Light Up Chinatown!, presented by RBC, is back this weekend with a two-day, family-friendly festival. From September 10 to 11, 2022, the whole community is invited to experience a full slate of new programming, food experiences, and colourful lights and lantern decorations around Vancouver’s historic Chinatown during Mid-Autumn Festival. This year the Vancouver Chinatown Foundation has partnered with the Vancouver Chinatown Business Improvement Area Society (VCBIA), Vancouver Chinatown Merchants Association, Chinese Cultural Centre of Greater Vancouver, and Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden to celebrate the city’s iconic neighbourhood.
It all happens in the heart of Vancouver Chinatown – 500-block Columbia Street, 100-block Pender Street and neighbouring streets; bike valet available. On Saturday, Sept 10th, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Sunday, Sept 11th 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
LIVE ENTERTAINMENT PROGRAM INCLUDES:
Saturday, September 10, 2022
11 a.m. – Opening Ceremony with emcees Chris Gailus of Global BC and Karen So of OMNI TV; and VIP guests; lion dance by Hon Hsing Athletic Club of Vancouver; and special performance by Goh Ballet
12:45 p.m. – Goldenpearl Ensemble, traditional Chinese music performed by World Famous Master Ruan artist Zhimin Yu and her ensemble
2 p.m. – St. James Music Academy with a performance by children living and around Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside
3:15 p.m. – Now or Never, a hip-hop/breakdancing crew, winners of Battle of the Year International
4:30 p.m. – Fistful of Kicks, Vancouver’s funniest all-Asian improv comedy group
5:45 p.m. – Nina Mendoza and Hustle at RS; join hustle dancers and groove to the tunes by Mendoza
7 p.m. – Madison Reunion Band, a well-loved local band bringing joy to audiences of all ages
8:15 p.m. – DJ Kubanito brings hot Latin music to Chinatown; come shake your hips!
Sunday, September 11, 2022
12 p.m. – Backporch Serenaders, a Vancouver-based quartet playing traditional jazz
1:15 p.m. – Lorita Leung Dance Academy with a showcase of different Chinese dance styles
2:30 p.m. – Ken and Ken, where maestro Kenneth Hsieh performs with violinist Ken Lin
12 p.m. to 3 p.m. – Join Vancouver Cantonese Opera’s Rosa Cheng as she demonstrates the art of opera make-up and costuming, in the lobby at the Chinatown Storytelling Centre, while she prepares for her special balcony performance.
3:10 p.m. – Vancouver Cantonese Opera with a rare balcony performance by the renowned Rosa Cheng at the historic heritage building Chinese Benevolent Association (108 East Pender Street)
3:45 p.m. – Herbert & Friends with pianist Herbert and his musical friends
5 p.m. – Marie Hui closes Light Up Chinatown! with her strong, soulful voice!
Food lovers can eat their way through a variety of food trucks, including Takenaka, Salty’s Lobster Shack, and Tornado Potato. Marking a return this year is Beaucoup Bakery and Chinatown BBQ’s fan-favourite Peking Duck Croissant, available on both days at 2 p.m. at 130 East Pender Street. In addition, the team behind The Chinese Restaurant Awards has updated its successful Taste of Chinatown, featuring an exciting self-guided culinary walking tour of Chinatown. Diners can explore must-try items and shop for unique, specialty offerings from local merchants and restaurants. Taste of Chinatown is part of Light Up Chinatown!’s souvenir passport, where the community can go around the neighbourhood to collect stamps and win prizes.
They are also featuring the Chinatown Noodle Pull and that is a something else to check out for food lovers.
Dessert lovers should also check out the Chinatown Pastry Walk that features area bakeries offering up special treats.
Other notable activities include strolling through Chinatown to see even more lights and lanterns dotted throughout the streets, and a brand new Kids Zone with balloon twisting, tattoo station, arts and crafts.
For more details on attending this free festival, please visit www.lightupchinatown.com.
By: Richard Wolak