you to enjoy luxe overnight accommodation, two Kooza-inspired cocktails in 900 West Lounge and two level-one show tickets. And, from $579 per night, Fairmont Pacific Rim’s package buys you an overnighter in a deluxe guestroom, two cocktails in the Lobby Lounge, two level-two seats and a full breakfast à deux. To book, call the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver at 1-866-540-4452 or the Fairmont Pacific Rim at 1-800-441-1414.

Bliss out at the Camp Moomba Yogathon and Blissfest – July 24

Some Vancouverites are bending over backwards, quite literally, to help send B.C. kids to summer camp. And it’s not just any old camp, either; it’s the only one in Canada geared to kids impacted by HIV/AIDS. About 2,000 flexible philanthropists are expected to turn out for the eighth annual Camp Moomba Yogathon & Blissfest on July 24 at UBC’s MacInnes Field, site of the biggest outdoor yoga class in Western Canada. But you don’t have to do a single down dog to do good at this fundraising fest, just enjoy the live music, kids’ corner and vendor stalls selling sustainable consumer products, clothing, services and delicacies. Registration is $30 per person, with free admission for kids 12 and under. For more details, visit campmoombayogathon.com.

Attend the Knights of Columbus Fundraiser – July 24
For most of us, it’s way too early to think about Christmas. But not for the Knights of Columbus, a Catholic consortium hosting a July 24 fundraiser to purchase a new nativity scene for the All Saints Parish (821 Fairfax Street, Coquitlam). But don’t worry; it won’t be a no-fun affair full of God-fearing folk; instead, you’ll enjoy a boisterous night featuring non-denominational festivities in the form of a hearty buffet dinner, live blues band and a cash bar. Tickets for the bash, starting at 6:30 p.m. with a cocktail reception, are available at the door for $25 per person. To pre-order yours, or for further information, email Tony at tonyc1@shaw.ca. 

Cheer on the Abbotsford Rugby 7s Tournament – July 24 & 25
Sports action is only one of the activities on the agenda at the Abbotsford Rugby 7s Tournament on July 24 and 25 at Rotary Stadium in Abbotsford Exhibition Park (32470 Haida Drive). Along with exciting on-field action, where top local and international teams will battle it out for mastery over the ball, you’ll also enjoy live entertainment courtesy of a quartet of DJs, a beer garden, ethnic food court, multi-culti exhibitions and a family fun zone. What’s more, game fans can meet and greet Waisale Serevi, considered the greatest Rugby 7s player of all time, then while away the summer night at the rockin’ after-parties. For more information on this fun festival, go to abbotsfordsevens.com.

Check out Salt Spring’s Foxglove Farm Festival – July 25
Planning a trip to Salt Spring Island’s famed Saturday Market this weekend? Here’s a tip: why not stay an extra day and squeeze in the Foxglove Farm Festival, too? This free outdoor exposition on July 25 invites guests to enjoy a day of live music, guided tours, kids’ activities and delicious prepared farm food, all set on the grounds of Foxglove Farm’s 120-acre retreat (1200 Mt. Maxwell Road, Salt Spring Island). Be sure to try the homemade ice cream, and don’t forget to bring along a recyclable shopping bag to take home some fresh-picked organic produce, too. Catch it from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., with more details at foxglovefarmbc.ca.

Hear Live Music at Granville Island – July 25

Now that the HST has edged up the price of most forms of entertainment, it’s nice to know that you can still fulfill your culture quotient without having to rob a bank. Just check out All Over the Map’s free one-hour music-and-dance series at Ron Basford Park on Granville Island on selected Sundays during July and August, starting at 2 p.m. On July 25, this global series goes ethnic with the African Stages Association, delivering a fun-filled performance that celebrates the dark continent’s ritual and folklore. And no worries if it rains, either; shows will be moved into nearby Performance Works. For more details, go to granvilleisland.com.

See Queertopia at the Roundhouse – July 27 – Aug 14
There’s nothing queer about an arts festival, right? Not unless you’re talking about Queertopia, an arts exhibition running from July 27 to August 14 at the Roundhouse Community Centre (181 Roundhouse Mews, Vancouver). This multi-disciplinary mash-up showcases the culture of BC’s queer community with acts like the Vancouver Men’s Chorus and Koncert Kontinuum, along with playwright Jan Derbyshire and pianist Sara Davis Buechner, among many others. An initiative by the Pride in Art Society, the festival aims to combat homophobia by encouraging visibility and appreciation of art and artists outside sexual and gender norms. Click on queerartsfestival.com for more information.

Get Crafty at Comox’s Filberg Festival – July 30 – Aug 2
Consider yourself crafty? Then the place to be from July 30 to August 2 is at Vancouver Island’s 28th annual Filberg Festival, one of Canada’s biggest arts and crafts expositions. Taking place at the Filberg Lodge and Park (61 Filberg Road) – a designated heritage site in Comox – the nine-acre waterfront retreat will host non-stop entertainment, fab food and more than 120 artisans from across the country, peddling everything from pottery, woodcraft and metalwork to original paintings, jewelry and toys. Be sure to tote along the tots, too, because there’s also a separate kids’ zone. For further information, visit filbergfestival.com.


See SpongeBob SquarePants at the Vancouver Aquarium – until Sept 6

Know a SpongeBob SquarePants fan? You’ll make a big splash (plus forever pump up your popularity) by taking them to the Vancouver Aquarium (845 Avison Way), now screening 
Nickelodeon SpongeBob SquarePants 4-D every morning until September 6. This big screen adventure stimulates all the senses as it transports viewers through the world of Bikini Bottom — complete with attendant sights, sounds and smells — on an animated undersea journey. Afterwards, kids can take a peek at the cartoon characters’ real-life counterparts, including sea stars, sea sponges and sea anemones at a touch pool station, open daily from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Entry to the 4-D film and touch pool are included with Aquarium admission, with more details at visitvanaqua.org.

Stay at the Kw’o:kw’e:hala Eco Retreat – now
What’s an eco-conscious traveller to do if they want to make tracks but not leave behind a carbon footprint? Here’s an idea: Kw’o:kw’e:hala Eco Retreat, tucked in the forest along the Coquihalla River near Hope, boasts an earth-friendly attitude that’s reflected in its green cuisine, ecological accommodation and wealth of healthy activities. By day, you can relax in an open-air wood fired hot tub, bird-watch or cycle the Kettle Valley Railway. By night, you can bunk in a building made entirely from recycled materials. A sound sleep is practically assured too, especially after stuffing your belly with the likes of cedar-planked Fraser River sockeye salmon, succulently seasoned with organic citrus and freshly picked rosemary. For more details, call 1-877-326-7387 or visit eco-retreat.com.

Register for the Whistler Art Workshops on the Lake – July & August
Painters wanting to brush up on their skills can do just that at Whistler Art Workshops on the Lake, a near sold-out series running on selected dates throughout July and August. Amateur artists can still get on the waitlist for an “Intermediate Acrylics” workshop taking place July 26 to 28 and then again on August 5 and 6. Otherwise, we recommend booking now to reserve your spot for sessions including “Beginner Watercolour” from August 11 to 13, “The Art of Drawing” on August 14 and 15, and “Experimental Painting Techniques in Watermedia” from August 24 to 27. Not only will you get professional one-on-one instruction, you won’t lack for inspiration, either, given that the demos involve stunning shore-side scenery and instructor-supplied reference photos. For registration and information, including course prices, call 604-935-8232 or visit whistlerartscouncil.com.

Originally published in TV Week. For daily updates, subscribe to the free TV Week e-newsletter, or purchase a subscription to the weekly magazine.