WHAT’S IN STORE: Feasts and frontage come to Fort Langley

From new eateries and a food festival, to the start of customized condos, village changes are afoot.

Fort Langley is transforming before my very eyes, and I’m not just talking about new construction.

Have any of you heard about this new initiative called the Fort Feast.

For the month of February, there are a handful of restaurants in Fort Langley that are participating in what they call a “community culinary event.”

It is a month-long dine out event profiling the relatively new Rail and River Bistro (which opened last November), Mangia e Scappa Italian Foods and Trading Post Brewing (which have been in the village for more than two years each), plus the long-time villagers Eighteen 27 and Fort Pub & Grill.

Fort Feast appears to be an unofficial or friendly competition, if you will.

Each of these participating restaurants were asked to establish a few feature items for the month.

Now, customers are invited to sample the cuisine and, then go onto Fort Feast’s Facebook page and vote for their favourite dishes. Don’t see any prizes or awards being promised, hence my reference to an unofficial contest. But I’ll be interested to see the feedback.

“Come rediscover Fort Langley, the Birthplace of B.C…. Finally all grown up. Five restaurants, 10 Fort Feast features, highlighting the best cuisine Fort Langley has to offer,” said event promoter Trevor Friesen.

“This is a great opportunity to attract people to Fort Langley and show off how much we have grown,” said Mangia founder Giulia Carbone.

“Running for the entire month of February 2018, you’ll have time to visit them all,” she added.

And in a little segue, let me change gears to talk about another up-and-coming Fort Langley restaurant.

While The Rustic Gourmet Bistro (under construction on Mavis Avenue) wasn’t open in time for this year’s feast, you might expect it on the billboard come next February.

In the meantime, however, please stay tuned to the Langley Advance for more about this new little bistro and its owners prior to their official opening March 2.


Village transformation

Speaking of the village growing up, it’s hard to miss the massive construction underway around what used to be the Birthplace of B.C. Gallery – on the corners of Glover Road, Francis Avenue, and Church Street in Fort Langley.

Lanstone Homes is preparing to open its presentation centre in a few weeks and commence sales by mid-March for a 24-resident, luxury condo development called Lily Terrace.

As second-generation home builders, “we’ve been a part of Fort Langley’s evolution into what many are calling ‘the Kerrisdale of the Fraser Valley’ with its high-end custom homes, boutique shops, and trendy cafes,” said Lanson Foster, founder and president of Lanstone Homes.

“Fort Langley has long been a popular tourist destination for its 1840s-era national historic site but it’s also become a highly desirable residential neighbourhood,” Foster added.

“Over the past decade, Fort Langley has experienced a population increase resulting from several new residential developments,” he said. Honestly, I haven’t seen anything this big in impact since the introduction of Bedford Landing more than a decade ago – although Foster also noted the more recent addition of Lanstones’ McBride Station.

For sure, the location and design of this project is going to continue to transform this small, quaint 3,800-resident village.

If the artist’s rendering is accurate to the finished product, it seems like it will embrace a little sense of Fort Langley’s heritage, but also caputre some of the more contemporary design we’ve seen implemented in both Bedford, and some of the more recent commercial structures along Glover Road.

Foster predicts that “Lily Terrace will complement the community and appeal to a growing number of young professionals and downsizers with discerning tastes for a low maintenance, premium lifestyle in the heart of the region’s most coveted neighbourhood.”

Time will tell, but it’s definitely going to be a prominent new addition.


For RV aficionados

While Langley was once a hub for RV sales and service, the numbers of related businesses have whittled down through the years – many moving further east, where larger chunks of land to display the mammoth vehicles could be had for a more “reasonable” price.

So, in anticipation of next week’s Earlybird RV Show at Tradex in Abbotsford, I scanned the vendor list and could only find one business that jumps as being from Langley.

If you’re heading to the show, which runs Feb. 15 to 18, then make sure to say hi to the local folks at Traveland RV.

This event typically showcases travel seminars, the latest in RV trends and products, including the latest models of motorhomes and fifth wheelers.

This year’s program is also expected to include a number of featured exhibitors, including Okanagan College which will be highlighting information about its program for RV service technicians.


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