The Ultimate Abbotsford Experience

The winner of Passport to Christmas will enjoy being chauffeured around Abbotsford while they experience the ultimate day of pampering, wine tasting and delicious cuisine with a friend, loved one or family member.

Start your morning with massage treatments at The Wild Orange Spa. With an inviting atmosphere and contemporary design, this is a serene was to start your day in Abbotsford.



After relaxing, head out for a wine tasting and a locally sourced charcuterie board at Single Tree Winery in the backcountry of the beautiful Mt.Lehman area. Historically, this area is know to be a popular farming community. 



Enjoy the backroads of Abbotsford’s lush countryside on your way to dinner. Your evening will be spent at the new S+L Restaurant in Abbotsford who offers a casual upscale environment focused on bringing unique locally inspired dishes to everyone.



End your night by being chauffeured back to Brookside Inn, one of Canada’s top small hotels for a nights stay. Inspired by classic romantic movies, each suite is thoughtfully decorated to capture the film’s essence like Midnight in Paris or Under the Tuscan Sun.



And if this isn’t enough, you could also win a private dinner for you & 11 of your closest friends and family. The dinner would be hosted at Brambles Bistro at Tanglebank Gardens in Abbotsford.


HOW TO win this experience?
Pick up a passport at any of these stops, visit a minimum of 6 stops, answer a trivia question to get your passport stamped, and then to drop it back off at any of the businesses.
On December 23rd, two winners will be drawn and awarded prizes.

December Events in Abbotsford

The holiday season has arrived! Abbotsford is home to a wide variety of festive markets, local events and family friendly activities to elevate the holiday spirit. For a full list of events happening throughout the month of December, go to our Events Calendar. Also, check out Passport to Christmas in Abbotsford for your chance to win The Ultimate Abbotsford Experience.


 

Passport to Christmas | Nov 1 - Dec 21
Shop 10 local businesses and collect a minimum of 6 stamps to win the Ultimate Abbotsford Experience.
Various businesses around Abbotsford
www.passporttochristmas.ca
 

Trees of Hope | Dec 1 - 27
In support of Matthew’s House, stop by to see the decorated trees and vote to win a $100 gift card to Sevenoaks. 
32900 South Fraser Way - Sevenoaks Shopping Centre
Website
 

4th Annual Gift and Bake Sale Market | Dec 3
Holiday baking done right! Shop over 1,000 fresh home baked and handmade goods.
33886 Pine Street, Abbotsford
Website 

 

Holidays at Highstreet | Dec 3, 10, 17
Enjoy a fun filled Holiday Show featuring live music, marching band, Spandy Andy & more.
3122 Mt. Lehman Road - High Street Shopping Centre
Website
 

Pop Up Artisan Market | Dec 3 - 4 | Passport Event
Abbotsford Arts Council presents the "Pop Up Artisan Market" featuring over 25 artists and handmade gifts.
3122 Mt. Lehman Road - High Street Shopping Centre
Website
 

Christmas Farm & Country Market | Dec 3, 10, 17
You’ll also discover new varieties of fresh local produce; international award-winning jams; and a wide range of food products no available in stores.
Montrose Avenue at George Ferguson Way
Website 
 

Taste of the Market | Dec 3 - 4 | Passport Event

Join us under the tents as we bring together the bakers & makers behind your favourite local products.
33955 Clayburn Rd. - Lepp Farm Market
Website
 

A Christmas Survival Guide | Dec 4
Support live local theatre with this delightful musical comedy presented by Fraser Valley Stage.
2329 Crescent Way - Community Arts Addition
Website
 

Christmas Masquerade Ball | Dec 18
Suburban Swing Presents the 16th Annual Christmas Masquerade Ball – Abbotsford’s biggest dance of the year.
33800 King Road - Abbotsford Centre
Website 
 

 

FV First Night | Dec 31 | Passport Event
The Fraser Valleys biggest and best Family Friendly New Year’s Eve celebration. 
1190 Cornell Street - Tradex
Website


Follow Abbotsford on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram and share along your journey with the hashtag #ExploreAbbotsford. We can't wait to see what you get up to!

