Pecha Kucha Volume 10 Coming Up February 27th

PechaKucha New West is back for a 10th edition of local culture and entertainment in the evening on February 27th at River Market. This particular event is the tenth volume and so to celebrate, organizers are bringing back some of the favourite presenters from the past nine events.

“We thought it would be kind of fun to check in with some of the past presenters and to hear about current projects or passions,” said co-organizer Melinda Michael. “New West has a lot of creative people who we haven’t heard from yet, but we wanted to hear from some of the past presenters who really inspired the audience or told a unique story.” Continue reading “Pecha Kucha Volume 10 Coming Up February 27th”

Photo Essay: Disconnection

New West in the eyes of local photographer, Kevin McConnell

This month’s theme is “connectedness” but I also wanted to explore what might be the opposite of this – disconnection. There are times we all want to be disconnected from this city and from our lives, how can we find disconnection in a urban setting, where there’s free wifi and people everywhere?

I asked local photographer Kevin McConnell to spend some time in the city exploring with this “opposite-theme” in mind and I’m proud to share his photo essay.

Are you interested in contributing a photo essay on our monthly theme? Please get in touch. There’s room each month for more than one interpretation of the monthly theme.  

Finding Unexpected Culture

The Arts Council of New Westminster provides you with some ideas in our community.

There are many reasons to love New Westminster. The history, the fabulous local businesses, the amazing people. And, of course, the art and culture.

New Westminster is home to thousands of artists of all genres and disciplines. We have amazing galleries, performing spaces, arts schools and more. But we are also home to some fantastic works of art that are found off the beaten path in places you just might not expect.

Vancouver Biennale

It’s hard to miss the giant W in Pier Park. This iconic art piece, titled Wow Westminster, was created by Brazilian artist Jose Recende. This piece is the third in a series of spectacular outdoor art around New West. The other two pieces, The Blue Trees- New Westminster and Public Furniture/Urban Trees-New Westminster, found around City Hall and Pier Park and on the Waterfront Esplanade respectively.

Mosaic Art Tiles

All around the City are mosaic tiles, each handcrafted and unique. The City says they have a goal to have dozens, perhaps hundreds, of mosaic art tiles that tell the history of New Westminster. For now, keep your eyes open for them in all neighbourhoods – look down!

Amelia Douglas Art Gallery and the Plaskett Gallery

While most people in New West are familiar with Douglas College and the Massey Theatre, not everyone knows that two fabulous galleries are hosted within these venerable institutions. Nestled on the fourth floor of Douglas College is the Amelia Douglas Art Gallery. The Amelia Douglas Gallery is run by members of the Arts Exhibition Committee at Douglas College. The gallery is named after the Cree wife of James Douglas, Governor of both the Colony of British Columbia and the Colony of Vancouver Island in 1858. Amelia’s animated storytelling wove the Douglas generations together.

The Plaskett Gallery was named after Joseph Plaskett. Plaskett was born in New Westminster in 1918 and raised in Sapperton. His formal training in the visual arts began when he studied at night at the Vancouver School of Art under the supervision of Ustinoff, Amess, Shadbolt and Binning. These galleries both seek to remember the inspired artistry of their namesakes with insightful and evocative shows.

Community Arts Space at Vancity Uptown Branch

The Arts Council of New Westminster administers this new public art space as a satellite gallery of our Queen’s Park home. The current exhibition by Gillian Wright will run until the end of January. Stay tuned for more ACNW administered satellite galleries around town!

VanDop off site gallery at Wild Rice Restaurant

Glorious food, a spectacular view and a rotating gallery of fabulous art curated by the indomitable Trudy Van Dop. This gallery space features two artists for a monthly exhibit space. This month, enjoy the artistic musings of Iris Low and Carole Arnston.

Arts at One at the Laura C Muir Performing Arts Theatre at Douglas College

The Arts at One series is held most Thursdays during the Fall and Winter semesters, starting at 1pm. This series features professional musicians and outstanding Douglas College music students.

Landscape “Sculptures” in the City

All around the city, workers have made what would normally be bland, boring gardens full of tulips or primulas into much more interesting and imaginative displays. Near the Rose Garden in Queens Park, at City Hall, and out front of Canada Games Pool are three great examples, but there are more around the City.

New Westminster Pier Park Memory Band

One of the most informative and interesting art installations done by the city is the memory band at the Pier Park. This long, plasma-cut steel band, installed between the sidewalk and the boardwalk, features words that represent many parts of New Westminster’s history. Check out the link for descriptions of the significance of those words.


This list is by no means exhaustive. From our Arts Gallery in Queen’s Park to the weekend buskers at River Market to the local art on the walls at our many restaurants and coffee shops, arts and culture are everywhere in New Westminster, you just need to look.

16 Easy Ways To Find New Music

Looking to expand your musical tastes?

Some people say  that music isn’t what it used to be. I know what some people mean when they say this. But, for the most part, the fact that music isn’t what it used to be is a good thing. Don’t be fooled; this is a golden age of being a music fan, where nothing is old if it is new to someone. The main trouble isn’t about the lack of good music. During time of fragmented media and the lack of trusted and official curators, it’s often about how to find the best of it. How do you find new music, then?

