is the town where a tailor named Dave Marks opened his home for a
Passover dinner to a young Chicago vaudevillian named Benny Kubelsky. Benny, who was playing at the Orpheum Theater at the time, met—and fell in love with—Marks’ daughter Sadie. They married and lived happily ever after under their stage names of Jack Benny and Mary Livingston.
24-hours after Jack Deighton’s 1867 arrival in Vancouver amid a cluster
of sawmills on Burrard Inlet, the thirsty sawmill workers helped
Deighton build his frontier saloon. Out in front, a huge big-leaf maple tree offered shady shelter for the patrons of “Gassy Jack’s”. Gastown, named after that tall-tale telling character, soon became the meeting place for early settlers.
once-lively birthplace of Vancouver, relegated to a skid row in the
late sixties, Gastown has been rescued, restored and reborn to preserve
the city’s heritage. This redeveloped area is an unique atmosphere of Victorian architecture and cobbled streets. It is an unhurried people-place for eating, shopping and having fun.
from atop a bronze barrel of booze at the Carrall and Water Street site
of his old watering hole, the eyes of a bronze “Gassy Jack” Deighton
are still sparkling. “After all”, he is probably
thinking, “how many frontier saloon-keepers are considered the spiritual
fathers of cities such as Vancouver, British Columbia?”
|GASSY JACK ATOP HIS BARREL OF BOOZE|
Across the street from Gassy Jack’s statue is the Hotel Europe, erected in 1882 by an Italian hotelier. With
a shape reminiscent of New York’s Flatiron Building, the hotel was the
earliest reinforced concrete structure in Vancouver and the first
fireproof hotel in Western Canada.
Gastown Steam Clock, standing on the corner of Cambie and Water
Streets, was designed and built by horologist Raymond L. Saunders who
stated that “the world’s first steam powered clock has been created for
the enjoyment of everyone. The live steam winds the weights and blows the whistles.
bustling Chinatown is the second largest outside of the Far East. (San
Francisco is the first). Here gastronomes can indulge in a myriad of
Oriental epicurean delights. For down-home Chinese authenticity, you
must try dim sum.
you make your way through streets brimming with silvery fish and exotic
produce, you’ll feel as if you’re in China rather than North America. Peek into doorways…stroll into shops. You’ll find all kinds of interesting Chinese customs and souvenirs. For
example, the herbalist mixing up his natural medicines for his
customer; the gift shop with every kind of greeting card imaginable; the
butcher shop with ducks hanging in the window.
ethnic experiences are your thing, you might want to wander around the
Punjabi Market area, the heart of the East Indian community on Main
Street near 49th. The spice and sari shops, bakeries and restaurants will immediately transport you to India. Both of the above cross-cultural neighborhoods will assault your senses.
land, originally owned by the Royal Navy, was presented to the people
of Vancouver by the then-Governor General of Canada, Lord Stanley.
a seven-mile seawall around the park, miles of woodsy trails through
the native rain forest, and no fewer than four beaches attached to the
park itself. The park also contains a miniature
railway, stadium, archery range, restaurant, not-to-be-missed teahouse
and one of North America’s best aquatic zoos, the Vancouver Aquarium.
Vanier Park, the iconic -domed H.R.MacMillan Space Centre shares its
space with the Planetarium, Observatory, and the Museum of Vancouver.
|H.R.MacMillan Space Centre|