Happy Lunar New Year, Victoria!
There are plenty of celebrations happening in and around Victoria this weekend to celebrate the Year of the Dragon and we encourage you to get out and try as many as possible. Even if you’ve never attended or celebrated before, now’s your chance to try something new!
Additionally, this is the last weekend of OUTstages: a decidedly queer theatre festival, so be sure to check that out.
More movies from the Victoria Film Festival are screening, there’s another vintage ReLove market, a pop-up photo booth at Westshore Town Centre, and much more.
Also, as you may already be aware, February is Black History Month and the ISSAMBA Centre has started rolling out a lineup of incredible events open to everyone—don’t miss out!
For all that and more, here’s 12 things to do in and around Victoria this weekend—February 10th and 11th:
Lunar New Year—also known as the Spring Festival—falls on Saturday, February 10th this year, marking the beginning of the Year of the Wood Dragon.
On Saturday, February 10th, the museum will be offering free tastings of handmade dragon’s beard candy or Chinese cotton candy while quantities last, as well as opportunities for guests to find out what their Chinese Zodiac animal is and how it corresponds to personality traits.
Then on Sunday, February 11th from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., a Canadian award-winning author Julie Lawson, who was born in Victoria and is still based here, will be reading from her novel, White Jade Tiger.
Also being offered on February 11th will include free tastings of lychee starting at 12 p.m. until quantities last, and Chinese Zodiac interpretation.
- Where: Chinese Canadian Museum, 10 Fan Tan Alley
- Saturday, February 10th: Lunar New Year—Chinese Canadian Museum will be giving out candy and Chinese Zodiac interpretations.
- Sunday, February 11th: Julie Lawson reading from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
Grab the fam and head to Westshore Town Centre this February – your perfect photos await!
For 10 days only, Westshore Town Centre will be home to their very own pop-up photography studio, offering mini photo sessions with professional photographer Jon-Mark Photography.
The pop-up photography studio will be inside the shopping centre, and open daily from February 9th to February 19th near the play area.
You’ll have three wildly different backdrops to choose from: the Playful Rainbow, Elegant Floral, and Timeless Off-White.
The sessions are by appointment only, and you can book yours here—you’ll get three high resolution digital images for only $99 plus taxes, with the option to purchase additional images.
- When: February 9th to February 19th – booking by appointment only
- Where: Westshore Town Centre – by the play area
Who doesn’t love a good vintage shop?
The ReLove Market is an empowering fashion & lifestyle community dedicated to personal expression and environmental sustainability!
Join them for a weekend of shopping from the finest selection of vintage and secondhand clothing and find your new look.
- Where: KWENCH, 2031 Store Street
- When: Saturday, February 10th and Sunday, February 11th from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
In case you haven’t had the chance to indulge in the hot chocolate craze happening in Victoria right now, there’s still time!
The Hot Chocolate Festival kicked off on January 20th and will be running until February 20th—so you have plenty of opportunities to check out the masterful hot chocolate creations around town.
The participating local businesses will be putting the money raised towards the BC SPCA Victoria Community Animal Centre!
Participating locations include popular hotspots like the Fairmont Empress, Chocolate & Co, Pure Lovin’, Shirley Delicious, and more.
If you want to view the full list, you can do so on their website.
- Where: Participating businesses across southern Vancouver Island
- When: Running from January 20th to February 20th—hours vary per business
Theatre lovers, drama addicts, and adrenaline cravers, pay attention—this is the final weekend of Intrepid Theatre’s 10th annual OUTstages: a decidedly queer theatre festival.
This huge 10th-year celebration has brought dazzling queer performances and adventurous programming to Victoria with a 12-day run of eclectic and electric shows by queer artists from both Vancouver Island and other areas of Canada!
The final offerings will include ColourVision, the first all POC drag show on Saturday; the last Get Into It: Idea Series, filled with workshops and pop-up performances on Saturday, and Queer Youth Cabaret, a local queer youth presenting new scripts, monologues, spoken word, and more on Sunday.
Ticket prices vary and can be found along with the performance schedule, here.
