West Vancouver’s Community Day is a family-friendly event at Ambleside Park in June that includes a parade, sports activities, live music and a car show.
The annual event also features a kids’ activity zone, beach lounge, dance stage community organization information booths and food vendors. It’s a fun event at one of the Lower Mainland’s most popular oceanfront parks.
Community Day at Ambleside
The Community Day event takes place in West Vancouver‘s Ambleside neighbourhood on the first Saturday in June each year from 9 am to 6 pm. In 2019 it’ll be on Saturday, June 1st.
Ambleside Park is located just off Marine Drive southwest of the Park Royal shopping mall which itself is just a short distance from the north end of the Lions Gate Bridge. The park’s address is 1150 Marine Drive but its main access is via 13th Street which turns into the park and Argyle Avenue.
The West Vancouver Community Day starts at about 9 am with a running race followed by the parade at 10 am. The festivities then continue at the park from 11 to 4 pm, although the Beach Lounge continues until 6 pm.
Community Day Activities
Community Day festivities include an obstacle course challenge, climbing wall, paddle boarding opportunities and basketball activities. There are also music stages with live entertainment, a dance stage and a small number of classic cars on display.
The parade starts at about 10 am and goes along Marine Drive from 13th Street to 17th Street, down 17th a block to Bellevue, and then along Bellevue back to 13th Street and the entrance to Ambleside Park.
It’s a fairly simple parade with people from different community groups in costume giving out candy and things as they walk along, plus a few bands, dance groups and other typical small community parade kinds of things. The sidewalks aren’t as packed as they are at other larger parades, so you don’t need to arrive too early.
Getting to Community Day
Getting in and out of the Ambleside Park area can be a challenge on Community Day for a number of reasons. First, there is a fair bit of parking at the park itself, but on Community Day the area is closed to cars. Second, the parade goes along Marine Drive in the morning, which is the main access road to Ambleside. Third, Ambleside Park is a popular place on a regular day and so is particularly crazy on the event day.
What does all of the above mean? It means use public transit if possible, or ride your bike. If you need to drive, there’s lots of parking at Park Royal mall which is right close by (although parking there is “just for customers”), or get to West Vancouver early and look for street parking further west past Marine Drive and 18th Street.
If you go as far as Dundarave, which is over 3 km away, you’ll be able to get some good exercise walking back to Ambleside while enjoying one of Metro Vancouver’s finest walks along the waterfront.
Tips and Advice
Below is some advice and information to help you make the most out of your experience at West Vancouver Community Day.
TIP # 1: If you want to see the parade get there really early if you hope to find street parking anywhere near Ambleside or, if you can, take public transit.
TIP # 2: West Vancouver is accessed from the Trans-Canada Highway via Taylor Way, 15th Street and 21st Street. Don’t use the 15th Street access in the morning as Marine Drive at the bottom of the hill will be closed because of the parade. Taylor Way will provide access to the Park Royal mall in the morning, so it might be good for dropping people off close to the park. 21st Street might be your best bet overall, however, as it gets you to Dundarave and points west of the parade’s road closures on Marine Drive.
For more details see the West Vancouver Community Day website.
For major events on other days of the year, see Vancouver’s Festivals and Events Calendar.