Visit Passport to Christmas in Abbotsford to shop, stamp and win this holiday season. 

Events Calendar 

Abbotsford Business Excellence Awards

ABBOTSFORD BUSINESS EXCELLENCE AWARDS, TRADEX GROWING SPECTACULARLY TOGETHER

_______________________

In 2009, the Abbotsford Business Excellence Awards, co-presented by the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce and The Abbotsford News, made a decision that helped it grow into one of the largest and most spectacular events of its kind in the Fraser Valley.

It made Tradex its annual home.

“We outgrew the Ramada (now Quality Hotel) when in 2008 we had a waiting list of 100 people for a ticket to the awards night,” said Allan Asaph, now executive director of the Abbotsford Chamber, and who was with the awards program when it had a modest crowd of 200 at its debut at Tradex in 1996, and in subsequent years at the Kings Crossing banquet facility, which was destroyed by fire.

“Our hallmark is we acknowledge all nominees in our awards program, not just a select group of finalists. As a result, and with great anticipation, a lot of people want to attend. With the number of nominees each year in the range of 100, and the number of guests well exceeding 500, Tradex was able to accommodate us,” said Asaph.

The beauty of hosting the business event at Tradex is its ability to partner with other events scheduled there “that allowed us to lower the costs of pipe and drape and the cost of equipment.”

Also, Tradex continues to be a major award sponsor.



“Over the years our relationship with Tradex has allowed us to broaden the event in terms of the type of entertainment and staging. In 2014, we presented entertainment based on the Moulin Rouge movie, showcasing a wide range of local talent, from aerial acrobatics, bhangra dancers, Korean drummers, singers, actors . . . a very large contingent of performers under the guidance of talented Business Excellence committee member and choreographer Mary Boonstra,” said Asaph.

Coverage of that event can be seen here: https://youtu.be/VvDjfotuZa0. The Business in Black dance team, comprised of community leaders taught to perform by Boonstra, continues to be an event ice-breaker since it first appeared in 2005.

Since the awards moved to Tradex, just ask Chamber of Commerce event managers like Goldie VanGarderen and now Carole Jorgensen about how Tradex works hard to increase the flexibility of the venue, so together they can create a stylish event that greets people with a setting that suits its high profile.



“Tradex ensures the quality of the food served is a significant part of the event’s success,” Asaph said.

Tradex also allows enough space for the Business Excellence pre-event reception, which Asaph said is now a major social and networking opportunity as patrons arrive on the red carpet happy and well-dressed.

“Our pleasure over the years is growing together with Tradex to host a premier event recognizing the excellence of our business community,” said Asaph. “Happy 25th anniversary Tradex!”
 



Follow Abbotsford on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram and share along your journey with the hashtag #ExploreAbbotsford. We can't wait to see what you get up to!

Visit Passport to Christmas in Abbotsford to shop, stamp and win this holiday season. 

Events Calendar 

The West Coast Christmas Show

DYNAMIC CHRISTMAS SHOW DUO IMPRESSED
BY TRADEX CONVENIENCE, TEAM SPIRIT
_____________________________

Heather Angeard and George Acs, co-owners of Executive Event Production Inc. and producers of the West Coast Christmas Show and Fraser Valley Food Show, both said they thought they were dreaming when they first encountered the wonderful features of Tradex nine years ago.

“Our jaws were wide open because the staff at Tradex wanted to help us. No one helps like this when we host shows in Vancouver,” said Angeard.

“I remember saying to Heather the first time we had a show at Tradex that we must be in the Twilight Zone. We are dealing with real people who want to help you in every way they can. No one has a designated job. Whoever is nearby helped us. It made a huge difference,” said Acs.



