Best in Roe: BC Caviar Ranked among Best in World

I’m not much of a caviar connoisseur , so I’ll just trust the good people at Travel+Leisure on this one.

According to the magazine’s recent Best in Roe ranking, Northern Divine caviar – raised sustainably not far from Vancouver on BC’s Sunshine Coast – is among the top 5 caviars in the world.  The magazine singled out Northern Divine for it’s “crisp pop and creamy mouthfeel, with even grains.”  Yum.

Interested in sampling some yourself?  Hope you’re a big spender.  Continue reading:
Best in Roe: BC Caviar Ranked among Best in World

Top 5 Rock and Alternative Holiday Music Concerts in Vancouver

Anybody see The Office Christmas episode last week?  There’s one part where Dwight unplugs an iPod playing Christmas carols and starts rocking out to the Trans Siberian Orchestra’s Carol of the Bells (one of the few heavy metal Christmas songs).

That made me realize that my previous post on the Top 5 Holiday Music Events in Vancouver wasn’t very inclusive.  I missed a whole range of rock and alternative holiday concerts in the city.  So here goes a new Top 5 list geared more toward the hard-rockin’ holiday lover, with lots of help from a great Vancouver Sun article by Francois Marchand (Note: Many of these concerts support good causes, including local food banks).

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Top 5 Rock and Alternative Holiday Music Concerts in Vancouver

Video of Black Bear in Downtown Vancouver

A black bear hitched a ride into downtown Vancouver on a garbage truck yesterday.  The video below shows the scene at Georgia and Cambie Streets – smack dab in the middle of a busy city of 2.1 million people.   Conservation officers appear to prick the bear with a tranquilizer dart – then a very brave Vancouver police officer takes care of the rest.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=spav7Trxk0w

Just some follow-up, in case you’re wondering: According to a Vancouver Sun article, the 1.5-year-old bear was probably nosing around inside a dumpster on the North Shore (parts of which are heavily wooded), when the dumpster was picked up and dumped into one of those automated garbage trucks.  Then . . .

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Video of Black Bear in Downtown Vancouver

Holidays on the High Seas: The carol ships return

http://www.flickr.com/photos/vincealongi/2128341956/

It’s a holiday fantasia, staged on the high seas.   At dusk all throughout December, dozens of  ships sail out of Vancouver’s harbor.  Carrying thousands of passengers and decorated with hundreds of thousands of brightly colored lights,  the festive boats embark on a slow procession along the city’s shoreline.

Christmas carols echo from inside, glasses clink with toasts to the season and lavish meals are served:  all part of the cherished Vancouver tradition known as the Carol Ships Parade of Lights.

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the parade, which depart nightly at approximately 7 p.m. through Dec. 23.  Continue reading:
Holidays on the High Seas: The carol ships return

Peak of Christmas: A winter wonderland on top of Grouse Mountain

It’s no secret that Vancouver rarely gets snow in winter.  Temperatures remain mild, and even a dusting of the white stuff downtown is big news.

But that doesn’t stop Vancouver from having its own winter wonderland.  Twenty minutes outside of the city rise the snowcapped peaks of Grouse Mountain.  With summits rising to more than 1,220 metres, the popular ski mountain receives some 10 metres of snow every winter.

And in December, the mountain is transformed into a veritable winter wonderland as part of the Peak of Christmas festivities, running this year through Dec. 24.  Continue reading:
Peak of Christmas: A winter wonderland on top of Grouse Mountain

Top 5 Holiday Light Displays in Vancouver

During the month of December, Vancouver averages just 8.5 hours of daylight per day.  But don’t let the darkness get you down.  One surefire way to stave off seasonal affective disorder is by visiting some of the brilliant holiday light displays around town.

1) Bright Nights in Stanley Park:  An estimated two million twinkling lights are hung in Stanley Park for this kid-friendly seasonal favourite, now in its 14th year.  The display is centred around the miniature train line, which chugs deep into a holiday fantasy-land, complete with carolers and animated and live action.  This year, there’s also a North Pole exhibit, featuring Santa and a parade of trees.  Runs through Jan. 2. Free to look; $9 adults, $6 kids to ride the train. 

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Top 5 Holiday Light Displays in Vancouver

Nautical-Themed Christmas in Steveston Festival: Dec. 3

Photo credit: Chung Chow, Richmond News

Dozens of holiday events are happening this month in Vancouver, from Carol Ship cruises to Bright Nights in Stanley Park (Check out Dana’s great post for all the details).  But downtown Vancouver doesn’t have a monopoly on the holiday fun.

This Saturday, Dec. 3, catch a quirky, nautical-themed Christmas celebration in the seaside fishing village of Steveston.  Located in Richmond, not far from the airport, Steveston is perhaps best known for its Fisherman’s Wharf – where you can buy fresh salmon in the summer months.

That same wharf is where Santa will be making an appearance on Saturday as part of the Christmas in Steveston Festival.  Instead of arriving by sleigh, however, he’ll zip into port aboard a decorated whale watching boat.  Here’s a quick rundown of some of the unusual fun happening on Saturday:

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Nautical-Themed Christmas in Steveston Festival: Dec. 3