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Celebrate Asian Heritage Month in Burnaby with these events

Free events pay tribute to contributions and culture of city's Asian communities.
Burnaby Village Museum's South Asian Exhibit will share the stories of underrepresented South Asian communities through the years. Photo: City of Burnaby

May is Asian heritage month in Canada — a month to celebrate, highlight and recognize the contributions of Canadians of Asian heritage in our communities.

Every year, there are a range of events that are held in Burnaby and across Metro Vancouver.

Here are some of the events happening in Burnaby this year for you to check out.

Nikkei National Museum Ikebana Spring Show

You can now witness the art of Japanese flower arranging at this free arrangement display at Nikkei National Museum and Cultural Centre, organized with the Vancouver Ikebana Association. The show, featuring four different schools of ikebana — Ikenobo, Sangetsu, Sogetsu, Kado Sumi — will also include live demonstrations by experienced artists and a workshop (sold out as of this publication).

As an added bonus this year, you can also view a display of the Nikkei Bonsai Society in the lobby.

Although tickets for the workshops are sold out, the live demonstrations are free (however, donations are encouraged) for the public to attend.

When: Saturday, May 6, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday, May 7, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m..

Where: Nikkei National Museum and Culture Centre (6688 Southoaks Cres., Burnaby)

Cost: Free

Nikkei National Museum Spring Bazaar

Japanese Culture will be on full display at another Nikkei Museum event during Asian Heritage Month. The Nikkei Spring Bazaar is coming to the museum on May 13.

The Spring Bazaar will host a flea market within Hayashi Hall featuring a diverse selection of plants, food and gently used Japanese items, ranging from tableware and home decor to Japanese dolls, kimono and yukata. Some non-Japanese items will also be on sale from public vendors should you want to explore other cultures within the community.

An array of spring plants, including shiso, other Japanese vegetables, flowers and herbs donated by community gardeners, will be on display at the Nikkei Garden.

The free event, which will take place on Saturday, May 13, will also have a food truck on site, and delicious ready-to-eat Japanese street foods and packaged delicacies.

When: Saturday, May 13, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Where: Nikkei National Museum and Culture Centre (6688 Southoaks Cres., Burnaby)

Cost: Free

Burnaby Artists Guild art exhibit at Lougheed Shopping Centre

In honour of the month-long Asian Heritage month, the Burnaby Artists Guild will be presenting a weekend art exhibition from some of the best artists in the community, including Burnaby's YoungHwa Cha-Hach, at the City of Lougheed Shopping Centre on the Burnaby-Coquitlam border.

When: Friday, May 12, from 1 to 5 p.m., Saturday, May 13, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday, May 14, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m..

Where: City of Lougheed Shopping Centre (9855 Austin Rd., Burnaby)

Cost: Free

Tian Jin Temple’s TJ Fest Community Festival

One of the largest free street festivals in Burnaby celebrating multiculturalism and diversity will be back this month. TJ Fest, organized by Tian Jin Temple in Burnaby, is a celebration of Metro Vancouver’s Taiwanese culture.

The event will also represent other cultures through live performances and food from a variety of local vendors, and celebrate the rich cultural diversity in the city. Folks can also enjoy carnival-style games and other family-friendly activities at the events, as well as visit a community market at the event.

When: Saturday, May 6, and Sunday, May 7, From 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Where: Tian Jin Temple (3426 Smith Ave, Burnaby)

Cost: Free

South Asian exhibit at Burnaby Village Museum

The Burnaby Village Museum will be launching a new exhibit, Truths Not Often Told — Being South Asian in Burnaby, on May 6 — just in time for Asian heritage month. The summer-long exhibit will explore the “diverse experiences of Burnaby’s South Asian Canadian communities,” according to a City of Burnaby press release. The exhibit will take the public through the stories of the South Asian community in an interactive way, and explore “what it means to be South Asian living in Burnaby.”

Where: Burnaby Village Museum (6501 Deer Lake Ave.)

When: May 6 to Sept. 4; 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., (Tuesdays to Sundays, including statutory holidays)

Cost: Free admission, carousel rides: $2.65


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