Renfrew-Collingwood Community News

News stories from the Renfrew-Collingwood community in East Vancouver


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Homeless program raising funds and donations in Renfrew-Collingwood

Windermere Girls Group Homeless Program Donations

The Girls Group from Windermere Secondary ran a successful socks and underwear drive to support the participants of the homeless program at Collingwood Neighbourhood House. Photo by Suzanne Liddle

BY ANA MATEESCU

The Collingwood Neighbourhood House Morning Star breakfast program has been running since 2004 and serves between 60 and 80 people every Saturday morning! Here homeless and tentatively housed people, from the Collingwood neighbourhood and beyond, are able to have a hot shower and get some clean underwear and clothes before a hot breakfast.

This program relies on the generous help of dedicated volunteers and donations from the local community.

Recently, the program partnered with the Girls Group from Windermere Secondary. The girls ran a very successful socks and underwear drive to support the participants of our homeless program! For two to three weeks they spent every lunch break promoting the drive at school and encouraging pupils and teachers to donate.

A regular attendee at the breakfast program, Michael Desbiens, went along to meet the girls to say thank you.

Michael has been coming to the Morning Star breakfast program for a number of years. For a long time, Michael was homeless and living on the street; he connected with the outreach workers at Collingwood and they helped him to apply for housing and eventually he got a roof over his head. He is healthier and happier now but he knows how important it is for someone who is homeless to have basic needs met such as having clean, dry socks and underwear.

On May 30 Michael visited Windermere Secondary and had lunch with the girls who participated at the drive. It was an amazing afternoon with interesting discussions and Michael said he felt again “young and full of hope” by listening and witnessing how these girls are making plans how they want to change the world.

Michael talked about his experiences and the girls plan to come and volunteer for the breakfast program every Saturday and engage other secondary schools from the Collingwood Renfrew area to raise awareness of homelessness.

A video story about May 30 Windermere Secondary girls group action is on the Collingwood Neighbourhood House website and Youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KIALpiJmP8I

Donate and shop!

The Morning Star breakfast program is always accepting donations of clean socks and underwear. You can also drop off donations at Vancity on Joyce and Kingsway.

Would you like to shop and help the community at the same time? Come check out our Collingwood Summer Market! On Saturday, August 19 there will be a yard sale on the front lawn of CNH with a wide variety of interesting items sold, with plenty of bargains. All the money raised will support CNH’s homeless program.

Come every Tuesday and Thursday 11-2pm in August and September in front of Collingwood Neighbourhood House to shop and support people who are struggling with poverty and homelessness.

Ana Mateescu is the homeless programs coordinator at Collingwood Neighbourhood House.

Copyright (c) 2017 Renfrew-Collingwood Community News


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Local markets just a Skytrain ride away from Renfrew-Collingwood

An abundance of farm-to-table goodness, seasonal produce and exciting new vendors can be found at the markets right now. These markets are close to the Renfrew-Collingwood neighbourhood or accessible by Skytrain.

Queen-E-Farmers-Market

The Queen E Farmers Market features new lunchtime hours where you can also stop by the CBC Musical Nooners down the street for free summer concerts. Photo source: eatlocal.org

NEW! DOWNTOWN FARMERS MARKET

Queen Elizabeth Theatre Plaza

688 Hamilton Street at Georgia

Jun. 1–Oct. 5

Thursdays, 11 am–3 pm

Shop downtown then pick up lunch or dinner at the Queen E market. New lunchtime hours!

Near the Granville St. or Chinatown Skytrain station

http://eatlocal.org/markets/downtown/

Even better, stop by the CBC Plaza (700 Hamilton Street), 12-1 pm, for their free summer concert series running until every weekday Aug. 25. Check out the line-up at http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/events/cbc-musical-nooners-return-for-their-8th-year-1.4160454

CBC-Musical-Nooner-Wesli

Wesli rocked the stage with afro and reggae beats at the CBC Musical Nooners before playing at the Vancouver Folk Festival. Photo by Julie Cheng

TROUT LAKE FARMERS MARKET

Lakewood Dr. & East 13th Ave.

