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  • February 16, 2023 edition - Welcome to the Forever Emergency

February 16, 2023 edition - Welcome to the Forever Emergency


Outdoor Adventure & Travel Show

Usually when you think “emergency” most people’s gut reaction is to, you know, do something to stop whatever it is from being an emergency.

You probably don’t think “maybe let’s give it 2,500 days and see if it’s still an emergency by then.”

But, then again, you’re not in charge of handling the province’s poisoned drug crisis. Today marks 2,500 days since it was declared an emergency in BC—one that has taken at least 11,098 lives.

Find out what activists, front-line workers, and people who actually use drugs say would stop the deaths by checking out our feature story.

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2,500 days. 11,098 deaths. Welcome to the forever emergency.

February 17 marks 2,500 days since the province declared unregulated drug deaths an emergency. Current policies won't end the deaths.

“God—the fact that it’s still an emergency. This is just destroying people. This is grinding people down. This is ruining lives of people who are surviving. Certainly, it’s crushed me,” said long-time drug policy advisor Karen Ward in an interview with the Straight.


Explore the Outdoor Adventure & Travel Show

Outdoor Adventure & Travel Show

Whether you live a nomadic lifestyle and travel from place to place, are a Canadian travel enthusiast or simply a fan of the great outdoors, don’t miss Vancouver's Outdoor Adventure & Travel Show, Mar. 4-5.

BC's largest showcase of outdoor gear and travel experiences, The Outdoor Adventure & Travel Show is jam-packed with awesome attractions and exhilarating demos, and has all your adventure travel needs in one place. Browse through more than 250 exhibitors for gear and apparel or training and instruction for outdoor sports. Learn about incredible travel destinations from local gems and weekend getaways, to far-flung bucket-list experiences like climbing Mount Kilimanjaro.

Tickets on sale now. Use code Straight23 at checkout for $2 off The Outdoor Adventure & Travel Show.


Smokey Devil: Underworld Street Reporter follows the untold story of Vancouver graffiti artist

Nathaniel Canuel—known to his friends as Nat—wears many hats: filmmaker, OPS worker, skateboarder, social activist, digital media producer with the Canadian Drug Policy Coalition.

He put together Smokey Devil: Underworld Street Reporter, a documentary about Smokey Devil—also known as Smokey D and Jamie Hardy—who has been Canuel’s favourite artist since he was a teenager growing up in Vancouver.


Hey Vancouver, Margaret Cho is (rightfully) pissed off

She’s been at the standup comedy game for 40 years now, but the world just keeps giving Margaret Cho reasons to be pissed right the hell off.

The iconic comedian will be at Vancouver’s Vogue Theatre this Saturday, February 18 as part of the Just For Laughs Vancouver comedy festival. It marks the first of over 30 stages Cho will perform on this year, as she plans to traverse North America on a comedy tour that spans into September. The name of the show? Live and Livid. Here’s why.

Featured arts listings

  • Rights Back At You: A Podcast Listening Party: On Thursday, Feb. 16 at 6pm, join Massy Arts Society, Massy Books, and Amnesty International Canada for the launch of brand-new podcast, Rights Back at You. Learn more about the podcast in our story here. | Feb. 16 | Free | Massy Arts Society

  • Starwalker—a powerful new musical by Corey Payette—comes to The Cultch’s York Theatre this Feb. 16 to March 5! Don’t miss this empowering new musical!*

  • Beehive the 60s Musical: This show features over 40 classic chart-toppers that will have the audiences dancing in the aisles, reliving one of music’s greatest decades. | Feb. 23 to March 11 | $26 | Deep Cove Shaw Theatre

  • The Cull: This riveting dissection of human relationships and the forces that control our deepest motivations will keep you on the edge of your seat. | Until Feb. 26 | From $29 | Granville Island Stage

  • The Wrong Bashir: Touchstone presents this riotous mistaken-identity comedy full of family foibles and cross-generational clashes by playwright Zahida Rahemtulla! March 2-12 | Firehall Arts Centre*

*Sponsored Listing

Vancouver International Dance Festival

The Vancouver International Dance Festival (VIDF) is just around the corner! The 2023 VIDF offers kinetically charged performances by outstanding Canadian and international artists from Feb. 27 to March 25, 2023.


Family love is extraordinary on Jonah Yano’s Portrait of a Dog

About three years ago, when his grandfather began losing his memory, Montreal-based artist Jonah Yano travelled back to Port Coquitlam, BC to archive his family’s life.

For his trip home, Yano brought a field recorder, a video camera, disposable cameras, and a scanner to individually scan documents and thousands of photos. He was there for two weeks. It was painstaking and tireless, but incredibly important.

Featured music events

  • Magic City Hippies: Miami's alt-pop psych-funk party starters are bringing their music to Vancouver’s Hollywood Theatre this Thursday. | 6pm | Feb. 17 | $30 | Hollywood Theatre

  • Mod Sun: Alternative hip-hop singer, songwriter and rapper Derek Ryan Smith AKA Mod Sun is performing in Vancouver. | 6:30pm | Feb. 23 | $32.50 | Rickshaw Theatre

  • Samia: Samia, the American singer-songwriter from New York City, is performing at the Hollywood Theatre. | 7pm | Feb. 24 | $25 | Hollywood Theatre

  • PopCappella III: Dance away the winter blues as Chor Leoni sings your favourite pop hits backed by a band of Vancouver’s best. Mar. 3 & 4*

  • Announcing Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit with special guest Kathleen Edwards at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre, in Vancouver on March 6, 2023. Get the best seats in the house by using this link.*

*Sponsored Listing

Caravan World Rhythms

Legendary Indian tabla maestro Zakir Hussain returns to Vancouver with Masters of Percussion, bringing together the very top of Indian music and world percussion from India, South America, and Africa. The results are unforgettable.


No Reservations: It's Okay on East Hastings rooted in the idea bars are best when they are small

We spoke to Colin Canning, co-owner of the new East Hastings bar It’s Okay, about small American bars, friendship-testing dump runs, what albums are playing, and the inspiration behind the venture in our new column, No Reservations.

The Rest of the events

  • Friends of the Library Big Book Sale: Find something special at the Friends of the Library book sale while supporting special projects at NVDPL. | 10am to 2pm | Feb. 17 to 19 | North Vancouver District Public Library (Lynn Valley Branch)

  • Love Lights at Capilano Suspension Bridge Park: The Capilano suspension bridge, Treetops Adventure, Cliffwalk’s Arc de Lumina and Park will all feature Valentine’s themed lighting experiences and activities. | Until Feb. 26 | $63 | Capilano Suspension Bridge

  • Weathered Beer Celebration: Weathered Beer Celebration is a one-of-a-kind craft beer tasting event somewhere in between a beer festival, a pop up bar, and a bottle share. | 4-6pm | Feb. 17-18 | $75-105 | Heritage Hall

  • Vancouver International Mountain Film Festival: Adventurers, films, workshops, and more! In-person shows Feb. 24-Mar. 5, and online shows Feb. 24-March 26.*

*Sponsored Listing

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