Planning underway for a Sun Peaks Arts Council

If all goes to plan for a group of enthusiastic art lovers, there’ll be another non-profit society at Sun Peaks, and a lot more art in the mountains in the near future.

Lorel Sternig and other local patrons of the arts will hold a general meeting on Tuesday, May 29 to explore community interest in establishing a Sun Peaks Arts Council.

“A non-profit Arts Society/Council . . . would allow the society to apply for grants, expand the (summer arts project) or develop new programs for both adults and children,” explains Sun Peaks resident Nancy Street.

Sternig estimates needing seven directors to form the council.

“They should have their own interest in something they’ve invested in trying to get going; someone who has passion for music, and visual arts, theatre and film, and authors,” says Sternig.

And, while decisions are still pending on the formation of the council, Sternig is well underway planning Art Zone summer workshops in the resort, an initiative that’s already received funding from the Kamloops Arts Council, and Sun Peaks Municipal Council.

“(Sternig) made a presentation to council asking for support for an art school,” confirms Byron Johnson, chief administrative officer for Sun Peaks municipality. “Council agreed to support that (to) $2,650 as well as in kind support.”

“We’re trying to do something every weekend . . . and hopefully expand to be a full seven days per week program in future years,” says Sternig. “(The workshops will) show the village what we’re capable of, and check that there’s interest for that sort of programming too.”

Local and visiting artists will host workshops ranging from watercolour painting to silversmithing, to sculpting. Already confirmed are painters Debbie Milner and Vaughn Butland on the first three weekends of the summer, as well as Alex Fong on August 11 and 12, and clay handbuilder Karen Palmer on July 21 and 22.
Plans are also afoot for summer art camps for children, either week-long day camps or sessions running once or twice per week.

“Right now . . . it’s about seeing if there’s demand, what parents are comfortable paying, and what the children would like to have as activities,” explains Sternig.

The venue for this bustle of activity will be a space in the Fireside Lodge thanks in part to support from Sotheby’s Realty at Sun Peaks.

“Lorel’s doing something very nice for the community and we want to support that,” says Liz Forster, owner of Sotheby’s Realty at Sun Peaks. “More and more we’re seeing individuals who have bright ideas, and they’re . . . adding activity, enthusiasm, positiveness (to Sun Peaks); our business really likes to support endeavours that way.”

The new societies and activities that are popping up in the village are breathing fresh energy into the area, and are offering more draws to the community.

“The Arts Summer Project will be another reason for people to spend time at Sun Peaks,” says Street. “It’ll also provide the many artists from (this) area a venue to share their expertise.”

“The community seems to have interest in music, theatre, film, all kinds of things,” concludes Sternig. “If you have enough push from the community you can bring things in . . . I think every community benefits incredibly when it has a council to help spur different events.”

The Arts Council meeting will take place on Tuesday, May 29, at 4 p.m. in Masa’s Bar & Grill.

Keep up to date with the Sun Peaks Arts Council and Art Zone initiatives, and keep your eyes peeled for the Kids’ Art Classes survey at: ArtZoneSunPeaks.blogspot.com. Or contact Nancy at: ndstreet2@yahoo.com

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