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Modernize Tailors featured on Global News

Modernize Tailors is a Vancouver institution, having been operating in Chinatown since 1913. The business and the two brothers who run it, Bill and Jack Wong, was recently featured on Global News:

Bill and Jack’s brother was the well-known Vancouver businessman and philanthropist Milton Wong, who passed away recently. Watch the Global News clip for the interesting story of their business, the building it is in, and why their brother Milton entered the professional world why they (both graduates of Engineering from UBC) kept up the family business.

The video above is embedded from the Global News website; the Modernize Tailors feature will play after a short advertisement.

Celebrate the Lunar New Year this weekend

Gung hay fat choy! The beginning of the Chinese New Year was this past Monday and there are lots of ways you can celebrate the Year of the Dragon this weekend:

The annual Chinese New Year parade begins on Sunday at noon at the Milennium Gates in Vancouver’s Chinatown. The Chinese Benevolent Association also has a parade map online.

The Chinese Benevolent Association is also presenting a two-day Chinatown Spring Festival on Saturday and Sunday, at the Dr. Sun Yat Sen plaza on Pender Street.

Or, check out the great round-up of events provided by the Vancouver Sun.

The image above is from a restaurant pamphlet in the Chung Collection. According to this pamphlet, “The Golden Dragon has always been associated as a symbol of good luck and wealth to its possessor.”

Special exhibition at Chinese Canadian Military Museum

For a limited time, you will be able to experience a special exhibition at the Chinese-Canadian Military Museum entitled “Chinese-Canadian Veterans: Loyalty to Country.” The exhibition will explore the history behind those Chinese-Canadians who fought for the Canadian military, despite being subjected to discriminatory laws. The exhibition will run from January 24 to January 27, so be sure to make it down to the museum during that time.

For information on hours and location, see the Chinese-Canadian Military Museum website.

Chung room closure: Monday Jan. 23

The Chung Collection exhibition room will be closed on Monday January 23. We apologize for the inconvenience. This closure also effects the “75 Years of Controversy: Canada’s Governor General’s Literary Awards” exhibition. Both exhibitions will re-open on Tuesday Jan. 24.

Cross-posted with the RBSC What’s New blog.

The loss of Chinese-Canadian philanthropist Milton Wong

Vancouver has lost a vibrant member of its business, philanthropic and Chinese-Canadian communities. Milton Wong passed away on New Years Eve after a battle with pancreatic cancer. Like Dr. Chung, Wong was the son of an immigrant Chinese tailor, who ran the family business out of a historic building in Vancouver’s Chinatown at Carrell and Pender. Their shop, Modernize Tailors, opened in 1913. Wong later purchased the building to restore it and convert the upper level to housing for seniors.

Wong was an alumnus of UBC and was active with both UBC and with Simon Fraser University. UBC has written up a tribute here, and Todd Wong has written some nice personal reminiscences and a round up of news articles here.