TaiwanFest spices up downtown Vancouver

Photos by Sunny Huang

The Telus TaiwanFest returned yet again for Labour Day weekend from September 3-5. During the three days of the festival, the streets of Granville and the Vancouver Art Gallery erupted with celebrations of Taiwanese culture.

Those who attended TaiwanFest last year agree that this year’s festival is different in many ways.

“It’s very well-organized. There are a lot of food stands, performances, and booths people can check out,” said David, a Vancouverite who makes an effort to stop by the festival each year.

“I like how the variety of the festival really brings out the multi-faceted nature of Taiwanese culture.”

Granville Street was filled with food stands serving some of Taiwan’s most famous foods such as oyster pancakes, stinky tofu, and beef noodles. Taiwan’s world-renowned beef noodles were on popular demand during the festival, with some food stands running out of beef noodles within a matter of hours.

A change from previous years, the festival was arranged as a banquet rather than as a night market. “We believe that this unites the festival in a very special way,” said a volunteer named Sandy. “It allows the festival to mimic the settings in Taiwan.”

Performances that took place in front of the Vancouver Art Gallery featured culinary demonstrations, traditional dances, and music from all over Taiwan. A large crowd gathered to watch the various performances that spanned throughout the three days of the festival. A crowd favorite was a musical performance that included various dancers and musicians dressed in traditional Taiwanese robes.

Vancouverites crowd the intersection between Robson and Granville to get a taste of Taiwanese culture.

Chef Chung demonstrates how to cook a traditional Hakka dish from Taiwan.

This year's TaiwanFest included a large outdoor banquet.

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