BC Adventures – Our To Do Picks for January 21-27

This week in BC: Catch the PuSh Festival, celebrate Chinese New Year, enjoy Taste BC, and more

Soledad Barrio and Noche Flamenca ignite the PuSh Festival with fiery footwork

What to do in BC this week

See the Tony Award-winning Red – January 14 – February 4

Critics aren’t always what they’re cracked up to be, but we’re taking it on faith when a respected publication like The Observer deems Red “a first-rate production.” On stage at Vancouver’s Queen Elizabeth Theatre from January 14 to February 4, this Tony Award-winning drama is described as “a moving and compelling account of one of the greatest artists of the 20th century, whose struggle to accept his growing riches and praise become his ultimate undoing.” Tickets start at $33 by phone at 604-873-3311.

Don’t Miss the PuSh Festival – 
January 17 – February 4
When the weather outside is frightful, sometimes you need a little “PuSh” to get you motivated. So cue the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival, running January 17 to February 4 at various Vancouver venues. Designed to “give winter the cold shoulder,” this cultural carnival pushes boundaries with 20 days of groundbreaking live theatre, dance and music. One show to see? Soledad Barrio and Noche Flamenca, whose fiery Latin footwork will ignite the Chan Centre stage on January 21.

Get Psyched 
About Bikes
 – January 19-22
So what if it’s still the season for snow tires; it’s never too early to check out the deals on wheels at the 2012 Vancouver Motorcycle Show, running January 19 to 22 at Tradex Centre (1190 Cornell St, Abbotsford). Bike enthusiasts are revving up to preview the latest models from the world’s leading manufacturers — Ducati, KTM, Suzuki and Polaris, among them — along with hundreds of motorcycle add-ons and accessories. Tickets are $13. 

Wet Your Whistle at the Victoria Whisky Festival – January 19-22
No drinking and driving! That’s one of the criteria for netting a ticket to the seventh annual Victoria Whisky Festival at the Hotel Grand Pacific (463 Belleville St.) from January 19 to 22. You’ll be glad you made the vow, and so will the local cops, when you get a load of the number of tastings on tap. One thing’s for sure, this four-day fest will show you why whisky ranks as one of the world’s top tipples.

Take a Dive at the Vancouver Aquarium – January 21-22
What lurks beneath the waves? Divers’ Weekend at the Vancouver Aquarium (845 Avison Way) aims to answer all your undersea questions on January 21 and 22, when aqua experts gather together to deliver all the diving deets you’ll need to take the plunge yourself. This 13th annual expo includes seminars, dive demos and appearances by the Canadian Coast Guard and RCMP Dive Team.

Celebrate Chinese New Year – January 23

The Year of the Dragon deserves to be rung in with a roar. So why not celebrate Chinese New Year on January 23 by chowing down at some of Vancouver’s top Asian eateries? And if you need help narrowing down the endless options, no worries; a panel of local food critics have done the legwork for you, handing out 2012 Diners’ Choice Awards to Kirin Restaurant for “Best Fine Dining,” Jade Seafood Restaurant for “Best Dim Sum” and Fatty Cow Seafood for “Best Hot Pot.”

Try Taste BC – January 24

You know how food writers are always going on about B.C.’s fabled bounty? You’ll discover the reason behind the raves at Taste B.C., an annual fundraiser for B.C. Children’s Hospital’s Oak Tree Clinic. Held on January 24 at the Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver (791 W. Georgia St), this palate-pleasing party serves up fine wine, beer and spirits, along with tasty fare from top local restaurants. Tickets for the bash, taking place from 4:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., are available for $49.99 at Liberty Wine Merchant Stores.

Catch the Grapes of Laugh – January 24
We’ve all heard of The Grapes of Wrath, but the Grapes of Laugh? Leave it to the improv artists at the Vancouver TheatreSports League to use witty wordplay to describe this sixth annual fundraiser on January 24 at Granville Island’s Performance Works (1218 Cartwright St, Vancouver). The fun fete, which rolls out a night of wine, hors d’oeuvres, live improv and auctions, helps support the not-for-profit laugh league’s community outreach programs. Tickets for the event, starting at 
7 p.m., are $65 at 604-738-7013.

Don’t Miss Calendar Girls – January 26 – February 26

If you know anything about Calendar Girls, you’ll know why it’s called a “revealing” true story. That’s because this award-winning movie-turned-play — think of it as a Full Monty for females — is about a group of middle-aged matrons who come up with a “cheeky” new way to raise money for charity. And though this version doesn’t include Helen Mirren, it’s still “a delight, full of great one-liners.” See it at the Stanley Industrial Alliance Stage (2750 Granville St, Vancouver) from January 26 to February 26.

Check out the Rossland Winter Carnival
 – January 27-29
What’s so cool about the Rossland Winter Carnival? This 115th annual alpine exhibition, running from January 27 to 29, holds the distinction of being Canada’s oldest winter carnival. Since 1897, townsfolk and tourists alike have been braving the cold to take in everything from bobsled races and luge competitions to a street parade and fire dancing. While you’re there, catch the Blizzard Mountain Music Festival, too!

Ogle Insects at Circle Craft – until January 31
Most people are creeped out by creepy crawlies, but not Tofino-based artist Sean Goddard. The insect aficionado is debuting his latest exhibit Beetles and Flies at Circle Craft Co-operative (Net Loft, #5-1666 Johnston St, Granville Island, Vancouver) until January 31. Who’d want to ogle insects, you ask? Plenty of people — just ask the fans of his two popular art galleries in Ucluelet and Tofino. Admission to the exhibition, on display daily from 10 a.m. to 7 pm., is free.

Escape to the Island – until April 15
If you need a holiday after the holidays, the Old House Village Hotel (1730 Riverside Lane, Courtenay) on Vancouver Island is offering a great escape with its Stay, Ski and Spa package until April 15. Starting at $295 per person, this winter retreat includes three nights’ accommodation, a lift pass at Mount Washington Ski Resort, daily breakfast vouchers and a 60-minute massage at the West Coast-inspired OH Spa. To book, call 1-888-703-0202.

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