Award-winning Recreation Oak Bay exercises minds and bodies with classes and camps at numerous locations. The facilities all foster a safe, welcoming environment where community members can come together and splash into the pool during children’s or adults’ swim lessons, work out in fitness studios, stretch in sync during yoga classes, or swing through the nine-hole Henderson Park Golf Course. Recreation Oak Bay also keeps children safe from the video-game-proffering witches that lurk in most public parks with a variety of kids' sports programs, including skating and hockey, soccer, and tennis.
Like the colourful fan of its namesake's tail feathers, diamonds and triangles of billiard balls nestle into racks on Peacock Billiards' tables. A grid of 30 tables in an array of sizes and colours populates the room, surrounded by cushy leather couches and bright murals. Beneath the clatter of sunken shots can be heard the rhythmic tap of table-tennis matches and the furious spinning of foosball handles. The James Joyce Bistro resides in the corner, where patrons sitting in circular booths enjoy drinks and nachos served in cored-out copies of Dubliners.
As any triumphant team of athletes can tell you, winning is exhilarating. At Sportball, though, instructors focus on the quieter joys of athletics: improving motor skills and life skills. Their noncompetitive instruction—aimed at babies all the way up through tweens—covers eight popular sports, ranging from soccer and volleyball to hockey and golf. With age-appropriate, child-sized equipment, they help youth develop balance, strength, and coordination. They also nurture the self-confidence that will one day be needed on the soccer field where each grown kid will take the bar exam.
When the competitive career of two-time Olympian and five-time Canadian National Champion Anna Rice came to an end, she never considered hanging up her racquet. Instead, she became the program director at Badminton Vancouver. Here, she and her fellow instructors teach students of all levels the sport's ins and outs, from basic shots and strokes to refining footwork.
Lessons take place on the facility's 12 indoor courts, which are outfitted with the same brand of scuff-resistant Mondo flooring used in the Olympic games. Thirty-three-foot-high ceilings accommodate even the loftiest lobs, and anti-glare lighting ensures that players can’t blind their opponents via the strategic use of wristwatches. Along with lessons, the courts host camps, birthday parties, tournaments, and drop-in games.
The pro shop equips players with racquets, shoes, apparel, and other gear. Overlooking the courts, The Mezz Cafe & Lounge beckons to guests with sandwiches, pastries, specialty coffees, and the latest sports on big-screen HD televisions.
Two fields, a soccer shop, five indoor tennis courts, and an outdoor, heated pool. Those are just some of the amenities inside Sportstown Sports Complex, but it's also got something a little unexpected: its own sports bar. In the glow of TVs or outside on the hundred-seat patio, visitors to the kid-friendly Sportstown Tavern find brews, food, and detailed instructions on how long to wait before eating and swimming. If your thirst for competition isn't quelled by beers—or by the Thai curry mussels and housemade pizza—you can keep up the spirit of play with a game of pool or Texas Hold 'Em on Tuesday nights.
The waters of False Creek reach into the city of Vancouver like an arm. For years, the passage of water was used for industrial purposes, but all that changed in 1980 when the city of Vancouver decided to develop Granville Island. One of those developments was False Creek Community Centre.
Today, the centre fills False Creek with an array of recreational boaters, including kayakers, canoeists, dragon boaters, and whale surfers. Back on land, the facility boasts a pottery studio, a fitness centre, tennis courts, a water park with a large kid's area, and a talented staff of instructors who teach programs and classes for kids and adults alike.