- Get Into It: Idea Series: The Hub, 2A Blanshard Street
- ColourVision and Queer Youth Cabaret: Metro Studio Theatre, 1411 Quadra Street
- Get Into It: Idea Series: Saturday, February 10th at 3 p.m.
- ColourVision: Saturday, February 10th at 7:30 p.m.
- Queer Youth Cabaret: Sunday, February 11th at 4 p.m.
Brought to you by Destination Greater Victoria and the BC Restaurant and Food Services Association Victoria Branch, Dine Around will be celebrating its 20th anniversary—happening from January 26th through February 11th!
You can check out the full line-up of participating restaurants here, featuring newcomers like Good Ovening, FARO Handcrafted Pizza and Tasting Room, Marilena Café + Raw Bar, and Hermann’s Jazz Club.
On the ‘stay’ side of things, you can make it a night on the town and enjoy discounted rates on room bookings during the Dine Around program period. This year, they’re offering deals from this list of twelve Greater Victoria hotels!
And don’t forget to check out this handy Dine Around and Stay in Town 2024 Guide, giving you all the best tips and tricks!
- Where: Participating restaurants all around Greater Victoria! See the full list here.
- Where: Running from January 26th to February 11th, 2024
The Victoria Chinatown Lioness Lions Club is hosting a free, drop-in craft session to celebrate the Lunar New Year and you’re invited!
Celebrate the Year of the Dragon and enjoy fortune telling with joss sticks, lantern making, coloring masks, drum rattle making and much more!
Fun for kids and adults alike.
- Where: The Bay Centre, 1150 Douglas Street in the Centre Court
- When: Saturday, February 10th from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Throughout the month of February and into early march, the AACCCS-ISSAMBA Centre will be hosting a multitude of events!
This includes a second forum discussion on Community Immunity Awareness after a successful first discussion on February 3rd—discussions that encourage others to voice concerns and provide suggestions for enhancing government services through the International Decade for People of African Descent (IDPAD).
The second discussion will be held online on Saturday, February 10th from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and you can RSVP for that here.
- Where: This forum will be held online
- When: Saturday, February 10th from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Uptown has something special in store for visitors!
The Wong Sheung Kung Fu Club will be performing a traditional lion dance at 12:30 p.m. on the dot.
Be sure to come a little earlier to get the best view and keep your eyes peeled for giveaways that the team will be handing out!
- Where: Uptown, 3440 Saanich Road
- When: Saturday, February 10th at 12:30 p.m.
Locally made and locally loved, the Tight Hair group consists of a bunch of disco-living misfits that utilized the power of FaceBook and roller skates to form an authentic disco band!
Fronted by two powerhouse diva vocals and backed by rasping saxophone, trumpet blasts, sweeping analogue synths and raucous guitar riffs, they’ll send you back to 1975 and the days of Studio 54.
Grab your pals, get dressed up, and have a groovin’ time!
Tickets are $25 and can be purchased online or at the door.
- Where: Hermann’s Upstairs, 753 View Street 2nd floor
- When: Saturday, February 10th from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m. (doors open at 7:30 p.m.)
Feist, 11-time Juno Award winner, has announced the Multitudes tour Finale—set to take over the Royal Theatre this Sunday!
The production was conceived by Feist and developed with artist/filmmaker Colby Richardson, artist Heather Goodchild and Artistic Producer Mary Hickson.
As described, her album Multitudes took shape soon after the birth of her daughter and the sudden death of her father. After reflection on morality and the connection to the human condition, the album ultimately radiates an ineffable sense of hope.
Tickets start at just over $63 but the final price will depend on your seat selection.
- Where: Royal Theatre, 805 Broughton Street
- When: Sunday, February 11th at 8 p.m.
The Ryan Oliver Quartet will be playing the John Coltrane Ballads Album as a tribute to the 1963 romantic jazz album classic.
The quartet includes Ryan Oliver on tenor saxophone, Tony Genge playing piano, Louis Rudner on bass, and John Lee on drums.
Tickets are $25 and can be purchased online or at the door.
- Where: Hermann’s Jazz Club, 753 View Street
- When: Sunday, February 11th from7 p.m. to 9 p.m. (doors open at 5:30 p.m.)