Saturdays through Oct. 21

9 am–2 pm

Near Nanaimo Skytrain station

www.eatlocal.org/markets/trout-lake/

MAIN STREET STATION FARMERS MARKET

1100 Station Street

Wednesdays through Oct. 4

2–6 pm

Near Science World Skytrain station

www.eatlocal.org/markets/main-street-station/

MERCATO ITALIAN MARKET

3075 Slocan St. at Grandview Hwy.

Fridays, June 16, July 21, Aug. 18 & Nov. 24 (Christmas market)

5–9 pm

Run by Il Centro, the Italian Cultural Centre, Mercato Italian Market blends a traditional farmers market with an Italian community market that highlights local, organic and artisan products and produce.

Near Renfrew Skytrain station

www.italianculturalcentre.ca/events/mercato-italian-market/

RIVER DISTRICT FARMERS MARKET

8683 Kerr Street

Saturdays through Oct. 14

10 am–3 pm

The River District is one of Vancouver’s up-and-coming neighbourhoods and is located on the Fraser River just south of Renfrew-Collingwood. Along with local baked goods and seasonal produce, enjoy live music, family activities and the nearby waterfront playground and pier. You can also stop by Romer’s Burger Bar, which we reviewed in an Eating Out in RC column (https://renfrewcollingwoodcommunitynews.com/2014/03/13/eating-out-in-rc-romers-burger-bar-great-food-awesome-waterfront-location-cool-atmosphere-excellent-service/)

COLLINGWOOD SUMMER MARKET

Front yard at Collingwood Neighbourhood House

5288 Joyce Street

Saturday, Aug. 19

1–4 pm

Used clothing, household items under $5

– compiled by Julie Cheng

Copyright (c) 2017 Renfrew-Collingwood Community News


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Summer happenings at Still Moon Arts – 2017 Moon Festival coming Sept. 30

Still Moon Performance

Lost and Found Performance: Carmen Rosen sings an original music piece composed by Isaac Rosen-Purcell, joined by youth dancers and fiddlers. Photo by Kat Wadel

BY JUNE LAM

The summer has been wonderful over here at Still Moon Arts. Here is what we’ve been up to.

Still Creek Stories: Lost and Found Performance

For two summers, Still Moon Arts has been researching, planning and rehearsing for the Still Creek: Lost and Found Performance. On Sunday, July 2, members from the community came together to witness this site-specific performance featuring original music, dance, visual art and storytelling.

The audience was taken on a transformative journey, where they stopped at one location, experienced a bit of the performance, then moved on to the next location through the Renfrew Ravine to experience the rest. Along the way, the audience heard two original pieces of music, one composed by Isaac Rosen-Purcell and the other by Martin Reisle. The audience also heard story excerpts from the Still Creek Stories book, such as the story of Ted Twetie, who lived in the ravine.

This unique performance used spaces that would otherwise been seen as mundane. For example, the old water pipe was transformed into art, and featured two fiddlers, Robin Lough and Clara Rose, who played amongst the vines. Overall, the performance received a lot of support and positive feedback. Don’t worry if you missed it, we hope to host another one in late September!

Cheyenne Lost Streams mural painting

Lost Streams Mural by Still Moon Arts

Youth paint salmon and benthic invertebrates on the Lost Streams mural. Photo by Robin Lough

For the past 15 years, we’ve been dedicated to the stewardship and restoration of Still Creek, which flows through Renfrew Ravine. In 2014, we initiated the Street Mural Project, a project to showcase the part of the ravine that flowed through pipes directly under the streets. The mural on Cheyenne Avenue was our most recent addition to the project and the public was invited to help paint it.

Community members, artists and youth got their hands dirty and began painting on July 13. In just two days, the mural was completed, followed by a celebration in the evening. This being our fourth mural, we hope to continue this legacy in other locations where Still Creek has been buried beneath the roads. We also hope this project leaves a lasting reminder of Still Creek and the Renfrew Ravine, and sparks meaningful conversations around it.

Stewardship Tuesdays

 Stewardship Tuesdays is a series of workshops that happen once a week from 6 to 8 pm every Tuesday. On July 4, we held a workshop on gathering local plant material for weaving. Through this workshop, not only did participants help improve ecological integrity of local parks, but learned how to collect natural artistic materials sustainably. Participants gathered invasive plant species, such as Himalayan blackberry and English ivy, and learned weaving techniques and styling methods.

