Contiki Holidays VIP Euro Bash

Last night I attended the Contiki Holidays VIP Euro Bash at V Lounge in Yaletown. What. A. Party! And I’m not just saying that because one of my best girlfriends, Sheralyn, was a huge factor in making it the success that it was. (And she did happen to be the one that invited me!) Contiki doesn’t mess around when they throw a party.

The lovely host, Sheralyn
Sheralyn, the lovely hostess for the evening. The girl can rock a red dress like it’s nobody’s business!

Table decorations

Greek God at the Contiki VIP Euro Bash

Everything from a custom cocktail list, a VIP section sponsored by the Spanish Tourism Board, tasty hors d’oeuvres (duck confit – wow, yum!), music by DJ Zu of ZUZU Productions, to a cabaret show by NY Jazz Company dancers, contributed to one impressive and memorable party to celebrate Contiki and their longtime supporters. And to top it all off, we were treated to an amazing performance by Canadian singer/songwriter Keshia Chanté. More photos can be viewed on Flickr here.

Drink Menu

Spanish Tourism Board VIP section

DJ Zu

Cabaret dancers

Contiki Holidays is in the process of re-branding itself to appeal more to their target market, which is 18-35 year olds. This party showcased some of that re-branding with a Euro and Burlesque theme. The photos can’t quite capture just how risqué the cabaret dancers were, saucily stripping down to their teeny tiny birthday suits. I applaud these girls!

Cabaret dancers

Cabaret dancers

Cabaret dancers

Part of this re-branding also includes Contiki launching their “Have You Done It?” campaign with a cheeky video spot that some of you may have seen online. Here’s the teaser that brings you to the website. And here’s the kicker:

Not your typical adventure travel company, eh?

The highlight of the evening, though, was definitely seeing Keshia Chanté perform. What a big sound coming from that tiny frame! I thought the windows of V Lounge might shatter from the force of her powerful voice. She sang about half a dozen songs, finishing off with her new single, “Set You Free,” which starts airing on the radio next week. This was only the second time she’s performed it live – the first time being at the Contiki Bash in Toronto last week. She even happened to name-drop Contiki in the song! That’s a PR dream come true. I smell a collaboration with Contiki & Keshia in the near future, no?

Keshia Chanté

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Keshia Chanté

Keshia Chanté

It’s always nice seeing some familiar faces at these kinds of events, and even making a few new friends, too!

Eric + Sheralyn

Earls Girls: Kate & Amanda

Flight Centre folks

Flight Centre folks

Sheralyn + Chris

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Oh yes, I can’t forget the swag bag I was given as I walked out the door. The Lady Dutch purse hook – you know that baby is going to go to good use!

Contiki swag bag

So Contiki… you can definitely feel free to invite me to more of your parties. Brad mentioned something about an anniversary party later on this year… yeah. Ok? Thanks.

Keshia with the Contiki crew
Keshia posing with the Contiki Holidays crew.

~

A small taste of Juno Fest

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Emily and I

I had no intentions of catching any shows during Juno Fest, but Emily and I happened to be out Saturday night cruising down Granville Street, and casually walked into a tent where a band was doing a sound check and getting ready to play, so we stuck around to watch. They were a country/folk band called Run GMC. Yes, I know what you’re thinking – silly name – but they were really good! Actually, now that I look back at the video, I think My Dad, and possibly even my Grandma might have enjoyed this show as well, and I find that rather amusing. This might not be everyone’s favourite genre of music, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. I’m glad we happened to stumble upon the show. It felt like a real piece of Canadiana.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “Run GMC at Juno Fest on Vimeo“, posted with vodpod

Pemberton Music Festival!!!

There may have been a lot of rumours about what happened up in Pemberton, and I’m here to set them straight – at least from my point of view.

My friends and I arrived on Thursday night to the Pemberton Airport Parking Lot, which was mayhem. This was the one moment of my entire weekend where I thought – woah, what did I get myself into? The staff there were not prepared for the number of people that arrived Thursday evening (who had all most likely driven up from Vancouver after work). Volunteers must have been so overwhelmed by the amount of people waiting hours to park their cars, that they just gave up and went home. We were supposed to park the car and get in line for a shuttle to take us to the campsite. Well, that was not happening. There were thousands of people there, some getting wasted in and around their cars, others lined up for the shuttle, and it was obvious to us that this was going to be a loooooong wait. Once we got the car parked, we finally spoke to someone who was working there, and they told us our best best was to pitch our tent beside our car and get up bright and early to wait in line for the shuttle. We hummed and hawed, but in the end, we followed his advice.

