Royal BC Museum: November Events

Memory, micro-organisms and marshes big themes at the Royal BC Museum this November

VICTORIA, BC–Brighten up your dreary November with special events and activities at the Royal BC Museum. Enhance your language skills by listening to stories told in local First Nations languages, pay your respects at Remembrance Day ceremonies, and embrace your competitive side with Museum Happy Hour pub quizzes and more.

Join Dr. Genevieve Hill for Live at Lunch: From Marshes to Mountains on Wednesday, November 1 at noon. Dr. Hill will talk about her partnership with the Cowichan Tribes field technicians and how they worked together to survey cultural sites in the Cowichan Valley. This event takes place in Newcombe Conference Hall; admission is by donation.

Our Wonder Sunday family program continues this month with a focus on micro-organisms. Use microscopes to get a close look at teeny tiny plankton and other micro-organisms and learn their important role in various ecosystems. This program takes place each Sunday in November from 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm. Included with museum admission or membership.

Home Learners are invited to take part in Who Were They Anyway? Digging into Local History on Monday, November 6, 13, 20 and 27 from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm. Learn about the social history of early Victoria through photographs, documents and artifacts from the museum and archives collections. This four-week workshop series is $75 per person (10 per cent discount for members).

Come listen and learn at Have We Got a Story to Tell– Stories from This Land and its People on Wednesday, November 8 from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm. Local Indigenous storytellers are sharing stories in their original languages such as lək̓ʷəŋin̓əŋ (the language of the land of Greater Victoria), SENĆOŦEN (from the Saanich peninsula), Hul’q’umi’num’ (Cowichan area and some Gulf Islands) and more. Storytellers include Elmer Seniemten George, Tiffany Joseph and MENEŦIYE. Musical performance by Wesley Hardisty. Tickets are $12 per person (10 per cent discount for member).

Museum Happy Hour returns for its next instalment. Each Museum Happy Hour will have a different pub quiz theme: “Natural History” on Thursday November 9, “Archives” on November 16 and “Sound and Music” on November 23. The event is from 5:15 pm to 7:00 pm and costs $10 per person. This is a popular event that sells out quickly, so get your tickets early!

Our annual Remembrance Day presentations will take place on Saturday, November 11 from 12:00 pm to 3:00 pmLest We Forget: Remembrance Commemorations include musicians, singers and storytellers. The event is included with museum admission or membership.

Experience the magic of Christmas in Old Town and get into the holiday spirit starting on November 16 (running until the end of December). Visit the wood-cobbled streets lined with festive garlands and see shops decked out in seasonal finery. Starting December 1 you will find Father Christmas in Old Town where he will be available on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays for photos (by donation). Christmas in Old Town is included with museum admission or membership.

On Saturday, November 25, we are hosting a City of Victoria initiative called Performance as Medicine, an Indigenous Performance Art Symposium. Participants will present and explore Indigenous philosophies and contemporary expressive forms. Registration is $40 and is required for the workshops (9:00 am to 3:00 pm); from 3:30 to 5:30 you are welcome to drop by for a free performance on the Legislative Assembly lawn and a panel discussion in the museum’s Clifford Carl Hall.

We have a don’t-miss special talk for photography enthusiasts who are excited about the upcoming Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition (on exhibit at the Royal BC Museum from December 8, 2017 to April 2, 2018)! Wildlife Photographer John E. Marriott: Tall Tales, Long Lenses, presents Thursday, November 30 from 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm. Tickets are $15 per person (10 per cent discount for members).

For more information about any of these events, visit our online calendar at

Please follow and like us:

18th Annual Japanese Cultural Fair

Tastes and traditions of Japan come alive at 18th Annual Japanese Cultural Fair FREE admission Greater Victoria residents have the chance to experience the best of Japanese food, entertainment and crafts in just one day at the Victoria Nikkei Cultural Society’s 18th annual Japanese Cultural Fair Oct. 21 at the Esquimalt Recreation Centre.

“The 2017 fair is our chance to share our Omotenashi – Japanese hospitality that entertains guests wholeheartedly,” said VNCS President Tsugio Kurushima. “It’s a family-friendly fair with activities and events – and delicious food – for all ages.”

