Five reasons to head to Commercial Drive this weekend

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      For those who live there, there's no reason to leave the Drive area all weekend long. With sun in the forecast, here are five things we'll be heading to over the coming days--and not one of them could really be found anywhere else.

      1. Italian Day: On Sunday (June 9) from noon to 8 p.m., organizers plan to bring it Venetian Carnevale style. Think masked entertainers, packed outdoor patios, risotto balls and spaghetti marinara, fashion shows, and folkloric dance. Grape-stomping and pizza- and pasta-eating contests are all there too. For the first time, the event is introducing cooking demos throughout the day. Yes, we'll be waddling home a few pounds larger.

      2. The In the House Festival: Back-yard circuses, living-room burlesque: this year's fest has it all, from Friday through Sunday (June 7 to 9). The 10th annual event will spread between 13 houses and their lawns, with the intimate shows spanning cabaret, standup comedy, music, and storytelling. See a full schedule here; many sell out.

      In the House's new promo video.

      3. Bingo Bill Exchange Pop-Up: Gorgeous, boldly graphic felt carpets and soft furnishings that come from the isolated steppes of Kyrgyzstan are featured at an East Van pop-up shop. Vancouverites Ann Klaveness and Nina Watts have brought them all the way here, from women's cooperatives in the poor former Soviet bloc country. Gotta get some of those vibrantly cool pillows and carpets. The trunk show and sale is set in a studio at the back of 1956 Parker Street, from Friday to Sunday (June 7 to 9) and again June 13 to 16. Hours are from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Fridays and Saturday and from 12 to 6 p.m. on Sundays.

      4. The Eastside Flea: More like the Brooklyn Flea, or street sales in London or Paris for that matter, than anything you might find on Terminal Avenue, the monthly event at Wise Hall (held Saturday [June 8] this time around) finds local vendors selling everything from handmade jewellery to vintage clothes, vinyl, and books. Cool, community-minded, eco-friendly, and cheap.

      5. Brunch at Little Nest: One of the 'hood's most loved eateries (at 1716 Charles Street) is being forced out in July by rising rents (up a whopping $2,000 per month to $6,500 a month). Show your support and get a last visit in for scrambled organic eggs with baked polenta, caramelized pearl onions, roasted portabellini mushrooms, and goat's cheese on the side (hungry yet?); there's talk of a Little Nest Love In and more as the restaurant makes a last bid to stay.

      Now, onto planning around Car-Free Day next weekend.




      Jun 8, 2013 at 4:18pm

      "genuine hipster"

      Sounds like a reason to avoid it.


      Jun 8, 2013 at 9:30pm

      Car free day? You had to put your little comment in there
      & ruin the story for me didn't you? How about a janet smith hack writer free day ?

      Martin Dunphy

      Jun 8, 2013 at 10:06pm


      Yup, just like <em>you</em> had to put <em>your</em> little comment in <em>here</em>.