Vancouver riot clean up brings city back together

Asmaa Noor photo by Jenny Uechi

What made Ted, a high school student, come to clean up after the riots from yesterday's Stanley Cup loss?

"Shame," he said, lowering his eyes.

"We want to show that not all Canucks fans are like that."

He was among hundreds of citizens who volunteered to clean up the downtown area, where broken glass and debris littered the streets. By 11 a.m., however, an estimated 90 per cent of the damage was cleared away.

A City worker estimated that over a thousand people had come to clean the city, while busily handing out brooms, tongs, garbage bags and gloves to groups of volunteers from his truck. 

Some of the volunteers had come from outside of Vancouver to help. Asmaa Noor, who came from Surrey, said she was watching the game with friends downtown. She left in the third period after her family called, fearing for her safety. 

"It was heartbreaking, we were so terrified," she said of the riots.

Noor, like others, were dressed in Canucks gear to show that not all Canucks fans were involved in the chaos of last night. 
"It was so stupid," said Meek, a high school student who had come to the clean up with his friend Markos. "I don't think it's the reaction of a fan, if you lose a game." 
Canucks fans Meek and Marko clean up in their Canucks jerseys
Françoise Veron-Stamp, a volunteer, said she was surprised to see how young many of the people causing the riots were.
"I was watching YouTube videos of the riot, and many of the (rioters) were kids my age, you know -- 20 and younger," she said. 
Veron-Stamp, who is originally from France, said the Canucks drama was lost upon her, but that she wanted to pitch in to clean the city.
"I'm not even a hockey fan, but I feel responsible."

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The respectful who Shine in Vancovuer

According reports, crowds for the Stanley cup playoffs were well in excess over 100,000 people.

Only a few hundred anarchists who appear to be the same group who caused the looting after the Olympics and the disruption of the G8 summit in Ontario were involved in the riots and looting.  The violence and anarchy spread to other immature and disrespectful delinquents who became involved. 

Many people have expressed their shame and disgust.  There have been many negative posts, some filled with name-calling and profanity on Facebook belittling and condemning the city of Vancouver based on the post-game events.

This morning over 12,000 people signed up to clean up the mess left by the rioters.  I talked with two girls giving out free hugs in front of the London Drugs Store at Granville and Georgia.  I asked one of them what group they were with.  She said they weren’t with any group.  They had come down this morning to help with the cleanup but it had mostly been cleaned up so they decided to give free hugs all day.  I noticed only one crew of about five people scrubbing the white stone exterior wall on the side of the Sears store.  Other than them and the boarded up windows the area looked pretty much as it does any other day.

This afternoon I decided to visit the downtown area where the riots were last night.  I’m glad I took my camera to record what I saw.  On every board covering the broken windows were hundreds of written testimonies.  People left condemnations of the violence and looting, professing the love for the city, and stating this is not the real Vancouver. 

Am I ashamed to live in Vancouver?  No way!  This is a great city with overwhelming numbers of really great, respectful, and giving people to overshadow the few delinquents from last night.

Thank you, people of Vancouver.


Thanks, Jenny. I needed this.

And thank you, Jeffery. I'm starting to breathe a little easier ...


Proud and hopeful

Seeing the numbers of people who are interested in cleaning up the City as well as helping to apprehend the vandals and rioters makes me proud and hopeful.

the real vancouver

i just got home from cleaning the city.  it was awesome. please ask people to post as many photos of the clean up AS POSSIBLE!  we need to send that message out to vancouver and to canada.  we the people would never destroy our street.  we live here!  we didn't come out of our condos and trash our streets, we were attacked.  the police are releasing more and more information on these CRAZY people who attacked our beautiful city: 

this was not a so called riot of crazy fans. the fans went home. this was a planned ATTACK on our city by a group of NUTS-OS who came packing lighter fluid, igniter fabric, small gas tanks and knives. they were comming to our city for one thing, and one thing only.

Great Example of Civic Pride

Great job Vancouver of recovering from this nasty incident.  The rioters are clearly nothing more than idiots who do not represent your fine city.  Although I can't afford it now, I hope to one day visit your beautiful city.  Take care!

As a life long Bruins fan

As a life long Bruins fan (for over 55 years!) I was thrilled by our victory on Wednesday night.  That changed as I watched the news and saw what unfolded outside the arena.  I was shocked and appalled by what I saw the other night.  I knew that was not the real Vancouver.  Seeing this article restored my faith in the great people of Vancouver and in the great people of Canada (well, except for a Bruins fan I can't go THAT far!)

Good on you Vancouver for showing the world what you are really made of.


No offense to these great

No offense to these great people, Ill always hate this team, from the battles with the my team , to BUlongo saying his stupid comment about timmy thomas, How can u respect a guy that does that BS. Burrows pulls hair, and not likes biting, great role model for young hockey players. you blow

Keep up the great work guys, clean the mess these aholes left. The best thing to do is keep showing this on the news and show the faces of the aholes that performed these actions.


Okay, sorry to burst your bubble people. But stop blaming the 'Anarchists'. They don't exist.

Gary Mason in The Globe and Mail tells what needs to be heard. These rioters weren't anarchists hell bent on overthrowing society. The rioters were for the large part kids that came from well to do families.

The guy stuffing the rag into the gas filler of the police is an 'A' level student who is (was more likely) going to the states on a scholarship for water polo.

The other kid, bare chested, holding a hockey stick infront of the BMO, is an Air Cadet from Richmond.

When I ventured out of my apartment in the west end just around 9:30 for some picture taking, one of the first confrontations I came across was some prep in expensive slacks and shoes, trying to punch a riot cop in the face. Said prep was pepper sprayed. His gilrfriend who was dressed like she should have been going to an Avril Lavigne concert. She only bacame upset after he was peppered sprayed. Prior to that she was yelling at the cops too.

In fact, if you go to the facebook page that was started up for posting images, you won't find a single anarchist anywhere doing anything. It was all drunken assholes fueled by alcohol.

So sorry Jeffery, sorry to burst your delusion. But take comfort in the fact that you're not the only one suffering from this delusion. The riot wasn't started by anarchists, it was egged on by anarchists, it wasn't even planned by anarchists.

The riot was started, fueled and maintained by an underlying urge to 'forget the rules and have some fun'. These were 'A' students, people with well paying jobs, probably even some with kids at home with baby sitters.


Blaming the 'Anarchists' is this chickens way out. Placing the blame where it truely belongs is what takes balls.