This year’s fair will again offer up a blend of new and old activities. Returning by popular demand are the sell-out bento box and sushi sales, the only-at-the-fair YYJ Dogs (hot dogs with special Japanese toppings), taiko drumming performances, and tea ceremony demonstration.

New activities this year include Haiku teaching table, a session on Japanese pop music, a look at Japanese classical theatre, and a Judo demonstration. Other cultural displays include a pottery session for youth, Ikebana (Japanese flower arranging), Koto (Japanese zither) and Kyudo (Japanese archery). The full schedule available at

Please follow and like us:

Finalists named for top philanthropic awards

Victoria, BC – November 22, 2017

Each year, National Philanthropy Day recognizes outstanding individuals and organizations in our community that are making a difference in the lives of others.  By ‘changing the world with a giving heart’, these local philanthropists have been named as the top three finalist in six award categories for this year’s National Philanthropy Day awards:


Generosity of Spirit Award
Sponsored by: United Way Greater Victoria

Gordy and Ravinder Dodd

Gordy and Ravinder arrived in Canada in 1977 from India and grew their furniture business from a 2,500 square foot space to three stores on the Island. For the past 40 years, the Dodds have organized and paid for annual Thanksgiving dinners for more than 40,000 homeless Victorians and 1,000 in Nanaimo. For seven years, they have donated Christmas dinners for hundreds. Their annual Walk for Peace supported by 20 volunteers motivates hundreds of walkers to fundraise for causes such as Jeneece Place and Victoria Hospice.

 John McEown

For over 30 years John McEown has been devoting his time, expertise, and money towards our local community. As a volunteer for the Upper Room, John worked diligently to ensure that the homeless in Greater Victoria had a place of their own for shelter and nourishment. When the Upper Room and the Open Door merged to create Our Place Society, John was one of the founding donors supporting the campaign to build the facility at 919 Pandora. Recognizing that people need access to support services to overcome poverty, John helped create Our Place’s Hand Up program that has successfully transitioned hundreds of vulnerable people into stable employment.

Patricia & Kenneth W. Mariash Sr. 

Master Developers and owners of Focus Equities, Kenneth & Patricia Mariash have made over $3 million in charitable contributions and community event sponsorship investments in the past few years. Their generosity has covered a wide range of initiatives with a philanthropic focus on education, women’s, children’s and seniors’ health, arts and culture, community development, and athletics. They believe in supporting people, communities and teams who demonstrate caring acts of life changing kindness for anyone in need.


Outstanding Fundraising Volunteer Award
Sponsored by: Coast Capital Savings

Deedrie Ballard

For more than 35 years, Deedrie Ballard has juggled raising children, managing her award-winning realtor career and volunteering her time to raise more than $10 million for various charities. A few organizations that have benefitted from Deedrie’s outstanding fundraising volunteerism include: The Art Gallery of Victoria, Sovereign Order of St. John, Knights Hospitaller, Victoria Hospitals Foundation, Victoria Hospice Society, Broadmead Care Society, Victoria Commonwealth Games, Victoria Symphony, St. Margaret’s School, Pacifica Housing Society, and Coats for Kids.

Keith Dagg

Keith Dagg has been an enthusiastic promoter of Victoria and has made a name for himself as a volunteer, always willing to lend his name and support to a myriad of causes. Once Keith is on board, a team of volunteers is sure to follow. His talent for rallying people behind a cause or event is undeniably hard to match. Keith currently sits on numerous local boards of directors: he is the Chair of the Victoria Curling Legacy Foundation; Co-chaired the 2013 Ford Men’s World Curling Championship; serves as a Director for Victoria Highlanders Soccer; the Victoria Open Golf Society, served on the TELUS Community Board, and is a current member of Our Place Society’s Advisory Cabinet.

Tracey Drake

Tracey, Editor in Chief of NICHE and Drift magazines, is a dedicated volunteer and passionate mentor for young women in the Victoria community. For six years, Tracey has been involved with the Victoria Festival of Trees (FOT) as a Tree Sponsor and member of the volunteer planning committee. During Tracey’s tenure, Victoria FOT has raised $905,350 for the hospital’s Excellence in Child Health Fund, which supports urgent programs and services for patients, research, and Sunny Hill Health Centre for Children. In 2016, Tracey became Chair of the FOT committee. Under her leadership and the banner of “Growth”, the event raised $170,500 (a 23% increase from 2015) and featured a record number of trees (85).


