PNE Food: 5 Foods to Try From Classics to Food Dares

It’s that time of year again! The PNE is a Summer tradition here in BC and along with the rides, the animals, the dog races, and outdoor concerts (I know I’m missing some things, there’s just too much to list!), the food is one of the highlights for many visitors. There’s a novelty about the food at The Fair- maybe it’s the atmosphere, maybe it’s the people serving it, maybe it’s the food itself (or all of the above) but it’s definitely on another level than your everyday meals. Add in that some of the items are only available once a year at the PNE and it’s the perfect excuse to try something new (food dares have definitely become an annual tradition for a many, but more on that later) alongside classic favourites like the infamous mini donuts and elephant ears.

Whether you want to go with some classics or go a little crazy (or maybe a try a little bit of everything) you’ll get a sample of of what’s available this year at the PNE to indulge your cravings in this post. There are so many options to choose from it’s hard to narrow down the choices, but I’d definitely suggest trying something new alongside something classic/ familiar. I’ve got a total sweet tooth so I couldn’t resist including 2 sweet options on this list (one’s a classic and one’s new this year), alongside 3 savoury options + I’ve also included some extras at the end that I didn’t want to leave out.

What food are you wanting to try at the PNE this year?

PNE food #thewaffletaco waffle ice cream cone

Waffle Ice Cream Cone aka #TheWaffleTaco- Steve O’s Public House 

Picture a taco made out of a waffle cone filled with ice cream, whipped cream, and finished with your favourite toppings. Need I say more? This is a twist on the classic waffle cone that deserves a place on your PNE food list: the waffle taco is dipped in chocolate, filled with rolled ice cream that’s mixed with your favourite toppings (here’s just a few of the options you can choose from: Oreos, Skor, and strawberries) and topped with whipped cream. Choose up to two toppings to customize your waffle cone and indulge your inner sweet tooth. If you love ice cream don’t miss #thewaffletaco this year!

PNE food Dim Sum Express dumplings 

Dumplings- Dim Sum Express

Want to try something different than typical fair food? If you’re looking for something outside of burgers and hot dogs, dim sum is a refreshing option. Added bonus: you can eat it on the go as you walk around the fair. 

PNE food Beaver Tails

BeaverTails

A PNE classic. What’s a BeaverTail exactly? It’s thinly- rolled dough that’s deep fried and topped with cinnamon and sugar (the classic version) or choose from other topping combos like bananas and peanut butter. If you really want to indulge try the Triple Trip: chocolate hazelnut spread, peanut butter and Reece’s Pieces (shown). Oh em gee so good!

PNE food Jamaican fish and chips

Jamaican Style Fish & Chips- Double Decker Diner

Two reasons not to miss this: 1) Fusion cuisine always produces some amazing combinations and these fish and chips are no different and 2) Everything is cooked and served in a converted double decker bus! This British classic gets an update with Jamaican flavour served alongside hand- cut fries (these aren’t the frozen, out of the bag variety!). If there’s room, eat your meal on the open air patio atop the second level of the bus and enjoy great views while you eat. Come for the food, stay for the bus!

Cricket Burgers & Fries- Gourmet Burgers

Maybe you’re wanting a burger while you’re at the PNE. But maybe you want to take it to a whole new level…? Enter the cricket burger new to the fair this year. Add this to your food dare list but be prepared to enjoy it more than you might think (if you’re willing to give it a try!). Crickets are a great source of protein and while they aren’t a standard burger topping, don’t be afraid of them adding a weird flavour (they don’t). This makes for a great foodie bucket list item to check off and some entertaining photos. Definitely one of the more adventurous items available this year at the PNE and worth a try!

Other foods to check out:

  • Double Bacon Mac N’ Cheese Super Footlong Hotdogs- Super Footlong 
  • Funnel Cake Poutine- Funnel Cakes
  • FOOD DARE: Chicken Feet- Chicky’s Chicken (definitely one of the crazier foods available this year!)    

What’s on your PNE food list this year?

For full details about The Fair at the PNE, check out their website and find them on social media:

Facebook: PNE/ Playland

Instagram: @pne_playland

Twitter: @PNE_playland

#TheFair

Cirque Du Soleil: A Date Night with TORUK

Last night I got to go to my first Cirque du Soleil show and it was A M A Z I N G. Based on James Cameron’s movie, Avatar, TORUK- The First Flight is here in Vancouver from Dec 13- 18 as part of a global tour.

