Have you ever thought to yourself, "Dang, if only Montreal had more soapbox racing derbies, my life would be complete"? Well, you're in luck, because Montreal is getting one, a big one. A Red Bull one.
A soapbox or gravity racer, is a motorless vehicle built for downhill racing either against the clock or against a competitor. Originally made from wooden soap crates (hence the name) and rollerskate wheels, these little human-powered gravity racers now come in a range of wicked-cool designs and can reach speeds upwards of 112 km/h. Here's to hoping we break those speeds at La Course Red Bull Boîte à Savon set to hit Square Victoria this September.
On Sunday September 6, La Course Red Bull Boîte à Savon is taking over Montreal for the grand prix of soapbox events. Amateurs drivers of all kinds and from all over will race their bestest and most outrageous soapbox dream machines down the slopes of Square Victoria for the chance to crowned the Red Bull Boîte à Savon Champ.
This unique non-motorized racing event is all about wild rides and a whole lot of fun. Participants of all levels and disciplines are invited to submit their most creative and imaginative designs and the very best ideas will be selected to showoff their soapboxes come raceday. Racers will be judged on a variety of criteria including; speed, creativity and showmanship as they barrel toward the finish line.
Yet another new Starbucks is opening its doors, and whether you love or hate the coffee mega-chain, a new Sbux means one thing everyone can love: free coffee and drinks.
For those in the know, the first day a Starbucks opens, they hold a special "friends & family" event where everything is entirely free, with donations to a local charity strongly recommended. The manager of the new Starbucks, set to open in early September, got in touch with us and let us know the basic breakdown on the event.
Here are the details, thus far:
Where: World Trade Centre Montreal (Square Victoria Metro)
When: September 4th (exact time frame TBA)
Why: To raise funds for a local charity (TBA)
How: All drinks will be on the house, with a similarly sized donation recommended in lieu of.
September is still a ways away, which is why some of the exact details are a little undefined. Rest assured we'll have the exact address well before the event and the local charity will have been chosen. Also note that free drinks won't be served all but rather during a specific time period. We'll update you on the window of free Starbucks opportunity too.
For more on all things Montreal, follow Michael on Twitter @MDAlimonte
Evo Square Victoria is the new student housing craze.
Whether your an international student or not, living on your own is something that every University student should try. While many first year students choose to live in university dorms and later move into apartments, evo Square Victoria provides students with the experience of a life time. evo Square Victoria is a residency that brings together students from different universities to live in high- rise communities and experience an elevated student life.
Here's how evo Square Victoria will change your living experience:
1- They Like To Party
On Wednesday, March 19th, evo Square Victoria will be holding its very first party geared to teach the public everything they need to know about their student residencies. The celebration will take place at their head quarters on rue University with tons of food and drinks!
2- Save Your Cash
These rooms come fully furnished with desks, chairs, beds and couches. All you'll have to worry about is your personal decorative flare. No university student should have to break the bank to furnish their apartments fully. Internet, cable, and electricity are also included!
3- One Stop Shop
At evo Square Victoria, students are exposed to an all- in- one package. No more walking to the gym during a snow storm or trekking up the hill to study at the library. At evo Square Victoria's student residency, everything comes as one. Restaurants, public transportation, study rooms and fitness classes are offered just outside your doorstep.
4- Cool People Make Cool Friends
This residency has a true community feel. Not only will you be surrounded by other students just like you, you'll have the opportunity to meet and live side by side with those from different universities and programs. You'll also meet tons of international students from all around the globe who will grow to become your new family.
Evo Square Victoria places a big emphasis on community engagement. Living at one of these residencies doesn't just mean sleeping in a room, it also provides the opportunity to participate in a student life program. SCORES helps students build friendships through dozens of outreach programs, sustainability initiatives and social gatherings.
Let’s face it – Montrealers have a pretty intense love/hate relationship with our metro system. That doesn’t stop us from thinking of a certain station as “ours” because it’s the one that we use daily. You know what we mean; ‘your’ station is the one that you know like the back of your hand, the one that you think of fondly and point out to people on a map with a pride in your eyes, the one that you’re thinking of right now as you read this. Don’t be embarrassed, we all do it and whoever says that they don’t is a guaranteed liar. Guaranteed. Don’t trust him ever again. If you lie about the metro, what other monstrosities are you capable of?