Christmas-show duo has a long history in the hospitality industry

Acs and Angeard have been business partners for decades, and together they founded and produced EAT! Vancouver Food Festival, EAT! Fraser Valley Food Festival (now Fraser Valley Food Show), West Coast Christmas Show, CityTV’s Taste of the City and produced the BC Hospitality Expo.

Angeard’s first job was with a catering company for a variety of events when she was 13. Working with Acs, who she first encountered when he was with the BC Restaurant Association, has been a rewarding experience.

Acs has been involved in the restaurant, food service and hospitality industry since leaving university in 1969. He’s been owner/operator of restaurants and bars in Victoria and Whistler, including Louie Louie’s Diner, Jimmy D’s Roadhouse and The Hungarian Village. He was named BC Restaurateur of the Year three times.

For Angeard, with more than 30 years of experience in the hospitality and event industry, it was a natural progression to create and launch consumer shows with Acs.
“When Vali Marling of Tradex came to us, telling us that they wanted to do a show similar to our Eat! Vancouver and asking for our help, we said sure. Then we did the Christmas show here as well,” said Acs.



Tradex in Abbotsford makes it easy

What does he like most about Tradex?  “It’s like a dream to move a show in and out. There are lots of big doors to access the show from all around. There are no elevators, you just drive in. It’s a wonderful facility.”

For Vancouver shows, logistics companies are hired, holding lots are rented and exhibitors are held there until they are called. None of that happens at Tradex,” said Acs.

Fancy foods, artisan market, Santa’s workshop, children’s choirs and more

The West Coast Christmas Show, considered Western Canada’s leading holiday season show, runs this year Friday through Sunday, Nov. 18-20 at Tradex. Angeard said “we get a small head-start on Wednesday, fluffing up Christmas trees and assembling reindeer. We have all day Thursday, and Friday morning to set up, before the show starts.”

The event brings together holiday gifts, fancy foods, personal services, a Festival of Trees, new décor ideas and products, festive seminars, culinary presentations, and the sounds of Christmas performed by local choirs and musicians.



Sugar shack, Nintendo and a trolley

This year a maple sugar shack outside the front doors of Tradex will bring back childhood memories for anyone from Eastern Canada, with the aroma of hot maple syrup and shredded ice . . . a sugary sweet festive delight.

A Nintendo trailer outside will also bring smiles to the faces who love anything new related to Pokémon.

And once again, parking is free, with parking-lot shuttle service provided by The Vancouver Trolley Company.

As Tradex celebrates 25 years, Angeard said the facility has certainly grown over the years and “it has been nice to be a part of it.”
 



Follow Abbotsford on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram and share along your journey with the hashtag #ExploreAbbotsford. We can't wait to see what you get up to!

Visit Passport to Christmas in Abbotsford to shop, stamp and win this holiday season. 

Events Calendar 

Passport to Christmas in Abbotsford



For anyone looking for the sweetest holiday treasures, WE invite YOU to participate in the Passport to Christmas. 

_______________________________
 

From November 1st to December 22nd, Lower Mainland residents are invited to visit 10 local businesses, specializing in the unique and memorable, where everyone can ‘shop, stamp, and win’!

The Passport to Christmas partner list includes:

To play, participants are asked to pick up a passport at any of these stops, visit as many as possible, answer a trivia question, get the passport stamped, and then to drop it back off at any of the businesses. Plus, a bonus stamp is rewarded if a picture is posted on Instagram. Official hashtag is #PassporttoChristmas. In order to win, at least six stamps must be earned.

On December 23rd, two names will be drawn and awarded prizes. Prize #1 is the Ultimate Abbotsford Getaway, which includes chauffeured transportation around town, wine tasting at Singletree Winery, spa treatment, dinner for two at the new S+L Kitchen & Bar, and an overnight stay at Brookside Inn, one of Canada's Top 10 Small Hotels. Prize #2 is a private long-table dinner for 12 at Brambles Bistro.