The next day, we woke up to the sound of Coldplay’s “Viva la Vida” being blasted from someone’s car stereo at around 5:00am. Normally this kind of thing would have annoyed me, but it was such a nice change from the crappy music being played the night before, that we all kind of enjoyed the wake-up call. So, anyway, we lined up around 6:00am(?) Friday morning and finally got loaded onto shuttles around 9:30am after being “security searched” for drugs and alcohol. Pffft.

We arrived at the site and set up camp and were cruising the grounds by 10:00am. All in all, the experience wasn’t that bad. In fact, it kind of added to the uniqueness of the weekend, and it was soon forgotten after we tasted that first cold beverage.

After that, everything is a blur. Many hours spent in the beer gardens sipping on Coors Light and sangria made from Pemberton wine (delicious!), and in the Bacardi tent drinking mojitos. I did catch some great shows, though (the whole point of actually being there!) as well as just kicked back in the beer gardens and listened to the festivities around me. Friday night’s performance by Nine Inch Nails was one to remember, and I’m not even a huge fan. Saturday night’s stellar line-up did not disappoint either. The Tragically Hip and Tom Petty were amazing. That was one of the funnest days. I ran into so many people that I knew and hadn’t seen in a long time on Friday and Saturday, it was crazy! But there are also many people I know whom attended, but I never caught a glimpse of them.


Sunday was a day of all days. For one, I actually got to have a shower. Mind you, it was in a dirty little trailer, and I had to wait at least half an hour to get in there, but it felt magnificent! Jay-Z’s performance that afternoon was epic. The sun even decided to peak out of the rain clouds for a few moments. But the best show for me, was the final headliner on Sunday evening – Coldplay. I have always enjoyed Coldplay, but this performance just put me over the top. I am in love.

Oh yes, I can’t forget the traffic issue. Since I was camping at the festival site and NOT staying somewhere fancy in Whistler, I didn’t have to deal with the 4-5 hour “drive” from Whistler to Pemberton and back every day. The only way I was affected by the traffic, is when Coldplay and a few other artists showed up late for their set, because they were ALSO stuck in traffic. But for me, no big deal.

Rather than bore you much longer, I will just share some more photos from the weekend.

The garbage at the airport Friday morning. Ew.

Our many wristbands

Some of my travel buddies. L: Karine, R: Carly

One of my fav pics

Prepped for Pemberton

I thought I would write a “before” post, about my trip to the Pemberton Festival, because I’m so damn excited, and also because I haven’t posted something interesting in awhile…

So far, I’ve got the tent and sleeping bag ready, and half the bag and cooler packed. Carly (my roommate) and I did a Costco run last night, and are going to prep some food tonight. We want to bring food that’s easy to eat, like cold pasta salad, buns and cheese, etc. because if we have to cook to eat, we just might starve… or we may forget to eat altogether.

I am feeling a little more organized now, after making a list and checking it twice! Packing, unpacking, and re-packing – yeah, I’m a little excited. And also nervous. I just hope everyone there is in the same frame of mind and just wants to have a wicked good time like me.

To all you festival goers out there, please be safe, but have a ton of fun, too!

P.S. Listen to the line-up here at Last.FM

Sweetheart Show

Tuesday Night I was fortunate enough to see a band called Sweetheart play at the Roxy. Tuesday nights at the Roxy are local bands sponsored by 99.3 the Fox. A band called February March opened for them, but I just caught the tail end of their set as I walked in the place, so I can’t tell you much about them.

I got the invite for the show from a friend at work. Her husband is the lead singer of Sweetheart. I have to say I really enjoyed the show. This pic here is at the end of their set, when they asked people to come up on stage. They wouldn’t start the last song until the stage was full. They’re pretty funny, and they are natural performers. They aren’t your typical rock band playing trashy cover songs all night. They play all their own stuff…. and it’s good. Great music, great band. And the best part of it all is, they look like a band. They dress up, they match, and it looks sharp.

I’ll definitely go see these guys again! :)