Downtown Eastside demonstrates its love—and artistry—in Heart of the City Festival

Hunter vividly recalls when a former Skid Road alcoholic with a brilliant mind—Bruce Eriksen—rallied the neighbourhood in the 1970s to advocate for a community centre. This story is told so eloquently in a memoir by the late Eriksen’s partner, former Vancouver East MP Libby Davies, who also joined the fight as a young social activist. So it seems fitting that Hunter and coproducer Savannah Walling would invite Davies to play a prominent role in this year’s festival, which coincides with the 40th anniversary of the opening of the Carnegie Community Centre at the corner of Main and Hastings streets. Davies will host an online workshop on how to drive change through existing political structures. In addition, the festival will play a recording of Davies reading her book, Outside In: A Political Memoir, at a livestreamed tribute to the Carnegie Community Centre on October 28. It will be hosted by Hunter.