BC Adventures – Our To Do Picks for May 25-31

This week in BC: Listen to the pleasant tapping sounds of NEWmatica, ditch your car and participate in Bike to Work Week, sip a martini at Glow, and more

NEWmatica Music and Tap Dance — May 25

When it comes to music, some people prefer cutting-edge to classic. If that sounds like you, check out NEWmatica, a site-specific concert that combines new music with modern tap dance on May 25 at Squamish’s Britannia Mine Museum. And proving that the power of percussion extends far beyond drums, the venue itself will be played as an instrument, as musicians and tap dancers showcase their respective talents. Tickets for the 7:30 p.m. show are $25 online.

South Okanagan Half Corked Marathon — May 25-26

“Fun run, lots of sun.” That pretty much sums up the vibe at the South Okanagan Half Corked Marathon, an annual race taking place through Oliver wine country on May 25. And while it’s too late for wannabe runners to sign up — this popular event sells out super early! — you can still stake out a spot along the race route to cheer on hordes of costumed joggers or catch the festivities, including an awards ceremony, from 9 a.m. at Oliver Community Park.

Maple Leaf Singers — May 25-26

Music, it’s been said, is “an outburst of the soul.” And it’ll sure feel that way at the Maple Leaf Singers’ 45th annual spring concert, featuring a rollicking repertoire ranging from pop classics to show tunes from The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Carousel and The Wizard of Oz. Plus, the 60-voice ensemble welcomes special guest Jennifer Gillis, a teenage singing sensation who gained acclaim by competing on CBC’s Over the Rainbow. Buy tickets for the concert, held May 25 and 26 at New Westminster’s Massey Theatre, by phone at 604-521-5050.

Credit: Unique Lives

Unique Lives Lecture Series: Featuring Sigourney Weaver — May 27

If Sigourney Weaver has one message for women, it’s this: “There is no one to take care of us, but us!” Hear what else the former Political Animals star has to say on May 27 when she appears at the Centre in Vancouver for Performing Arts (777 Homer) as part of the “Unique Lives” lecture series, starting at 7:30 p.m. This self-confessed “late bloomer” is set to share inspiring stories about how her various failures, both in her personal life and career, ultimately led to her greatest successes. Buy tickets online from $31.50.

Glow: A Women’s Evening of Change and Celebration — May 31

Don’t let the $85 price tag stop you: Glow: A Women’s Evening of Change and Celebration, held on May 31 at Coquitlam’s Executive Plaza Inn, should be worth every penny. That’s because this gala for gals, which supports Tri-City Transitions, includes everything from a martini bar and massage station to appies and a silent auction, along with a live DJ, prizes, and speakers including Big Brother Canada’s Suzette Amaya and comedienne Monique Hurteau, starting at 7 p.m.

Bike to Work Week — May 27 to June 2

Love ’em or hate ’em, Vancouver’s dedicated cycling lanes will definitely come in handy during Bike to Work Week, taking place from May 27 to June 2. This city-wide program encourages avid cyclists and new riders alike to sign up, log their commutes, win prizes and be a part of making Metro Vancouver a better place to live, work and play. And be sure to pedal over to the dozens of Celebration Stations across town, offering free refreshments, prizes and bike-mechanic services.

SONGFIRE Festival — May 30 to June 26

Songs are really just poems set to music. So it makes sense to combine the two into one common celebration, which is precisely the aim of Vancouver’s SONGFIRE Festival. This month-long tribute to “art song” brings together local and international poets, scholars and musicians — including Britain’s revered pianist Graham Johnson — in a series of concerts, workshops and master classes held at UBC and various other venues from May 30 to June 26.

Vancouver International Children’s Festival — May 27 to June 2

For some, there’s nothing sweeter than the sound of children laughing. And guaranteed: there will be giggling galore at the Vancouver International Children’s Festival, May 27 to June 2 at various Granville Island venues. Expect 30,000 attendees to turn up for this 36th annual kiddie carnival that features performing artists from Norway, Africa, Germany and Canada, along with a Twist & Toddle play area and more than 15 hands-on arts activities — from shadow puppetry and origami to circus skills. Buy tickets online, at the gate or by phone at 1-877-840-0457.

Credit: SeaFlora

Algae Expert Diane Bernard — Until September

The best use for seaweed isn’t in sushi. Just ask algae expert Diane Bernard, who hand-harvests wild organic seaweed for her skin care line, Seaflora. From May to September, visitors can join her at Sooke’s Whiffen Spit to explore the ocean garden during inter-tidal tours that teach you all about seaweed’s many cultural uses, nutritional benefits and anti-aging properties. Call 1-877-713-7464 to book.

Abode Restaurant

Not only is “abode” another word for “home,” it’s also the name of Vancouver’s newest restaurant, a comfort-food cookery that specializes in hearty, house-made fare. Abode (1223 Robson) serves “fresh, fun local cuisine” ranging from soup and sandwiches to croissants and cake, along with a beverage bar pouring craft beer, wine and artisan coffee. Drop by for breakfast, lunch or dinner, with more details at 604-688-1411.

Originally published in TVW. For daily programming updates and on-screen Entertainment news, subscribe to the free TVW e-newsletters, or purchase a subscription to the weekly magazine.