101 Things to Do in Burnaby and New Westminster (2012 Edition)
By Staff Writer - Burnaby NewsLeader
Published: May 01, 2012 12:00 PM
Updated: May 01, 2012 12:41 PM
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- Mothers Day
New Westminster Symphony Orchestra presents a special Mother’s Day Concert on May 13 featuring Rossini and Shostakovich. Massey Theatre, 735 Eighth Ave. at 2 p.m. Info: www.masseytheatre.com.
There are few things as satisfying as rolling a heavy object towards a target and watching it all fall down. Visit Old Orchard Lanes (4429 Kingsway) and REVS Bowling (5502 Lougheed Hwy.) in Burnaby, and Lucky Strike Lanes (1205 6th Ave.) in New Westminster.
- Burnaby Rhododendron Festival
On Sunday, May 6, gardeners can enjoy art and horticulture, entertainment, mini-workshops and more at the Shadbolt Centre for the Arts, 6450 Deer Lake Ave. Visit www.brags.ca.
- Burnaby Blues & Roots Festival
The 13th Annual Burnaby Blues and Roots Festival at Deer Lake features internationally acclaimed artists from 2 to 10 p.m. on Aug. 11. Children’s activities on site. Visit www.burnabybluesfestival.com.
- Hyack Festival
From May 18-27, New Westminster’s Hyack Festival is one of the largest festivals in B.C. It includes a parade, antique fair, fireworks and much more. Visit www.hyack.bc.ca.
- Hyack International Parade
On Saturday, May 26, B.C.’s largest international parade is coming through and you’ll want to see it all with over 130 entrants from B.C. and the Pacific Northwest. Start: 11 a.m. Visit www.hyack.bc.ca.
- BC Seniors Summer Games
This 25th annual event is in Burnaby this year, from Tuesday, Aug. 21 through Saturday, Aug. 25. This multisport competition celebrates active, healthy seniors aged 55+. Visit www.2012bcseniorsgames.org.
- Art galleries
Burnaby Art Gallery, in historic Ceperley House (6344 Deer Lake Ave.), features contemporary art. Info: www.burnabyartgallery.ca. Burnaby Arts Council has a gallery a few doors down (6584 Deer Lake Ave.). Info: www.burnabyartscouncil.org. At Simon Fraser University is the SFU Gallery (www.sfu.ca/gallery). The Arts Council of New Westminster hosts exhibitions at Centennial Lodge in Queen’s Park. Info: www.artscouncilnewwest.org. Van Dop Gallery (421 Richmond St.) showcases artworks in a home setting, by appointment. Info: www.vandopgallery.com.
- Live Theatre
New Westminster’s Queen’s Park is home to the Bernie Legge Theatre, the stage of the Vagabond Players (vagabondplayers.ca). Douglas College’s theatre department presents four student productions a year at the New West campus (700 Royal Ave.). Info: http://bit.ly/zURhBI. In Burnaby, Shadbolt Centre presents touring productions from professional companies such as the Arts Club. Info: http://shadboltcentre.com/theatre.php.
- Cemetery tours
Cemeteries aren’t just final resting places, they’re a rich source of history and stories. In New Westminster, Fraser Cemetery is regularly the site of walking tours by local historians Archie and Dale Miller. Info, www.nwheritage.org or call 604-526-6113. In Burnaby, tours of Ocean View, Forest Lawn and Masonic cemeteries are occasionally hosted by Burnaby Village Museum. Check burnabyvillagemuseum.ca for more details.
- Live Music
On weekends, don’t be surprised to see live bands playing at public spaces, including Hyack Square and the Queen’s Park Bandshell in New Westminster. In Burnaby, Civic Square, next to Bob Prittie Metrotown library, is home to live music and other events every Sunday from July 8 to Aug. 26. Info: 604-570-4000. Also visit the Heritage Grill, Java Jazz Cafe (New West), and the Marine Pub and Admiral Pub (Burnaby).
- All aboard
Every November the Pacific Northwest Region of the National Model Railroad Association Canada hosts a giant exhibition of miniature model railroads at the Cameron Recreation Centre in Burnaby. Info: www.bctrains.org
- Nikkei Place
Visit the National Nikkei Heritage Centre and Japanese Canadian National Museum. The museum hosts exhibitions on Japanese-Canadian history. Info: www.nikkeiplace.org.
