The PNE Budget

Hey All!

You’re getting two blogs about the PNE today in spirit of it ending soon!

I thought while I was there that I would give myself a low budget and see what we can get for that budget between me and my girlfriend. I’ve grown up believing that the PNE is expensive, and though that is true in some ways, it is an amazing experience to go and it does offer many MANY free things, as well as some cheap food that is probably not the best for you,  but oh well! ‘Tis the season as they say! Besides, how could you NOT eat Mini Donuts and Corn dogs at the PNE.

The Budget: $60

What was purchased:

– 2 Bags of Mini donuts: $5

– 2 Pieces of Fudge: $5

– 2 Smoked beef on a Kaiser bun with 2 medium cokes: $23

– 1 Regular Sized, Iced Tea flavored Lemonade: $6

– 1 Revolation drink: $10.25 (The good thing about this is it comes with free refills all day, and if you come back again, you buy a sticker for free refills all that day too for $5.50. Buy this the second you get to the park! It saves money!)

– 1 Wiggle Chips: $5

– 1 Corn Dog: $5

– A day at the fair with the girl I love: PRICELESS

As you ca see, we were well fed with crap food all day within a $60 budget between two people. That’s $30 each, which is what you end up spending for a dinner out anyways. At least here it was the same price and a great experience all in one. Though the PNE can get costly, I hope I have opened your eyes as to how cheap it can be as well. Now go out there and have fun while you still can!

Top 5 FREE Things To Do At the PNE

Hey everyone! With the PNE wrapping up and the crowds dying down, I figured I would write an article about the top FREE things to do at the PNE. I was just there doing some media coverage, and having a blast a couple days ago, and all I spent money on was food. I will include my budget and what I got in a different blog, but without further adieu, this is: THE TOP 5 FREE THINGS TO DO AT THE PNE!

1. PRESIDENTS CHOICE SUPERDOGS:

If you haven’t seen the Superdogs by now and you’ve been to the PNE before, YOU ARE MISSING OUT. It is good fun for the whole family, with some great crowd interaction, and this year even came with a couple of great messages. The announcers at one point said: “That’s one of the purposes of this show. To show you to play with your dog, take care of your dog, love your dog.” Along with the way they started the show by presenting us with two puppies and telling us (the crowd) that any dog can be a Superdog (we are all super). And the ending to the show was a classic: We are all winners. Anyways, if you have kids, GREAT, take them to the Superdogs, if you have pets at home, the Presidents Choice has a table set up for all your pets needs. But best of all, the show is free, and at the end you can even come down and pet the dogs you spent the whole time watching. I enjoyed this event as a young child, and I enjoy it still as a young adult. Who doesn’t love dogs at least a little bit?

2. ACROBATS SHOW: 

I will admit it, this year was my first year ever watching this event. I wanted to experience everything free this year, and I was completely shocked that I had never seen such a tremendous act before. I won’t ruin ANY of the acts for you here, but you simply must go see it if you haven’t yet. There are many death defying acts, many acts leaving you scratching your head as to how they are able to contort their bodies, and some acts that left ME personally saying: “What the hell is going on here?” I was skeptical if this was an event for kids, as it requires patience for some acts, like the chair stacking, however, kids sat behind me and they were very well behaved. It’s really up to you parents, but do go see this show at some point of your PNE day, you will not regret it. Just don’t take any photos with a flash, that is VERY dangerous for the performers as they need all their focus on what they are doing.

3. STAR TREK THE EXHIBITION

First things first, I will also admit that I am a Treky. I spent most of my time in the line for this watching the Star Trek video provided via overhead televisions, but how could you blame me? It was at the climax! This line up can be quite long, but fear not everyone, once you’re in it, you will find it moves quite fast. Me and my girlfriend were actually surprised at how little time the seemingly endless line took to die down. I believe our wait was about 10 minutes, and the line was about half full when we joined it, so it’s about a maximum of 20 minutes, but boy is it worth it. This exhibit isn’t just for Star Trek fans, but for everyone really. It has SO MAY props, costumes, set pieces, art, etc. that my mind was just blown, I literally could have spent my entire day here if my girlfriend wasn’t with me. On top of everything, you can get your picture taken on all of three set pieces. The captains chair from the original series, the bridge, and the transporter. You’ll be saying “Beam me down Scotty.” right after you say “Fire  photon torpedo’s”. However, ye be warned, the photos are quite costly, and I ultimately couldn’t afford mine sadly, but if I had the money I would have gladly spent it, because how often do you get to sit in the ORIGINAL CAPTAINS CHAR!