At the beginning of the year and in the season of resolutions to make positive changes in our lives, I’d like to offer a few starting points to this quest, this hero and heroine’s journey toward your personal musical golden fleece – or fleeces. Like in any journey like that, there are trials and challenges to face. But, these are fun trials and challenges to consider as you get your “find new music” game faces on. Continue reading “16 Easy Ways To Find New Music”

Your guide to Feast On The Fraser

With twelve events over ten days, Feast On The Fraser presents New West folk with a dilemma: which one(s) to choose? Fear not, gentle reader. There is something for everyone in this week of foodie fun.

The full list of Feast On The Fraser events.
The full list of Feast On The Fraser events.

With twelve events over ten days, Feast On The Fraser presents New West folk with a dilemma: which one(s) to choose? Fear not, gentle reader. There is something for everyone in this week of foodie fun.

If you like to run with the cool kids: Get a ticket to the kickoff event on Friday, September 25. “Boathouse Brews & Bites” features a tasting menu of five mouthwatering treats incorporating Steel & Oak brew. It is the official launch party, so everyone who has had a role in putting together Feast On The Fraser will be there, including many of New Westminster’s movers & shakers. Tickets are $50.

If you’ve got someone you want to impress: Splurge on the Longtail Kitchen Seafood Boil & Fry on Saturday, September 26. Longtail is one of the best Thai restaurants in the Lower Mainland, so you know the food will be excellent. In addition to a smorgasboard of local Oceanwise mussels, clams, crabs, lobsters, fried oysters and prawns, the $83 ticket also includes a large bottle of Steel & Oak craft beer and live entertainment.

Another option is the Feast On The Fraser At Anvil Centre, on Saturday, October 3. For $94, Executive Chef Nin Rai will show you how to pair, prepare and plate a fancy meal at home. You will get to eat as well as learn. The menu includes vanilla butter poached sturgeon with local chanterelles, ice wine gelee, seared skin on Fraser run Steelhead with roasted butternut squash puree, and spiced pumpkin and banana fosters flambe. Wine pairings with each course are included in the ticket price.

Finally, Thursday, October 1, there is Wild Rice’s Tribute to King Neptune Restaurant. The King Neptune was the place to eat in New West many years ago, and longtime locals still talk about it with a pang of longing. The $45 menu includes an appetizer of fried oysters with house tartar and slaw, ling cod with anchovy butter and King Neptune salad for the main, and a Royal City Sundae for dessert. Each table will feature quotations from New Westminster’s archives that capture the history of our working waterfront (provided by New Westminster Museum & Archives).

For a date night that’s a little different: Head to the Palates & Paint Night Fundraiser on Wednesday, September 30 at 100 Braid Street Studios. The $53 ticket includes a painting lesson from a professional artist and a wine tasting featuring three glasses of Pacific Breeze‘s garagiste-style vino and a selection fo appetizers. The event is also a fundraiser for the Arts Council of New Westminster. All materials are supplied and no painting experience is necessary.

Go on a two-hour romantic riverboat cruise aboard the M.V. Native for the $38 Wine & Dine Cruise on Friday, October 2. Enjoy Pacific Breeze Urban Winery’s award-winning wine expertly paired with a meal of paddlewheeler sliders, fresh seafood chowder and mixed green candied salmon salad.

Take your sweetie out dancing at The Heritage Grill Dine & Dance on Wednesday, September 30. For just $35 you’ll enjoy a three-course meal and dancing to live entertainment with Ranj Singh.

For a night out with the girls: Join the Belly Dancing Divas at Taverna Greka on Friday, October 2. Your $39.75 ticket includes drinks, dinner and a chance to learn some new belly dancing moves! Your ticket includes a glass of wine or a pint of beer, pita and dip appetizer and a main course of your choice.

To enjoy new-to-you tastes: Try the Raw Night at Rain City Juicery on Sunday, September 27. Certified Holistic Practitioner Vanessa McKay from Good Fooditude will offer a taste of raw, vegan cuisine featuring nut pate sushi, raw zucchini pad thai and a raw vegan lime tart alongside drinks from Rain City Juicery for $43.

For fun on a budget: The Rock Band Party on Tuesday, September 29 at the Columbia sounds like a hoot. For $23 you’ll get a beer, highball or glass of house wine and your choice of sliders, chicken strips, flatbread pizza or potachos while enjoying the Harmonix Rock Band video game. Live entertainment with audience participation.

If sports are more your style, try Monday Night Football at Match Eatery on September 28. For $30 you’ll get a three-course dinner along with an exciting night of football. The menu includes a 4oz beer pairing with each course.

Or, for just $20 per adult or $15 per child, you can enjoy a pizza dinner and watch the Boston Pizza New West Master Chef Cookoff on Sunday, October 4. Up-and-coming young chefs will square off against the BP head chef to create the ultimate pizza. The winner will take home a voucher for free pizza for a year and may have their creation featured as a BP menu item.


Disclosure: This is a sponsored post, paid for by Tourism New West.