Check out our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/StillMoonArts/ or website www.stillmoon.org/ for more information on upcoming workshops!

Mark your calendar!

The 15th Annual Renfrew Ravine Moon Festival is coming up on Saturday, Sept. 30, 2017.

 

Copyright (c) 2017 Renfrew-Collingwood Community News


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Skytrain Rambler: Evergreen line connects history from Renfrew-Collingwood to Port Moody

BY JULIE CHENG

As a young boy my husband lived for a while in Port Moody. Since the opening of the Evergreen Skytrain extension in December 2016, I’ve been thinking of visiting that area of the Lower Mainland. Along with tracing the roots of my husband’s childhood, I discovered history connections between Port Moody and our little corner of Vancouver, Renfrew-Collingwood.

Skytrain Station: Renfrew station at East 12th Avenue/Hebb and Renfrew to Inlet Centre Station. Travel time: 28 minutes. Roundtrip with a walk in between takes two to three hours.

Evergreen_Line_map

From Renfrew station, take the Lafarge Lake-Douglas train going east and stop at Inlet Centre Station. Source: Translink

From Renfrew station, take the Lafarge Lake-Douglas train. Along the way you’ll pass by Brentwood Mall, Production Way-University and Lougheed Skytrain stations, interspersed with industrial warehouses. At Burquitlam you can see the east side of Simon Fraser University on top of the hill before entering a tunnel that will take you into Port Moody.

As you glide into Inlet Centre Station, you’ll notice the railcars sitting on the tracks running parallel to the Skytrain line.

Port Moody Train

The railway figures prominently in Port Moody history. Photos by Julie Cheng

Port Moody is a historical railway town. As a port, it was the original destination for the railway terminus for the Transcontinental Railway (CPR) before land speculators got a hold of it and moved it to Vancouver where the Seabus building now stands. Apparently Port Moody didn’t have enough flat land to put the railyards, says my history-buff husband. This is why we have the tunnel (now the Skytrain tunnel) to Yaletown, which became the railyard flats.

Check out the artwork inside and outside Inlet Centre Station before you turn left and follow Ioco Road to Sherbrooke. Turn left at Suter Brook Village and go through the village. This is your chance to grab a juice or coffee before your trek.

[photo 4] Check out the artwork inside and outside Inlet Centre Station.

Check out the artwork inside and outside Inlet Centre Station.

Cross Murray Street and go left, following the bike trail. Along the edge of the wooded area you’ll see nurse stumps, which are tree stumps left over from old forestry logging. Take the Sutter Brook Creek trail and go through the community centre parking lot with tennis courts on your left. Pass by the Trasolini soccer field and you’ll see a trailhead straight ahead. Go right and follow the rail lines with the soccer field to your right. Cross the railway line and follow signs into Shoreline Park.

The map shows you can turn right to Old Orchard Park, where you’ll see old logging equipment along the way, or you can turn left to Rocky Point Park, which loops you back into Port Moody.

From the map, we head straight and found we had met up with the TransCanada Trail. In front of us are mud flats – the head of the Burrard Inlet and a tidal area. My husband remembers as a three year old walking with his dad across the mud flats at low tide from his house on Ioco Road all the way to Rocky Point (now marked by a large green shed that’s a sulphur storage plant).

The tidal mud flat in Shoreline Park is at the head of Burrard Inlet.

The tidal mud flat in Shoreline Park is at the head of Burrard Inlet.

Turning left across a small bridge onto the TransCanada Trail, destination Rocky Point, you’ll see the mud flats become marsh. My husband imagines native peoples living in middens throughout this area, with its rich food sources from the sea. This is where the sea meets fresh water, and an area that salmon would travel on their way to their spawning grounds. It’s important to catch the salmon close to the sea as salmon start to deteriorate once they hit fresh water.

It’s a leisurely walk over boardwalk and trail along the edge of the water. Take your time reading the TransCanada Trail signs and learning about local history and flora and fauna.