It’s hard to visit all the stops in one day, which is why Abbotsford hotels are offering a 20% discount off their best available rate. Visitors simply need to quote Passport to Christmas upon booking. Hotels include:

To add to the merriment, Abbotsford has two Christmas tree lightings and festivals on November 19th at High Street and November 25th in Historic Downtown Abbotsford. From 3-9pm, the Historic Downtown's Winter Jubilee has an artisan night market, talented musicians, street carollers, fun eats, and a few more surprises in store. High Street has Santa Clause, dancing elves, and promises a magical snowfall.

Passport to Christmas accommodates all budgets and has something for everyone. To learn more, visit www.passporttochristmas.ca

November Christmas Events & Markets



Christmas events and markets provide the perfect opportunity to get started on your holiday shopping. Luckily, Abbotsford is home to great variety of markets, events and interactive family activities to elevate your holiday spirit. Below is a list of 10 holiday events happening throughout November. Also, check out the Passport to Christmas in Abbotsford for your chance to win The Ultimate Abbotsford Experience.

 

Passport to Christmas IN ABBOTSFORD | Nov 1 - Dec 22
The Passport to Christmas guides you around Abbotsford to unique boutiques, one-of-a-kind shops, and fertile farms. At each stop, make sure you get your passport stamped, bringing you one step closer for a chance to win 1 of 2 prizes!
Website 
 

Crafts with Mrs. Claus at Glenda’s | Nov 12
Bring your little ones to enjoy free cookie decorating and crafting with Mrs. Claus. There will be popcorn and hot chocolate to enjoy beside the bonfire as well!
Website 
 

4th Annual Plaza Christmas Market | Nov 11 - 12
Shop over 80 local handmade artisans, food trucks, gingerbread decorating and gift basket draw. Free admission & parking.
Website 
 

West Coast Christmas Show at Tradex | Nov 18 - 20
Featuring over 140 artisans - Discover new ideas for holiday entertaining, decorating and gift giving. Remember to get your Passport stamped!
Website 

 

4th Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony at Highstreet | Nov 19
To get you into the holiday spirit, they have a 40-piece marching band & 65 ft Christmas Tree with Rudolf, Frosty and most importantly Santa joining the festivities.
Website
 

A Heritage Christmas in Clayburn | Nov 19
Enjoy music, tea and scones, a vintage marketplace, kid’s crafts, food as well as guided village tours. Hosted by the Clayburn Village Community society.
Website 
 

8th Annual Trees of Hope | Nov 21 - 27
Visit the Food Court to view all of the wonderfully decorated trees from our generous sponsors. Vote for your favourite tree and enter to win a $100 Sevenoaks Gift Card.
Website 
 

Toys for tots at the Quality Hotel | Nov 25
Bring a toy or money donation and stay for a free buffet breakfast. Proceeds benefit the Abbotsford Christmas Bureau.
Website
 

Winter Jubilee in Historic Downtown Abbotsford | Nov 25
Winter Jubilee is a free community event celebrating the 27th Annual Christmas Tree Lighting.  Enjoy live music, craft beer gardens, interactive children’s games + activities, artisan marketplace and food trucks.
Website
 

Maan Farms Christmas Market | Nov 26
Join us for the 2nd Annual Country Christmas Market. A great one stop shop to cross a few names off of your Christmas list while support local businesses, and having a great time.
Website
 

The Nutcracker | Nov 27
Experience the magic of The Nutcracker this holiday season with Royal City Youth Ballet's full length ballet, featuring a cast of 100+ dedicated and enthusiastic dancers.
Website 

The Olde Farmhouse Vintage Market

Well-loved items, thousands of visitors and a stress-free venue make this show producer smile

__________________

 

As Leah Faulkner, show producer and manager for The Olde Farmhouse Vintage Market, starts thinking about her third show Nov. 12–13 at Tradex, she just smiles about the stresses she and her husband Tom no longer encounter.