Even though we complain relentlessly about the metro system and the STM, we know that we’re lucky to have such an easy, accessible and (relatively) cheap public transportation system. Those suckers using the New York City Subway have nothing on us (have you seen their map? Like, how do you even begin to decode this?). But did you know that we can tell what kind of person you are based on your metro station? Oh yes Montreal, we’re about to accurately stereotype you.
You, Mr. Lionel-Groulx, are a busy, busy man. You’re constantly on the move, connecting with clients and setting up business deals. You enjoy the efficiency of the metro because it reminds you of yourself; things are pre-scheduled, dependable (most of the time) and laid out in a no-nonsense kind of way. You wonder if anyone else ever notices that the two outbound directions are on one floor and the two inbound are on another, because you sure did and you think it’s organizational genius. Lionel-Groulx’s multi-storied structure reassures your inner self-doubts – you are the biggest and the best.
Adorned in fall colors, you are the perpetual student. September is your favorite time of year – the perfect weather, the rush of back-to-school shopping, new books, new friends, new adventures. Whether you sport a blue and white kilt every day, or the casual coolness of a CEGEP student, you know several things to be true: Monkland has the best array of coffee shops for after school studying, there’s no pizza like a Pinoli’s pizza, Villa Maria metro station is often affectionately referred to as Villa Mafia and free cone day at Ben & Jerry’s is the happiest day of the year.
You’re an international lady with your mind on money and politics. You live life luxuriously, even if it is not within your means, and with a hint of Parisian flair. Your afternoon lunches are spent by a statue of Queen Victoria and you’re not shy about gifting your guy a certificate to Mann for a masculine mani-pedi and massage. Classy, trendy and flawless, you are exactly who we all want to be.
Or maybe you’re just a staff member at MTL Blog.
You, my dear Cote-Vertu, are the little engine that could. You have always been given more responsibility than you expected but rather than crumble under the pressure, you’ve grown beautifully around it. You were never supposed to be a terminus so in demand, but here you are, taking everything the city of Montreal life has thrown at you and embracing it as your own. Sometimes, you can get a little rowdy but you’ve tried to curtail it by asking a group of friends to patrol your halls watch your back and keep you out of trouble. A lot of people assume you’re actually from the West Island or Laval, but you’re a native of Ville Saint-Laurent, born and bred.
Mr. Pie IX, you’re a confusing guy who will often lie when asked for directions, instead of admitting that you don’t know. You think the Olympic Stadium is an eyesore, but you’ll still proudly brag to your friends from out of town about it because – let’s face it – not everyone gets to host the Olympic Games (even if it did happen before you were born). Your life always has an air of excitement to it; the kind a spectator feels as they’re approaching the venue of their favorite sports team before a big game. You’ve been a die-hard Expos fan your whole life and kept attending games until the very end. You will gladly wear your old Expos gear to Nationals games, if the opportunity presents itself but, above all else, you miss Youppi and his cheerful, orange presence. Your east end accent clearly tells anyone who meets you where you’re from on the island and you couldn’t be more proud.
Place des Arts
You're a member of the original set and you don't let anyone forget it. The word artsy doesn't even begin to properly define you. You dream of going to every ballet and opera performance that the city has to offer but, let's be honest here, the rent for your tiny studio apartment (you fancy, huh?) eats up all of your paycheck... and savings account. Instead, you live for Montreal's many free festivals which always happen in your 'hood. From quirky art shows to unknown band performances, you're always there ready to Instagram the action.
Ah Montmorency, you're only just a couple of years old but you've already taken up permanent residence in the hearts of Laval residents. You're big and beautiful - just like your hair - and you're bringing back the va-va-voom attitude of the 60s and 70s. Always the life of the party, you know how to turn any old time into a good time. Playful and adventurous, you spent quite a while being overlooked before finally getting some independence of your own. No longer having to rely on your older sister (the city of Montreal), you've become a force to be reckoned with. Don't worry, we are definitely paying attention to you now.
