Early Summer Community Events to Enjoy

Italian Day on the Drive, Photo: Italian Day Festival Society

Summer is so close that you can feel it. To celebrate the warmer season coming up, there are some fabulous upcoming community events and lively street festivals on the horizon. Vancouver is known for its diverse communities, and every spring and summer, people get together for vibrant weekend public gatherings, perfect for the whole family or a day out with friends to show your collective community spirit and celebrate different traditions and cultural heritages.


Hats Off Day

Hats Off Day, Photo: The Heights Merchants Association

Known as “Burnaby’s favourite festival,” the annual Hats Off Day takes place on Saturday, June 1, featuring a two-kilometre-long street party with live and roving entertainment, vintage car show, activities, and street food from around the world along East Hastings Street from Boundary Road to Gamma Avenue.

This grassroots festival has been celebrating the best of the Burnaby Heights community since the early 1980s. It has grown from a small sidewalk event to a day-long celebration that begins with the thrilling Family Fun Dash (a 550-metre kids race), followed by a colourful parade and an all-day street festival. Hats Off Day welcomes more than 50,000 people annually.


Granville Island Block Party

Granville Island Brewing, Photo: Public Disco

Gather ’round for the Granville Island Block Party on Saturday, June 8, at Lot 55 (behind Granville Island Brewing) to kick off Public Disco‘s 2024 Summer Series of outdoor public cultural events for another free, all-ages block party on Granville Island with pop-up bars, picnic table seating, food trucks, feel-good music, dance performances, and kids activities.

This party also marks the start of Granville Island Brewing’s 40th anniversary celebrations, which include the brewery’s reopening after extensive renovations to its building, more celebratory events, and a special limited edition mix pack.


Italian Day on the Drive

Italian Day on the Drive, Photo: Italian Day Festival Society

Join East Vancouver’s historic “Little Italy” neighbourhood on Commercial Drive (aka “The Drive”) for their annual Italian Day on the Drive block party from Venables Street to Grandview Highway on Sunday, June 9, in celebration of Italian culture, heritage, and community.

Be prepared for a lively 14-block Italian festa that’s become the city’s largest and most anticipated cultural street festival. Each year, it draws hundreds of thousands of attendees of all ages and cultures attracted to nearly 160 street participants, comprised of 20 patios, 60 Drive merchants, 23 food trucks, and over 55 outside vendors. Choose from dozens of food merchants, multiple music stages, DJs, family activations, and fashion shows to enjoy.


West Van Community Cultural Fest

Head to the North Shore for the two-day West Van Community Cultural Fest at Ambleside Park at the foot of 13th Street from May 31 to June 1. Join the District of West Vancouver for this multicultural celebration of diversity, which brings people together through food, music, and culture.

Highlights include multiple cultural pavilions, dance performances, a kids’ zone, live music and dance stage, food trucks, and an international lounge. Make sure to stay for the talent showcase of West Vancouver elementary and secondary school students with live band, choir, and musical performances.

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