Where can Canucks fans celebrate together?

Post by Mike Klassen in ,


Picture it: Canucks win the next round and head to the finals

Vancouver, you've waited far too long for this moment to arrive. For the first time in seventeen years your team is going to the NHL semi-finals. Now how are we going to celebrate with class?

The obvious comparison is the 2010 Games. VANOC and the host cities prepared for everything except one crucial piece – it almost forgot to invite local citizens to participate as well. Thankfully the public twigged onto "where to be for free", and Vancouver's Olympics will go down as the most successful winter games when it came to local participation.

Will Vancouver finally win the Stanley Cup? Some predict that it's destined to happen. Canada's two previous Olympic hosts – Montreal in '76 and Calgary in '88 – both had their teams win the Cup in the season following their Games. Vancouver hosts the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Games, it must win the 2011 Stanley Cup.

How will Vancouver mark the occasion? Mayor Gregor says call his office if you know where the public might gather. But with this cool "Mayvember" weather, do we really want to assemble outside for three hours? Our city simply does not have the celebration space, especially since Robson Square is under construction.

I've not spoken with Canucks team owner Francesco Aquilini, but have taken steps to reach his office today. I can't think of any better way to reward Canucks fans than to open up Rogers Arena for away games. As it happens one likely date for an upcoming Canucks away game – May 22nd – does not have anything scheduled.

Rogers Arena would be the ideal gathering spot. For a nominal seat charge – perhaps going as a donation to Canuck Place – fans could assemble under the big jumbotron in the comfort of that stadium.

The only potential stumbling block might be a liquor license for the event, which would allow some beer sales to add some good cheer and cover the cost of holding the event. That's where the power of the Mayor's office really comes in – one signature and the beer taps are allowed to flow.

Another alternative would be to host fan nights at the City-owned Pacific Coliseum, but without rapid transit and proximity to the downtown it's a less attractive option. It could work in a pinch though.

Vancouver, we've waited over forty years to win the NHL championship. The Stanley Cup is deserved by no better team and city than ours. I know that just like the Olympics we can celebrate together with class. Other cities such as Detroit pull the strings for their fans, surely Vancouver can do the same.

Let's start talking now about how we're going to celebrate together, and not miss this opportunity to show our spirit.

- Post by Mike Klassen. Mike is a candidate seeking the council nomination for the Vancouver Non-Partisan Association (NPA). If you're an elected official or candidate seeking a nomination and want to write about urban issues, please send your 450-500 word submission to CityCaucus@gmail.com.

Follow Mike on Twitter or on Facebook or visit his website at klassenforvancouver.com.


how about community centers? so $$ doesn't always pour downtown for both home and away games? spread it out?

go canucks go!

@Jen. Great idea. Not everyone can gather in Rogers Arena of course, but it would be exciting to make some other gathering spots.

Sounds good to me! Thanks for taking the initiative to get this ball rolling! :)

"Rogers Arena would be the ideal gathering spot."

Wouldn't local bar and restaurant owners prefer that fans patronized their establishments rather than seeing the $$$ from a captive audience all spent in the arena?

The congregation at the arena is likely to lure more people out on the town, with the postgame dispersal benefitting those establishments. It's a win-win.

I think it's a great idea, and one worth pushing. Doesn't
matter who gets credit for it. The fans and the city win.

@chris Your concern for local merchants is touching. Too bad you didn't care about them when your hero Gregor Robertson rammed his stupid bike lanes on Hornby street. You didn't seem to care then that bike lanes were going to hurt businesses.

I think opening up Rogers is great. It won't take people out of bars, but it will give a low cost alternative for fans to celebrate together. Other cities like Detroit and Calgary have done it with great success.

"The congregation at the arena is likely to lure more people out on the town, with the postgame dispersal benefitting those establishments. It's a win-win."


It might lure a few more people out, but it might also diminish the pool of people who will spend $$$ on a meal and a drink during the game. My experience is that if the team wins, people might stick around for a while, but when they lose, folks tend to wrap it up and head home. I also wonder how Mike's idea would impact all the bars and restaurants who aren't in the downtown core. When I choose to go out for a beer and a meal to watch a game it's usually to my local watering hole which is a short walk away.

The idea may have merit, especially for families, but there's all sorts of other things to consider such as the impacts on traffic, transit, etc. Would love to know how other cities who do similar events rate the experience overall.

Putting aside the unwarranted personal attack, there's a significant difference between the bike lanes and this idea. Bike lanes aren't going to present direct competition for discretionary spending in the same way as this proposal.

Putting aside the speculation on whether or not the bike lanes are actually having a negative impact on downtown businesses, those who are advocating for better access to downtown for people riding bicycles are definitely going to want to see the lanes have an overall positive impact on business. It helps create support for the lanes.

The only people who benefit from separated bike lanes having a negative impact on business (which generally doesn't happen btw) are the people ideologically opposed to transportation alternatives or keen to see a change in local gov't. Judging by your post I'm guessing you fit into the second category? But, if you are eager to support the businesses along the bike routes, consider using this map next time you head downtown and need a bit to eat.




I think the arena is a great idea. It allows for families, people of all ages to gather. If they do charge a small fee, perhaps part of the proceeds can go back to a local charity.

Much more family friendly than bars and it allows for a larger crowd of people.

Like when the gold medal game was being played during the Olympics.

Great idea,

it offers a low cost venue with hopefully proceeds going to a charity... everyone has the opportunity to participate..

Loved the little boy on Global news last night that was able to , from memory give you the names and jersey numbers of each Canucks team member..

That young man deserves a front row seat!!

Great idea.. everyone wins. I'm sure there are many that will choose a smaller place to party downtown, and there are many bars and restaurants to accommodate everyone..

I also love Jen's idea about community centers...there are some that can't make it downtown, or tolerate huge crowds seniors, disabled, small kids, I love the idea that ALL can be included...

Two thumbs up for Mike for getting this conversation started early!

I will likely go to a bar I can get to on my bike, maybe one on Hornby. I've noticed I am spending more money downtown now that it is safer to get there and back.

But I can see that having a focal point will help galvinize the celebration!

just an observation here, since the bike issue was brought into the mix...

You aren't saying you will be going to a bar then riding your bike on Hornby after a few brewskies... right?

Funny story, I met a young man in the grocery store a few weeks ago. I stopped to chat because his entire arm was in a cast.. asked him how he hurt himself so badly, and he gave me a sheepish grin.

Well he said, I had a little too much to drink last night and fell off my bike..
True story and if he is reading this... hope you feel better...because he hurt himself badly. I winced watching him...

Be safe to all Canuck partiers out there!!!

I didn't realize there were any bars on Hornby, aside from the hotels.

Most are focused on Granville......

It would be nice if there were some big screens and beer gardens somewhere downtown (maybe the former live sites at David Lam and Larwill? the lawn in front of the VAG - project the game onto the Sears building?) throughout the playoffs, for games home and away. Throw some street hockey in while we're at it, too...

Most european cities set similar things up during the Euro or World Cup tournaments, and they seem to be pretty successful. I like the pub, but it would be nice to have an alternative like this...

Agreed D. But, the rain we seem to be experiencing may stop people from standing or sitting outside to enjoy the events.

The arena or community centres make sense.

And give charity dollars to Kids Sport or the Food Bank.

So Max you had to mention rain...

Hail in my hood right now... What is going on!! good call having it indoors...

Try Bacchus (and yes, I know it is in a hotel. Or turn onto Smythe and go to Uva. Don't like the big sports bars myself.

Uhh hate to break this to you all....

this is a retread idea

If anyone cares to recall the PNE opened up the Coliseum for the 94 finals - away games.

The attendance was really good except for the idiot brigade that decided to burn things and tear things up during and after the game.

Since Rogers Arena is a private entity I suspect the owners might be reticent to throw open the doors for free and have to absorb any of the costs due from staffing and security not to mention damage, insurance, etc and no the sales of beers and snacks wouldn't even come close to covering the cost of just opening the doors.

I know George, I had to pull my tomato, lettuce and herb plants closer to the wall on my balcony, before the poor things drown!

We truly lucked out for the Olympics last year!

Last week's storm destroyed my Clematis blooms...

the Olympics weather was definitely a gift...except for the snow missing on the mountaintops...but we can't always have everything..

I notice that Mike Klassen is going to be on Mike Smyth CKNW today, within the next 45 minutes, discussing where to watch the games..

Well...since bike lanes have been broached again, let's talk about drunk cycling (I've got an excellent video clip on one such example-TBP), hit-and-run killer cyclists (Vancouver fall 2010), and killers of the mentally handicapped using bicycles as getaway vehicles (Toronto 2010, 2011 a recent arrest suggests more than one person involved)-now there's creative use of alternative, unlicensed, unregulated transportation. Gee, why wouldn't we want to return the advocates of this nonsense to power???

Gerry since you seem to be the video guy extraordinaire...don't know how you manage it but...

if you ever get the chance to get video of that idiot that has added a gas tank to his bicycle, and I've been told he works out of a garage on tenth near Davidson Battery on Broadway.

I watched a woman on one of those rigged cycles almost get smeared on Main Street 2 weeks ago... it was her fault, but it didn't stop her from cursing out the driver...so dangerous, not to mention noisy and irritating...these things are way over the decibel rating.

Months ago Jeff Lee wrote about his experience with this man and how it ended with his wife being on the receiving end of spit in the face, classy...

"hit-and-run killer cyclists (Vancouver fall 2010)"

If you are referring to the cyclist that collided with the elderly Asian gentleman last year, please note that he stayed at the scene, cooperated with the investigation, and no charges were laid.

If you are referring to a different incident, can you indicate a news item or other link I could check out for more information?



I've seen the same loon riding up the very crowded sidewalk along Nelson in Yaletown. I think someone ought to look into this.

Thanks for the compliment George. I'll keep an eye out for this wingnut. CK, I may have mistaken a published call for witnesses to mean they were looking for the cyclist. Please accept my mea culpa on that one, although it doesn't really change the analysis that unlicensed cyclists are unaccountable for their behavior. Take for example the dips**t that kicked my car today because I beat him to the corner (by 150 feet) and started to initiate my turn. Even if I hadn't he was still going to wait for traffic. So why did he kick my car? a) because he was high on adrenaline (hey, I ride too) and b) because he could get away with it.

Here's the promised video. It's short but sweet...sort of!


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