Community (last week)

Another exciting week for the world’s most entertained City Councillor.

As you can see above, I went “All in for the Arts” at the Arts Council of New Westminster fundraiser at the Match Eatery in Queensborough. I was surrounded by Stephen O’Shea and Erin Jeffery, who are both incredibly generous with the thumbs-ups.

While fundraising, we were entertained by local analog electronic auditory waveform artist HARGOW, who also happened to perform at the Tenth (10th!) PechaKucha New West event on Saturday. This was (IMHO) the best PechaKucha yet, with stories that reflected so much that we love about community and about New West. The Mayor spoke, as did the coolest Malt Fermenter in New West. We had Renée Sarojini Saklikar stunning us with a personal poem about New Westminster history to Jen Arbo dropping the news about an exciting new venture where she hopes to see New Westminster’s future written.1

I had a Youth Advisory Committee to meet with (which made me feel every bit of my 46 years old), and attended a tour of a recently-built pool in an unnamed nearby community as part of my duties on the Canada Games Pool Planning Taskforce. We are deep into information gathering here, and hope to have some exciting news this spring.


I made a quick appearance at the well-attended VIBE event at the Anvil to try my hand at blackout poetry, but had to run to my curling game before the choir performance, which was disappointing, as I really love complaints.

Speaking of complaints, I went down to Front Street on Saturday to talk to a couple of the business owners. With the Parkade removal moving along fast, there have been a few minor glitches, but the City and the BIA are doing a lot of work to help the businesses down there keep operating, and to keep people knowing that you can’t drive your truck on Front Street, but you can still get down there and buy some wine or some coffee. Different business owners are having different experiences, but almost every one I talked to is really looking forward to letting the sun shine on their storefront for the first time in 50 years.


Everyone’s favorite brewery had a Founders Club celebration this week, the RCFM had their Annual General Meeting (exciting changes in 2015, lots of great new ideas for 2016!), and the Vancouver Foundation held their Neighbourhood Small Grants celebration for New Westminster at Century House.

If you don’t know about the Neighbourhood Small Grants, you should look them up. This is a great program where the Vancouver Foundation provides grants to a variety of small events, ideas, or programs in the region. They are easy to apply for, and granted every year, to help you run a block party, hold a community dance, start a sewing circle, or an art project where people put on a Fez and sit on a Chaise.2

So there is that.

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