Explore Canada with these 5 events at the 2017 Vancouver Writers Fest.

Our 2017 Festival may not have an explicit ‘Canada 150’ theme, but we certainly haven’t forgotten this momentous national occasion and opportunity for reflection. In addition to featuring several internationally-renowned Canadian writers, this year’s Fest includes five events that explore Canadian identity, politics and the lands and waters we call home. Highlights include:

Game Changer
Ken Dryden
Tuesday, October 17 at 8:30pm, Revue Stage.

In 2015, Steve Montador, a journeyman NHL defenceman died at 35 as a result of concussions sustained while playing hockey. Now, NHL Hall of Famer Ken Dryden has issued a challenge to lovers of Canada’s national sport: make hockey safer or risk losing it all together. Join us as this passionate hockey advocate explains how, and why, the rules of the game need to change.

Think Big, Canada
Doug Saunders in conversation with Gloria Macarenko
Wednesday, October 18 at 8:30pm, Revue Stage.

Could tripling Canada’s population be the solution to Canada’s social, economic and environmental concerns? Five-time National Newspaper award winner Doug Saunders thinks so. Join CBC host Gloria Macarenko as she reveals Saunders’ (big and) bold vision for Canada’s future.

Writing Canada (1)
Angie Abdou, Fanny Britt, Maia Caron, Kevin Hardcastle
Friday, October 20 at 10:00am, Revue Stage.

We’re going on a cross-Canada trip! Visit a coal mining town in the Rockies in Angie Abdou’s In Case I Go; see the prairies as they were during the Northwest Resistance of 1885 with Maia Caron; soak in the grittiness of rural Ontario in Kevin Hardcastle’s In the Cage; and explore the underbelly of residential Montreal with Fanny Britt.

Magnetic Mysterious North
Ken McGoogan, Ed O’Loughlin
Friday, October 20 at 1:00pm, Studio 1398.

What is it about the Arctic that has drawn so many explorers to embark on gruelling – and, sometimes, deadly – voyages? Writers Ken McGoogan and Ed O’Loughlin have both spent time exploring this mysterious land, both in fiction and in history, and have returned with some fascinating stories to tell.

Writing Canada (2)
Carol Bruneau, David Chariandy, Dawn Dumont
Saturday, October 21 at 2:00pm, Performance Works

Because one trip across this great land is never enough: join us for part two of Writing Canada! David Chariandy’s characters confront racism in a Canadian suburb; Dawn Dumont’s short stories weave together the lives of four First Nations people living in the prairies, and Carol Bruneau makes brings to life the salt air and gossip of a Nova Scotian small town.


Lauren Dembicky