For the past decade, the Arts Club Theatre has organized a wine fundraising event each spring. Last year, 95 wineries from across the province participated in Chef Meets B.C. Grape. This year, the Arts Club hosted the 34th annual California Wine Fair during its cross-Canada stop in Vancouver. The fundraiser, which benefits the Arts Club’s community-based programs and youth education initiatives, took place April 22 at the Vancouver Convention Centre East.

I really thought raccoons would figure it out first—or crows.

But it appears the race to be the first non-human species to panhandle may have been won by seagulls. Well, this seagull—and with predictable results.

The panning itself isn’t the problem. It’s dealing with all the coins afterwards.

It’s hard enough some times for human panhandlers to convert the coinage they receive into bills. Birds will have it that much harder.

The problem with panhandling is the handling part

A lot of panhandlers convert their coins at fast-food restaurants. All birds, however, have learned the hard way that waddling into restaurants can be dangerous—the distance from the front door to the cooking pot is very short as the crow flies.

Celebrated Canadian tenor Ben Heppner is retiring from singing. The Murrayville, B.C.-born opera star announced on his website today (April 24) that after more than three decades on stage, he is leaving the world of classical music as a performer.

“After much consideration, I’ve decided the time has come for a new era in my life,” Heppner states. “I wish to thank the countless people who inspired me, supported me, and encouraged me to embark on a fantastic journey over the past 35 years. A million thanks to those who hired me. Most importantly, I want to thank everyone who ever bought a ticket.”

A B.C. medical marijuana supplier is recalling one of its batches after Health Canada raised concerns over the company’s production practices.

The Nanaimo-based Greenleaf Medicinals has recalled one batch of Purple Kush.

Anyone in possession of marijuana from batch number PK-10-20-13 is advised to stop using the product immediately and return it to the company via courier.

The recall is thought to affect about 63 of Greenleaf’s clients.

Couldn't make it out last night? You missed Vancuover's own Swollen Members at Venue. Trina Rundgren was there and caught a moment of the show on Instagram. Here’s your concert pick of the morning. Swollen Members at Venue on April 23, 2014. Thanks Trina.

That's one big tree.

Dubbed "Big Lonely Doug", this Douglas-fir is the second largest tree of its species (Pseudotsuga menziesii) in Canada.

Forest ecologist Andy MacKinnon, who runs the B.C. Big Tree Registry, made it official last week, when he measured the thing.

Here's the stats:

  • Height: 70.2 metres or 230 feet
  • Circumference: 11.91 metres or 39 feet
  • Diameter: 3.91 metres or 12.4 feet
  • Canopy spread: 18.33 metres or 60.1 feet

Big Lonely Doug, found in the Gordon River valley on southern Vancouver Island, is estimated to be 1,000 years old.

People as far away as Vancouver and Kelowna say they felt the ground shake.

A 6.6-magnitude earthquake struck off the coast of Vancouver Island last night (April 23).

According to the U.S. Geological Survey, the epicenter was 94 kilometres south of Port Hardy and the quake took place at a depth of 11.4 kilometres.

After the initial quake at 8:10 p.m., four aftershocks were measured with magnitudes ranging from 4.1 to 5.0.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said it did not expect a "destructive Pacific-wide tsunami".

The Vancouver Public Library’s Terry Salman branch has added a new piece to its art collection: an original piece by acclaimed artist Wang Xu Yuan.

The accomplished Chinese artist has given the VPL an original work that uses the letters T and S to represent the branch’s T-shaped design and the S-shaped symbol of an open book.

Wang’s work combines traditional Chinese calligraphy with and painting, creating distinctive works of art. The style, called han shu, has a deep history in Chinese culture. It is often done on rice paper, but Wang has also painted on traditional blue and white vases.

Every weekday, the Straight highlights a great local shot as the Photo of the Day. Interested in submitting your photos for consideration? Check out our Flickr group.

Meeting fellow art lovers can be tough in a big city, but Hot Art Wet City has made it a little bit easier. The sixth annual Carded! turns the beauty of good art into an interactive event.

At Carded!, people can buy packets of five cards for $5. Each card features the work of a different local artist. In order to get your favourite cards, you’ll have to trade with people.

Chris Bentzen, gallery owner and cofounder of Carded!, explains that the idea came out of their other show, Hot One Inch Action, where people can buy one-inch buttons to trade with each other.

“We wanted to find another way to give the artists a bit more space, and we liked the idea of trading cards,” he says. “We liked the idea that we could force interaction in an art show.