- Burnaby Village Museum
Step into the 1920s at Burnaby Village Museum where original heritage homes sit alongside historically-accurate replicas of Burnaby buildings. Info: www.burnabyvillagemuseum.ca or 604-297-4565
Barnet Marine Park in North Burnaby quietly provides locals with a salt-water setting of fun and relaxation. Deer Lake, meanwhile, offers its own beach off Sperling Avenue, which can be used as a launching point for not only walks around the lake but trips on the water by canoe, kayak, rowboat or pedal-boat, all available at Deer Lake Boat Rentals.
- European Festival
The 15th instalment on Saturday, May 26 will be a showcase of more than 30 countries including folk dancers, musicians in costume, cultural displays, food, beer garden and a finale with a live band. Held at Swangard Stadium (Kingsway and Boundary Road) in Burnaby. Visit www.eurofestbcsociety.com.
Check out Burnaby Heights, along Hastings Street, for everything from Italian to Asian groceries, French bistros, cappuccino bars, and the beckoning presence of Valley Bakery. Edmonds Street and the adjacent HighGate area has become a multicultural mecca for food, with groceries, butchers and restaurants representing Eastern European, Middle Eastern, Asian, North African, Turkish cuisines and more. In New West, River Market at Westminster Quay is in the midst of a major overhaul which will eventually see it become a focus for foodies. The city is also home to Karmavore (610 Columbia St.), an independent, 100 per cent vegan store.
- Mountain biking at Burnaby Mountain
Mountain Air Bike Skills Park on Barnet Highway at Takeda Drive features jumps, berms, ramps, ladders, rollers, walls and beams. Riders can then test those skills on the 20 km. of trails that encircle and bisect the Burnaby Mountain Conservation Area. Info: www.bmba.ca
- Hats Off Day
Enjoy Burnaby’s biggest street party Saturday, June 2, when Heights merchants take their hats off to the community. It begins with a parade on Hastings between Boundary and Gamma. Visit www.burnabyheights.com.
- Sapperton Day
Sapperton businesses put on Sapperton Day Street Festival on June 10 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on East Columbia Street in New Westminster.
- Fish hatchery
There are a number of fish releases in Burnaby every spring, the largest is the Great Salmon Send Off at Stoney Creek, May 12. The Sapperton Fish and Game Club also maintains a hatchery in New West to stock streams that feed the Brunette River. Info: sappertonfishandgame.com
Drop a baited line into Deer Lake. If you fish from shore, or from the dock, you’ll likely reel in a carp. Paddle or float into deeper water, especially in spring and fall, you might hook a rainbow trout, stocked there by the Fraser Valley Trout Hatchery. You’ll need a B.C. freshwater fishing licence.
- Aim for a bullseye
The Burnaby Archers have been aiming their arrows at the largest outdoor archery range in B.C. since 1980. The range, which includes a sand pit for the use of bow hunters, is located at the north end of Burnaby Lake Park, near the intersection of Kensington Avenue and Joe Sakic Way. For more information: http://bit.ly/wg7Evy. There is also an indoor archery range located in New Westminster, at 426 E. Columbia St.
- Squash & Racquetball
The popularity of squash and racquetball has waned since the 1980s, but there are still courts available, including Bonsor and Cameron recreation complexes in Burnaby. There are also members-only courts at REVS Fitness Centre.
- River to Sea Heritage Fair at Burnaby Village Museum
Celebrate Canada’s heritage in the form of student projects with a history or heritage theme. Students share their work May 11-12 all day. Visit www.burnabyvillagemuseum.ca.
For those who get their blood pumping with a throw of the dice there is the Grand Villa Casino in Burnaby and the Starlight Casino in New Westminster.
- Bird watching
Burnaby’s two lakes provide ample opportunities for bird-watching. From the viewing tower at the east end of Burnaby Lake, look for herons, eagles, kingfishers, osprey and ducks. Reach the tower from Piper Avenue. Walking the trail that encircles Deer Lake will provide chances to see songbirds, ducks, egrets, kingfishers, hawks, ducks, herons and the occasional eagle. Spot shorebirds and eagles from the beach and along Drummond Walk at Barnet Marine Park. In New West, the best bird watching is by walking the trail that skirts the Brunette River from the lower parking lot at Hume Park.
