Stop. Hammer Time.

(Who doesn’t want to be able to start a post that way?) 

Join the Spare Parts Adventure Society at Hammer Time! A Pop-Up Fundraiser on April 27, 2018 at 7:30 at New Westminster’s River Market. Tickets are $20 per person and all money raised go directly to helping the Spare Parts Adventure Society bring more pop-up playground events to New Westminster’s parks and events.

The fundraiser includes a building contest where everybody is invited to use spare parts and their imaginations and creativity to build something exciting. Parents often remark that their kids have a load of fun building and creating at Spare Parts Adventure pop-up playground, so now everybody will have the chance. The best creations will win prizes such as a Steel & Oak gift pack and swag from Patterson Brands.

There is also a silent auction with over 20 incredible items generously donated by local companies such as Wild Rice, The Wine Factory, and Cartwright Jewelers. And if you like theatre and live entertainment, come out and bid on packages from Massey Theatre, Bard On The Beach, Out On Screen, and the Vancouver Symphony.

Dedicated to offering children and youth access to free child-driven educational opportunities, Spare Parts Adventure holds workshops and day activities where kids build their own playgrounds using raw materials such as rope, tarps, pvc pipe, wood, tires, or anything that enables a child’s imagination to flourish. Since 2016 Spare Parts Adventure has put on workshops for youth in various New Westminster neighbourhoods, helping them to develop self-reliance by taking risks and experience active play in barrier-free environments while developing their problem solving and teamwork skills.

Tickets are $20 per person and are available through Eventbrite — search for “Hammer Time” at More information about Spare Parts Adventure can be found on Facebook at 


Support Family Place!

We’ve written about how great Family Place is, and the time has come when Family Place needs your help to continue to offer top notch programming to those who need it most.

On Tuesday, November 15, at the Paddlewheeler Pub, join in on the effort to raise funds for much needed expenses. It is a great cause and sounds like it will be lots of fun. The silent auction prizes are great – there are two TVs, a night at the fabulous Inn at the Quay, a week in a condo in Arizona, and other great goodies and baskets you can bid on.

Marjorie Staal, Executive Director, says that they are raising funds for “the day to day things like wages for our staff, rent so that we can keep doors open and have bright shining smiles for children to see when they arrive, and to keep buying consumable supplies for the programs.”

Family Place has over 450 families that joined us last year at the main site on Sixth Street, as well as at their Lord Kelvin hub, their Food Bank program, and their Parent Child Mother Goose program.  They also have a grandparent program at the new ELC at Qayqayt Elementary. All of these programs are done on a shoestring budget, and costs are going up and up! They are hoping that the community can rally behind them next Tuesday night. Doors at at 6pm. Call 604-520-3666 to get tickets put on hold for you to pick up at the door or stop by their main location to get them in advance at 93 Sixth Street.


One Last Time!

Warren Kimmel as Tevye, Michael Wilkinson as The Fiddler, Erin Palm as Fruma Sarah/Ensemble, and Zach Wolfman as Perchik. Photo supplied by RCMT. 

If you were one of the fortunate people to catch a performance of the Royal City Musical Theatre’s recent run of Fiddler on the Roof, you’ve probably been humming various tunes from the show since you saw it.

I can’t get the show’s big opening number, “Tradition”, out of my head. If you missed it,  Shaw TV has a recording of the number in full. (But be warned, if you watch this, you’re going to be singing to yourself “Traditionnnnnn, TRA-DI-TION!” as you point up to the sky for weeks.) Continue reading “One Last Time!”

Lord Kelvin PAC calls for #lessgraymoregreen on school grounds

The schoolyard at Lord Kelvin Community School is gray. Really gray. The teachers are sick of it, the kids are sick of it, and the PAC wants to do something about it. It’s time for #lessgraymoregreen.

New West’s inner city schoolyard needs a facelift. Our students deserve more green during the 30+ hours they spend at school each week. They show up at school and they’re greeted with this:


The gravel field at Lord Kelvin school. Photo: Natalie Lawy.
The gravel field at Lord Kelvin school. Photo: Roger Hur

It’s not good enough. Continue reading “Lord Kelvin PAC calls for #lessgraymoregreen on school grounds”

Farmer’s Market Fundraiser… and other hijinxs

Cross-posted on disadventure, Jocelyn’s blog about life, travel and more.

L-R: Jenn Arbo, Will Tomkinson, Jocelyn Tomkinson
L-R: Jenn Arbo, Will Tomkinson, Jocelyn Tomkinson

Last night I joined @gnb, Hollie, @duckbeaver and two of my co-editors from Tenthtothefraser, Jen Arbo and Will at a “Burger and a beer” fundraiser for the Royal City Farmer’s Market, at the Brooklyn Bar and Grill on Columbia Street in New Westminster.

Chuck Puchmayr’s band was playing, the weather was good, conversation was nice, and we met some great people – like Loren from the Apple Barn Pumpkin Farm, a market vendor who drove all the way out from Abbotsford to attend the fundraiser. Several New West celebrities were there, including our newly elected MLA (and long-time MP) Dawn Black, Mayor Wayne Wright, and councillors Jamie MacEvoy and Jonathan X. Cote.

TenthtotheFraser’s own Jen Arbo seemed to be a bit of a nexus in this crowd – a passionate RCFM supporter and new vendor, she’s also been recently appointed as the Market Managing Coordinator. Congratulations, Jen! Will worked the crowd in his signature way, prompting Jen to remark that his Twitter name should be @Willhepolitic? – a rhetorical question given Will’s longtime threat to run for office.

I think I get to claim the most mischief, however, when an incorrectly hung bathroom stall door had me committing an act of “Guerrilla Access” right there in the ladies room at the Brooklyn Bar and Grill. I was surprised enough to note that there is a wheelchair accessible stall in a bar bathroom, but when I found that the door swung inward (into the stall) instead of outward, I realized it was impossible to use. Imagine trying to close the door in a stall space of approximately the same size as the door’s swinging arc – now imagine trying to close it while sitting in roughly 16″ x 18″ of wheelchair and you’ll see why wheelchair bathroom stall doors should never swing inward. My solution was to procure a screwdriver from Graham and make a little MacGuyver change.

Thankfully it went off without a hitch, the door now swings outward, and no hard feelings to Brooklyn Bar and Grill – thanks for the fundraiser!

NOTE: It was brought to my attention that Mayor Wright was on vacation at the time and not able to attend the fundraiser. -jt