“Tradex is a stress reliever. It’s a whole package. They take care of the event security, parking, promoting, overall cleanup and take-down. I’ve done seven markets since 2012, and comparing our old rustic venue at the Maple Ridge Albion Fairgrounds with Tradex is a difference like night and day,” said Faulkner.

“While half the vendors used to be in barns and outside in the grass, and the facility fit what we were doing in a rustic sense, the weather was not always cooperative. My husband and I used to have to clean washrooms and manage the parking, too,” Faulkner said.



“Now the show-goers get to enjoy dry shopping and the time-worn pieces are protected from the elements.”

The show moved to Tradex initially because it grew too big and had too many shoppers and vendors. The first Tradex show was in November, 2015, second was in June this year, and what’s on tap this month is her third one. Even though Faulkner is a relative newcomer to the 120,000 square foot facility, she is happy to share her experiences for Tradex’s 25th anniversary.

Faulkner’s mother-in-law from the Prairies has an especially keen eye for farmhouse-style collectibles and taught her how to finish some of her great junking and garage-sale finds.

“When Tom and I were first married, we couldn’t afford the stuff in the big stores so we went to garage sales to acquire things cheaply. Eventually every room was finished and we got to the stage where we would love to find something new and different, but we would trade-out what we already had,” Faulkner said.

“Once we came home with a trailer full of furniture after looking for treasures and we consulted with others through Craigslist to put on a market. We had 35 vendors for the first show.”



The Olde Farmhouse Vintage Market places value on things that are well-loved and that are sometimes rusted, dented, and roughed up. Vendor names are cute, like Knotty Paintbrush, Glitter and Spice, Just A Tinker and Cottage Kisses. Some 125 vendors are participating in the next Tradex show.

“It’s a dream being at Tradex,” said Faulkner. “We attract an audience of 6,000 people over the weekend. We don’t have stages, but we have vendors who sell paint and give tutorials on how to finish their projects.” Finished projects are also available.

Faulkner does not consider herself a hoarder—far from it. But there are certain items with which she just cannot part; her grandmother’s old quilt she used to wrap around herself when she was young is one of them.

A special find in her home is a pie cupboard. “I love the colour of the wood. It is rustic. It is sentimental and makes my imagination work. What little old lady cooled her special pies in this piece of furniture?”

For Faulkner, the show at Tradex also offers a message for the next generation. “We love to teach our kids we shouldn’t be a throw-away society,” she said.

And because of that, she believes her show at Tradex contributes to making the world a better place.


 



Follow Abbotsford on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram and share along your journey with the hashtag #ExploreAbbotsford. We can't wait to see what you get up to!

More from the ExploreAbby Blog:

Meet Tyler & Cassandra of Duft and Co. 
5 Places to Explore with Kids
Fresh Faces of Abby Series 

Events Calendar 

Meet Tyler & Cassandra of Duft and Co.



MEET 
Tyler Duft and Cassandra Crocco, Owners of Duft and Co. Bakehouse IN HISTORIC DOWNTOWN ABBY.
____________________

Q: Tell US about Duft and Co. What led to this dream?

Cassandra: Tyler and I wanted to start our own businesses before we even met, so when we started dating the conversation naturally flowed. We decided to go to Europe and spent six months going to all the coffee shops and bakeries that we could find.

We returned with inspiration and starting writing down recipes. I’m a pastry chef and Tyler is a savoury chef. We had all the pieces, but weren’t sure which avenue to take.  And, then we thought, “We work really hard for other people, so why wouldn’t we for ourselves?” At some point, you want to be creative on your own terms.

Tyler: We decided it was better to lose sleep and sweat for ourselves rather than someone else, and Abby was a European community that loved bread and pastries. There used to be a bakery where this little, older Ukrainian lady made the best rye bread and butter buns. Every Christmas, it was my job to pick up the rye bread.

Cass and I just knew that it was an appropriate time to give the community back what it once had access to. We grew up eating real food, made by hand.  We don’t do it the European way, we simply do it the old-fashioned way, the way things were.


