Top August Long Weekend Events in Vancouver

Powell Street Festival. Photo credit: Flickr user Robert Sanzalone.

Sticking around for the August Long Weekend, August 4-6? I don’t blame you. In addition to the obvious options, like beach time, there’s so much action happening in Vancouver this weekend, a staycation is an awesome decision.

Here are six August Long Weekend events to get excited about.

1) Honda Celebration of Light Fireworks, August 4
It’s the last night of this legendary, sparkly Vancouver summer event. Vietnam, Brazil and Italy are in competition for best pyrotechnics. Only Italy has yet to get down to explosive business. At 10pm August 4, the skies over English Bay will twinkle with thousands of colourful lights. Find details on the best places to watch the fireworks here. Use this handy iOS app to vote for the winning fireworks display.

2) Veg Fest Vancouver, August 4
Bored with bacon? Sick of pigging out at whole hog dinners? Calling all vegetarians, vegans, veg-curious and flexitarians: the second annual Veg Fest Vancouver takes over Granville Street between Georgia and Robson on Saturday, August 4. Veg Fest is a day-long, free festival that offers a rare opportunity for meat-free foodies to sample fare from over a dozen veg vendors in one go.

3) Smoking Sausage BBQ Competition Cook-Off, August 4

The Mount Pleasant BIA knows that sausage and summer fit together like…weiner and bun. That’s why they’re hosting a sausage BBQ cook off with artisan sausages made by Mount Pleasant businesses. The fun goes down 5pm to 9pm at the Laneway west of Main Street between Broadway and East 8th Avenue.

For $3, eat and vote on sausage crafted by: Hyde Restaurant, eight 1/2 Restaurant Lounge, The Cascade Room, Rumpus Room and Rhizome Café. All money raised will be donated to the Greater Vancouver Food Bank. Sausage master Drews Driessen of D-Original Sausage Company will help judge.

Spam nigiri at Powell Street Festival. Photo credit: Flickr user Michael Francis McCarthy

4) Powell Street Festival, August 4-5
The Powell Street Festival is an annual celebration of Japanese Canadian arts, culture and heritage that features something for everyone: dance, music, film, visual arts, martial arts demos, baseball, an amateur sumo tournament, craft vendors and of course, tons of scrumptious Japanese food. Head over to East Van’s Oppenheimer Park to join the fun.

The festival runs 11:30am to 7:00pm Saturday and Sunday. Daytime events are free. Come hungry and choose from osaka balls, yaki-mochi, okonomiyaki, udon, grilled short ribs and squid, plus the infamous Spam nigiri.

5) Legendary Long Weekend Yelp Food Cart Fest at the Waldorf, August 5
Following the smashing success of the Canada Day Food Cart Fest, Yelp and Waldorf have decided to extend the party. This Sunday, head over to free, family-friendly Yelp Food Cart Fest at the Waldorf, from 12pm to 6pm, for food, live music, shopping, and fun.

6) Vancouver Pride Parade and Festival, August 5
It’s pride party time, people. Hit the streets and strut with Vancouver’s LGBTTQ community at Western Canada’s largest Pride Parade.  Follow it as it winds its way through Vancouver’s West End. The fun kicks off at 12pm starting on Robson Street, continuing down Denman into the Westend, finishing along the beach. The unforgettable annual event drew 600,000 spectators last year.

Scenic Sunset Beach is the outdoor venue for the pride festival (11am-6pm) with live music, fabulous merchandise and a beer garden.  Join 125,000+ celebrants letting loose in the summer sun.

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