Your sunny disposition and huge personality makes up for your sometimes distant attitude. A true rebel without a cause - after all, they did put those fences up to keep you from jumping over the ticket booth - you know that you're the one in charge around here. Although there is a distinct lack of nightlife in your 'hood, you and your friends have always been more than happy picking up a 40 from one of the numerous deps and hanging out on your front steps, or checking out one of the new up-and-coming restaurants on Wellington. But, you can feel the tides turning - sooner, rather than later, you'll be the new Griffintown and everyone will just die of jealousy.
Your love of astrology has not gone unnoticed, dear Cremazie, but you really have to stop relying on Cosmo's monthly predictions when it comes to real life. Poetry, the celestial world, and patriotism pretty much define who you are and are the things that we love about you. You're the only one of us who really has the soul of a gamer and for that, we applaud you and retro demeanor. However, we have also noticed your slight obsession with the 60s and it's fine, really, just let's not use the word groovy too much, okay?
The first impression you give us, Mr. Namur, is pretty bland. Then, we get to know you a little better and BAM- a whole lot of personality, all at once! We know your favorite thing to do all summer is hang out at the Julep, sipping on a drink and checking out some cool vintage cars. Your heart still breaks a little bit when you think about the loss of the Hippodrome and you tend to drown your sorrows in plate after plate of delicious doner at Marathon's. We love your can-do attitude, despite your dreary upbringing - you stand your ground and won't ever let anyone change you. Wanna head over to PF Chang's for some lettuce wrapped chicken and a discussion on the politics of war?
You pride yourself on being the epitome of elegance, with a touch of an efficient nature. You're old-school, a 19th century-style revolutionary, with your eye on making a change in this world. You have a creative soul, often using your long commutes to get in touch with your inner writer. Your love of quiet solitude knows no bounds, but don't isolate yourself too much - we'd miss you too much!
Oh dear LUDS (yep, we anagram-ed you), you're a hot mess, aren't you? Now, we don't want to be rude, but you're a little shallow and lacking a certain je-ne-sais-quoi. It's okay though, because we know this isn't the real you. Your heart belongs to the South Shore and this is just a phase you're going through; a transition between who you are and who you want to be. We forgive you for the cold exterior because we understand; it's not easy being so far from the city you love. Just keep reminding yourself that it's only temporary - we got your back, boo.
Is your slogan 'Go Big or Go Home'? Because, friend, we're here to reassure you that you definitely go big. In fact, you go HUGE compared to the rest of us (showoff!). Whether you're heading to class, red square proudly taped to your backpack, or on your way to do some research at the Grande Bibliotheque, you've got your mind on improving the world around you. You have a love of nostalgia - a big fan of time capsules, for example - and you believe in providing the best services to your fellow Montrealers. We promise we won't mention your love of threesomes though, although we heard aaaall about it.
You're the city's number one prankster and you know it. In fact, we're pretty sure it's your sole purpose in life. Why do we always feel disoriented after spending some time with you? It's okay, your love of nature more than makes up for it - we appreciate the skills of your very green thumb and your knowledge on natural rock formations. If you were ever on Jeopardy, you'd kill the nature categories... And, to be honest, the graffiti category (if there were such a thing). We don't know if you just get bored easily, but you seem to love tagging pretty much everything. The only thing is, you're kind of unfinished, aren't you? You would just make more sense if that missing piece was added. It's okay though, we'll take confusing, nature-loving Snowdon over no Snowdon any day.
So... this is awkward, but you don't really exist. I mean, sure, there have always been rumors about you and many of us have sat around wondering if you'd ever appear. Man, we're sorry, but it looks like it's just not happening. You're like the Loch Ness monster - we all want to see you, but you're just a myth. Once in a while, someone catches a 'glimpse' and the search is renewed. In the end though, we always come up empty-handed. That's okay though, there's always the train... (Sorry!)
Pictures of historic Montreal structures being built.
Construction is a fact of life in Montreal, and that was never more true than in the 1960's. Titled as the "golden age of construction" in Montreal, the 60's saw a huge jump in the building of major city structures. Place Ville-Marie got things started in 1959, with Square Victoria, Chateau Champlain, and Place Bonaventure all built in the following years . The photos below, taken from archives of Montreal, offer a rare glimpse into the year between 1965-66, when these these famous Montreal structures were built. Take a look and watch Montreal history literally being made.