Vancouver’s Playland Amusement Park Getting $80-million Facelift

8202639344_6e065fc2b2_zVancouver’s famous Wooden Roller Coaster may be getting a little sprucing up.

Playland at the Pacific National Exhibition – the nearly century-old amusement park on the edge of downtown Vancouver – is about to begin an $80-million restoration project. The massive undertaking, set to start next fall and be completed over 13 years, will increase the size of the park by 50 percent, from 6 hectares to 9 hectares.

Playland and the PNE have a long, storied history in Vancouver. Hastings Park, home of Playland, was given to Vancouver by the province back in 1889.  The first annual PNE Fair took place way back in 1910.  Happyland, the precursor to Playland, opened in 1926.

Over the years, however, Playland has started to show its age.  Some of its signature rides, like the 1958 Wooden Roller Coaster and the 1960 Wave Swinger, are more than a half-century old, while many others, including the Scrambler, Pirate Ship, and Log Flume date from the 1980s.  The renovation plans call for modernizing rides while also “introducing a softer, more welcoming look and feel,” according to an article in the Vancouver Sun.

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Vancouver’s Playland Amusement Park Getting $80-million Facelift

Zombie Fighting Returns to Streets of Downtown Vancouver

Photo credit: The Zombie Syndrome from the Virtual Stage

Photo credit: The Zombie Syndrome from the Virtual Stage

Zombies are back on the streets of Vancouver.  And our only hope is … you and your smartphone.

For the third year, the Virtual Stage is unleashing its interactive Halloween adventure The Zombie Syndrome on downtown Vancouver.  Starting Oct. 7, you can grab your smartphone and join other “top agents” on a quest to save the world and elude the undead.  Just watch your back and don’t get bit along the way.

The unique piece of interactive theatre has won rave reviews from press, critics and – most importantly – participants.  The audience must use GPS-enabled smartphones to gather clues from across the city and stop the zombie plague. Groups are guided by special agents from the “Department of National Defence” and confront all sorts of ghoulish adversaries as they move from site to site, from walking corpses to menacing troublemakers.

This year’s plot offers an intriguing twist on the zombie narrative.   Continue reading:
Zombie Fighting Returns to Streets of Downtown Vancouver

The Need for Speed: Scenic Rush Roars to Life

The fleet of exotic beauties in the Thunderbird Marina. Photo by Ehren Seeland

Sunglasses pushed against your brow, you extend your left arm in an affirmative thumbs up as collective engines rumble like a pack of hungry bears. Splashes of light whip through the treetops as your foot presses on the gas and the Pacific air whistles past your ears. The V8 engine roars beneath a slick exterior of Rosso Corsa as you expertly hug every curve to your final destination under the watchful gaze of a famous stallion.

With a sticker price of $295,000, a daytrip in a convertible Ferrari F430 Spider is not an experience that many are able to savour. Couple that with the pristine surroundings of the Sea-to-Sky Highway, and you’re presented with a select list of reasons for your good fortune. Among these, your lottery numbers finally came through (congratulations), you blew out all of the candles for a successful birthday wish (happy birthday), or you’re currently traveling from Vancouver to Squamish on a guided tour with Scenic Rush. Continue reading:
The Need for Speed: Scenic Rush Roars to Life

One of Vancouver’s best nights-out moves to the Rio Theatre

Paul Anthony

Host Paul Anthony on the new set for Talent Time. Set design by NotAce Martens, photo by Skinny G-Smith.

For six years, one of the most entertaining shows in Vancouver has been Paul Anthony’s Talent Time. An old-fashioned variety show, the monthly event has brought an array of acts, from jugglers to comedians to animal trainers, to the Biltmore Cabaret.

For its seventh season, Talent Time is going to be bigger, better and in a new venue, the Rio Theatre. And host Paul Anthony is promising even more changes with the new location.

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One of Vancouver’s best nights-out moves to the Rio Theatre

Zombie Paintball Hunting Returns to Vancouver Area

Photo sourced from Zombie  Combat Zone

Photo sourced from Zombie Combat Zone

The zombies are multiplying.  And humanity’s only hope is you and a paintball gun.

Zombie Combat Zone – the only place in Canada where you can hunt and shoot zombies with paintball guns – is back for its third season.  The unique facility in White Rock bills itself as an immersive, zombie-fighting experience.  Dressed up in tactical gear and armed with paintball guns, you and your squad must fend off wave after wave of the undead under the cover of thick forest. 

And, just to up the ante, all of this zombie mayhem happens after dark.

So what’s it like? Continue reading:
Zombie Paintball Hunting Returns to Vancouver Area