Metropolis at Metrotown has 450 stores, making it the largest shopping centre in B.C., but there’s also Lougheed Town Centre and Brentwood Town Centre. All are easily accessible along SkyTrain. For a more “neighbourhood” shopping experience, stroll Hastings in Burnaby’s Heights area, or visit burgeoning districts like HighGate or along North Road, where Korean merchants have concentrated. In New West, Royal City Centre anchors the Uptown, while Downtown offers an eclectic mix of boutiques, antique shops and wedding outfitters.
The Central Valley Greenway is a safe network of marked bike lanes and designated paths that travels from Columbia Street in New West, through Burnaby along the Millennium SkyTrain route into Vancouver. There’s also the bike-friendly 26-km BC Parkway, beneath the Expo line.
- Farmers markets
Burnaby and New West are home to three weekly farmers markets that run through summer. The Burnaby Farmers Market (www.artisanmarkets.ca) will run at the Burnaby City Hall ever Saturday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. from May 5 to Oct. 27. There’s also a pocket market Wednesday afternoons at SFU and the Royal City Farmers Market (rcfm.ca) will return to Tipperary Park on Thursdays, 3-7 p.m., from June 7 to Oct. 4.
The boardwalk that spans the Quayside in New Westminster is a pleasant stroll to enjoy the working waterway known as the Fraser River. Upstream is a pleasant walk at Sapperton Landing, while downstream there’s Burnaby Fraser Foreshore Park. There’s more challenging terrain in Robert Burnaby Park, in the forests surrounding Simon Fraser University and in Penzance Park in the northwest corner of Burnaby. There are also many picturesque trails to walk in Central Park, Deer Lake Park and Burnaby Lake Park, and the B.C. Parkway running along the SkyTrain line offers an optimal walking opportunity.
Deer Lake is one of the most picturesque spots in the Lower Mainland and one of the best ways to experience it is on the water. Deer Lake Boat Rentals rents canoes, kayaks, pedal boats and row boats. The boathouse is at 5435 Sperling Ave. at the southeast corner of the lake.
With its calm waters, Burnaby Lake offers one of the best places in North America for competitive rowers to train. Burnaby Lake Rowing Club at the west end of the lake has many experienced scullers but also offers private lessons for those who want to learn. The Burnaby Canoe and Kayak Club is run out of the same facility and offers programs for people age eight and older.
- Paddlewheeler ride
Travel on the Fraser River just as the province’s pioneers did, by paddlewheel. Paddlewheeler Riverboat Cruises is based out of New Westminster Quay and offers various spectacular cruises along the river.
The trails at Burnaby Lake are ideal for serious joggers. Central Park has marked distance trails and for those that want an optimum technical experience, the track at Swangard Stadium is open for public use Monday to Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., except during events. Queen’s Park in New Westminster also has a pleasant path.
- Charity walks and runs
There are several runs and walks for charity held throughout the year including the WRA Walk for Wildlife to be held at Burnaby Lake on Sept 30th and the Jan. 1 Resolution Run at Fraser Foreshore Park. Lengths vary. For running events visit www.events.runningroom.com.
- Ice skating
Public ice skating is available in Burnaby at the Bill Copeland Sports Centre and Kensington Arena in Burnaby, and Queen’s Park and Moody Park arenas in New Westminster. Times are available in the parks and recreation areas of the city websites: www.burnaby.ca and www.newwestpcr.ca.
- New West Museum and Archives
Keeping history alive is what the New Westminster Museum and Archives is all about. The museum is at Irving House (302 Royal Ave.), one of the oldest homes in Metro Vancouver.
- Eagles Estate Garden
This magnificent mansion and garden on the southeast corner of Deer Lake is open to the public. The 1.6 acre terraced garden was designed by renowned horticulturist Frank E. Buck for Blythe and Violet Eagles, and is being restored to former glory. An interpretive centre is generally open Monday to Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., from May until Thanksgiving.
- Westminster Regiment Armouries
The grand old armoury stands stately at the corner of Queens and Sixth. A museum featuring photos, small arms and other memorabilia going back to 1863 is open Tuesday and Thursdays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., or by appointment (604-526-5116).
- Canadian Lacrosse Hall of Fame
Lacrosse is a large part of New Westminster’s social and recreational fabric so it is fitting the Canadian Lacrosse Hall of Fame is located at Centennial Community Centre.