Corporate Responsibility Award
Sponsored by: The University of Victoria

 Think Communications Inc.

Think Communications is a locally owned IT service provider established in 2005. They believe that their slogan “Great People. Great Ideas.” is the secret to their success and making an outstanding commitment to philanthropy is one idea that has quickly become a part of the company’s DNA. For the last four years, Think has been a champion for The Cycle of Life Tour, a 2-day group cycling event that raises funds for local hospice societies all across Vancouver Island. Their $22,500 in sponsorship dollars have been critical to making the event possible, which has in turn raised more than $400,000 for end-of-life care

The Neal Estate Team at RE/MAX ALLIANCE

Ron Neal lives his life by the mantra, “Give to Live” or the reverse “Live to Give” and has created a culture of giving and service within both his personal sales team, The Neal Estate Team, and also his brokerage, RE/MAX Alliance Victoria. The agents of Ron’s team and office each contribute a portion of their personal earnings to both BC Children’s Hospital and their own internal community support fund from every sale. Since joining the Miracle Network, the Neal Estate Team have raised and donated more than $250,000 for the BC Children’s Hospital. Ron Neal personally served on the BCCHF Board of Governors for more than 10 years and continues to serve on their real estate advisory committee.

CFAX 1070 Radio

Now celebrating 40 years, CFAX Santas Anonymous Society was founded in 1977 by Mel Cooper, then owner of CFAX 1070 radio. Santas Anonymous helps over 1500 families enjoy Christmas, support local community organizations at Christmas, and are founders of the Christmas Giving Network. Since 2002 CFAX Santas Anonymous has given back to the community outside of the Christmas season with special grants of $1,766,000.00. Children go to summer camp, are funded special therapies, have safe playgrounds to play on, and families in crisis are helped in any way possible and so much more.


Outstanding Philanthropic Service Club Award
Sponsored by: Camosun College

Royal Jubilee Hospital Auxiliary

The Auxiliary has demonstrated exceptional commitment and leadership in the community since its formation in 1924. For over 90 years Auxiliary volunteers have raised millions of dollars in support of health care and nursing education in Victoria while providing a delightful source of high quality gifts and treats at the Royal Jubilee Hospital. The Auxiliary’s main fundraising project is a busy gift shop staffed by approximately 70 volunteers. The Gift Shop carries a wide selection of products, and most volunteers work three 4 hours shifts per month in the shop while others contribute by knitting or making crafts for sale in the shop.

Ladysmith Health Care Auxiliary

The volunteer-led Auxiliary has been supporting the Ladysmith area and health care field over 100 years. They support a wide variety of health care related needs ranging from small kindnesses that make the difference for a single patient to larger gestures that impact many. The Auxiliary, with 200 active members, is a vibrant organization. In 2015 they raised and donated over $262,000 in medical equipment and support for health related non-profit organizations. Their fundraising efforts have grown from presenting one-off events to operating a well-curated, well-supported thrift shop and the Health Care Centre gift shop, both located in Ladysmith.


Youth in Philanthropy Award ages 5-10
Sponsored by: Children’s Health Foundation Vancouver Island

Liam Docherty, Ewan Docherty & Connor Docherty

In 2015 the boys learned that the local emergency shelter had issued an urgent appeal for donations and decided to use their musical talents to raise money for others. The boys wrote to Country Grocer requesting permission to busk outside their store and asking them to match the money they raised. Country Grocer agreed and the busking events raised a total of $1,200. In 2016 after receiving a tour of the food bank and learning that $1 provides 3 meals a day to one child, they set a target to feed one child for one year. After learning of the boys new initiative, Country Grocer offered to provide a stage area near the bakery department of the store and the boys raised $378, enough to feed a child for a year.

Sophie Coburn

Victoria Hospice holds a special place in Sophie’s heart. Nearly two years ago, her grandpa spent the last few weeks of his life at Hospice’s palliative care unit. Shortly after her second birthday, Sophie toured the Hospice Rooftop Garden while visiting her grandpa. She noticed something was missing. She returned the next day to donate a beautiful hummingbird feeder that she had received for her birthday. When Sophie Coburn was planning her carnival-themed 4th birthday party, she was adamant that it have philanthropic twist. She set up a game for her preschool-aged friends called Coin Drop 4 Hospice. Funds raised by her pals were matched by Sophie’s family and $116 was donated to Victoria Hospice. 