Sophia at Kariton Art Gallery (Tyler & staff at Duft and Co.)

Q: From the moment you arrived on the scene, what have you experienced from the community?

Tyler: The Valley had a deficit. Vancouver is a great food city--you can get everything from Korean to Russian—but, this side of the Valley was still growing up and we knew that it was a calculated risk to move here.

Cassandra: We wanted to create a place where our customers felt like they were sitting in our living room, as though we made it just for them. I feel like the whole town has rallied together to support us and that’s a really neat feeling.

Abby was ready for a concept like Duft and Co. We have welcomed people from all over the Valley, Vancouver, and across the border. And, the downtown businesses of like-minded people are amazing. It’s the best thing to ever happen to Abby. We all want to make Abby a better place-- where people want to stay here-- and love hearing that we have inspired others to pursue their dreams. Our collective thinking is community over competition.

Tyler: We love seeing people enjoy what we have created and want to hit every high note. It’s about tasting, feeling, and smelling the love. We were the new kids on the block, but have been so lucky that the result has been positive.


(Tyler & Cassandra in Historic Downtown Abby)

Q: Are you happy living here?  What are your future plans?

Tyler: I grew up here. We love visiting local farms and seeing the food grown that we eat. We have a beautiful landscape from creeks, rivers, and lakes to snow-capped mountains and the ocean is within an hour’s drive. Not many places can make a claim like this.  I have never been more optimistic about the future. Our small town has been given a dose of much-needed culture. We are seeing a turning of the tides and we are fortunate to be a part of this paradigm shift.

Cassandra: We are expanding and launching Duft and Co. Brickhouse soon!  We’re full of ideas, and opening a restaurant was one of them. The Brickhouse is a small, casual eatery with good food like roasted meats, home-made sausages, wood-fired pizza and local drinks. We love the growth that is happening in historic downtown Abby and want to continue our journey here.  Duft & Co Brickhouse is just another way for us to share our love of food.


(Tyler & Cassandra visiting a local farm)

Watch their #FreshFacesofAbby story here.

Find your spooky spirit in Abbotsford

There’s no shortage of Halloween activities in Abbotsford to participate in this year for young and old alike. Whether it’s a haunted corn maze or kids pumpkin carving, you’ll discover your spooky spirit just in time for Halloween. If these aren't enough, check out our Must Visit Fall Destinations in Abbotsford for more ghostly fun. 





Maan Farms "Haunted Corn Maze" | Oct 7-31
This year Leatherface and his accomplices have been joined by a band of crazed clowns. Try to survive this terrifying corn maze with many dead ends that are full of surprises. Don’t forget to dress for the weather and remember that you are on a farm. (path of maze is all gravel )

Where: 790 McKenzie Rd.
When: Now until Oct 31, 7pm to 10pm
Website
 

The Land of Boo | Oct 21-31
Enjoy a super family-friendly Halloween Theme Scavenger Hunt around Highstreet Shopping Centre for your chance to win an iPad, courtesy of London Drugs.

Where: 3122 Mount Lehman Rd.
When: Anytime during Highstreet Shopping Hours
Website 
 

Haunted House for Canucks Place | Oct 29-31
Looking for a scare for a good cause? Check out “Sandpiper Sanitarium Indoor Haunted House” featuring 7 scare rooms. (Not for the faint of heart, recommended 8 yrs of age) Entry into the Haunt is by donation. Suggested donation is $2 pp or $10 per family. 100% of the money goes to the charity.

Where: Sandpiper Sanitarium - 3037 Sandpiper Dr.
When: 6pm to 9pm
Website 

 

HALLOWEEN DAY
 

5th Annual Trick or Treating | Oct 31
Loads of treats and lots of fun activities planned for the kids this year. Grab your list of trick or treating stops at Oldhand coffee in Historic Downtown. Make sure to bring a non-perishable Food Bank donation and you will receive an entry for the amazing Gift Basket filled with all sorts of goodies from the participating Downtown merchants!