It’s a leisurely walk over boardwalk and trail.

It’s a leisurely walk over boardwalk and trail.

Rocky Point has a children’s playground and a nice wharf. It’s still a working waterfront, with an active mill near the wharf. A sign at the beginning of the wharf tells the history of Port Moody’s namesake, Colonel Richard Moody. “You know,” my husband says, “Colonel Moody and his ‘sappers’ did all the surveying in Collingwood.” A quick search confirms this tidbit of history (see box).

 

My husband remembers walking with his father clear across the inlet from Ioco Road to Rocky Point as a young boy.

My husband remembers walking with his father clear across the inlet from Ioco Road to Rocky Point as a young boy.

 

Pajo's at Rocky Point

Feeling hungry from your walk? This is a perfect time stop by for “world-famous” fish and chips from Pajo’s.

By now you may be ready to head home, or you can head into Port Moody to see what the shops and restaurants have to offer. To head home, take the overpass. To the right is the Port Moody Railway Museum and to the left is the Moody Centre Skytrain station, around five minutes’ walk from Pajo’s.

On the way back we transferred at Lougheed Station and took the Expo line back to Collingwood. Just walk across the platform at Lougheed and take the Expo line train heading to Waterfront.

Along the way we saw more working waterfront. Around Sapperton (named after Colonel Moody’s sappers) in New Westminster there’s the hospital and the Brewery District, where Labatt’s Brewery used to be. To your left up the hill is the former B.C. Penitentiary, opened in 1878 and closed in 1980. Just before you pull into New Westminster station you’ll pass the red brick buildings of the New Westminster courthouse, first built in 1891.

New Westminster, too, was established before Vancouver in the 1859 and for a short time was the capital. Kingsway was a trail and the quickest way from New Westminster to Vancouver.

Before rolling into Royal Oak station, I look south for the ocean views and the Gulf Islands in the distance. So much more history to discover.

Julie Cheng loves taking the Skytrain. She has been the editor of the Renfrew-Collingwood Community News for 10 years.

Colonel Moody and Collingwood

According to the Collingwood Neighbourhood House:

“In the 1860s Colonel Richard Moody of the Royal Engineers took a fancy to a lake that sat between what are now Kingsway and Vanness Avenue. He laid claim to the lake and the surrounding land. Moody and other early European settlers were attracted to this area because they were able to drain the lake and grow food in the fertile soil.

“Kingsway, once part of an early military trail to Burrard Inlet, follows the route of earlier Aboriginal trails that ran parallel to the lake shore. Streets in the neighbourhood were built in orientation to Kingsway and are therefore at odd angles with the rest of Vancouver’s grid-like layout.” (www.cnh.bc.ca/neighbourhood-stuff-to-do/neighbourhood-history/)

Copyright (c) 2017 Renfrew-Collingwood Community News


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Summer Latin fest returns as One Love Westcoast Festival – Swangard Stadium and Rickshaw Theatre

Latin Fest Stage view

One Love Westcoast Festival is the new edition of the Latin summer fest that ran out of Trout Lake for 15 years until 2015.

August 11 to 13, One Love Westcoast Music and Community Festival celebrates the music of the worlds and the Latin, African and Caribbean cultures.

One Love Westcoast Festival is the new edition of the Latin summer fest that ran out of Trout Lake for 15 years until 2015. This family event is for all ages with no alcohol sales. Kids under 12 are free.

Latin Summer Fest, Van Music and Super Chido Productions present this first edition of the One Love Westcoast Festival featuring Afro-Latino and reggae cultures and music. This three-day event will be hosted at Swangard Stadium in Burnaby over the weekend and a red carpet VIP concert on Friday night at the iconic Rickshaw Theatre (254 East Hastings Street, Vancouver).

The Afro-Latin and Reggae International stage will house local and international acts such as Mexico’s AntiDoping, who are reggae superstars celebrating 25 years of resistance championing the social causes of Latin America. Potato from Vitoria Gasteiz in Spain is another super reggae ska world power. Formed in 1984 they were the first ska reggae band in their country and after several members and numerous LP and tours they are still going strong with a new CD called Todo el Rato. Mexican band Maskatesta is a ska sensation in Mexico used to filling stadiums and getting everyone to dance to their infectious music.

