By Lisa Manfield
They say if you really love something, you have to let it go. But in the case of Vancouver’s fleeting summer, that is definitely not true. When the first inklings of the impending season change start to hit in mid-August — the slightly shorter days, the morning chill in the air, the browning leaves and that familiar smell of fall — it’s time to dig in your heels and hang on to summer for just a little while longer.
And fortunately, in this city, it’s easy to do so, with summer fun that extends well into September, when the weather is typically still warm enough to convince ourselves that the dog days aren’t over quite yet. Here are some events to add to your list for August and September.
Abbotsford Air Show
If jetting away didn’t make it onto your summer to-do list, here’s your chance to live vicariously through those who take flight on the regular. The Abbotsford Air Show takes off August 10 for three days of thrilling air shows featuring all-Canadian favourites the Snowbirds alongside a variety of airborne acrobats including the US Navy Blue Angels and SkyHawks Parachute demos. Buy a day pass or stay the whole weekend; you can even camp on site.
The Fair at the PNE
Practically synonymous with the end of summer, the Fair at the PNE has been the perfect way to round out summer since 1910. It’s not only the longest running annual event in Vancouver, it’s also the most varied, with something for everyone including agriculture, shopping, food, music, shows, games, and rides. The Fair at the PNE takes place August 18 – September 3.
Only great music, art and food could possibly make Stanley Park a better place to hang out during the waning days of summer. Enter Vancouver’s Skookum Festival September 7-9. Catch big name bands like The Killers, Florence and the Machine, Metric and Blue Rodeo while indulging in some tasty treats at a variety of restaurant pop-ups, long-table dinners, and food truck favourites. You can also check out art installations while sipping local wine and craft brew to complete the trio of awesomeness this festival serves up.
Westward Music Festival
Prefer your music sans mosquitos? The Westward Music Festival returns this year at multiple indoor venues around Vancouver including the Vogue, Fox Cabaret, Rio Theatre, Fortune Sound Club, Biltmore Cabaret, and the Orpheum. Performers include Kali Uchis, Kelela, Poppy, Roni Size and Blood Orange. The second annual festival runs September 13-16.
Richmond Night Market
Running until October 8, the Richmond Night Market brings epic food and ephemeral fun together in one lively atmosphere. See local talent perform on stage while you sample food stall offerings, explore the magical dino park and try the amazing race inflatable obstacle course. The Richmond Night Market is open Friday and Saturday from 7 pm – midnight, and Sunday and holidays from 7 pm – 11 pm.
As the last days of summer unfold and fall becomes inevitable, keep in mind that autumn does bring with it a fresh calendar of fun that’ll make those browning leaves and shortening days seem a little less bleak. n