I’ve talked to lots of people who have gone to a Cirque Du Soleil show and have never heard anything less than amazing reviews and it’s been something I’ve wanted to do for a long time. Will and I had been looking forward to going for about a month and made a date night of it and enjoyed some time out without the kids. From what I know of Cirque shows I expected amazing sets, beautiful costumes, and mind- blowing performances/ acrobatics. And that’s exactly what we got with TORUK. The show is 2 hours long including a 20 minute intermission and from start to finish TORUK delivers from one amazing act to another. Whether you’ve seen Avatar or not, you will enjoy this show; Will mentioned he liked that it was based on a movie he was familiar with (and liked), but it’s not essential for enjoying TORUK.

Highlights for me included the amazing set that transformed throughout the performance, the talented performers, and the attention to detail (the costumes/ props were so beautiful). TORUK is set up in an arena, with the audience surrounding the majority of the stage area, making it dynamic to view- everywhere you look there’s something to see. Parts of the set would change throughout the show, moving and adapting for each act- you never knew what to expect next, and each performance seemed better than the previous. My jaw dropped several times throughout the show and I couldn’t stop shaking my head at what the performers are capable of. The acrobatics and choreography blew my expectations away, with several of the performers contorting their bodies in ways I had never seen before.

It’s hard to pick a favourite scene/ act, so I’ve shared photos of a few of them below. If you have the chance to see a performance of TORUK, I would definitely recommend it. As my first Cirque Du Soleil show, I left feeling pretty giddy from TORUK- I couldn’t have asked for a better first experience with this entertainment franchise and it was a great way to spend a night out with Will (although there were families with kids there so don’t rule it out as a fun family night out). My only advice would be to arrive about half an hour before show time to give yourself plenty of time to find parking, maybe grab some food, and get settled. For show and ticket information, see below.

 

 

 

 

 

About Toruk- The First Flight
TORUK takes viewers to Pandora, the setting from the film, and features everything you’d hope for in a Cirque du Soleil show, produced with a creative team including Cameron himself helping to bring everything for the show together. Narrated by a “Na’vi Storyteller” and filled with a variety of characters, this show is a mythical tale set thousands of years before the events depicted in the film AVATAR, and before humans set foot on Pandora. When a natural catastrophe threatens to destroy the sacred Tree of Souls, Ralu and Entu, two Omaticaya boys on the brink of adulthood, decide to take matters into their own hands. Upon learning that Toruk can help them save the Tree of Souls, they set out with their new friend Tsyal on a quest high up in the Floating Mountains to find the mighty red and orange predator that rules the Pandoran sky. Prophecy is fulfilled when a pure soul rises among the clans to ride Toruk for the first time and save the Na’vi from a terrible fate.
Through a combination of cutting- edge visuals, puppetry, and stagecraft accompanied by a beautiful cinematic score, Cirque du Soleil applies its unique signature style to James Cameron’s imaginary world and “makes the bond” between two kindred artistic visions that capture the imagination.
This live immersive experience also bears the distinct signature of directors and multimedia innovators Michel Lemieux and Victor Pilon. It is a living ode to the Na’vi’s symbiotic coexistence with nature and their belief in the basic interconnectedness of all living things.
Show Info
Show Dates: December 14- 18th, 2016
Location: Pacific Coliseum, Vancouver
Tickets: $51.90- $149.50 + service charges (family pack pricing available)
If you’d like to purchase tickets, click here to go to the Cirque Du Soleil website and check availability.
Top Photo Credit: Jesse Faatz
All other photos my own.
Disclosure: I received tickets to TORUK in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Cirque Du Soleil: A Date Night with TORUK

Last night I got to go to my first Cirque du Soleil show and it was A M A Z I N G. Based on James Cameron’s movie, Avatar, TORUK- The First Flight is here in Vancouver from Dec 13- 18 as part of a global tour.

I’ve talked to lots of people who have gone to a Cirque Du Soleil show and have never heard anything less than amazing reviews and it’s been something I’ve wanted to do for a long time. Will and I had been looking forward to going for about a month and made a date night of it and enjoyed some time out without the kids. From what I know of Cirque shows I expected amazing sets, beautiful costumes, and mind- blowing performances/ acrobatics. And that’s exactly what we got with TORUK. The show is 2 hours long including a 20 minute intermission and from start to finish TORUK delivers from one amazing act to another. Whether you’ve seen Avatar or not, you will enjoy this show; Will mentioned he liked that it was based on a movie he was familiar with (and liked), but it’s not essential for enjoying TORUK.

