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Lively City: From literature to punk, it's all happening in New Westminster

If you have a portfolio full of short stories that you're itching to dust off, why not make it this week? This Wednesday, Oct. 23, is the Royal City Literary Arts Society's short story open mike night, 7 to 9 p.m.

If you have a portfolio full of short stories that you're itching to dust off, why not make it this week?

This Wednesday, Oct. 23, is the Royal City Literary Arts Society's short story open mike night, 7 to 9 p.m. in the backroom at the Heritage Grill.

Margo Prentice hosts the evening, which is open to all writers of short stories - published or otherwise - and to storytellers or those wishing to read excerpts from their novels.

Check out for all the literary goings-on in the city.


New Westminster's own "girl-guy punk-rock-blues band" is taking the stage at the Columbia Theatre.

Marry Me is set to play a show on Nov. 2, where they will feature new member Adam Jeal on keyboards and vocals.

The band also includes Danny Lovelock on guitar and vocals, Natalee Fera on bass and vocals and Kenny Dietrich on drums.

The band will be joined by the master symphonic rock band Garrett - regulars at the Columbia - as well as Stars Boulevard, Fox Seeds 2010 winners.

Marry Me's self-titled debut EP was released in April, and the music video for the single Ignite (shot right here in New Westminster) was released in May.

The band recently toured Alberta over the summer - check out for the latest happenings.


Talent spans generations - and they're getting ready to prove it.

A Royal City youngster is taking to the stage with some talented seniors in a special fundraising concert in Surrey on Nov. 9.

Eight-year-old Tyson Venegas is joining the seniors' entertainment group The Vaudevillians onstage at the Surrey Arts Centre, in celebration of the group's 10th anniversary. Tyson has won a scholarship from the Vaudevillians.

The group is a non-profit organization that raises money to support youth in the performing arts - including offering a bursary for Douglas College performing arts students, among others.

They've raised more than $100,000 to date, with 20 students winning bursaries and scholarships.

The Vaudevillians and Tyson will take the stage twice on Nov. 9: at 2 p.m. and at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets for this fundraising show are $20, available by calling the box office at 604-501-5566.


Film buffs, don't forget it's nearly Last Mondays at the Movies time again.

The Arts Council of New Westminster's film series at Massey Theatre continues on Oct. 28 with a screening of Love Is All You Need.

The movie stars Pierce Brosnan and Trine Dyrholm, along with Paprika Steen, Kim Bodnia and Molly Blixt Egelind. It was an official selection for the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival.

The screening is at 7:30 p.m., and tickets are $9 at the door.

Massey Theatre is at 735 Eighth Ave. See for more on the film series.


From food allergy-induced hallucinations to a life of art and poetry.

That's the journey that Tri-Cities resident Gloria Barkley has been on, and she's sharing her work with a book launch and art display at the Arts Council of New Westminster.

She's launching her new book, Water Window Mirror, published by Watle and Daub Books, with a special event on Saturday, Oct. 26 from 1 to 3 p.m.

A press release explains that Barkley's art is the result of an unusual journey: for 22 years, she lived with allergy-induced hallucinations.

"Tables came to life, her own children seemed unreal, and yet she carried on living life with her trademark humour and grace," the release explains. "She raised three children, obtained a degree in art, and, luckily for us, discovered and developed her talent for writing. These beautifully sculpted poems take us along with Gloria through apparent mental illness through to a new food additive- and hallucination-free life."

A number of her sculptures will be on hand for the book launch, and she'll be having a full art show this spring at the gallery.

To find out more about the book, check out

The arts council gallery is at Centennial Lodge, Queen's Park.


Singer-songwriters, we know you're out there ... don't be shy!

The Royal City Literary Arts Society is holding its weekly open mike sessions on Sunday nights in the backroom at the Heritage Grill. Sessions run from 7 to 9 p.m.

Each week there is a challenge set for the following week - which songwriters can choose to participate in, or not.

The nights are hosted by Enrico Renz and Lawren Nemeth and are for original songs only.

"It is a fun, relaxed and friendly evening, so we hope you'll come out an take part either as a participant or an audience member," the group writes in an email. "And most importantly, it is free - no cover charge!"

So write a song, bring it along and sing it for an appreciative crowd.

For more details call 778-714-1772.

Heritage Grill is at 447 Columbia St., next to the Columbia SkyTrain station.


Want to know what the Royal City Literary Arts Society is all about? The group is holding its first annual general meeting on Saturday, Nov. 2, from 2 to 5 p.m.

The AGM runs from 2 to 3 p.m., with director nominations and elections, followed by meet-and-mingle time with snacks and refreshments, as well as an open mike.

It's a members-only event, but memberships are available at the door for anyone who wants to join and attend.

It's all happening at the New Westminster Public Library, 716 Sixth Ave.

Call 778-714-1772 or email [email protected]. RSVP to [email protected] if you plan to attend.

For info, go to


Golden Age Theatre is at it again.

The seniors' performance troupe is staging its next play, Home Sweet Home, on Friday, Nov. 15 and Saturday, Nov. 16.

The play is written by Gregg Finnegan and directed by Margo Prentice, and it's described as a "funny, enjoyable play for the entire family."

Tickets are $10, including refreshments, and the play takes place at Century House, 620 Eighth St.

Call 604-519-1066 for information, or stop in to Century House to buy your tickets.


Do you have an arts story or an item for Lively City? Send arts and entertainment ideas to Julie MacLellan at [email protected], or find her on Twitter, @juliemaclellan.