Where: Historic Downtown, Starts at Oldhand Coffee, 2617 Pauline St.
When: 1pm to 5pm
Website 
 

Moo or Boo | Oct 31
EcoDairy is bringing back MOO or BOO for its third year in a row! Families can look forward to games, crafts, cows and more, come on down to the farm, it's all indoors so rain or shine the party's ON!

Where: 1356 Sumas Way
When: 2pm to 6pm
Website
 

Halloween Trick or Treating | Oct 31
Enjoy a safe, warm and dry place to bring your ghosties for goodies! Look for the orange pumpkin for free candy at participating retailers.

Where: 32900 S Fraser Way
When: 3pm to 4pm only.
Website 


Party in the Plaza | Oct 31
Trick or Treat at the 8 themed installations while enjoying the Land of Boo Scavenger Hunt. There will be a photo booth, live music, treat, balloon artist & more!

Where: 3122 Mount Lehman Rd.
When: 5pm to 7pm
Website
 



Follow Abbotsford on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram and share along your journey with the hashtag #ExploreAbbotsford. We can't wait to see what you get up to!

More from #ExploreAbbotsford:

Abbotsford Must-Visit Fall Destinations 
5 Places to Explore with Kids
Fresh Faces of Abby Series 

Events Calendar 

Valley embraces West Coast Women’s Show, Popularity soars with move to Tradex

Murat Olcay, show producer and manager for the West Coast Women’s Show, said attendance skyrocketed by 70 per cent 14 years ago when the show was moved from the Vancouver Convention Centre to Tradex.

“The people of the Fraser Valley . . . Surrey, Hope, Mission, Abbotsford, Langley and Chilliwack . . . really embraced the show,” said Olcay. “Last year alone we experienced a 15 per cent increase in attendance over the year before, and that is unheard of in these interesting times.”

He added: “This show is all about the exhibitors, and we have 400 of them. Yes, we’ve had stars coming, including recording artist and humanitarian Bif Naked, renowned interior designers, actors Josh Morrow, Sharon Case and others from The Young and the Restless. They’re great, but a small percentage of women come to the show for the celebrities, they really want the whole experience.”



The West Coast Women’s Show, Oct. 21–23 this year, has grown to become the largest and most successful women’s event in Western Canada, Olcay said. Women come to be “entertained and informed . . . we have a terrific lineup of speakers. It is a unique shopping experience. It’s relationship building with the exhibitors . . . it’s a reaching out. Our visitors like to see the booths. It’s the ultimate girls’ experience.”

The shopping fantasy includes five stages of fashion, wellness and beauty secrets, entertainment, cheese and live calendar firefighters. A second artisan marketplace, for a total of 60 artisans, was added this year because of its popularity when it was introduced in 2015.



Olcay, who is with Encore Productions, has been in the show business for some 30 years. He loves Tradex because it is easy to move the show in, and move it out. “Those huge doors are a real bonus,” he said. “It’s a nice facility. Where else do you find one like that?”

Murat relies on his two adult daughters, his wife and an amazing “team of talented ladies” to get feedback on the shows and to constantly improve them.

He remembers Tradex from the days before the Abbotsford Airport passenger terminal was built and when he and others, who were running home shows at Tradex in the 1990s, were knee-deep in mud to post huge signs in farmers’ fields to point patrons toward the 120,000 square foot facility.

“Back then no one knew Tradex, but now after 25 years, they do. I’ve watched the community and area grow. I’ve appreciated the Tradex renovations, and we’re still here,” he said.

Olcay worked with Ron Price, one of the founders of Tradex when both were with Airshow Canada. “It was a lot of fun.”

“We’d head out of Fort Langley in a floatplane, go to the Gulf Islands for lunch and fly back. At 59, I still don’t feel old. The trick is, like the West Coast Women’s Show teaches: Stay active, stay vital, get the most out of life.”