With the Academy Awards on Sunday, we really are in the height of film season.
But even if you don’t have a ticket to the Dolby Theatre on Sunday (no, me neither), you can still experience some movie magic by grabbing tickets to the local film event of the year — the Victoria Film Festival, starting this weekend.
Or put some money on a ballot (Victoria Buzz tips: Renee Zellweger for Best Actress) and use your newly won funds to enjoy some of these great events happening in Victoria!
Here are 18 things to do this weekend, February 8th and 9th.
The 26th annual Victoria Film Festival brings together international and local film to Victoria, BC. This year features new programming streams, special guests, student rush tickets, and more! Check the schedule for more information about the films being shown and showtimes, and keep an eye on Victoria Buzz for information and reviews of the festival’s films!
- When: February 7th to 16th
- Where: Venues around town
Starting at 4:00 p.m., head to the Yates Street Taphouse for another FREE Oscars viewing party! It’s best to be at the bar when you win all those free drinks from your friends for guessing all the categories correctly!
- When: 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
- Where: Yates Street Taphouse, 759 Yates Street
It’s always worth seeing the Royals for their great hockey, but there’s an especially good reason to see them on Saturday night. It’s Tech Night at the Save-On-Foods Arena, which means a lot of fun things are happening.
All attending fans can enter to win a new laptop or a signed Bo Horvat jersey, for one. And at 5:00 p.m., there is a Super Smash Bros tournament, open to anyone, and the final game will be played on the Jumbotron during second intermission! The winner gets a pair of shoes and a free hotel stay!
- When: Saturday, February 8th, doors at 6:00 p.m., puck drop at 7:05 p.m.
- Where: Save-On-Foods Arena, 1925 Blanshard Street
Saturday night will be a great night of music, as Pablo Cardenas assembles a band of extraordinary skill to bring you a tribute to the legendary Buena Vista Social Club at Northern Quarter.
Even novices to the Cuban scene will be familiar with many of these timeless and evocative songs. This is always a highly enjoyable evening, perfect for dates, dinner, dancing and drinks!
- When: Saturday, February 8th, 9:00 p.m. to 12:00 a.m.
- Where: Northern Quarter, 1724 Douglas Street
With the impending invasion of unceded Wet’suwet’en territory by the RCMP, you can gather together in solidarity with your community and help pool resources towards the stronghold efforts of the Gidimt’en Yintah Access checkpoint.
Food will be available (first come first serve, please bring your own bowl/cutlery) by some of the city’s most daring dumpster divers and exceptional chefs. Dinner will be followed by a film screening of “Invasion,” and a music line-up that will poke your heart where it feels good.
- When: Sunday, February 9th, 6:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.
- Where: Fernwood (Address TBA)
Join Laurel Collins at the Spiral Cafe (418 Craigflower Road) for the first meet-up in her Coffee & Conversation series. The newly elected MP is looking forward to meeting constituents in Vic West, and her team will be announcing the dates for future meet-ups in neighbourhoods throughout Victoria, Oak Bay, and the MP’s part of Saanich.
- When: Saturday, February 8th, 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
- Where: Spiral Cafe, 418 Craigflower Road
Arctic Soul, Josh Q and The Trade-Offs’ iconic brand, is distinguished by the deep brooding voice of Josh Qaumariaq and soulful background of Jeff Maurice set against blues and rock and roll sounds echoing from the depth of the Northern tundra. In a blend of Inuktitut and English lyrics, The Trade-Offs sing the Arctic blues about universal themes of light and darkness and closeness and isolation.
- When: Saturday, February 8th, 8:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.
- Where: Lucky Bar, 517 Yates Street
Come shop your heart out at the second Valentide Handmade Market! Making February fabulous, 30 artists from the city are coming together for Valentide – it’s a treat that you don’t want to miss. Vendor offerings will include chocolate, pottery, herbal remedies, fashion, Valentine cards, art, decor, perfume, Keto goodies, and much more!
- When: Saturday, February 8th, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
- Where: Oak Bay United Church, 1355 Mitchell Street
Head to UVic for a delightful evening of lieder, melodie, cabaret and showtunes featuring works by Hugo Wolf, Igor Stravinsky and Francis Poulenc as well as songs by Kurt Weill, Jacques Brel, Noël Coward and Rodgers and Hart.