Youth in Philanthropy Award ages 11-18
Sponsored by: Telus

100 Girls Victoria

100 Girls Victoria was formed in the fall of 2015 by Lily Cote and Ella Stanger with the intention of creating a community of girls between the ages of 8 and 13 years old who come together and donate to charity. Today, 100 Girls Victoria has four leaders; Lily, Ella, Sam and Miia who plan, organize and lead the meetings that happen three times a year. To date, 100 Girls Victoria has hosted 5 meetings, which average 25-30 girls participating, and they have donated $3,168.38 to 7 different charities including the BC Children’s Hospital, Pacific Assisted Dog’s Society, Out of the Rain Youth Shelter, World Wildlife Fund, and KidSport. They officially have 75 members and their goal is to reach 100 members.

 Stuart Cameron

The Victoria Women’s Transition House staff worked closely with Stuart on two important fundraising projects for VWTH – Fashion for Transition in October of 2016; and Fashion for Compassion in February 2017. Both these projects required significant planning and coordination of all aspects of the events and Stuart was instrumental in their success. In each case, he worked with a small volunteer committee and produced two incredible fashion events that raised thousands of dollars for Victoria Women’s Transition House. Stuart is a young man of high integrity with a passion for fashion, community service and philanthropy. He continues to impress everyone with his leadership, dedication and service to community.

Emma Locke (“Two Hearts. One Wish.”) 

Emma’s philanthropic efforts began approximately one year ago and grew out of her experience as a cardiac patient at BC Children’s. Both Emma and her older sister Kennedy had life-saving heart surgery at the hospital. The name “Two Hearts. One Wish.” reflects the desire of both young women to support the hospital. Twelve-year-old Emma has spear headed the making and selling of one-of-a-kind friendship bracelets to raise funds. To date, “Two Hearts. One Wish.” has donated over $4,800 and hundreds of activity kits to BC Children’s Hospital Foundation. Emma has inspired her friends and family and created an opportunity for them to be philanthropic.

The National Philanthropy Day celebration, presented by the Association of Fundraising Professionals Vancouver Island will be held on Wednesday, November 22nd 2017, from 4:00 pm to 6:30 pm at the Victoria Conference Centre.

For event information contact Monica Powell at (250) 217-0772 or; and visit our website at

Please follow and like us:

Pumpkinfest returns to Galey Farms

Pumpkinfest is a great time for the whole family! Featuring live entertainment, face painting, kids games, hay rides, u-pick pumpkins, train rides, corn maze, playground, petting farm, children’s haunted house, fantastic seasonal displays and this year our new Cow Train!

This annual event is running October weekends 8th & 9th, 15th & 16th, 22nd & 23rd, and 29th & 30th from 10 am to 4 pm.

Cost is $12 per adult $8 per child for one Train Ride ticket or one Corn Maze ticket. With your purchase of first ticket, second ticket at $5 (+taxes). Family Combo Pass (2 adults, 2 children) for $48 includes Corn Maze and Train Ride. Petting Farm is complimentary only with the purchase of first ticket or separately $2 per person.

All prices plus taxes.

Don’t forget to bring your camera!

Please follow and like us:

TP the Town October 14 in support of Mustard Seed

TP the Town is a one-day fundraiser aimed at collecting thousands of rolls of toilet paper (TP) within Greater Victoria for those in need. This year marks the 3rd annual TP the Town campaign in support of the Mustard Seed, organized by The Prodigy Group. On October 14th head to participating Save-On Foods and Country Grocer locations to purchase and donate toilet paper. It’s your ROLL to give!

Participating Save-On Foods + Country Grocer locations: -Country Grocer – Royal Oak, 4420 West Saanich Road -Save On Foods – Saanich (Uptown), 3510 Blanshard Street -Save On Foods – Fort and Foul Bay, 1950 Foul Bay Road -Save On Foods – Westside Village, 172 Wilson Street -Country Grocer – Esquimalt, 1153 Esquimalt Road

Start time: 9:00AM

Please follow and like us:

Moon Festival Lantern Celebration

Experience the magic of Moon Festival Lantern Celebration at Gordon Head Recreation Centre and Lambrick Park! Moon Festival is a free, family friendly event that welcomes people of all ages and cultures to share in an uplifting creative cultural celebration.

