Enjoy cocktails by some of Vancouver’s finest mixologists at this year’s Harmony Arts Festival

Looking for a reason to visit West Vancouver? Look no further than the Harmony Arts Festival. Now in its 28th year, HAF is a celebration of visual art, music, food and drink. It takes place on and near the Ambleside waterfront Aug. 3-12.

Back this year are perennial favourites that include free exhibits, workshops, and concerts, along with ticketed events like Night on the Pier (local bartenders craft innovative cocktails) and Best of the West. But this year’s festival offers some new additions as well.

The Harmony Arts Festival draws crowds from all over the Lower Mainland to over 150 free events. Taking place along the Ambleside waterfront on Argyle Avenue, from 14th to 16th Street, festival sites include John Lawson Park, Millennium Park, Ambleside Landing, the Music Box, the Silk Purse and the Ferry Building Gallery.

Some of the new events include:

Indigenous Exhibition—This will include a marketplace and group exhibition, starting with a traditional welcome on the festival’s opening day. Traditional Indigenous cuisine provided by Mr. Bannock, Vancouver’s first Indigenous food truck.

Indigenous Feast—This inaugural event features a salmon dinner prepared by Salmon n’ Bannock and a performance by blues musician Murray Porter.

Art by Coast Salish artist Sinámkin Jody Broomfield—Broomfield is designing feature artwork for the event. The art pays homage to the eagles who live near Ambleside and John Lawson Park.

Some other festival notables include:

Garden Stage in Waterfront Lounge—The Garden Stage in Millennium Park’s Waterfront Lounge hosts three different performances daily with daytime, dinnertime and late-night concerts. Acts include The Hip Show, a tribute to the Tragically Hip; Gabriel’s New Orleans Street Party; and Eagle Eyes-The Ultimate Eagles Tribute.

The Fresh St. Market Art Market—See one-of-a-kind showcase work by local artisans. Ceramics, glass, jewelry, leather, painting, photography, textiles, wood and more will be on display from carefully selected artists and artisans.

Sunset Concerts—Nightly performances at 7:30 p.m. on the Main Stage in John Lawson Park include roots artist Sarah Jane Scouten, Celtic rock band The Paperboys, and Vancouver reggae/pop singer Buckman Coe.

Best of the West— Twelve local restaurants and wineries compete for culinary mastery on Ambleside Pier in this ticketed food and wine pairing event. Last year’s winner, Mangia E Bevi Ristorante (with Burrowing Owl Estate Winery) is back again this year.

Night on the Pier—Local bartenders demonstrate their innovative cocktail stylings. (Ticketed event, Aug. 9, 7:30-9:30 p.m.)

Cinema in the Park—Catch a flick nightly at John Lawson Park. Some of the titles include Mrs. Doubtfire, Wonder Woman, and Coco.

For more info, visit harmonyarts.ca.

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