My friends, I hope you’re staying safe amid the COVID-19 global pandemic that has been sweeping the world. This is the first Cultural Calendar that I can’t recommend you “go and check out some of the festivals and events happening around town,” because many events and social gatherings have been postponed or cancelled in order to avoid large crowds and mitigate the spread of the coronavirus. Instead, I would recommend practicing good hygiene, staying at home if you’re unwell and passing the time checking out some of the interesting digital exhibits and websites online.
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Virtual Museum of Canada
Discover history, art, science, nature and more through virtual exhibits from Canada’s museums and heritage organizations. The virtual museum links over 500 exhibits, community stories and online activities featuring a wide variety of subjects including arts & leisure, science & technologies, transportation & industry, nature and more.
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Jewish Museum of Vancouver
The Jewish Museum and Archives of B.C. is dedicated to the collecting and sharing of community memories of Jewish life in British Columbia. The ever-growing collection includes documents, photos and oral histories that recount the history of the Jewish-Canadian community. Their online exhibits document a slice of their community’s rich 150 year history. Check out the history of the Jewish community in the Oakridge neighbourhood, letters from soldiers on the frontlines of world war, stories about love across distances and more.
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Online comic artist and Portland-based software engineer Corey Mohler created Existential Comics in 2013, one of the most popular philosophy-themed webcomics on the Internet. Mohler illustrates the deep questions history’s greatest philosophers have asked in a humorous and accessible way. Find out what happens when Søren Kierkegaard creates an ad for Taco Bell, Karl Marx gives financial advice, Plato produces a play, David Hume tries to raise a child and more!
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Every community is the sum of its stories and memories. The Vancouver Public Library created the “This Vancouver” online exhibit to share the stories of Vancouverites and the history of Vancouver communities through images, audio clips, and videos. Many of the collections are the result of VPL collaborating with community members on community-based digital projects.
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Maptia is a collaborative project with a diverse group of photographers, writers, adventurers and conservationists. Together they bring readers a world of inspiring and thought-provoking stories. From spending months living with and learning from Indigenous peoples, to raising awareness about the effects of climate change in vulnerable island communities, the contributors who chose to self-publish on Maptia are some of the world’s most dedicated visual storytellers.
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Information is Beautiful
The Information is Beautiful website is dedicated to helping its visitors make clearer and more informed decisions about the world. All their visualizations are based on facts & data: constantly updated, revised & revisioned. Explore infographics on topics such as how to reduce carbon footprints, what Islamic Golden Age thinkers discovered, calculating the chances of extraterrestrial life and the most commonly given relationship advice.
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Humble Bundle sells games, ebooks, software, comics and other digital content in a software bundle. Pay as little as $1.50 to get a bundle of digital content. When you buy a bundle, you can choose the price you want to pay and choose how your money is divided. Every type of product they sell contributes a portion of proceeds to charity. On many products, buyers can allocate a part or all of their purchase to a charity of their choice.
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Google Arts & Culture
You might visit Google’s website everyday to search, read your email or write some documents, but did you know the search engine company has also partnered with some of the world’s most renowned museums and uses the web’s cutting edge technologies – maps, 3D virtual reality rendering, street view and video streaming – to present some of the world’s finest arts and culture in amazing online exhibits? Learn more about Kenyan superheroes, going to the washroom in space, how our human ancestors painted before paint existed and much more!
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Just because in-person classes have been suspended doesn’t mean you don’t have to keep learning. Why not take a course online? Coursera is one of the many online sites you can learn from and obtain university level credits for your study. Every course on Coursera is taught by top instructors from world-class universities and companies, so you can learn something new anytime, anywhere. Hundreds of free courses give you access to on-demand video lectures, homework exercises and community discussion forums. Paid courses provide additional quizzes and projects as well as a shareable Course Certificate upon completion.