Powell Street Festival 2014


The annual Powell Street Festival celebrates Japanese Canadian arts and culture and took place last weekend, August 2nd to 3rd, 2014. This year because of a protest, the festival site had moved from the usual place at Oppenheimer park to a more street market style type of festival.

Food and ware vendors set up tents along Jackson Avenue and Alexander Street. 

These sushi candles are so cute!

They even come in take out boxes!

 Food-wise, there was lots to choose from. I always wanted to try the SPAM musubi.

By itself, SPAM is very salty but the warm rice balances it out very nicely! I like it!

There was a huge lineup at the Osaka ball booth. 7 for $6.

Because it was so hot, I had to get a shaved ice dessert. This was call the deluxe Ujintoki, which contained green tea, topica, red bean and condensed milk.

There were some more Japanese foods such as Okonomiyaki (sort of a savory pancake) and Yakitory-onigiri (rice).
Lots of performances on the main stage. There were also shows, demonstrations and displays in the nearby buildings.

Later on, I went on one of the Powell Street walking tours to learn about the history of the buildings there. Our guide's family was one of the many Japanese Canadians who lived in the area.

The buildings of significance have these plaques put up describing their history and other trivia.
Many of the buildings are now in decrepit. This used to be a hotel, I think? The building next to it crumbled last year and they were afraid that this one would follow but the foundation is solid.

The Asahi baseball team played here in Oppenheimer Park. They were a Japanese Canadian baseball team that won the Pacific Northwest Championship for five straight years. An Asahi Tribute game will be held at Woodland Park, Southwest field (Mclean Dr. & Adanac St) on Saturday August 16th, 11am. It's free to attend.

T.Maikawa was a department store in the olden days.

 The Morimoto family building.

 Lion Hotel used to be a place where women can stay to give birth.

A gangster used to own this place. Gambling was illegal so they had someone sitting on the steps who would ring a buzzer when they spotted any authorities. Upstairs, they had tables that flip over to hide gambling evidence and made people believe they where socializing and just serving tea! 

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