4. FREE CONCERT!?!?

That’s right, a FREE concert. The PNE provides a million dollar stage for performers of all genres to play free shows on just for you. How expensive are concert tickets in today’s day and age? Well here, you can sit in the stands and watch a show for free! Check online to see who is playing there when to get your FULL money’s worth, but how amazing is it that such a thing is free at the fair? Sounds very fair if you ask me. 😉

Be sure to show the artists your support, and also show the PNE you appreciate their hard work. Just kick back and relax on the nice grassy area, or the stands provided.

5. MONSTER TRUCKS

Boy I had a hard time deciding number five. It’s hard to decide what the last thing to make the cut is. Ultimately I picked the monster trucks as it was a big part of my PNE experience as a child. Now I know my parents probably just took me to this event to drown out the noise of me constantly chattering, and now I also realize how much of a headache I probably gave them considering now I get a headache from this event every time, but it’s worth it to watch these massive monster trucks defy gravity. But, be warned once again, they are extremely loud! There’s a lot of power packed into one of those suckers. Take your kids as a break from all the headspinning, stomach altering, high flying rides that we all know and love, if for no other reason then to make sure they’re not throwing up in your car.

This has been my top 5 FREE things to do at the PNE. It was really hard to decide a top 5, but I think you’ll find these events are on your top 5 by the end of it as well. You know, people often forget with all the things that cost money there that lots of it is free too, along with what is mentioned above, there’s a Family Feud event, pig races, a petting zoo (with other animals to look at because they’re adorable, or you just don’t see them that often at home), there’s dirt bikes which are also stunning, you can vote for your favorite sand castle which artists have worked long days in the hot sun on, play in an assortment of amazing jungle gyms (only recommended for children, and especially not for people with a history of neck injuries). You can hang out with your favorite radio DJs, take a walk in the fair and see all the products you see on tv and more, and kids can play Beyblades with the YTV crew. But best of all, enjoy the experience, because it only happens once a year.

The Global Village

Nowadays, you can’t escape the feeling of a global village. Now, if you don’t know what that means, don’t worry about it, I am sure many others feel the same. A global village is more of the concept of being closer to people in China, Japan, Haiti, etc. We know it most from media, in fact… it is BECAUSE of media that we are the global village that we are. This global village allows me to know what is happening around the world at the click of a button. It makes me think the world is so small, but if you go outside, especially if you go to sea, you realize the fact that the world is massive, and we are just these tiny little creatures with something the others apparently don’t have. My mom always talks about the frontal lobes and how that is a link to our superiority, but that is another subject altogether. Often times the global village all comes together to aid a chapter within. To support each other, pick each other up when they are at their lowest.

