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Why Vancouver? Why You?

Thank you to all entrants. Please visit the semifinalist page to view the top ten essays as determined by our panel and the public voting. Click here to view the top ten

My Vancouver

By Maxine Adam

My Vancouver starts way back in 1946. My mum was a Scottish war bride; she married my Canadian soldier dad in Edinburgh, Scotland in 1943 when he was stationed in the North of Scotland. I made my entrance a year later and after the war in 1946 my mum and I set sail on the […]

The Life I Had Seen on TV

By Tiffany Anderson

After returning from Europe in 2007, sleeping in the old white rock basement suite with my mother was painful. For 6 months I had back packed through the UK, Sweden, Norway, Germany, France, Greece, Spain, Italy, and Portugal. I had run to trains and busses, 70 pounds on the back of my 130 pound frame. […]

Full Circle

By Rick Archambault

WHY VANCOUVER? WHY ME? I grew up in Nova Scotia’s Annapolis Valley, a lush farming area with Canada’s largest Air Force base (where my father worked) planted in the middle. As far back as I can remember, I wanted to move to “the city.” My father and I didn’t get along, and I felt trapped […]


By Jenn Ashton

My welsh grandfather, Robert Edwin Marsden, would no longer come to town. ‘Things are too different.’, he said. The former soccer star, tram-car driving, contractor and real estate maven was fine at making change, but when faced with it, well that’s a different ball of wax. Two streets are named for him here, and I’m […]

Vancouver Echoes

By Tricia Barker

I love Vancouver. It’s my home. I look around and see all the iconic images. Each place holds a special memory and each of those memories also has the power to rip my heart apart. Twelve years’ worth of visiting Vancouver’s best places with my god-children meant a never ending cavalcade of “adventure days.” The […]

The Husband Who Never Was

By Malcolm Bell

“We could buy mother’s house from my brothers. They’d love that. But we’d need a ton of money to lick it into shape.” “Not a bad idea except the time I spent in Ottawa in the seventies didn’t entice me to want to live with snivel servants and erstwhile politicians. Mind you, great food across […]

Ah Vancouver

By Shannon Braithwaite

Though I’ve spent most of my life in Langley, I feel a connectedness to Vancouver that transcends these invisible boundaries dividing that side from this side. Vancouver will always be my home and the direction into which my soul leans, in yearning. My roots are there. My heart loved there. My work was honed there. […]

Dear Vancouver

By Larissa Buijs

As Jack Twist says to Ennis Del Mar in the film Brokeback Mountain, I wish I knew how to quit you. I’ve left five times in the last 17 years, twice for good. But I keep coming back. To work, to friends, to the beaches and killer Westside views. Every time I close my eyes […]

Magnificent Moisture

By Bonnie Burnell

Rain–soft, silent rain–never bold or edgy, is what I love about Vancouver. To say so is a strange thing, given that when I first arrived here from the prairies the rain was the feature that I despised about the coastal environment. When did this precipitation creep into my soul and underpin all that I most […]

Benching in Vancouver

By Dell Catherall

“Cities have the capability of providing something for everybody, only because, and only when, they are created by everybody.” Jane Jacobs It’s my husband’s suggestion—a series of dinner picnics on Vancouver’s benches. “You know, the ones we stride past and never use.” The proposal is so appealing I ignore the pointed allusion to my rushing […]

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