- Spray parks
On hot summer days there’s nothing that provides more relief than a spray park. Parks throughout Burnaby and New Westminster provide a place to frolic in the sun amongst some pretty creative water works.
Golf can be played here almost year round, and there are two beautiful courses nearby. Burnaby Mountain (7600 Halifax St.) offers a gorgeous natural setting, with rolling terrain at the foot of Burnaby Mountain, and Riverway (9001 Bill Fox Way) is a classic 18-hole championship course with one of the best layouts in the area. Both include driving ranges. There are also pitch-and-putts at Central (3883 Imperial St.) and Kensington parks (5889 Curtis St.).
- Climb a wall
BCIT offers a great chance to go up its Tech Towers 20-foot climbing wall, with or without assistance at its SE16 building. Visit http://www.bcit.ca/recreation/facilities/wall.shtml.
- Burnaby Central Railway
B.C. Society of Model Engineers operates Burnaby Central Railway at Confederation Park in Burnaby from Good Friday (April 6) through Thanksgiving (Oct. 8). The miniature railway offers rides at 120 North Willingdon Ave. Call 604-291-0922.
- Pride 2011
The Royal City Pride Society stages Follow the Rainbow Pride Festival Aug. 16-19. Info: www.royalcitypridesociety.com.
- Swim at an outdoor pool
New Westminster has outdoor pools at Hume Park and Moody Park. In Burnaby there are outdoor pools at Central Park, Kensington Park, McPherson Park and Robert Burnaby Park. Check each city’s website for opening dates and operating hours.
Burnaby has an active and popular ultimate league. People interested in disc sports can visit Burnaby Ultimate and Disc Sports’ website at http://burnaby.bcdss.bc.ca/index.php.
- Heritage Home Tour
New West Heritage Preservation Society presents a self-guided tour of homes on May 27. Tickets on sale May 5. Visit www.newwestheritage.org.
- Vancouver International Rugby Sevens
Whether you are looking to compete or just watch, Vancouver Rugby Sevens International is a full weekend of action. The event is July 21 and 22 at Swangard Stadium in Burnaby. Visit www.vancouverinternationalsevens.com.
- Great Salmon Send-Off
Experience the thrill of releasing baby coho to begin their journey to the Pacific Ocean. Hosted by the Stoney Creek Environment Committee. The event is May 12, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Stoney Creek Elementary in Burnaby (2740 Beaverbrook Cr.). Info: http://www.scec.ca/gsso.html or phone 604-420-9132.
- Victoria Day
On May 21, Burnaby Village Museum is the place to be to celebrate Queen Victoria’s birthday. Meet her royal highness herself and enjoy a piece of birthday cake in an atmosphere of the 1920s. Visit http://www.burnabyvillagemuseum.ca/.
- Canada Day Celebrations
New Westminster always celebrates with a Happy Birthday Canada party in Queen’s Park. In Burnaby celebrations are at newly named Edmonds Park (formerly Richmond Park) and the city’s official party at Burnaby Village Museum.
- Mind Over Mountain Adventure Race
MOMAR is an off road multi-sport sprint adventure race in Burnaby that requires teams to mountain bike, kayak, trail run, trek and orienteer through a series of checkpoints over a 30 or 50 km. course. Event is Saturday, June 2. Info: www.mindovermountain.com.
- Royal City Show and Shine
With an average 400 entries each year, the show and shine draws car enthusiasts from all over the Lower Mainland, Interior, Vancouver Island and the U.S., who come to crowd the streets of Downtown New Westminster and gaze at classic, hot rod, vintage and collector cars and motorcycles. The car show is July 8. Info: 604-524-4996 or visit www.downtownnewwest.ca.
- Artisans’ Market
Visit the 23rd annual Artisans’ Spring Market, hosted by the Arts Council of New Westminster, on Sunday, May 20 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Centennial Lodge in Queen’s Park. Info:604-525-3244 or www.artscouncilnewwest.org.
- Royal City Multicultural Festival
Arts, crafts, history, culture, and food from all over the world will be found at the Royal City Multicultural Festival next to River Market at Westminster Quay on Saturday, May 19 from noon to 6 p.m. Info: visit www.downtownnewwest.ca.