Coco Jaffro. Photo by Sangito Bigelow

Coco Jaffro. Photo by Clyde Scott @Davosh Photos

The Sentiments from Portland appear on Saturday, Aug. 12 at Swangard Stadium. One of the fixtures of Portland, the Sentiments is a classic ska band with a powerful female vocal. Among their members are seasoned musicians that do in some of the best ska projects in their state.

Friday’s VIP concert features AntiDoping, the Sentiments and Potato.

Saturday we move to the Swangard Stadium where you’ll also be welcomed by the enticing fusion local sounds of Los Duendes, Kunda, Rumba 7, MNGWA and Impulso, among others. Food trucks, a market place, information kiosks and DJs will cascade onto the venue to create the Coconut Village.

This family event is for all ages with no alcohol sales. Kids under 12 are free.

Full-access pass early bird is now on sale at www.myshowpass.com – One Love Westcoast Festival

Facebook: One Love Westcoast 2017

Twitter: LatinFest, VanMusic

www.latinsummerfest.com

 


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August 2017 issue of RCC News is here

Renfrew-Collingwood Community News August 2017

This issue of the Renfrew-Collingwood Community News is full of the many wonderful people, events and programs happening in our neighbourhood!

Get your latest issue of the RCC News at your local coffee shop, grocery store, library and community centre.

Or click on the cover image to view the new issue.

In this issue:

  • Skytrain Rambler: Evergreen line connects history from Renfrew-Collingwood to Port Moody
  • Lots happening at Still Moon Arts Society
  • Photos of informal learning in Renfrew-Collingwood by John Mendoza
  • Homeless program raising funds in the neighbourhood
  • Shop local farmers markets
  • Gathering of canoes – Photo montage by Penny Lim
  • Read On! Many reasons to love Renfrew-Collingwood by Tony Wanless
  • Latin festival returns to new venues – Swangard Stadium and Rickshaw Theatre

Do you have a local story to tell or an event to share? We’d love to hear about it! Email rccnews-editorial@cnh.bc.ca.

The deadline for the September 2017 issue is August 10. We welcome story submissions from 300 to 400 words long. Accompanying photos must be high resolution in a jpg file at least 1 MB large and include a photo caption and the name of the photographer.


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Read On! page returns for ESL learners – Introducing Tony Wanless

BY TONY WANLESS

Have you been wondering why you have not seen the Read On! column in the Renfrew-Collingwood Community News recently?

That is because we have changed writers. The column has been written for some time by Cari Chan, but she had to stop last year because she was too busy with other work.

But now, a new writer – Tony Wanless – has agreed to replace her and write the column in future. This column is his introduction to regular readers.

Tony has been a journalist and writer for 30 years. He has worked for several Canadian newspapers across Canada, including the Province newspaper in Vancouver. At different times, he has been a crime reporter, an art writer, a photographer, an editor, and chief of a group of “re-writers” – journalists who refine other journalist’s articles.

He has also written many books for businesses. For several years, he was a “ghost-writer” – a secret writer-for-hire, for authors of articles and books. Most of those were about business. He has also worked as a consultant on marketing for many technology businesses.

Although Tony is now officially retired, he continues to write a column every month for the business section of the National Post.

Tony has lived in the Renfrew-Collingwood neighbourhood for almost 15 years. He has been involved in Collingwood Neighbourhood House’s senior’s Tai Chi program for several years.

He has some background with English as a second language and often replaces CNH’s usual teacher of English-as-a-second-language program when that person is away.

Last year, Tony offered a training session to help seniors who do not have English as their first language tell their stories about coming to Canada.

Although Tony is new to the RCC News column, there will be no changes for now. There could be in future, however, if readers suggest them.

In that sense, we are always willing to listen to suggestions about how we can make the column more helpful to newcomers to the area who are trying to better their English language skills.

If you have any ideas, then don’t be shy. We’d like to hear them so we can make the RCC News better serve the Renfrew-Collingwood neighbourhood. Please email rccnews-editorial@cnh.bc.ca.

Without the fertilization of new ideas, nothing can grow.