Around Vancouver Town: January 31st ~ February 2nd 2014

Hot Chocolate

We’ve got a few new offerings to serve up this time around and have also included some Chinese New Year Celebrations that were published a couple weeks back in Around Vancouver Town. There’s still plenty to do to ring in the new year in Vancouver!

Have fun, mama!

The Hot Chocolate Festival ~ until Valentine’s Day

Hmmm. Who doesn’t love a cuppa hot chocolate! Presented by this month long festival is a fundraiser to support the Downtown Eastside Women’s Job Training Program. What a cozy way to support getting women back to work!

What really fun about this event is the delectable and often daring concoctions some of the shops are whipping up for you. Check these out!

Here are some examples of how they’re making this event super special.

Cacao Barry Extra Brute Hot Chocolate with Cabernet, cinnamon and pear.
Served with a pear crisp and a cocoa sugar cookie.

Available at Terra Breads.

Chipmunks will chatter over this hot chocolate flavoured with peanut butter.
Served with a berry marshmallow.

Available at The Last Crumb on Main Street.

Made from 72% dark chocolate with red wine reduction and apple ginger compote.
Served with walnut shortbread (vegan and dairy free).

Available at Cocoa Nymph on West 10th Ave.

Excited yet? Check out more yummy ideas including a photo contest on This festival is running until February 14th. There’s a map of participating shops, (like Terra Breads and The Last Crumb) that you can print off or view the Google map version to keep handy on your phone.

Dine Out Vancouver

Last Minute Date Night Options

Have fun with your honey noshing on cuisine that defines Vancouver’s regional and international restaurants. Choose from hundreds of restaurants in this 17 day calendar of culinary events. Make it a weekend! There are dozens of hotel options to create your own delicious dining experiences.

This event is wrapping up on February 3rd so you still have time, mama!

Check their website for more details.

Skating at Robson Square

Free Skating in the Heart of Vancouver

The Robson Square Ice Rink, located in the heart of downtown (and underground) Vancouver will be open until February 28,2014. Skating is free with your own skates, otherwise, rentals are available. The rink also features a concession stand with snacks and warm drinks. And they serve hot chocolate too!

For more information check out their website.

Chinese New Year Celebrations

Year of the Horse at International Village Mall

The Year of the Horse Celebration at International Village brings traditional Chinese Spring festivities and rituals to Vancouver. You’ll find Chinese New Year festive items at the exhibition and sales booths on the main level, plus souvenirs and gifts. There will be multicultural live performances on stage and lucky draws as well. On the upper level of the mall there will be a festive Chinese New Year Heritage Village, where you can see experience the true colours, traditional arts and culture, and culinary delights of the new year. The whole thing kicks off with a ceremonial eye-dotting ritual and lion dance on Thursday, January 30, and culminates with the parade on Sunday, February 2.

January 30 – February 2, 2014
At: International Village Mall, 88 West Pender Street
Cost: Free
For more information visit their website.

Vancouver Chinatown Spring Festival and Parade

The Chinese New Year Parade is the biggest event all year for Chinatown, and an annual Vancouver favourite. It features lion dances, cultural dance troupes, marching bands, martial arts performances and much more. Year after year, the Chinatown parade is a cultural extravaganza not to be missed, and a must-see event if you’re wondering what to do in Vancouver for Chinese New Year.

February 2, 2014 at 11:00am
At: The parade starts at the Millennium Gate on Pender Street, proceeds east along Pender, turns south onto Gore, turns west onto Keefer and finishes at Keefer and Carrall
Cost: Free
For more information visit their website. 

Year of the Horse Temple Fair

Based on spring festival temple fairs of old, this Chinese New Year celebration is a “Hot & Noisy” mixture of traditional cultural activities. You’ll find traditional Chinese games and activities, fortune-telling, live music, food, drinks and more. There’s also a children’s corner promising lots of kid-friendly Vancouver fun, including the chance to run around and yell to scare away evil spirits. Remember to wear red if you add this event to your list of what to do in Vancouver!

February 2, 2014 from 10:00am-4:00pm
At: Dr. Sun Yat-sen Chinese Garden, 578 Carrall Street
Cost: By donation
For more information vist their website.


LunarFest offers a contemporary expression of Asian arts and culture, inviting everyone to share in the cultural diversity of our city. There is lots to see and do at this event, from Lantern Palaces, to workshops and games, to story-telling, and more. Enjoy drum performances, check out the two-storey tall rocking horse installation, sip a cup of tea, and enjoy dumplings at dumpling fest. But perhaps the best reason of all to add this event to your list of what to do in Vancouver this winter is that it’s free!

February 7-9, 2014 from 11:00am-7:00pm
At: Vancouver Art Gallery Plaza
Cost: Free
For more information visit their website.

Photo Credit.

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