Natural disasters happen all the time, especially since the big climate change that’s happened in the last decade or so. We’ve witnessed Katrina, the horrible hurricane that destroyed not only New Orleans but surrounding areas as well. It left people homeless, and certainly hopeless. As minutes turned into hours, hours into days, days into weeks and still the aid was minimal. Many people were stuck on their roofs, in the hot southern sunny weather. Some people were stuck in hospitals, surely it was a very hectic situation, and my heart goes out to all the victims of that terrible hurricane. The next “big” natural disaster was Haiti. To me, I didn’t even know about this place beforehand, I knew it sounded awfully like the Greek god “Hades” which to me felt a little ironic. However, ignorance aside, it’s a small city on a small island in the Caribbean. Surely many of us didn’t know or care about this place before the dramatic 7.0 magnitude earthquake, but as soon as it happened we rushed to their aid. Helping people we didn’t even know or care about beforehand in their time of need. Apparently we learned from Katrina that these places need help immediately. My third example of these amazing natural disasters is Japan. We all know Japan, we all know and own things that come from Japan. Perhaps your car is from Japan, or perhaps your TV is, or maybe your gaming system. We are all linked to that one tiny island in Asia in some way or another. Suddenly, it was shaken to it’s foundations, a 7.0 magnitude earthquake ruptured, and devastated the north east area of Japan. Areas were flooded, many more were destroyed, a nuclear power plant was leaking and in danger of exploading. Again, we flew to their aid. Even more than with Haiti, I remember not only was their ways to donate on the news, magazines, etc. But also on my PS3, you could buy themes for your PS3 where all the proceeds would go to Japan aid. Similar things like this arose in games like World of Warcraft, the biggest game in the world today. For World of Warcraft you could buy a vanity pet on the blizzard store where the proceeds too would go to Japan. Many more examples poured from my city personally, no matter where you went you could donate to Japan on the spot.

Media coverage isn’t only used in tragic situations however, it is also used to.. well… bring news. For example, expos around the world happen every year and Millions of people that wanted to go, simply cannot find a way there or it costs too much, or whatever. Personally, I can’t afford to go to California twice a year surprisingly… oh how I wish I was lying. BUT with the click of a button I can be watching the live Expo feed, free of charge. With sites like IGN running all the coverage all day, every day. In the case of my favorite developer in the world, Blizzard, you have to pay to watch a live stream, but somehow $50 sounds A LOT more affordable than the thousands it would cost to go there and see it in person. This constant flow of information is not limited to just expos of course. On the internet you can find anything you want if you look hard enough. It’s almost impossible to keep anything a secret anymore with the internet constantly getting bigger and bigger. Even on CNN “the most trusted name in news” they will post links to certain congressman’s twitters for example (Weiner man, we all know you did it). The internet is surely the global village of today, where the Television was the global village of yesterday.

Now for the bombshell you have been waiting for. I didn’t want to say it, y’all don’t want to read it but it MUST be said. The Vancouver riots. I know your heart skipped a beat thinking about it. Stanley cup finals. Game 7. Luongo… what the HELL were you DOING!? Sure it was a piss off that we lost, hockey brought us all together in ways that Transformers and Harry Potter simply cannot do. But we lost… and then we had a massive temper tantrum. Cars were lit on fire, windows smashed, store fronts completely destroyed. Thankfully nobody died for such a ridiculous cause, but did we have to take it as far as we did? We lost a GAME in a SPORT, sorry guys, I thought we always take that risk in sports. When teams lose the Superbowl, does their hometown blow up? No, they say “Oh well, we can get them next year”. This is a great example of why I like football (de Americano)more than Hockey. The fans aren’t a bunch of babies. On the news for the riot coverage the reporter said things like “I don’t think anyone could have predicted this” and “These aren’t hockey fans”. Hate to say it buddy but you are entirely wrong. This is the maturity level of hockey fans in Vancouver, also EVERYONE was a fan during the finals. As for predicting it? I did, I knew tear gas was going to fly the minute the game started. It’s that gut feeling of thinking about last time we were in Game 7. I chose not to go downtown cause no matter if we won or lost I just didn’t want to be there. It wasn’t worth it. What does this rabbling have to do with the global village? Well we, the people from Vancouver, became the Village idiot that night. The guy that everyone laughs at and makes fun of, that’s all of us. Introduce yourself to average Joe south of the border and he will likely say something  witty that his mom probably told him about the riots here. Personally, I am not one to separate myself from everyone else. Alienation breeds hate then depression. However, I am not the one that screwed up, and you know what?  I don’t even have to justify myself, I was home that night watching the game in my favorite chair. Does it suck to be associated with that when I tell people I am from Vancouver? Indeed it does, but nobody is going to make me feel like the village idiot. Nobody is going to beat me down because of where I come from. I love my hometown, and indeed my country. The only thing I love more than my country is my village. We are all a community, and ultimately… we are all family.