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Thursday, January 26, 2006

Where can I get information about local events? 

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“Dear Ai,
I’ve been in Vancouver more than 6 months. My life is pretty much going to school (9-4), come home, eat and sleep. I am getting bored of city and school. I thought maybe if I participate in some local events in Vancouver, my life would be more interesting. I checked websites, but it is difficult to find local events. Where can I get information?” Lisa – Korea

“Hi Lisa,
I am proud of your positive attitudes! Many students burn out after studying excessively. Sometimes, students are frustrated that their English hasn’t improved as much as they hoped, and they get depressed. These types of students blame themselves and so they choose to be alone. However, in your case, you have asked my advice to help you make your life more interesting and meaningful. It is a wonderful attitude!

I recommend my students get the “Georgia Straight”, which is a free Vancouver newspaper issued every Thursday. There are listings of events, entertainment (movies, books, concerts), arts, culture and lifestyle. Also, they have an annual contest called “Best of Vancouver” where readers vote for their favourite restaurants and other things in the city. I can always find a new restaurant from the paper! If you would like to read their back issues, you can visit their website at

For other ideas, if you would like to know more about where you live, visit for local community newspapers. You can glance at Canadian life in these community newspapers! The CBC online event calendar is a good source of fun activities! Their website is

Reading newspapers will not only help your reading skills, but will also help you learn about people and their culture. Canadians will be impressed with your knowledge, and they will appreciate your efforts to understand them. The other day, I visited “McLean’s Specialty Food”, a deli store in Nanaimo. I had read an article in the local newspaper that the biggest Scottish cheese arrived in their store three days ago! I mentioned that to Eric, the owner. He & I have become long-lasting friends! Their store has become one of my favourite stores in Nanaimo! I would not have had this experience if I had not read the local newspaper.


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