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9 weekend events to check out in Metro Vancouver

False Creek sunset

The first weekend of June comes with free community festivals in Burnaby and West Vancouver, African and plant-based exhibitions at the Vancouver Convention Centre, and a day of free musical performances around downtown.

Here are some of the many things to do in Metro Vancouver this weekend:

New Science World exhibit

Science World's new exhibition "Earth Matters: Rethink the Future" opens to the public on Friday.

Featuring "thought-provoking and fully interactive exhibits," according to Science World, Earth Matters aims to explore "the impact of our actions on the world through a different lens" and inspire visitors to "find new answers to big questions" about our changing environment.

The exhibit will be on display through Jan. 9, 2025. 

2024 children's festival

The 2024 Vancouver International Children's Festival on Granville Island concludes this weekend.

The event, which bills itself as "the longest-running professional performing arts festival for young audiences," has been going on since Monday, and will continue through Sunday.

Ticket information and a schedule of performances can be found on the VICF website.

Short film festival

Another multi-event festival taking place this weekend is the 14th Vancouver Short Film Festival, which will see 46 films presented in six programs at the VIFF Centre's Vancity Theatre from Friday to Sunday.

Virtual events associated with the festival will continue online through June 9, and a full schedule and ticket information can be found on the festival website

West Vancouver Community Cultural Fest

Head to Ambleside Park in West Vancouver on Friday or Saturday for the West Vancouver Community Cultural Fest.

Formerly known as the Bridge Festival, the free event features multiple stages with live music, food trucks and "cultural pavilions" showcasing different countries, which have been set up by local businesses, volunteers and cultural organizations.

There is also a 250-foot zip line and a "kids' zone" with family friendly activities, according to organizers.

The festival runs from 4 to 9:30 p.m. on Friday and from 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. on Saturday. 

'Hats Off' in Burnaby Heights

Saturday is also "Hats Off Day" in Burnaby Heights, a free street festival that has been a tradition in the neighbourhood since the early 1980s, according to organizers.

Festivities begin at 9:30 a.m. and stretch along Hastings Street from Boundary Road to Gamma Avenue. Following a "family fun dash" race for kids and a parade down Hastings, the event turns into a street party with live music, food and a "show and shine" car show.

The festival ends at 4 p.m. A full schedule can be found on its website

Afro World Expo

The Vancouver Convention Centre's east exhibit hall will play host to Afro World Expo 2024 on Saturday and Sunday.

Described by organizers as "Western Canada's biggest expo of African and Caribbean products and culture," the expo costs $5 to attend and features dozens of vendors, live music, a fashion show and panel presentations related to immigration, entrepreneurship and racial justice, among other offerings. 

Planted Expo

Meanwhile, on the convention centre's west side, Planted Expo Vancouver 2024 is scheduled to take place this Saturday and Sunday.

Featuring more than 200 "plant-based edible and lifestyle businesses and brands," plus a variety of speakers, the event promises "something for everyone," as long as that something is plant-based. 

Chinese folk music

Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden will play host to "an afternoon of joyful music to mark the change of seasons," beginning at 2 p.m. on Sunday.

"Spring to Summer" will feature the Vancouver Chinese Music Ensemble and Canadian folk singer Ginalina featuring "a unique remix of beloved traditional Chinese and Taiwanese melodies in new arrangements, offering a fresh take on timeless songs," according to organizers.

More information and tickets can be found on the Chinese Music Vancouver website

VSO's Day of Music

On Saturday, the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra will host its "Day of Music," a collection of 12 hours of free music performances across multiple stages, primarily in downtown Vancouver.

Performances will run from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. at venues including the Orpheum, VSO School of Music and Christ Church Cathedral, among others. A full schedule of performances and locations can be found on the Day of Music website.

The day concludes with a free performance by the VSO at 8 p.m. Top Stories

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