Performed by UVic professors Anne Grimm and Bruce Vogt, piano and voice respectively, this is a great chance to see how talented the Faculty of Music at UVic really is.
- When: Saturday, February 8th, 8:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.
- Where: Phillip T. Young Recital Hall, UVic, 3800 Finnerty Road
This 2-hour tour begins at the Victoria Public Market and includes stops at The Gates of Harmonious Interest, Fan Tan Alley, Market Square, Bastion Square, Trounce Alley, Government St., and the Inner Harbour Causeway.
Depending on the day, there are between 6-8 tastings along the route, as we discuss the history and quirks of beautiful Victoria, B.C. Tastings can include bread, pierogis, meatballs, craft beer, macarons, chocolate, and much more!
- When: February 1st and 2nd, 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
- Where: Starts at the Victoria Public Market, 1701 Douglas Street #6
The Darlings are a multidisciplinary non-binary drag performance collective based in Vancouver. Their work challenges the boundaries of conventional drag and explores genderqueer, non-binary, and Trans experience through the use of movement, poetry, performance art, theatre, and immersive installation.
- When: Saturday, February 8th, 9:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.
- Where: Metro Studio Theatre, 1411 Quadra Street
Fancy waking up as early as possible to watch some Rugby? The Irish Times have got you covered. The Six Nations tournament runs every weekend from February 1st until March 14th. You can head to the pub with a game day pass or an all-access pass, with reservations available now!
- When: February 1st until March 14th
- Where: Irish Times, 1200 Government Street
The oneTree 2019 exhibit will feature the work of almost 80 artisans that have all created their work from a single, salvaged Maple tree.
The artwork includes boxes, chairs, tables, and sculptures, all made from the wood of a single tree.
- When: December 17th, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., running until February 29th, 2020
- Where: Bateman Foundation Gallery of Nature, 470 Belleville Street
This February 9th, the one and only author Meg Tilly and her partner Don Calame will join Bolen Books to instruct attendees on how to craft the perfect love letter! A love letter can be written to anyone, whether it’s a good friend, family member, or even to oneself! This event is all-inclusive, and we encourage anyone interested in exploring the art of love letter writing to attend.
- When: Sunday, 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
- Where: Bolen Books, Hillside Mall, 111-1644 Hillside Avenue
Join the Victoria Film Festival for an intimate evening of lively conversation with one of the greatest British actors working today — Bill Nighy.
From Love Actually to The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel to Harry Potter and many, many other notable works, this multi-award winning actor is sure to entertain with his hilarious dry wit and incredible experiences both on and off set. Following the conversation, there will be a special screening of Nighy’s 2019 UK indie hit Hope Gap.
- When: Saturday, February 8th, 7:45 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
- Where: Victoria Conference Centre, 720 Douglas Street
Hungry for authentic Ukrainian Potato/Cheddar/Onion Perogies made from a family recipe dating back to 1863? Howabout one Litre of genuine Ukrainian Borscht, which is also a family secret?
Register for these Ukrainian Cooking Classes! Classes begin at noon, leaving you with lunch and a free day to carry-on! Fees include all ingredients for both days!
- When: February 8th and 9th, 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.
- Where: Studio Robazzo, 2001 Douglas Street
Steve and Marten are the two masterminds behind some of the biggest House Music bangers in recent history. For the first time ever the two besties are joining forces to go on one epic Back2Back Tour … TOGETHER!
- When: Saturday, February 8th, 10:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m.
- Where: Capital Ballroom, 858 Yates Street
This weekly program introduces children ages 3 – 5 to the fun world of museum learning. Each week’s program revolves around a new theme, encouraging children to learn through crafts, play, song, and dance.
- When: Saturday, February 8th, 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
- Where: Maritime Museum of B.C., 634 Humboldt Street
Coming to Open Space after a critically-acclaimed nation-wide tour, When Raven Became Spider brings together work from six Indigenous artists who transpose supernatural beings from Indigenous stories into the realm of superhero comics.
On Saturday, curator Leena Minifie will give a talk on the new exhibition, a great chance to gain insight on the incredible work.
- When: Saturday, February 1st, 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
- Where: Open Space Gallery, 510 Fort Street