Mom won in a walk: a Lynn Valley Day memory

By contributing writer Len Corben

My mother’s Achilles heel was actually her most valuable asset. At least it was on the afternoon she entered the Lynn Valley Day walking race from 15th Street and Lonsdale Avenue to Lynn Valley Park on June 1, 1957, coming up 58 years ago now.

With this year’s Lynn Valley Day scheduled for Saturday, May 30, this is the perfect opportunity to tell the tale of my mom’s victory using a rather unorthodox finishing kick.

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Granddaughter offers glimpse into Lynn Valley Day history

Thanks to our internet-connected world, a little piece of Lynn Valley history recently came to light.

Kim Wertenberger of Wapato, Washington, sent LynnValleyLife a photo of a much-cherished trophy that once belonged to her grandfather, Brian J. Ingoldsby. “I love it dearly and wanted to share it with you,” wrote Kim, who had unsuccessfully tried to make contact with someone in Lynn Valley years ago. This time, her internet search found an appreciative audience in the LVLife editorial office.

Image 4The trophy was given to Mr. Ingoldsby for winning the “Mile Flat Race” in 1921, 22, and 23. The race was run at the first-ever Lynn Valley Day in 1912, and again in 1913, but there is a significant gap in the dates while World War One interrupted such idyllic pastimes. (For a first-hand account of another Lynn Valley man’s experience of this period, see Walter Draycott’s online chronicle of The Great War.) It must have been celebratory indeed when Mr. Ingoldsby won the race when it made its reappearance in 1921.

Says Kim: “I was told that [my grandfather] qualified for the Olympics as a runner, but was spiked by another runner’s shoe so couldn’t participate.  I’m not sure about the truth in that or even if I am remembering the story correctly…but he won this trophy three years in a row so he must have had some skill!”

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It takes a village to make LV Day happen!

A year or two ago, Lynn Valley Day was voted the North Shore’s best festival in the North Shore News’ Readers’ Choice Awards. That same year, Lynn Valley was voted the best neighbourhood in which to live. Coincidence? We think not.

The same things that make a great festival make a great hometown. That’s friendly people, an engaged citizenry, a commitment to our shared environment, and lots of volunteer help when it’s needed.

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Community building: A New Year’s Resolution for all?

Love ’em or hate ’em, adopt them or not, thoughts of new year’s resolutions are on most people’s minds each year when the calendar reaches its final days.

As we know, most well-intended resolutions die a quick death in the first few weeks following January 1. But surely it is still worth taking the time to look ahead at the year to come and ask yourself what you’d like to bring to it, and get from it.

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Lynn Valley Days 2014 – one of the best ever!

Wow! What a great Lynn Valley Day weekend! The LynnValleyLife crew was busy running the games pitch and the new SuperKids Obstacle Course, but were able to capture some of the park and parade festivities on camera. Here is a re-cap on the day from organizer Gillian Konst, director of the Lynn Valley Community Association:

Thank you to everyone for the biggest and best Lynn Valley Days so far.

With the weather firmly on our side, this was truly the best attended and most succesful Lynn Valley Days ever. We don’t have hard numbers yet, but it’s estimated that up to 15,000 people visited the park on Saturday!

LV Lion racerHundreds of volunteers, along with the exhibitors and parade participants, made it a day to remember for the thousands who came out to enjoy the rides, games, Cookshack, activities and entertainment.

The warm weather also meant that our inaugural evening concert and BBQ dinner on Saturday evening were a big hit.  What a great way to end the weekend!

Lynn Valley Days is organized by the community for the community.   It is all about building and strengthening the community in which we live.   Thanks to our generous sponsors and donors we have two beneficiaries from our weekend:   The Tim Jones Legacy Fund and The North Shore Disability Resource Centre.

We were surprised but thrilled to discover that the night of our gala would also have been Tim Jones’ birthday; we were able to raise a glass and toast this remarkable man and the legacy he has left us.

Thank you from The Lynn Valley Community Association, Lynn Valley Legion and Lynn Valley Lions to everyone who pitched in, donated, participated and came to support the 102nd Lynn Valley Days. Together we make a difference in the community and you are all part of continuing the tradition.

