Looks like the A-maze-ing Laughter sculpture installation at English Bay is here to stay, thanks to the Wilson family of Lululemon fame.
Which of course begs the question, will the popular figures eventually end up clad in yoga pants and cute hoodies?
Chip and Sharon Wilson donated $1.5 million US to the Vancouver Biennale Open Air Museum for the purchase of A-maze-ing Laughter, which was installed in 2009 by the Vancouver Biennale Foundation as a temporary exhibit. The non-profit received such positive feedback from the public about the bronze sculptures that earlier this year it began fundraising to purchase the installation.
In April, before the money was raised to purchase the piece the park board accepted the long-term loan of A-maze-ing Laughter. At the time, the park board had no policy to deal with such long-term agreements. Instead, the park board held a formal discussion regarding the donor's responsibility and all costs associated with accepting the loan, consulted with the Public Art Committee, convened a technical review and held a community consultation on the proposal. Of the 1,014 responses, 912 were in favour of keeping the installation while 102 were against the plan. Meanwhile, the Biennale Foundation was able to negotiate a time-limited sale price for A-maze-ing Laughter from $5 million to $1.5 million based on the artist Yue Minjin's desire to see the work remain on display.
According to much of the feedback the Courier received from readers, not everyone is in love with the installation. If you have an opinion, good or bad, check out the Courier's web poll question at vancourier.com. Or email me at email@example.com.
The 2012 Olympic Games in London, England begin Friday and many, if not all, of this city's community centres will be showing highlights of the competitions on the legacy TVs donated to the facility's prior to the 2010 Games held here.
The TVs were donated to ensure all residents had an opportunity to watch the Vancouver Olympics from the opening to closing ceremonies. Some centres also created community living rooms with special viewing events and celebrations.
Vision Vancouver park board commissioner Constance Barnes is hoping the London Games will inspire residents to get more active by swimming, skating and joining fitness programs at community centres across the city.
She adds a good way to start is to take advantage of a limited-time offer the park board has on now through Aug. 16, which offers a $50 discount on an annual Flexipass membership. The passes allow unlimited access to 24 community centres, 15 fitness centres, nine indoor pools, four outdoor pools and eight ice rinks.
"I hope that people will be watching the Olympics and think, 'I can do that,'" says Barnes. "It just might motivate people to get their Olympics on."
I checked out the prices and it's a good deal, particularly for children. A 12-month pass for children aged three to 12 years is on sale now for $128.57. That works out to less than $11 a month. An adult pass is now $307.14 while youth and seniors' passes are $200.
For more information on Flexipasses visit vancouver.ca/parks. And don't forget to check with your local community centre for Olympic-related events.