The FIFA World Cup is here and it’s time to bring out those Jersey’s and flags, dust them off and get out there to support our favorite teams. Where is the best place to go you may ask?? There are few neighbourhoods in Vancouver as defined as Commercial Drive…lovingly known as just “The Drive” this area is an eclectic multinational East Van neighbourhood that has been the centre of European culture for over a century. It used to be known as Little Italy until recent transformation. On every block you can find a different European, Latin, Portuguese, Greek, Asian even African café or coffee shop filled with ex-pats and diehards usually watching a soccer game. This month The Drive will be in full tilt welcoming all to its hood to enjoy The World Cup. It is the biggest single-event sporting competition in the world. Whoa.
Hosted every four years by a different nation – this year being Brazil, the finest soccer or should I say football athletes in the world will grace our screens for us to scream, sit at the edge of our seats, sing silly chants, take to the streets with our flags, buy jersey’s, and use those crazy vuvuzela horns and drive our friend’s nuts! Soccer has truly found a home in North America and Vancouver has embraced it with our own fantastic team – the White Caps. Canada will not be in this year’s festivities, but according to online research we are still supporting nations coast to coast. With Portugal being the leader, followed by Italy and Germany. But here at home –Vancouverites are shaking things up a bit, by supporting Italy, Uruguay and then Germany. Will you be bearing our red and white colours to support those fallen, or does your heritage run deep in Italy, Germany, Belgium, England, Ghana, Japan, Algeria, Netherlands, Cameroon, USA……GO WORLD!
Here are my picks for the Best Spots on the Drive to hoot and holler and watch all the drama unfold.My NUMBER ONE Pick – because it’s where I love to go....
Abruzzo’s Cappuccino Bar (Italy)
1321 Commercial Dr, Vancouver
Italy all the way……beware flying any other colours except red, white and green in this colourful icon of a cappuccino bar. Located in the centre of the Drive it shows all the games – all of Italy’s Games to be sure to a lively enthusiastic crowd.
Vancouver Alpen Club (Germany)
4875 Victoria Drive, Vancouver
Croatian Cultural Centre (Croatia)
3250 Commercial Drive, Vancouver
Libra Room (Brazil)
1608 Commercial Drive, Vancouver
Caffe Napoli (Italy)
1670 Commercial Drive, Vancouver
If you can’t get to the Drive – have no fear - no matter where you hang your hat in Vancouver The CBC has created a cool on-line map that shows you where you can catch the game all across the city– click here to see who’s playing where in your neighbourhood.
CBC - World Cup Vancouver
GOOOO WORLD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! OLÉ, OLÉ, OLÉ, OLÉ!!!!!