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Our project was to plan and hold a neighbourhood block party, BBQ and pot luck to bring our neighbourhood together, with the goal of fostering new relationships and enhancing old ones. In previous years, a small neighbourhood committee was formed to put on an annual event, with out of pocket costs falling on the committee. Due to rain some years (2014 and 2015 being the most recent,) the party was either cancelled or significantly scaled back.
This year, the grant from the Vancouver Foundation allowed us to provide food, drink, shelter (a pop-up tent) and the rental of traffic barriers. This re-energized the committee and brought a few more members forward to assist with the planning and implementation.
We were lucky that it was a hot and sunny day, bringing out more than 125 people to our gathering. We were very grateful to have a pop-up tent to shade our food tables. The grant also allowed us to provide beverages and hot dogs (including vegan and gluten free options). The diversity of our residents was definitely showcased on our pot luck table!
It was a particularly idyllic afternoon. Adults chatted while some of the older children organized games, activities and face painting for the younger children. Many of the children brought their toys, bikes and scooters into the street to share with new and old friends. One of the main draws was the ambulance that was on site for part of the afternoon. There was a table to sign up for a potential block watch formation and plans are under way to make this happen.
The block party planning committee would like to express our sincerest thanks to The Vancouver Foundation and The Cedar Cottage Neighbourhood Small Grant Resident Committee for making this possible.