- Street Hockey
The Play On! 4-on-4 street hockey tourney returns to the streets outside Metropolis at Metrotown all day June 9 and 10. Info: www.playon.ca
- Kensington Community Fair
Enjoy entertainment, a mini-midway, food and activities for kids of all ages. Free admission, at Kensington Park, Burnaby. Info: 604-671-1000.
- Terry Fox Run
This year’s run is Sunday, Sept. 16. Updates for runs at www.terryfoxrun.org.
- Queensborough Day
Celebrate Queensborough with entertainment, rides, and delicious food at the Queensborough Community Centre (920 Ewen Ave.) on Sunday, May 27. Info: 604-525-7388 or www.nwpr.bc.ca.
- Symphony in the Park
Hear the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra on Sunday, July 15 in the gorgeous setting of Deer Lake Park as you sit on a blanket or lounge in a folding chair. This free event starts at 7:30 p.m.
- Giro di Burnaby
Check out this professional criterium cycling road race held July 12 in the Burnaby Heights Neighbourhood along Hastings and surrounding streets. Race start is 6 p.m. Visit girodiburnaby.com for more details.
- City Fair and Classic Car Show
The popular annual fair takes place on Edmonds between Canada Way and Kingsway on July 22.
- Discovery Day Festival
The 28th annual Burnaby Discovery Day Festival features family fun and creativity. Free at Deer Lake Park. Date to be announced. Info: www.tourismburnaby.com.
- Fall Fair
Enjoy a fall fair on Sept. 3 with entertainment, crafts and a parade at Burnaby Village Museum. From 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. At 6501 Deer Lake Ave.
- Haunted Village at the Burnaby Village Museum
The circus is coming Oct. 26-28. The ghoul community in the village is hosting a traveling circus. Problems ensue. Come join the dead folk and help solve the mystery. From 6-9 p.m., 6501 Deer Lake Ave. Info: 604-293-6500.
- Remembrance Day Ceremonies
Remembrance Day is marked with a ceremony at the Royal Westminster Regiment’s Armoury, 530 Queens Ave. in New Westminster. In Burnaby, there are ceremonies in North Burnaby at Confederation Park, and at the cenotaph at Nelson and Imperial. Watch the NewsLeader for details.
- Edmonds Santa Claus Parade
The annual Santa parade which showcases the Edmonds community will return in late November. The route travels Edmonds Street, between Canada Way and Linden Avenue.
Unleash your inner Rafael Nadal at one of Burnaby’s 80 outdoor public tennis courts, 37 of which are lighted. There are also four indoor courts at the Cameron Recreation Centre. No opponent? The courts at six parks - Broadview, Central, David Gray, Robert Burnaby, Westridge and Willingdon Heights - have a wall for solo play. Visit www.city.burnaby.bc.ca/Home.html for locations. In New West, there are 28 outdoor courts and four practice walls at nine parks. Info: www.newwestpcr.ca/parks/park_amenities/tennis_courts.php. Or you could join the New Westminster Tennis Club which was established in 1890 and has occupied its current location in Tipperary Park since 1901.
- Hyack Santa Claus Parade of Lights
Kick off the Christmas season with Hyack’s Santa Claus Parade in Downtown New Westminster. It includes bands and floats. The parade travels along Columbia Street between Fourth and Eighth streets, ending up at Hyack Square. Date to be announced. Visit www.hyack.bc.ca
- Very Victorian Christmas at Irving House
New Westminster’s Irving House was built in 1865 and dresses up for the holidays with traditional decorations, including a tree in the large parlour. Irving House is at 511 Royal Ave. Info: 604-527-4640.
- Heritage Christmas at Burnaby Village Museum
From Nov. 24 to Jan. 4, enjoy a traditional 1920s Christmas at the village, beautifully decorated for the season. At 6501 Deer Lake Ave. Phone 604-293-6500. Recorded info: 604-293-6501.
- Listen to some poetry
In New West there are two chances to hear poets in action. Poetic Justice is Sundays, 2 p.m. (except holiday weekends) at Heritage Grill, 447 Columbia St. Info: firstname.lastname@example.org. And World Poetry Night Out is the fourth Wednesday of the month, 6:30 p.m. at the New Westminster Public Library. Info: 604-526-4729.
- Fly a kite
It’s always breezy atop Burnaby Mountain, and the open hillsides in Discovery Park make it perfect for kite flying. Even parasailers have been known to use the park to practice their takeoffs.