There was a full house (well, tent) out to enjoy The Boom Booms Saturday evening.

There was a full house (well, tent) out to enjoy The Boom Booms Saturday evening.

The Boom Booms kept toes tapping from 5 to 8 p.m.

The Boom Booms kept toes tapping from 5 to 8 p.m.

The Boom Booms

The Boom Booms

The LVLife SuperKids Obstacle Course Leaderboard showed top times by age group at day's end!

The LVLife SuperKids Obstacle Course Leaderboard showed top times by age group at day’s end!

LVLife sponsoring realtor Kelly Gardiner took a (sadly unsuccessful) run at top time for the SuperKids Obstacle Course Masters category. He was doing well until it was time to "skip his age"!

LVLife sponsoring realtor Kelly Gardiner took a (sadly unsuccessful) run at top time for the SuperKids Obstacle Course Masters category. He was doing well until it was time to “skip his age”!

This Black Bear Band niece is getting an early intro to the art of the trombone from Uncle Jeff Seddon, a member of the band's 'Impalers' t-bone section.

This Black Bear Band niece is getting an early intro to the art of the trombone from Uncle Jeff Seddon, a member of the band’s ‘Impalers’ t-bone section.

Harry skips his age to finish up the obstacle course, and is named winner of the Masters category!

Harry skips his age to finish up the obstacle course, and is named winner of the Masters category!

Harry knocks the blocks off and prepares his return through the slalom run.

Harry knocks the blocks off and prepares his return through the slalom run.

A ballerina gets instructions and encouragement from a LVLifer as she starts out on the SuperKids Obstacle Course.

A ballerina gets instructions and encouragement from a LVLifer as she starts out on the SuperKids Obstacle Course.

We had a great time running the games pitch. The old-fashioned relay races are always popular, as was this year's new SuperKids Obstacle course.

We had a great time running the games pitch. The old-fashioned relay races are always popular, as was this year’s new SuperKids Obstacle course.

Bodies were flying everywhere at this cool challenge, in which players had to take to the air in order to avoid being knocked off their pedestals by the randomly twirling bonker thing (there is probably a more technical term for it, but whatever it's called, it's fast!)

Bodies were flying everywhere at this cool challenge, in which players had to take to the air in order to avoid being knocked off their pedestals by the randomly twirling bonker thing (there is probably a more technical term for it, but whatever it’s called, it’s fast!)

Great salmon car from the North Van Outdoor School alumni.

Great salmon car from the North Van Outdoor School alumni.

A small ensemble from the LV Black Bear Band entertained passersby. This could be you next year! Join up at www.blackbearband.ca.

A small ensemble from the LV Black Bear Band entertained passersby. This could be you next year! Join up at www.blackbearband.ca.

LVLIfe sponsoring realtor Jim Lanctot, looking dashing in a sombrero, coaches a Masters category runner through the obstacle course.

LVLIfe sponsoring realtor Jim Lanctot, looking dashing in a sombrero, coaches a Masters category runner through the obstacle course.

This was one of our best tower-builders of the day! It cost him some valuable seconds, but we confidently predict this detail-oriented young chap will go far.

This was one of our best tower-builders of the day! It cost him some valuable seconds, but we confidently predict this detail-oriented young chap will go far.

Gunnysackers gave it their all.

Gunnysackers gave it their all.

Neighbourhood seniors are well represented by the LV Seniors' Association.

Neighbourhood seniors are well represented by the LV Seniors’ Association.

The sword play looks pretty authentic!

The sword play looks pretty authentic!

A Tin Man from LV United looked the part.

A Tin Man from LV United looked the part.

LV United had a great float in the parade, with Wizard of Oz characters following behind.

LV United had a great float in the parade, with Wizard of Oz characters following behind.

They may be relaxing now, but things got pretty hectic at the LVLife Games pitch once the parade was over!

They may be relaxing now, but things got pretty hectic at the LVLife Games pitch once the parade was over!

