Burnaby Blooms will be free this year

The annual spring event will be held at Shadbolt this May, with smaller events in other parts of the city

Burnaby’s popular annual spring event, Burnaby Blooms, will kick off on Sunday, May 5, 2024, from 11am to 4pm in Deer Lake Park and Shadbolt Centre for the Arts. While in previous years Burnaby Blooms activities required prior registration and payment of fees, this year, all events will be free of charge for Burnaby residents. 

A performer at Burnaby Blooms. Photo: City of Burnaby

The agenda of this year’s Burnaby Blooms is packed with a diverse range of activities, tours, talks, and family-friendly fun. Visitors will have the opportunity to hear from ornithologists, beekeepers, and experts in the scientific and medicinal properties of herbs. A mycologist will guide visitors on a fascinating mushroom walk. Attendees can learn about the Indigenous natural history of Deer Lake, “Hummingbird Alley,” and even a secret garden at Deer Lake Park. Plus, there’s a free Ikebana workshop, face painting, eco-sculpture planting, and arts and crafts for all ages. Entertainment will include live music and food trucks parked at the location. 

On May 18, from 11am to 2pm, a smaller event will take place at the Burnaby Mountain Conservation Area on 100 Centennial Way. Activities on that day will include weaving, painting wooden ornaments, planting seeds, and making floral masks. 

A third event is scheduled for May 25, from 11am to 2pm, at the BC Parkway between the Metrotown and Patterson SkyTrain stations and will include arts and crafts activities and live entertainment.  

Speaker at last year’s Burnaby Blooms. Photo: City of Burnaby

On Feb. 26, the city’s culture director Emmaline Hill presented plans for cost reduction to council and some changes to the programming of Burnaby Blooms.

“We’re working on several specific adjustments to the Burnaby Blooms and free summer community events programs that will allow for a reduction in expenses and staff time while still delivering strong events,” Hill said during her presentation. “Burnaby Blooms will be focused on Deer Lake Park and the summer events schedule will be scaled down.”  

The Culture Special Events Program Review report submitted to council, included additional information on the expected cost savings this year.

“In 2024, the event will be reorganized to contain costs and manage the capacity of the event team. Programming will centre at Deer Lake Park, with additional activations at the BC Parkway. This format will result in reduced expenses of $75,000,” the report said. 

This piece was made possible by the Local Journalism Initiative.

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