- Stop to smell the roses
The Centennial Rose Garden in the Burnaby Mountain Conservation Area features dozens of varieties of the fragrant and colourful flowers that bloom throughout the summer. Wander over to the fence for breathtaking views up Indian Arm and over the Burrard Inlet.
- Feel the G’s
If you want to get your adrenaline pumping, and feel g-forces, drop by the Harry Jerome Sports Centre on the Barnet Highway where the Burnaby Velodrome Club can teach the intricacies of track racing. Burnaby Velodrome Club: www.burnabyvelodrome.ca/
- Sail a model boat
The Burnaby Association of Marine Modellers gathers at the duck pond at Central Park, on Imperial Street, Sundays to sail their hand-built, radio-controlled sailboats, tugs, freighters, and even scaled-down warships. Deer Lake is also conducive to the hobby.
- Fly a plane
You don’t need a pilot’s licence to fly radio-controlled planes at Burnaby Lake. The Burnaby Lake “Hoods Up” Flyers flying club was formed in 2000 to control and police flying in the park. Info: www.hoods-up.com
Enjoy Canada’s sporting heritage by watching a lacrosse game. The Burnaby Lakers and New Westminster Salmonbellies play in the Western Lacrosse Association. Season runs May to September. Info: burnabylakers.ca, salmonbellies.ca.
- Future lacrosse stars
Lacrosse is Canada’s official national summer sport. Many of its future stars develop on the floors of arenas in Burnaby and New Westminster. The best play in the BC Junior A Lacrosse League, or on field lacrosse scholarships at American universities. The Burnaby Lakers and New Westminster Salmonbellies organizations also have busy youth leagues. For more information: burnabylacrosse.com, minorbellies.com, bcjuniorlacrosse.com
- Get your ‘roo on
The Burnaby Eagles play in the British Columbia Australian Football League. The team is largely comprised of Aussie ex-pats and rugged blokes who play the sport from down under that is a fast-paced melange of soccer, rugby and football. The team plays some of its home games at the east fields of the Burnaby Lake Sports Complex, and they’ll be hosting the annual BC Footy Cup. For more information: burnabyeagles.com
- Watch hockey
The SFU Clan are the defending champions of the B.C. Intercollegiate Hockey League. They play their home games at the Bill Copeland Arena, from September to March. For more information: sfuhockey.com
- Play ball
The Vancouver Cannons play in the British Columbia Premier Baseball League, the top rung of amateur baseball in the province. The league has produced major leaguers like Jeff Francis, Ryan Dempster and Justin Morneau. The Cannons play their home games at Queen’s Park Stadium in New Westminster. For more information: vancouvercannons.com
- Cherish your freedom
Go to Sapperton Landing Park at the foot of Cumberland Street in New Westminster, turn around and look up towards the old gatehouse of the BC Penitentiary. That’s the view prisoners would have seen as they experienced their last moments of freedom before being walked into the Wharf Warehouse, which has been preserved at the site, then up a tunnel to be processed and locked away for the duration of their sentence. There are signs in the park retelling its colourful and important role in New Westminster’s history.
- For the love of the game
All the players on the Burnaby Buzzards baseball team are over 45 years old. But they haven’t let age diminish their enthusiasm. The Buzzards’ season runs April to June, and they play most home games at beautiful Robert Burnaby Park. Info: ballcharts.com/buzzards
- Icing the puck
The Grandview Steelers of the Pacific International Junior Hockey League play home games at the Burnaby Winter Club every winter. Many players go on to play in the Junior A BC Hockey League or at American universities. Info: grandviewsteelers.com
- Bowl a googlie
The grass fields at the Burnaby Lake Sports Complex are one of the grounds used by the British Columbia Mainland Cricket League. For more information: www.bcmcl.org.