Marching bands had the perfect weather to strut their stuff.

Marching bands had the perfect weather to strut their stuff.

Lynn Valley Elementary Band's rendition of Louie, Louie was enjoyed by all.

Lynn Valley Elementary Band’s rendition of Louie, Louie was enjoyed by all.

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Tucker the Turtle presses some flesh.

Tucker the Turtle presses some flesh.

It was all peace and love with the Zazou '70s singers.

It was all peace and love with the Zazou ’70s singers.

Fairy tale princesses and other book characters marched along with the NVD Library parade entry.

Fairy tale princesses and other book characters marched along with the NVD Library parade entry.

Mmmmm…. Purdy's Hedgehog.

Mmmmm…. Purdy’s Hedgehog.

The Lynn Valley Lion reminds everyone to get their Christmas trees from the Lions, and see your money do some good in the community!

The Lynn Valley Lion reminds everyone to get their Christmas trees from the Lions, and see your money do some good in the community!

Our first two contestants in the SuperKids Obstacle course.

Our first two contestants in the SuperKids Obstacle course.

LVLife threw its annual pre-Gala shindig at the home of Jim and Cindy Lanctot.

LVLife threw its annual pre-Gala shindig at the home of Jim and Cindy Lanctot.

This LV Lion has some tough comptetition in the gunny sack race. He was wishing he was mascot for the Lynn Valley Kangaroos.

This LV Lion has some tough comptetition in the gunny sack race. He was wishing he was mascot for the Lynn Valley Kangaroos.

Concert to cap off Lynn Valley Day celebration

There won’t be any “post-Lynn Valley Day” let-down this year, thanks to a new event sponsored by Bosa Development.

Lynn Valley Day won’t wind down with the last spin of the carnival merry-go-round on the afternoon of May 31. Instead, it will be capped off by a high-energy evening finale delivered by The Boom Booms, a soul/funk band that’s based in Vancouver but tours internationally.

The Boom BoomsMark Sager, who has assisted with the community consultation for the Lynn Valley Mall redevelopment, organized the evening to give families a night out and to raise funds for the North Shore Disability Resource Centre (NSDRC).

The Boom Booms were voted Vancouver’s Favourite Band by Georgia Strait readers in February 2014, and have just returned from a tour in Hawaii (click here to learn more about them). With a new album coming out on July 5th and gigs all over the Lower Mainland and province this summer, the band is busy – but not too busy to make an appearance at Lynn Valley Day. Admission to this event by donation with 100% of the proceeds going straight to NSDRC. Organizers promise that it will be a wonderful community event, and a wonderful opportunity to support a great organization.

The event will take place under the big white tent on Lynn Valley field, and run from 5 to 8 p.m. on the evening of Saturday, May 31. Concert-goers are invited to bring some friends and a blanket to sit on, and to enjoy dinner or snacks from the Lions Cook Shack to make a real community night of it!

For a schedule of other Lynn Valley Day events, click here.

Lynn Valley Day 2013 was a blast!

– photo courtesy Sonia McDiarmid

Well, we had a great time at Lynn Valley Day, and we hope you did, too! To judge by the smiles in the crowd and the happy participants in the LVL games and races, Lynn Valleyites know better than to let a little rain dampen their spirits.

From the Friday night gala, to the pancake breakfast, parade, displays, crafts, races, carnival rides, concerts and more, Lynn Valley Days 2013 was a wonderful celebration of community. Thank you so much to the host organizations (Lynn Valley Lions and the Lynn Valley Community Association), the extra volunteers who stepped up, the incredible merchant sponsors who make the event possible, and everyone else who went the extra mile to make this day something to be proud of.

Take a minute to check out our online photo album, and submit some of your own shots to us if you have a favourite you’d like to share!

Lynn Valley Day 2013 will hit new heights (literally!)

There’s always something new to look forward to at Lynn Valley Days, and 2013 will be no exception!

