Arts and history woven with culture and community are taking the spotlight in Vernon.
As part of BC Culture Days, which takes place across the province Sept. 24 to Oct. 24, the Greater Vernon Museum and Archives and Arts Council of the North Okanagan have a number of events planned.
Arts in Action is the theme of the Arts Council, as a number of by-donation classes are hosted including artist trading cards, glass beadmaking, flower pounding, screen printing and more, along with artist exhibits at Gallery Vertigo.
To kick off Culture Days, the Vernon Community Arts Centre invites you to take part in a variety of fun, interactive workshops and artist demonstrations Saturday, Sept. 25 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Pre-registration required for some workshops, at vernonarts.ca.
The Vernon Museum is focusing on the theme Re:Imagine over several events. It begins with the opening of The World is Our Stage, an exhibit featuring some of the original, hand-crafted masks and other set pieces from Armstrong’s iconic Caravan Farm Theatre Tuesday, Sept. 28, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. The Caravan reimagined stagecraft to become one of the world’s most esteemed outdoor theatre companies. The evening includes a special viewing of Niall McNeil’s documentary film The Originals. Filmed on location at the Caravan Farm Theatre and featuring interviews from Theatre alumni, The Originals spans four decades of life at Caravan.
The Vernon Museum will then host two events honouring the National Day for Truth & Reconciliation.
Syilx and Secwepemc community member, social activist, and business leader Elaine Alec will lead an online workshop called Cultivating Safe Spaces Wednesday, Sept. 29, from 1 to 2:30 p.m.
“We at the museum took this workshop along with members of several not-for-profit organizations in the North Okanagan and found it tremendously inspiring and beneficial in thinking of how to re-imagine our own workplace culture – and ways to make our community feel safe and inclusive to all,” curator Laisha Rosnau said. Register at vernonmuseum.ca.
National Day for Truth & Reconciliation, Sept. 30, the museum is hosting a day of exhibits and programming called Toward Reconciliation. Presentations, viewing of documentaries, and discussion circles, as well as self-led activities available for smaller children during the museum’s open hours (1 to 7 p.m.) will be available.
To wrap up its BC Culture Days involvement, the museum will host Not Neutral: Reconciliation in Museums Oct. 14, 7 to 8:30 p.m. This is an evening of exploring where and how the things in your local museum come from, from who decides what is ethical and what is history, to whose stories are told and whose are silenced or ignored.
“These are questions we are continually asking as we not only build on the legacy of the Vernon Museum, but reimagine what a museum can be in the 21st century, and how it can honour and respect all people,” Rosnau said.
All events for BC Culture Days (with the exception of the Cultivating Safe Spaces workshop with Elaine Alec) are by donation. For a full list visit culturedays.ca.