There’s no better way to start a new school year than a day in the sun celebrating the cool and eclectic neighbourhood of Mount Pleasant. Thankfully, the Autumn Shift Festival was there for everyone keen, to wander about the car-free streets and lanes, while basking in the warm weather.
On Sunday September 14th Main Street from Broadway to 7th Avenue was closed for this annual fall festival and 30,000 of people came for the celebration. What makes the Autumn Shift Festival a unique experience is the transformation of laneways and a parking lot into useable market spaces. With help from festival partner Liveable Laneways, the lanes were cleaned and vendors set up tents and activity booths throughout the area for guests to walk through.
There were 4 stages with live music that showcased folk artists, sultry singers, heavy metal, soft grunge and a collection of DJs and rappers. Jugglers wandered about, henna tattoo artists painted hands and feet, and there was even a dude named Delayne making a sculpture out of sand.
And of course there was food, and lots of it! Pastel coloured macaroons, hot dogs, sweet treats, baked goods, popcorn and free cotton candy was scattered throughout the festival footprint like tiny treasures for the hungry masses. For those that were really hungry the Smoking Sausage BBQ Cook-Off was offering 2 bites of 6 different gourmet sausages created by some of Mount Pleasant’s most talented chefs. The competition was fierce and the Cascade Room won, while helping raise $3121 for the Greater Vancouver Food Bank.
Throughout the day dancers of all types used the street as their stage. Ballerinas twirled to and fro, tap dancers showed off their skills and break dancers hit the pavement.At 3 o’clock here was a flash mob organized by ImproVancouver that took over Main Street! Seeing the crowd burst into spontaneous, synchronized dance was a definite embodiment of the whole day. Everyone was there to have a great time together and partake in community spirit!
The 5th Annual Autumn Shift Festival did not disappoint and I’m already looking forward next year! Check out the amazing video of ASF 2014
Written by Mormei Zanke