Highlights for me included the amazing set that transformed throughout the performance, the talented performers, and the attention to detail (the costumes/ props were so beautiful). TORUK is set up in an arena, with the audience surrounding the majority of the stage area, making it dynamic to view- everywhere you look there’s something to see. Parts of the set would change throughout the show, moving and adapting for each act- you never knew what to expect next, and each performance seemed better than the previous. My jaw dropped several times throughout the show and I couldn’t stop shaking my head at what the performers are capable of. The acrobatics and choreography blew my expectations away, with several of the performers contorting their bodies in ways I had never seen before.

It’s hard to pick a favourite scene/ act, so I’ve shared photos of a few of them below. If you have the chance to see a performance of TORUK, I would definitely recommend it. As my first Cirque Du Soleil show, I left feeling pretty giddy from TORUK- I couldn’t have asked for a better first experience with this entertainment franchise and it was a great way to spend a night out with Will (although there were families with kids there so don’t rule it out as a fun family night out). My only advice would be to arrive about half an hour before show time to give yourself plenty of time to find parking, maybe grab some food, and get settled. For show and ticket information, see below.

About Toruk- The First Flight

TORUK takes viewers to Pandora, the setting from the film, and features everything you’d hope for in a Cirque du Soleil show, produced with a creative team including Cameron himself helping to bring everything for the show together. Narrated by a “Na’vi Storyteller” and filled with a variety of characters, this show is a mythical tale set thousands of years before the events depicted in the film AVATAR, and before humans set foot on Pandora. When a natural catastrophe threatens to destroy the sacred Tree of Souls, Ralu and Entu, two Omaticaya boys on the brink of adulthood, decide to take matters into their own hands. Upon learning that Toruk can help them save the Tree of Souls, they set out with their new friend Tsyal on a quest high up in the Floating Mountains to find the mighty red and orange predator that rules the Pandoran sky. Prophecy is fulfilled when a pure soul rises among the clans to ride Toruk for the first time and save the Na’vi from a terrible fate.

Through a combination of cutting- edge visuals, puppetry, and stagecraft accompanied by a beautiful cinematic score, Cirque du Soleil applies its unique signature style to James Cameron’s imaginary world and “makes the bond” between two kindred artistic visions that capture the imagination.

This live immersive experience also bears the distinct signature of directors and multimedia innovators Michel Lemieux and Victor Pilon. It is a living ode to the Na’vi’s symbiotic coexistence with nature and their belief in the basic interconnectedness of all living things.

Show Info

Show Dates: December 14- 18th, 2016

Location: Pacific Coliseum, Vancouver

Tickets: $51.90- $149.50 + service charges (family pack pricing available)

If you’d like to purchase tickets, click here to go to the Cirque Du Soleil website and check availability.

Top Photo Credit: Jesse Faatz

All other photos my own.

Disclosure: I received tickets to TORUK in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Healthy Family Expo Highlights

Yesterday I went to the 3rd annual Healthy Family Expo– who else went?- this is one of my favourite events of the year and it didn’t disappoint. The organizers always do an amazing job bringing together some great companies and products and I had the pleasure of being one of this year’s blog ambassadors. 
In case you missed it, here’s some of what was at the 2016 HFE:
– more than 100 exhibitors featuring food sampling + shopping
– 10,000 square foot Active Kid Zone including a giant hamster ball track, and climbing wall
–  Concerts with Bobs & Lol and Jessie Farrell
– $15,000 Grand Prize contest
– On- site hybrid vehicle test- driving with Toyota Canada
– Seventh Generation Baby Feeding & Changing Lounge

The HFE always brings together a great variety of exhibitors, including food, clothing, natural wellness, fitness, and kid/ family activities, and one of my favourite thing about events like this is getting the chance to meet with and chat to different companies about their products and try some of them out on the spot (my favourites from yesterday were the Organic Spritzers from GoodDrink and Coconut Ice cream from Frozen Coconut). It’s also great to say hi to others you already know and learn about new products they’ve got available. I brought home an awesome selection of goodies (check that out on Instagram) and can’t wait for next year’s event. Here are a few of my favourites from yesterday’s event:

Shown above: 
Underables | Earth Baby Outfitters | Love Child Organics | GoodDrink | Little Bean + Co
What were your highlights from this year’s event?
March posts sponsored by

Feature Friday: Mommies N Munchkins Fair

This past Saturday I attended the Mommies N Munchkins Fair. One of my friends (Stephanie from Cutie Pie Boutiquerecommended it raved about it to me and suggested I check it out. I am so glad I did. In the weeks leading up to the event, I spoke with the organizers a few times and was very impressed with how organized and hard working they were. Their efforts definitely paid off. 