For starters, we want to give a big community thank-you to William F. White International, which is sponsoring all of Lynn Valley Days’ cable and power needs. (And thank you to Lynn Valley’s Garin Josey, the William F. White VP who is making this happen for us!) Amongst other things, what this will mean is no more distressing generator failures, and a much better-balanced sound system at the sold-out Gala Dinner Dance. And if the weather cooperates, it will also mean some amazing light-up-the-sky special effects on Friday night!

People, businesses make it happen

It’s thanks to business sponsorships of all shapes and sizes that Lynn Valley Day has become the great event that it has. Please have a look at some of the other sponsors who stepped forward to support the community festival this year (list is not complete, we know more names are yet to be added!). But it’s not just businesses that make it happen – Lynn Valley Day is the result of months of hard work by host organizations Lynn Valley Lions and Lynn Valley Community Association, and many individual volunteers.

Shirin Ismail of the LVCA is once again coordinating volunteers, and would love people to step forward to offer just a couple of hours here or there. Whether you lean towards traffic control during parade time, staffing a ride on the midway or site clean-up, there is definitely a place for you to earn your karma points. The times and tasks, along with Shirin’s contact info, are listed here.

New ride promises good view

We’re definitely looking forward to watching people’s faces as they take in the new Euro-Bungee ride. Thrill-seekers will be strapped into this new attraction, then bounce on a trampoline that will shoot them 40 feet into the air – so hang onto your dentures!

People looking for more old-fashioned fun will once again be glad of the free games and races that the LynnValleyLife team will be organizing in its corner of the field. Egg-and-spoon, gunny sacks, three-legged races, ballon toss, the ever popular Hyak Rafting Super Soaker…. what more could you want for some good old family fun? (Well, if there IS something more, please tell us – it’s not too late to incorporate some other favourite races! Just email info@LynnValleyLife.com.)

Also new in our neck of the woods will be the chance to have your photo taken with our custom-painted Project Sunflower photo board (thank you, Julie Jay!) If you haven’t already picked up your free packet of seeds for Project Sunflower, please stop by and do so – we’re hoping to see hundreds of sunflowers blooming in the valley this summer!

Rain or shine, there will be something old and something new, something borrowed and …. oh, right, that’s weddings. But it holds true for Lynn Valley Days as well, and we know you’re not going to want to miss the Lions Cook Shack 7:30am Pancake Breakfast, the 10 a.m. parade, and all-day fun at the park. Keep our special Lynn Valley Days section handy so you’ll have access to all the entertainment schedules and other details as they are finalized!

 

Advent of spring means LV Day coming soon!

Happy Spring, everyone! Snowdrops and crocuses are currently doing their annual warm-up act for the daffs and tulips that will soon be putting on a show.

But they aren’t the only ones busy doing their thing. The organizers of the annual Lynn Valley Days community celebration have already been at work getting the stage set for this popular event, so here’s a heads up of what you need to know!

  • First off, tickets for the Friday night gala dinner dance, set for May 24th, go on sale beginning Sunday, March 24th. This has been a sold-out success for the past two years, and tickets move fast, so get yours now! All details are here.
  • All the world loves a parade, so start planning your entry now. All the parade details and application forms are available in our Lynn Valley Days section, along with contact details for this year’s parade marshal, Gillian Konst.
  • Lynn Valley Days is the North Shore’s longest-running festival, and one of its most popular. And it doesn’t just happen by magic! Please pitch in by becoming a sponsor or volunteer. Neighbours helping neighbours makes the world go ’round

100th Lynn Valley Day a sunny success!

“This was, by far and away, the absolutely best Lynn Valley Day ever.”

So said an elder of the valley, who has been attending these annual affairs since the 1960s.  And to judge by the comments we heard on Saturday and in the days that followed, she wasn’t alone in her views.

A full-capacity, 500-seat Gala Dinner Dance on Friday night morphed into a family-friendly, full-day festival on Saturday, thanks to generous sponsors and the tireless work of dedicated volunteers, who laboured into the night and were up in the early morning to transform the grounds in preparation for the crowd to come.

