Council Candidates’ Forum

September 22, 2022

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The Origins of Commercial Drive

September 16, 2022

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I have just published a brief article on the earliest origins of Commercial Drive. It can be found at: https://grandviewheritagegroup.ca/blog/

It will probably be the first in a series.


The Lunch Lady Is In Town!

September 14, 2022

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We had lunch today with old friends at The Lunch Lady on Commercial.

It was a delight made even more special by meeting Mrs. Nguyen Thi Thanh, the original Lunch Lady, who is visiting from Saigon and staying here until the end of the week. She was warm and friendly and quite obviously enjoying her stay in Canada during which she had visited Montreal and Toronto.

A good time!


Car Free Day on The Drive

September 10, 2022

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Not quite as packed as events prior to covid, but it was still great to see so many people enjoying the Drive today.

It was also good to see Sean Nardi, James Buckshom, and Tricia Barker dealing with the crowds at the TEAM tent.


Car Free Day 2022

September 8, 2022

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After a two-year break due to covid, the annual Car Free Day on the Drive is back this Saturday! It takes place from noon until 7pm.

In the same way that Italian Day this year was restricted in scope to Grandview Park, Car Free Day is limited this year from Grandview Highway north to 1st Avenue.

Along with all the usual fun, games, local businesses, music, and food, there will be an interesting exhibit on the history of local transit by the Transit Museum.

I look forward to seeing the usual crowds!


Grandview’s Drug Store Tycoon

September 5, 2022

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I have today published a research essay on “Louis Toban: Drug Store Tycoon and Philanthropist” — a man who had a considerable effect on the Drive’s retail environment.

The essay can be found at: https://grandviewheritagegroup.ca/blog/


Italian Day 2022

August 28, 2022

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With the last two years’ festivities cancelled due to covid, it was great to celebrate Italian Day once again on Commercial Drive.

This year’s event did not close the street as usual, and everything was confined to Grandview Park. It was not quite the same, but enjoyable nonetheless — and the weather was perfect. The music was great, the food was great, and the crowds came out.

Well done to the organizers!


Mayoral Debate in Grandview

August 24, 2022

Zawa — No Good Surprises

August 18, 2022

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I am a great booster for businesses on the Drive but about two years ago I wrote about why I would never again use or recommend Zawa Restaurant. Now I see that the entire front of house staff has walked out due to the “inappropriate actions and harassment from the owner.”

Image from Facebook

The only surprise is how long this took to happen.

Given the huge number of fine eating establishments on the Drive, there is definitely no need to give such a disaster your patronage and support.


A Mainstreeting Event for TEAM for a Livable Vancouver

August 17, 2022

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Colleen Hardwick’s TEAM campaign will be mainstreeting on Commercial Drive tomorrow (Thursday 18th).

They will be meeting at the Entre Nous Femmes housing complex on Adanac & Commercial at 4pm and then proceeding south on Commercial Drive until about 5:30pm.

Come down and meet the next (and first female) Mayor of Vancouver and her TEAM!


The Buftons of Commercial Drive

August 2, 2022

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I have today published a biographical sketch of the three generations of the Bufton family who ran a florist shop on the Drive for 60 years, and who were community stalwarts, engaging in all the issues that faced Grandview and the Drive in those years.

The article can be found at: https://grandviewheritagegroup.ca/blog/

I hope you find it of interest.


Dykes On The Drive 2022

July 30, 2022

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It was great to catch the Dykes on the Drive March this afternoon! The parade was several blocks long, and scores more folks followed on afterwards. Pride was in evidence everywhere.


OneCity Meet & Greet

July 26, 2022

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The OneCity campaign will be holding a meet and greet session tonight at Pandora Park, 2325 Franklin, from 6pm to 8pm. This will be a chance for community members to meet each other, learn more about OneCity, and talk about how you can help elect OneCity candidates in October.

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Note that this notice is in no way an endorsement of the OneCity campaign, just a PSA. I will be happy to post notices of any events from any other party if I am notified in advance.


Barbecue With The NPA

July 19, 2022

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Want to talk politics? For those that may be interested the NPA campaign is holding a barbecue this coming Thursday (21st) at 2365 Kitchener (corner of Kitchener & Nanaimo) at 4:30 – 6:30pm.

Note that this notice is in no way an endorsement of the NPA campaign, just a PSA. I will be happy to post notices of any events from any other party if I am notified in advance.


The Viaduct That Saved Grandview

July 1, 2022

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Today — Canada Day — is the 84th anniversary of the opening of the First Avenue Viaduct. I have written a short history of how the viaduct came to be built, and its effect on Grandview.

The history can be found at: https://grandviewheritagegroup.ca/blog/

I hope you find it of interest.


100 Years Ago Today

June 27, 2022

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Vancouver Sun 1922 June 27, p.13

I would wager this house is still there, but the price may be a touch higher.


Car Free Days Are Back!

June 18, 2022

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It was way back in 2019 that we last enjoyed the Car Free Day on Commercial Drive. I am therefore really glad to be able to report that we will be doing it all again this year — on September 10th!

There will be similar festivals this year in the West End (August 20) and on Main Street (August 27).

I’ll post more details about the Drive event as I get them.


Living the High Life

June 17, 2022

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Highlife Records and Music has been an important fixture on the Drive for forty years, selling an eclectic range of world music, jazz, and instruments. The store also sells albums written, produced, and performed by Highlife’s owner, Kevin Finseth.

I am glad that the Vancouver Sun ran this feature for the launch of his latest album called Hertzog. Stuart Derdeyn describes Finseth’s music as “[p]aired with the lovely cello work of jazz cellist Peggy Lee, additional instrumentation from producer A-Dub and the bowed kemenche and wordless vocals of Turkish artist Asli Maj, the music is like a soundtrack to a film by Greek director Theo Angelopoulus.”

The store is always worth a visit!


Why It Took 50 Years For Grandview To Get A Library

June 8, 2022

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I have today published a new research essay on the 50-year struggle to get a library established in the Commercial Drive neighbourhood.

The essay can be found at: https://grandviewheritagegroup.ca/blog/

I hope you find it of interest.


Big Changes Coming To The Drive?

June 7, 2022

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It is reported that the entire Il Mercato block on the north west corner of Commercial Drive and First Avenue has been sold to a developer for re-development.

Under the Grandview-Woodland Community Plan, of ill repute, that site could be developed with a far higher and dense building. Something to watch for.