REMEMBER HOW great Vancouver was in 2014? Take a look back at the headlines that happened and be proud that you live in one of the best places in the world.
1. VANCOUVER WINS TITLE OF NORTH AMERICA’S MOST LIVEABLE CITY
Forbes Magazine lists Vancouver as 2014’s third most liveable city in the world, one spot ahead of Toronto and two ahead of Calgary. Take that, every city in the world that isn’t named Melbourne or Vienna.
2. ARCHAIC LIQUOR LAWS CHANGED
Ridiculously out-of-date BC liquor laws were changed to allow happy hour prices, and starting in spring 2015, grocery stores will finally be permitted to sell booze. Rejoice as we join the current millennium!
3. NEW VANCOUVER BREWERIES OPEN, BEER LOVERS SWOON
Vancouver used to get made fun of for all its coffee shops. Well, move over pumpkin spice lattes, craft beer is here to stay. And if a microbrew isn’t enough, nanobrews are on the upswing and brewed in batches just small enough to get hipsters up in arms, racing their single-speed bikes for the last coveted growler-full. Just this year Main Street, Bomber, and Black Kettle have made waves, more have opened, and seemingly endless beer awards have been assigned. Combined with the new liquor laws, 2015 just might be the Year of the Beer.
4. VANCOUVER PUBLIC LIBRARY DECLARED BEST IN WORLD
Okay, so technically the group of university scholars from Düsseldorf announced this back in December 2013, but you have to feel pretty proud that we have one of the absolute best public libraries in the entire world (tied with Montreal).
5. PEDRO MORALES NAMED MLS NEWCOMER OF THE YEAR
I love him, you love him, and the rest of the MLS merely tolerates our adorable Chilean Whitecap.
6. KITS STREET PARTY KICKS ASS
Fifty-plus bands, forty-plus food trucks, and over 100,000 people made the 2014 Khatsahlano Street Party the best free event of the whole summer. And everyone was extremely well-behaved.
7. EARNEST ICE CREAM NEW LOCATION ANNOUNCED
The Fraser Street staple announced that they’re opening up a second location in Mount Pleasant and we are all crazy excited for a cone of Whiskey Caramel and London Fog.
8. STANLEY PARK NAMED WORLD’S BEST PARK
TripAdvisor pulled together every review they could find and discovered that Vancouver’s Stanley Park is the best park in the world. It placed ahead of New York City’s Central Park, and was the only Canadian one in the top ten. “Enough with the awards already” said no Vancouverite, ever.
9. ICONIC VANCOUVER AQUARIUM REVITALIZED
The self-sustaining non-profit Vancouver Aquarium that you grew up loving got an awesome 25 million dollar upgrade.
10. TRADE IN TOYS FOR TICKETS
The Salvation Army facilitated a pretty amazing deal between Vancouver drivers and Impark. If you were unlucky enough to get a few parking tickets in 2014, the Army accepted a one-for-one trade-in on tickets for kids’ toys, thus making kids happy, keeping us happy, and keeping money out of Impark’s hands. And a Merry Christmas to all.
11. CAT CAFE OPENS
Vancouver took a page out of Japan’s book and opened a cafe that doubles as a cat shelter. If a large white chocolate mocha with extra whip isn’t enough to pick you up, a purring ball of the internet’s favourite animal is always nearby to sit on your lap.
12. WE WIN GOLD x2
Goaltender and Vancouver native Carey Price posts mind-blowing numbers and shuts out both USA and Sweden as the Canadian men’s hockey team steamrolls the world to win Olympic gold. Meanwhile, the women’s team pounds USA 3-2 for the second time in the tournament to win gold.
13. TORTS AND GILLIS FIRED
The experiment in hiring the certifiably insane John Tortorella to coach the Canucks was failed, maddening, and terrible. So when Trevor Linden stepped in and hired Jim Benning and Willie Desjardins, we put our torches and pitchforks away. Welcome, Willie and Jim. You’re already making your city proud of you.
14. BENCHES HAILED AS COMPASSIONATE TOWARD HOMELESS
Raincity Housing installed some benches around town that fold out to provide a dry space with a roof for anyone who wants to sleep there. Other cities coughLondoncough around the world went the opposite direction, instead putting spikes and painful deterrents on benches, earning the scorn of humans everywhere.
15. UBC RESEARCHERS DISCOVER SEPSIS BREAKTHROUGH
Sepsis is a huge killer that is very difficult to diagnose, but in October, UBC researchers developed a way to detect the disease much earlier, which could potentially save thousands of lives every year. Saving lives is pretty sweet.
16. COUPLAND EXHIBIT OPENS AT THE VAG
Vancouver-born and raised cultural icon, Douglas “Generation X” Coupland, had his very own exhibit at the Vancouver Art Gallery, reminding us all that “everywhere is anywhere is anything is everything.”
17. COMPOSTING PROGRAM BEGINS
If you’ve been living in an apartment or condo, you probably hate having to throw food scraps and organic waste in the trash. But finally, the city got with the times and started rolling out composting to all Vancouver residents. It’s just one more way we’re maintaining our reputation as the greenest city.
18. BC WOMEN WIN SKIING OLYMPIC GOLD & SILVER
Our very own Vancouverite Marielle Thompson and Kelowna’s Kelsey Serwa went 1-2 in women’s freestyle ski cross, earning the tearful respect of Canadians nationwide.
19. LOCAL RESTAURANTS REIGN
Vij’s, Hawksworth, and Farmer’s Apprentice were all recognized as some of this country’s finest restaurants. Vancouver’s gastronomy scene has been on the rise for the last decade and shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon.
20. BEST WEATHER IN THE HISTORY OF EVER
We had NINETEEN consecutive days with zero precipitation this summer. NINETEEN. If you missed any day between July 25 and August 12, you might be crying yourself to sleep tonight. As Vancouver millennials, we’ve never had a summer that good in our entire lives.