Community Arts Council of Vancouver celebrated the Lunar New Year by entering a parade team for Chinatown’s Spring Festival Parade 2011.
On Sunday, February 6th/2011, prior to the Chinatown Parade, CACV held a pre-parade gathering at Victory Square Park. Under a tent, provided by the Carnegie Outreach Street Team, parade team members and the general public enjoyed hot tea and snacks. The popular DEET Street Band with Special Guests from the Carnegie Jazz Band provided lively music in the drizzly weather. Brought out of storage for the day, was the beautiful, God of Fortune, made by artist Carmen Rosen, and animated by local boxer, Antonio Dossantos.
During the main parade, incognito was drum group, Harmony of Nations, who wore self-made rabbit masks and danced like tireless Everready bunnies. In weeks leading up to the parade day, 6 rabbit mask workshops were led by Jason Bouchard, and held at the Carnegie Community Center and Oppenheimer Park. During the workshops, which welcomed anyone who was interested in working with plaster of Paris, Che Pepe was especially helpful as he skillfully assisted many participants.
Getting back to the parade, a last minute entry was the ever-smiling stiltwalker, Lily Baker, and her mother, Rudi Leibik, both in droopy rabbit ears, and grooving along with the DEET Street Band. Community volunteers, Les Nelson and Tim Adkins carried Community Arts Council of Vancouver flags, which were created by Laura McAlear and Aleida Vandenbosch.
Event Manager, Aleida Vandenbosch, proved to be a ‘multi-tasking whiz’, and helped out in everything from poster creation, scheduling, budgeting, and overall logistics. Lead photographer, Kaori Kasai, volunteered her sharp eye and took great shots throughout the afternoon.Another mask-maker, Jesse Brown, helped with promotion by posting to social media.
Derek Irland and Brad Snelling wearing traffic vests easily marshaled the parade team down to the Millennium Gates, where they met a sea of other parade teams.
Sue Gordon guided the entire project with her vast experience and upbeat energy, as did Terry Hunter from the Vancouver Moving Theatre
CACV thanks Great Beginnings, City of Vancouver, Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation, Vancouver Foundation, 2010 Legacies Now and BC Arts Council of Vancouver for their financial and advisory support to this program.