When I arrived with Ari in tow I was excited to see how many people were already waiting to get in- there was a line out the door (way to go ladies!); there were grab bags for the first 100 people as a reward for arriving early. I spoke with one of the attendees- a girlfriend of mine- about what she thought of the grab bags. She had mixed reviews, as there was a lot of promotional material & not a lot of samples from the vendors, but she received a food pouch for her little one which she really appreciated (she also mentioned how much she loved the XL bag as a great Mommy tote).
The event took place at a different venue from previous years, but speaking with vendors, attendees, and from my own experience, it was an excellent choice. The layout was clear & organized, with ample room for strollers; while there was a great turnout (approx. 3,200!), you never felt cramped/ crowded.
There were performances by Will Stroet and As You Wish Princess, a balloon twister from Twist Parties (these were some of my friend’s favourites), a bouncy castle from Par- T- Perfect, and face/ belly painting by Melanie Dawn. Based on the feedback I got, the performers did a great job and the only changes would be to have them on a stage in a designated area to keep the audience corralled and to spread out the performances throughout the event. From what I gathered, they were such a hit that the audience blocked the aisle during the performances and it was a little busy shifting from performer to the next, as the kids wanted to meet & take photos with them.
As an added bonus there were also a variety of food trucks & free Starbucks coffee given away outside, which allowed all of the indoor space to be free for vendors, but still conveniently close for parents who wanted to return inside after a bite to eat & some fresh air.
I got a chance to meet and speak with a lot of the vendors at the Fair and was impressed with the variety present. We really are surrounded by some talented & hard working people and I can’t wait to collaborate with some of them in the future for TPB readers. Please show your support & check them out! 
MiniMocs: How cute are these???
Family Resources
An online resource for families about events & other information. Articles on a variety of subjects including travel, local activities, & giveaways. “The only pocket book resource guide for families”.

Teach your child how to be healthy, independent sleepers- skills that will grow with them. Consultant Kathryn Wood will teach you why sleep is so important, show you the steps to establish healthy sleeps habits with your kids, and how to measure success. Private consultations & seminars available. 

Health & Wellness
The lovely lady from Prenatal to Parenting!
Looking for prenatal, postpartum, and/ or parenting services? Everything from doula services & hypnobaby classes to placenta encapsulation &workshops for parents. Great for parents (and parents- to- be!) seeking natural alternatives to traditional options. 
Homeopathic medicine to suit a variety of common ailments, including, teething, cold, cough, & flu, allergies, and restlessness. Products available for babies & children, with options for adults. If you’ve been searching for an alternative to pharmaceuticals, this is a great brand to try (I use their drops for teething & colds – for more check out my post on teething here).
Specializing in dentistry for infants & children through adolescence. Provides a ‘kid- friendly’ approach to oral care so their young patients understand what is going on and help remove the intimidation of visiting the dentist. Regular maintenance/ preventative & restorative services provided.

Family Entertainment & Activities
A great place to bring your kids from 6 weeks to 13 years with a variety of programs tailored to specific age groups to encourage a healthy lifestyle & self esteem. A great venue for birthday parties too!

An award- winning bilingual musician with a background in education, Will Stroet entertains children with his high- energy, interactive music. With eight albums & 1 DVD under his belt, Will can currently be found on Kid’s CBC on weekday mornings. His current album, Just Imagine is available now.

The fab ladies from Discovery Toys
Turn play time into a time for learning. Everything from toys & games to books & CDs, these quality toys are a great addition to your home. Perfect as gifts or to stock your kid’s toy box, these toys encourage kids to develop & learn a variety of skills as they grow. Check out our Amazing Mom post on Chelle from Discovery Toys here.

The lovely Erin Parr from Music Together of The Fraser Valley
Encourage & foster your child’s love of music with MTFV. Through their classes MTFV encourages all members of the family to participate; tailored for ages 0- kindergarten. Music therapy also available to help address a variety of learning & developmental concerns. Check out our feature on Erin Parr & MTFV here.

Encourage you kids to learn how to work as part of a team& to focus on how they achieve something (rather than focusing just on the achievement) through dance and cheerleading. Xtreme teaches teamwork, dedication, focus, and a good attitude though their motto: work hard, and be nice. A fun & positive alternative to traditional competitive sports (theatre & musical theatre programs coming soon).  

