Feast like never before from Sept. 25 – Oct. 4 in New West

Featuring 12 tasty events over 10 days, the new Feast On The Fraser festival showcases local arts and culture as well as eateries.
Featuring 12 tasty events over 10 days, the new Feast On The Fraser festival showcases local arts and culture as well as eateries.

Get your stretchy pants ready: you are about to feast like never before. From September 25 – October 4, even the healthiest eaters in New West will want to take at least one “cheat day” to enjoy the mouthwatering delights on offer for Feast On The Fraser, a 10-day long gloriously indulgent foodie festival.

Organized by Tourism New West and presented in partnership with the City of New Westminster and the Brewery District by WesGroup Properties, Feast On The Fraser is designed to show off our city, pairing New Westminster’s top chefs with some of our brightest cultural talent. It’s much more than two weeks of tasty meals: each day of the festival features a one-time-only collaboration between an eatery and one of our other local arts, entertainment, or retail movers-and-shakers to create a one-of-a-kind culinary experience that can be found only in New West.

“New Westminster has long distinguished itself as one of Metro Vancouver’s premier culinary destinations, and it’s time for us to expand our dining scene and pair it with some fun experiences,” said Tej Kainth, Executive Director, Tourism New Westminster in a press release about the event.  “Feast on the Fraser is the perfect opportunity to further showcase the city’s delicious offerings, along with our rich arts, culture and entertainment scene.”

The festival kicks off on September 25 with Boathouse Brews & Bites, a beer-themed menu at the Boathouse Restaurant incorporating Steel & Oak’s delicious local brew. Other events over the 10 days include live music, painting your very own work of art, watching a Monday night football game, geeking out playing the “Rock Band” video game, dancing, cooking demonstrations, a boat cruise, belly dancing, a master chef cookoff, and even a tribute to the famous King Neptune restaurant (New West old-timers still talk about how amazing it was).

Participating businesses include 100 Braid St. Studios, Anvil Centre, The Boathouse, Boston Pizza, Heritage Grill, Longtail Kitchen, Pacific Breeze Winery, Paddlewheeler Riverboat Tours, Steel and Oak Brewery, Taverna Greka, Truffles Fine Foods and Catering, Wild Rice, and more.

All events are ticketed, and I would suggest you snap yours up quickly – many are sure to sell out. The cost ranges from just $20 to $94 per person, so there is something to fit every budget.

Here’s the schedule:

Full details about the festival are found on Tourism New Westminster’s website.

Biggest one-day food truck fest in Canada comes to New West Aug 22

The Columbia StrEAT Festival is the biggest one-day food truck festival in Canada

Canada’s largest one-day food truck fest is back in downtown New West this summer.

On Saturday, August 22 from 4-10pm, The Third Annual Columbia StrEAT Food Truck Fest will bring over 70 food trucks, beer gardens and free entertainment to downtown New West.

Tacofino, Johnny’s Pops and DougieDog Hot Dogs will be back by popular demand. New vendors this year will include Culver City Salads, Cheeses Crust, Taters – The Baked Potato Co., and many more.

Many Downtown New West restaurants will also set up food tents to sell street food. RainCity Juicery and Old Crow Coffee are among the New West restaurants who will join the party on Columbia Street for the event. Boston Pizza is hosting a pizza-eating contest, featuring star contestant Mayor Jonathan Cote!

I spoke to Downtown BIA Program and Events Coordinator Maddison McKitrick to ask a few questions about the event:

Q: What has been the impact of this festival on downtown New West businesses?

A: We actually polled our membership and Columbia StrEAT Food Truck Fest ranked very high with our members regarding BIA initiatives. The impact has been amazing, bringing crowds of over 50k in 2014 provided great exposure for our Downtown businesses. We are expecting crowds of 75k this year!

Q: How many beer gardens will you have? Who is running them?

A: Four! The Heritage Grill, The Columbia Theatre, The Met Bar & Grill and Anvil Centre will be set up inside but their large window/doors will be open to the street. These beer gardens are technically liquor license extensions, basically a large patio for the establishments. The Met Bar & Grill will have Growers serving up samples in their beer garden.

Q: What entertainment are you offering? 

A: Huge variety! The Arts Council of New West will be hosting two festival tents of amazing acts, including Roland and Emma Nipp, Old Mare, The Alvair Trio, Bryan Michael and more. The Royal City Swing will be set up, dancing away and even offering intro lessons to attendees! Emily Harder, a local singer/songwriter, Six String and a Saxophone, a local New West jazz duo. We are expecting more to join the event as well. A full list of entertainment can be found on our website’s event listing.

Q: Is this a kid-friendly event? 

A: As our event runs from 4pm-10pm, it’s tailored to an older demographic but we definitely encourage families to attend and had tons attend last year. There are lots of yummy treats that are very kid friendly! Plus the Brick & Mortar Living girls will be presenting the Chalk Spot, a sidewalk chalk area for artsy kids on McKenzie Street at Columbia from 4pm-7pm.

A full list of participating food trucks is available on the New West Downtown BIA website. There is also a Facebook event you can join if you want to be updated with the latest info.

The Food Truck Fest is organized by the Downtown New West BIA, with support from RiverSky by Bosa Properties and Vancity.

Photo: Technomonkey Media, used with permission of the Downtown New West BIA.



Four music stages, kids zone at 12th Street Music Festival on July 26

2015 12th Street Music Festival
Poster for the 2015 12th Street Music Festival

The 12th Street Music Festival is back on July 26, 2015.

Organized by the West End Business Association, the festival features four music stages, a Kids Zone with crafts and a petting zoo, muscle cars on display, delicious treats to buy and many community groups and vendors. Continue reading “Four music stages, kids zone at 12th Street Music Festival on July 26”

New Westminster outdoor movies in the park (2015)

2015 New Westminster Outdoor Summer Movie Series

The City of New Westminster is once again hosting a free outdoor movie series in Queen’s Park Stadium.

There’s something truly special about coming with your kids, neighbours and friends to stretch out on a blanket under the stars for a show. Even the mosquitoes can’t get you down.

Stadium doors open at 7pm and movies start at dusk (approximately 9pm). Movies are only shown on fair weather days. If you aren’t sure if it’ll be cancelled, you can call 604-527-4634 to ask. For other questions, try 604-515-3775.

This year’s movie lineup is full of goodies: Continue reading “New Westminster outdoor movies in the park (2015)”

Pier Park water misters have arrived!

The three promised water “misters” have arrived at Westminster Pier Park, right on schedule.

The misters are positioned right next to the hammocks and the beach volleyball courts, and according to contributor Eryne Donahue (who took the photos featured below), they do help to make a hot afternoon tolerable.

The Pier Park is the newest and most strikingly attractive park in New West. But the heat wave this summer has highlighted a problem: most of the park is in full sun, all day long. It is just too hot to spend much time in when the temperature climbs. The misters will provide some needed relief.

Water misters near hammocks at Pier Park
Cooling misters have been installed next to the hammocks and beach volleyball court at Westminster Pier Park. Photo: Eryne Donahue.

Continue reading “Pier Park water misters have arrived!”