Students from the Argyle Digital Media Academy were on board to document the centennial event (they also produced the colourful promo posters that you’ve seen around the valley!). They mounted a time-lapse camera from the home of LynnValleyLife sponsor Jim Lanctot, and were able to capture the entirety of the celebrations in the following 60-second clip, from the tent going up on Thursday afternoon to its dismantling on Saturday. Whether you were at the event or not, you won’t want to miss this minute-long whirlwind tour! (And check out our Lynn Valley Day photo album on our Facebook page, too!)

The Friday night Gala participants enjoyed a great meal from Tommy’s Catering, live dance music, and the opportunity to pull out their party clothes and – instead of going to a stuffy office function! – hang out with friends and neighbours, with complimentary limousine service at the end of the evening to ensure revellers got home safely.

Hats off to all the Lynn Valley Day movers and shakers who managed to attend not just the Gala, but arrive on time to set up the park and the pancake breakfast early the next morning. (One intrepid LV Lion started his park duty at 5 a.m.!)

For a peek into the Gala night, have a look at this next super video put together by the Argyle students. (Check out some of those dance moves!)

Despite last-minute scrambling when breakfast organizers discovered they had no water supply because the District had just re-keyed the locks in the rec centre, the pancakes got mixed, poured and flipped for the early risers.

As always, the Lynn Valley Black Bear Band was out early to serenade the pre-parade crowd, kicking off a day that was jam-packed with festivities. From balloon artists, to magicians, to musicians of all stripes, event co-organizer Bob Rasmus of the Lynn Valley Lions says that the day offers attendees over $12,000 of free entertainment.

And according to parade organizer Terry Nichols, the 57-entry parade was the largest he’s ever marshalled, with groups calling at the last-minute to be allowed in. “I have never had such a big parade,” he said at the organizers’ debriefing meeting held last night. “I let it get up to 57 because I was in a good mood.”

The good mood continued with the awarding of cash prizes to top parade entries. Best Entry goes to Ferguson Moving and Storage, Most Entertaining to Freddy Fudpucker and his band, and Best New Entry to The Living Lab. And Terry event added a new category, Best Walking Group, to recognize the Argyle Pipers football team. Led by a piper and featuring the cheerleading team, the school principal, and the school football team, Terry says they were “exceptional for a first-time group.” He also awarded thank-you plaques to five organizations that are long-time supporters of the parade and consistent with strong entries: RBC, Zazou Salon, 30th Seymour Scouts, Lynn Valley United Church, and Brockton School. Congratulations to all!

Just some of the other highlights from the day were the dog agility show, the car show on Institute Road, free games and races for all ages, a flash mob, and the colouring contest, which had over 80 entrants. And one of the most memorable moments included the power outage that saw the Bouncy Castle deflate (more than once!) – fortunately not harming any of the resident children in the process!

The North Van RCMP’s media relations officer, Cpl. Richard De Jong, says Sgt. Paul Duffy was the proud Red Serge-clad officer in the parade, and he applauds the work of the many Community Policing and Auxiliary Constable volunteers who were out in force at Lynn Valley Day, answering questions and introducing kids and adults alike to the RCMP Safety Bear. (Cpl. De Jong also encourages people to call the Lower Lonsdale Community Policing Office at 604-969-7464 if they are interested in joining their ranks!)

While final revenue numbers won’t be available for a little while, Bob Rasmus does say “It was a very good day.”

“We were well within budget on everything,” he said. “The only area we went over budget was in the revenue category.” A main beneficiary of the day’s success, he says, will be the North Shore Rescue Team, which is fundraising for new facilities in the North Van Works Yard.

Even though the event was a resounding success, the Lynn Valley Day planners are already hammering out what will be done to make things run even more smoothly next year. Once again, LynnValleyLife wants to thank the organizers for the thousands of hours they have collectively donated over the past number of months to make the weekend festivities a reality. Please have a look at our tribute to the event hosts, and think of ways in which you can support the work of the Lynn Valley Lions and the Lynn Valley Community Association.

And now, for one more Argyle video – a look at Lynn Valley Day 2012!

 

– Peggy Trendell-Jensen, editor