The evening features live traditional Asian dance and musical performances by community groups; lantern making for children and a sampling of mooncakes and traditional green teas. The event culminates with outdoor lantern installations, an illuminated community lantern procession through the park followed by an outdoor musical performance.

Prizes for Best Lanterns
You are invited to create and bring a battery-powered portable lantern to be part of our illuminated community lantern event.  This year, as part of the special Canada 150 and Culture Days celebrations, Saanich Parks and Recreation will be offering three (3) prizes of $150 to lanterns created by community members – either individuals or community groups.  For more details visit the Saanich Parks & Recreation Facebook page
  • 5:00-7:00pm ~ Lantern-making workshops: (Materials & light included – $3 fee per lantern)
  • 5:30-7:15pm ~ Musical performances & mooncakes and tea sampling
  • Dusk (approx. 7:25pm) ~ Illuminated community lantern procession and lantern viewing
  • 8:00-8:30pm ~ Illuminated finale performance
  • 8:30pm ~ event ends
Marking the “Harvest Moon” is a cultural practice celebrated by many Asian cultures around the world. Moon Festival Lantern Celebration fosters understanding and appreciation for cultural diversity by sharing Asian cultural traditions in music, arts, dance and performance, as well as offering hands-on opportunities for everyone to participate.
Dress up, bring your own creative lantern (battery-lit) or make one in our lantern making station! ($3/lantern). Food trucks will be on site.

Brought to you by Saanich Parks and Recreation in partnership with Lambrick Park Secondary School, School District 61.

Please follow and like us:

Terry Fox Run – Sunday starting at 9AM

Run Day Details
Registration: 9:00 am
Opening Ceremonies: 10 am; Hair “Do”: 10:15 am to noon
Warm-up for Run: 10:20 am
Run Start: 10:30 am
Event End: 12:00 pm
Location: Mile 0, Beacon Hill Park (junction Dallas Rd & Douglas St near Terry Fox Monument)
For Run information please contact Darren Wark at  or 250-589-3273
For Great Canadian Hair “Do” information please contact Linda Johnstone at or 250-477-6545
There are also runs in Cental Saanich and Western Communities.  More info HERE

Route Information

Registration is done on grass, limited accessibility for bikes, wheelchairs and rollerblades. Dogs on leash welcome.
Route distance: 1 km, 2 km, 5 km, 10 km
Please follow and like us:

Spooky, smart and sublime at the Royal BC Museum in October @RoyalBCMuseum #yyjevents

VICTORIA, BC–Pull on a sweater, kick your way through the fallen leaves and head to the Royal BC Museum to explore the many special events and activities we’ve planned this October, including the final days of our feature exhibition Family: Bonds and Belonging. Continue reading “Spooky, smart and sublime at the Royal BC Museum in October @RoyalBCMuseum #yyjevents”

Please follow and like us:

Oktoberfest at Oaklands! October 14th #yyjevents @oaklandsca

On Saturday, October 14th, join the Oaklands Community Association for our annual Oktoberfest in Oaklands celebrating all the favourite traditions of Munich & Bavaria, Germany- including beer, music, food, and community!

Included in the ticket price, each guest receives a meal prepared by Camosun College Hospitality Management Instructor Dave Pritchard and his team of students with bratwurst, sauerkraut, potato salad and a pretzel and a beer ticket for a choice of Hoyne Brewing Company.

Vegetarian options are available and a selection of cider for the non-beer drinkers. Additional drink tickets are $6. Entertainment will be provided by Eastern European party band Bučan Bučan, the Aaron Watson Trio, and Peter Wilks. 19+ 5pm – 10pm Oaklands Community Centre (1-2827 Belmont Ave.)

Tickets are $20 in advance available at the Oaklands Community Centre in person or by phone at 250-370-9101 or online, and $25 at the door including one beer, the bratwurst meal, and all the live entertainment!


Please follow and like us:

Colwood Seaside Festival 2017 SUNDAY #yyjevents @COOKEILIDH @FortRoddFisgard

Join the City of Colwood and Parks Canada for a day of heritage fun at Fort Rodd Hill and Fisgard Lighthouse, including:

Please follow and like us: