Play Grant for Britannia Community Services!

For some kids, the opportunity to play is limited by finances, location and safe locations. Physical literacy is vital for children to develop appropriately and learn to live healthy lifestyles as adults. Answering the call is RBC and their Learn to Play grants, which support kids and youth in sport and recreation. The grants go towards teaching children to play through jumping, swimming, skating and more, mastering movement skills and building confidence while growing physical strength.

The Britannia Community Services Centre is the latest recipient of a $9,450 grant, part of which will go to the Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre Society’s Learn to Skate program, which will provide urban Aboriginal children, tweens, teens and youth with an opportunity to learn how to skate while also encouraging future participation in the sport. “By providing organizations with the funding and resources to teach kids basic skills, we’ve been able to empower them to feel confident and competent to move their bodies, engage in sport and create lifelong relationships with physical activity,” said Elio Antunes, President and CEO, ParticipACTION. Not only will kids benefit from the grant but so will the greater community as a whole. Congrats to the centre for their grant!

Man Up! play by the Boys Club Network

The Westcoast Boys Club Network Foundation (aka Boys Club Network or BCN) is pleased to present their acclaimed reality stage play Man Up! in Abbotsford from November 25 through 27, playing to a targeted audience of high school students, educators, youth workers, families and other stakeholders at the W. J. Mouat Secondary School Theatre.

Man Up! is the gritty, heart-wrenching, emotional and life-changing story of two determined eastside Vancouver educators, a group of at- risk boys on the sharp knife-edge of life, a handful or generous and visionary Lower Mainland businessmen from all walks of life, and the compelling four-year journey they took together – from the edge of frustration, hopelessness and despair, to the pinnacle of hopefulness and success. Man Up! Shares authentic, deeply personal stories of individual struggle, overcoming demons and realizing dreams.

BCN is a registered Canadian charity with a mandate to establish connectedness, trust and accountability to at-risk young men and help grow then into good men. The Network uses drama – more specifically the reality stage play – as a creative platform to spread their message of H.O.P.E. (Hope, Opportunity, Positive mentorship, Education) to communities throughout the lower mainland, to ignite discussion, and to inspire stakeholders to set-up new BCN chapters.

BCN independently operates seven chapters in Vancouver, North Vancouver and West Vancouver secondary schools with the cooperation and assistance of school districts and stakeholders in youth work and law enforcement. Close to 100 mentors, representing all facets of Canadian life, from break-even to billionaire, mentor a membership of more than 200 boys. The Network is grateful to Mr. Gino Bondi, a long-time BCN mentor and new Assistant Superintendent, Abbotsford School District, for introducing Man Up! to the city of Abbotsford, with its diverse population and eight secondary schools.


Man Up! messaging is entirely relevant to today’s students and educators, and parallels Curriculum Learning Outcomes in BC Secondary courses Planning 10, Health & Career 9, Drama Curricula, and lessons in Focus on Harassment and Intimidation. The supplied Companion Study Guide for Educators and Reflections on Learning student worksheets address topical issues like anti- bullying, personal accountability, gratitude, philanthropy and empathy. Buy tickets here!

Theatre Under the Stars!

Looking for something full of artistic flair, beautiful storytelling and more? Want to entertain your family this summer? Theatre Under the Stars (TUTS) invites audiences to fall in love this summer with Disney’s Beauty and the Beast & West Side Story, running July 6 – August 20, 2016  at Stanley Park’s picturesque Malkin Bowl. “The summer of 2015 was our most successful on record: We welcomed more audiences out to the Malkin Bowl than at any point in our more than 75-year history,” says Naveen Kapahi, TUTS Board President.

TUTS’ 2016 season features two of Broadway’s most universally acclaimed, smash-hit musicals: Disney’s Beauty and the Beast is an enchanting musical for the entire family, and the first Disney film ever to make the leap to stage. The ‘tale as old as time’ follows Belle, a young woman in a provincial town, and the Beast, a young prince transformed by a wicked spell. If the Beast can learn to be loved, the curse will end and he will be restored. But time is running out… A feast for the senses, the treasured production is abundant with lavish sets, sumptuous costumes, and spectacular musical numbers, including “Be Our Guest,” “Gaston,” and the titular ballad.

TUTS will also present West Side Story, a dynamic reimagining of Romeo and Juliet in the turbulent streets of 1950’s New York. As turf war rages between two rival gangs, a pair of star-crossed lovers find themselves caught in the middle – and tragically wrenched between two worlds.

Following on its success and popularity when introduced last season, TUTS will once again offer a two-show subscription pack – allowing audiences to secure their seats to both productions for one great price. Subscriptions are available by visiting or by calling 1-877-840-0457 until May 6. Single Tickets go on sale May 17.

Peekaboo Beans and Anxiety Seminar

Peekaboo Beans is passionate about spreading the message of the importance of play. Play encourages children to engage with one another, use their imaginations, and develop vital skills needed to grow into healthy, well-adjusted and communicative adults.

Insert our Play Series is Peekaboo Beans’ most recent initiative a part of their Play Revolution. PLAY-ducation is a series of workshops with knowledgeable industry educators, bringing their expert experience to your home. These workshops are opportunities to grow, learn, and feel supported in their family values.

Peekaboo Beans is organizing an informative webinar with Dr. Deborah MacNamara so parents can learn how to support their child who suffer from anxiety. Although this is a free seminar, Peekaboo Beans can always use donations! In order to provide children less fortunate than us the right to play freely, please consider a donation to Playground Builders.

The webinar is Thursday May 14 from 6-8 pm. Register here!

Beauty and the Beast!

Looking for a fun family activity?

Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, the award-winning worldwide smash hit Broadway musical, returns to Vancouver as part of the Broadway Across Canada 2014 – 2015 season. Produced by NETworks Presentations, this elaborate theatrical production will come to life on stage at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre February 3-8, 2015. For information on the production, visit

Tickets are on sale NOW at all Ticketmaster outlets, on-line at

Disney’s Beauty and the Beast features the Academy Award®-winning score with music by Alan Menken and lyrics by the late Howard Ashman, with additional songs composed by Alan Menken and lyrics by Tim Rice. The book is written by Linda Woolverton. Disney’s Beauty and the Beast in Vancouver, presented by Broadway Across Canada, is part of three city Canadian tour including stops in Edmonton (February 10 – 15) and Calgary (February 17-22). Don’t miss your chance to catch this night full of family fun!

Play Is The Answer!

By Katherine Janson, ParticipACTION


We all know we should be active, but research shows that we’re not active enough in Canada.  Even our kids, who seem to be busy and running around all the time, aren’t active enough to meet guidelines. In fact, only 5% of Canadian children and youth get the recommended 60 minutes of movement each day!


There are so many reasons people give for not getting enough physical activity. They’re not a sporty family, they might feel silly, they’re tired, it’s expensive, or they’re just plain too busy with other family priorities. All of these are valid reasons, but if parents understood how easy and worthwhile it is to get their kids moving more, I believe they would make it a priority. 


One of the best things about getting your kids more active is that it doesn’t have to cost money or require a lot of planning or effort. Rather than seeing time spent kicking a ball around the driveway or backyard as “wasted” time, start thinking of it as valuable time for play!


Play is a simple, cost-effective solution to getting your kids more active. In fact, ParticipACTION and Healthy Families BC have joined forces to encourage all BC families to Bring Back Play and give their kids the opportunity to let loose, run around and have fun the way their parents did when they were kids.


Play might sound fun, yes, but it’s actually not frivolous. Play is important for a child’s social, physical and cognitive development. It helps kids learn how to win and lose, how to make friends, take risks, understand rules, trust their bodies and move with confidence. 


If you are skeptical, or the reasons not to encourage play are jumping up into your head, consider the following ways to overcome the common obstacles to active play:


Safety concerns – These days, parents think of the world as a more dangerous place than when they were kids.  Fears include exposing kids to everything from traffic to crime, injury and bullying. 


·       Take turns with other parents or caregivers supervising kids at play in the park or on the block.


  • Encourage kids to play with a buddy or group of friends.


No time – Finding more time to do more things can seem like adding another to-do to your list of schoolwork and scheduled activities. 


  • Try playing along the way – add follow the leader or I Spy to your walk to school or play tag while you’re waiting for the bus.
  • Consider reducing the number of scheduled activities.

Weather barriers – Your kids need more than fair-weather fitness to grow up healthy and strong.  When it’s cool, blustery, wet or sweltering outside, don’t send your kids to the couch! 


  • Dress for the weather by choosing layers, rubber boots  or sun hats that fit the forecast.
  • If it’s really frightful outside, find an indoor swimming pool, trampoline or have a dance party.


Screen time – The lure of technology is strong these days, and screens are everywhere—in the car, at school and in the home.  To bring back play:


  • Make family rules that limit how much screen time your kids are allowed each day.
  • Remove TVs from children’s bedrooms.

Canadian kids will be healthier and happier if we can bring back play.  For more information, please visit