FOR RELEASE: November 19, 2015
Hastings Crossing Business Improvement Association (HxBIA), which represents over 600 local businesses and property owners in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, has produced the first of what it plans to be several short documentaries celebrating the lesser-known history of the area. The first part of the Living History Series, which is now available online for public viewing, shares the incredible story of the Smilin’ Buddha Cabaret, whose iconic sign now glows in the Museum of Vancouver.
The documentary series includes rare interviews with people who frequented, performed in, or worked at the Smilin’ Buddha from the 1950s to the 1980s, including radio Icon Red Robinson, Vancouver socialite Fay Leung, photographer Bev Davies, and never before seen performances from punk rock icons Joey Keithely of DOA and Neil Osborne of 54-40.
HxBIA is an arms length community development non-profit funded through a commercial property tax levy. The organization engaged its own members and the public to fund this first round of the Living History Series, keeping with the BIA’s identity as Canada’s first Social Innovation BIA.
The series was screened at several small venues over the past year, and is now available online at www.livinghistoryseries.com. Plans to feature other spaces and locations within HxBIA are in the works, and Downtown Eastside community members are encouraged to submit suggestions for future locations.
Executive Director, Hastings Crossing BIA
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