The ocean, the mountains and (hopefully) the sunshine set the perfect stage for Vancouver’s eclectic series of summer festivals. Here, our top picks to start the season.
Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival
If you yawned through Shakespeare in high school English, a visit to Vancouver’s 23rd annual Shakespeare spree in Kitsilano’s Vanier Park will provide an entirely different experience. The Taming of the Shrew promises to be the ultimate battle of the sexes, while Macbeth is billed as a dark and powerful tragedy driven by seductive prophecy. Order a picnic dinner and make it a date night; she’ll be impressed. Special events include the salmon Bard-B-Q and Fireworks (July 28, August 1 and 4) and Celebrating Red and White, a wine tasting event following the matinee performances and before the evening shows on August 18. Performances run Tuesdays through Sundays until Sept. 22.
Carnaval del sol
Latin Americans love to party and the proof is in the pan con lechon (roasted pork bun with mojo sauce, olive oil and lemon). Granville Street (between Smithe and Hastings) will be transformed into a typical Latin plaza on June 30 between 10 a.m. and 10 p.m. The fiesta includes fabulous food, music and dancing, outdoor salsa and zumba lessons and an arts and crafts market. Team up with seven of your friends and participate in the mini world cup street soccer tournament. The first round is on June 24. More info here.
TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival
We are counting down to the opening of the jazz fest June 23, which brings a weekend of free entertainment outside the Vancouver Art Gallery. The arts and music village will include three live performance stages, art installations, an artisan and food market, two outdoor licensed bistros and free dance classes. After brushing up on your moves, check out headlines like “punkgrass” the Avett Brothers, sexy soul sensation and Grammy nominee Janelle Monáe and “supeafunkrock” Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue.
Image courtesy of Maurice Li.