Beautiful & quality children’s books published in the UK. With a focus on inspiring curiosity & encouraging imagination while teaching children “respect for cultural, social, and ecological diversity”. The artwork & stories will encourage your children to develop a love of reading.

Savour your memories in these stylish books created by a local Mom. A beautiful alternative to regular albums & online photobooks, these memory books are clean & classy with several motifs to choose from. Save time & energy by saving your memories in these user- friendly books. A lovely baby shower gift idea that supports local? *LOVE*. 

Satisfy your sweet tooth with confectionary bliss. Everything from vintage favourites to hard- to- find & imported items,  and even insect candies! Pick up your favourites for a treat or to stock a candy bar or goodie bags. Various locations throughout Metro Vancouver.

Looking to add the ‘wow’ factor to your next event? Do it with balloon decor. Everything from corporate events, weddings, showers, etc. Consultations & personalized service provided to ensure  creations compliment the style & feel of the event while adding that extra touch to make it stand out.

Babies & Kids
Lace romper from Cutie Pie Boutique
Beautiful, quality, & affordable hair accessories, rompers, & bloomer sets. Accessorize your little ladies in style with these creations! Check out our Amazing Mom Feature on owner Stephanie- we love supporting this talented lady!

Looking for a quality, handmade alternative to the mass produced options? Check out this amazing brand that specializes in sleep sacks, car seat & shopping cart covers, and other handmade items. Support a local Work At Home Mom too!

Minimoc’s local handmade shoes
Canadian handmade”modern moccasins for small feet” made with ethically sourced materials. Your little one’s footwear can be stylish & easy to put on/ take off with these mocs. Eco- friendly with the added bonus of supporting this local husband & wife team; we love that these cute mocs are custom made to order.

Online shop specializing in children’s clothing sourced internationally. Unique & stylish clothing & accessories that offer an alternative to the mass- produced retail options. Perfect for photos & special occasions, this local lady has excellent taste!

Adorable baubles by Flounce Necklaces
How about some cute baubles for your young lady? Have fun accessorizing her outfits with adorable necklaces from this US- based jewellery line. These pretty pieces photograph beautifully and are a great prop- perfect for birth announcements & birthday photos.  

Beauty & Hair
Enjoy some pampering in the comforts of home. Packages can be shared with friends & family or kept to yourself. Perfect for birthday parties (for the young ladies of the house!), stagettes, bridal prep, ladies nights, or just because you deserve it! Services range from manis & pedis to massages & facials.
Kymm’s Mobile Hair
Have your hair cut & styled in the comfort of your own home. No need for arranging a babysitter or having to travel to your stylist. A great idea for busy Moms! Contact Kymm via email at kymmbird@hotmail.com.
Belly Art by Melanie Dawn
A professional make up artist, Melanie creates beautiful works of art on the body. Whether it be her award- winning face painting at a special event, or celebrating your baby bump with some original artwork, Melanie will help create special memories with her talent. 

Beauti Control
A variety of skincare & beauty products for teens to boomers. New baby product line now available. All products are gluten and paraben free. Contact Tabitha Forsythe at tabforsythe@hotmail.com. Website under construction.
House & Home
Get organic produce delivered right to your door on a weekly or bi- weekly basis. Choose from preset and custom bin options and help make eating healthy more convenient and affordable! Small, medium, and large bins available to meet your family’s needs.

The women’s answer to home improvement needs! Now you can try your hand at DIYs and repairs with tools designed specifically for women. The cute colour doesn’t hurt either. A great gift for ladies of all ages.

An eco- friendly locally made alternative to the chemical options on the market. Free from phosphates, chlorine, peroxide, & other harmful ingredients, this paste detergent is HE & front- load friendly. Added bonus: packaged in re- usable mason jars, receive a $5 discount on your next purchase when you return your empties! Currently available in citrus, lavender, & unscented. Each jar washes 60- 65 loads.

Quality & stylish locally hand- sewn items for the home & all members of the family- including the furry ones! Everything from unpaper towels (great idea!) & wetbags to burp clothes, and doggie tuxedos (that’s right- dress your poochie in style!). 

Some goodies in a jar by Prenatal to Parenting
Phew! So much to see from so many great people & businesses! I hope you’ll check out the Mommies N Munchkins Fair next year- it’s a great event. In the meantime, I hope you check out some of the vendors above & let them know you heard about them on TPB!
April posts sponsored by Gary Gallant Travel