- Cheer hockey’s future stars
Those guys in the stands at the Burnaby Winter Club with clipboards in their hands and serious looks on their faces are scouts of future talent for teams in the Western and BC hockey leagues. The Vancouver North West Giants is comprised of the top midget-aged players in Metro Vancouver, some of whom will be drafted in the sport’s higher rungs and may eventually reach the NHL. For more information: www.bchockey.net/MML
- Raise a ruckus
Every Saturday from October to April, the grass fields at Burnaby Lake Sports Complex and Hume Park in New West are churned up by male and female rugby players from the Burnaby Lake and United rugby clubs. Both organizations also have regular jamborees to introduce the sport to youngsters. Info: bcrugby.com
- Boot up
The Vancouver Metro Soccer League is a top-level amateur league for players who have outgrown the youth system but still want to play at a competitive level. The league has 15 divisions for players 18 years-old to Masters. The Sapperton Rovers play in the Premier division. Their home games, September to April, are at Queen’s Park Stadium in New West. They also have a team in the Under-21division, along with Burnaby-based Cliff Avenue United. Visit: vmslsoccer.com
- Catch the Clan in NCAA action
The Simon Fraser University is the first Canadian school to be part of the NCAA. The men’s and women’s basketball and soccer squads along with the football team all play in the NCAA Div. II starting in September. The football and soccer teams play on campus at Terry Fox Field while the hoop squads play at SFU West Gym. To find out when the teams play on Burnaby Mountain go to athletics.sfu.ca.
- Boo a bully
Hockey isn’t just played on ice. The field game is alive and well in Burnaby, where men’s, women’s and youth teams play their home games on the turf fields at the Burnaby Lake Sports Complex. The senior season runs from September to late March. The kids play through the spring. And a bully is a sort of faceoff that is used to restart play when possession is unclear. For more information: fieldhockey.org
- See a salchow
You can watch some of Canada’s top international figure skaters hone their jumps and twirls at Skate Canada’s BC Centre of Excellence, which is located at the 8-Rinks Complex in Burnaby. Every day, top level coaches like Joanne McLeod and Victor Kraatz work with up-and-coming skaters who may someday represent Canada at the Winter Olympics. The Centre of Excellence is located at 6501 Sprott St.
- Friday night lights
From September to late October, Friday night is Football Night in New Westminster and Burnaby. That’s when the high school senior football teams play their rivals from across Metro Vancouver. The New Westminster Hyacks play their home games at Mercer Stadium. The St. Thomas More Knights play at the Burnaby Lake Sports Complex West. For more information: bchighschoolfootball.com
- Sweep your cares away
The Royal City Curling Club has produced Olympians and world champions, but you can also learn how to play the sport on its six sheets of ice. Every October, the best male curlers in the world compete for prize money in the Westcoast Curling Classic. For more information: royalcitycc.com
- Field of dreams
Beedie Field at SFU is the new home for the school’s women’s softball team, as well as the Douglas College Royals softball squad. The facility is built to NCAA specifications with lighting, bleachers, batting cages, scoreboard and scorekeepers box. The season runs March to May. It was partially funded by a $500,000 donation from Burnaby developer, and softball booster, Keith Beedie.
- Ride the sky
The Expo and Millennium SkyTrain lines that run on elevated guideways through Burnaby and New Westminster afford a unique perspective of the city from about 25 feet above ground. The lines skirt green parks, forests, industrial parks, residential areas, cemeteries, shopping districts, clusters of gleaming office and condo towers, the Fraser River and even rail yards. For more information: www.translink.ca
- Time travel to the 1960s
The Baldwin House on the southern shore of Deer Lake in Burnaby is a two-storey modern post-and-beam home designed and built in 1965 by renowned architect Arthur Erickson. For years the house was the home of Erickson’s friends, Dr. William Baldwin and his wife, Ruth. It now belongs to the BC Land Conservancy and has been restored and refurnished to its former glory. The house is available for rentals. Info: blog.conservancy.bc.ca/
- Get spooked
Ceperley House, in Burnaby Deer Lake Park, isn’t just the home of the Burnaby Art Gallery; it also houses a ghost. The 1909 mansion was built by Henry Ceperley as a retirement home for himself and his second wife, Grace. When Grace died, she willed the house to her husband with the condition that if he ever sold it, the proceeds would go towards constructing a children’s playground in Stanley Park. But Henry kept the money to himself, and now the house is said to be haunted by a woman in a white flowing old-fashioned dress, thought to be Grace. Info: spooky-canada.livejournal.com/912.html
- Pet a horse
The Burnaby Horseman’s Association has operated stables at the east of Burnaby Lake since 1971. The facility has two outdoor riding arenas, one indoor arena, a round pen, as well as access to the network of trails around Burnaby Lake. For more information: www.burnabyhorsemensassociation.com
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