Nicola Valley attraction venues located in and around the City of Merritt, BC, Canada. 

Art Shows in Merritt BC

Nicola Valley Arts Gallery: Show of Shows 

Art Shows in Merritt BC at the Gallery for the last five years

Art Shows in Merritt BC

Nicola Valley Arts Gallery: Show of Shows Photo Credit Kim Leclair

Art Shows in Merritt BC and on the walls of the Nicola Valley Arts Gallery is the Show of Shows exhibition, the posters from 55 art shows since May 2017.  That was when I became the Gallery Director in Merritt BC and began curating art from the valley in a variety of exhibits, featuring all local artists. All local except the artists in two 2017 shows. 

Showing the creativity and art from our own Nicola Valley is one of the missions of the Nicola Valley Community Arts Council. And that mission is a passion of mine, to gather a diversity of art expressions in a variety of art shows.

Art shows in Merritt BC from young and old…

The 55 shows have brought the art of all ages to our small Gallery. We recently had clay sculptures and paintings from an after school art class with children as young as seven years.

And two of the many shows featured Bev Veale, who is still painting and drawing as she turns 86 years old. And Bev is not the only artist in the area who continues to create well into their retirement. Some retirees are just beginning their artistic path! 

Posters as art…

Bees in the Nicola Valley

The Bee Show, Poster by Kim Leclair

For each show, except one, local artist Kim Leclair has put together images provided her to create a poster that is art itself. Kim uses her digital skills to promote art shows in Merritt BC in posters which are printed to post around town, and in digital form to use in all our social media. 

The posters for each show are now on display on the walls of our small town Gallery, framed informally with bright wooden and metal frames. As people enter the Gallery the show posters take them on a sequential journey down memory lane around the four walls. 

We have put on about ten shows a year, each about five weeks, some longer and some shorter. Each art show has a story about its inspiration, the artists and submissions, and its time in the community.

Winter Art Show

6th Winter Artisan Show at the Nicola Valley Arts Centre Photo Credit Kim Leclair

Our month long Winter Artisan Show, since 2016

One corner of the Gallery is filled with the Winter Artisan posters, a popular yearly event since 2016. Artists and artisans, who are not already a part of our adjoining Gift Shop, are invited to display their art and wares for the local and traveling public. From local honey, to hand spun scarves, to art on the wall, there is something for everyone during the festive season.

The artists and artisans who participate have often already been a part of one of our Gallery shows.

We feature individual artists, two person shows, invite shows with several artists, and community shows where everyone in the Nicola Valley can submit a piece or two for the show. 

Art Show Stories

Each show curated has stories of its inspiration, its execution, and the personal accounts of the artist(s) and the art…

Some shows are touching in their topics, like the Memories and Mandalas Show, honouring over 30 artists and creatives who have passed in our valley. Hearing the stories of the submissions for this show was both emotional and fascinating. It was a very personal show for me, as I set up a display for my thirty year partner, a creative writer well known in our community, Gordon Cockle. Gord was a writer, a journalist, and a natural comedian and poet. I held his memorial during this show, a quiet affair in the middle of our Covid shutdown.

Another, The Murray Church Show, lamented the burning of a well know historic church a few kilometres out of town. The show acknowledged the memories of so many people in the community and beyond

This was a community art show in Merritt BC, by the community, and about our community. And the stories were from far and wide. We had Murray Church art on display: oils, pastels, watercolours, and sketches, both recent and from long ago. We had lots of photos of the church: inside and out, past pastors, and events, as well as art photography. There were collages, storyboards, stories, newspaper clippings, brochures, and past posters.

Linda Baird of the Trinity United Church, along with Amrit Samra, gathered much of the historical material for this wonderful show. We held a story telling evening…

This is a favourite poster of mine, because of Kim Leclair’s depiction of the church, gone…

Murray Church Art Show Poster

Murray Church Art Show Poster. Photo Credit Kim Leclair

The church has since been rebuilt, complete with stained glass by local artists Susan and Glenn Parkinson.

Art During Covid, Inspiring

Art During Covid

Art During Covid: Creativity Persists Photo credit Kim Leclair

Our Art of Covid: Creativity Persists Community Show was surprisingly beautiful. We held this show in early 2021, during our months of careful protocols. We weren’t sure what to expect but the creativity that people brought forward was full of beauty and inspiration, as well as art expressing unsurprising frustration.

Soon after our 2021 fires and floods, causing wide spread evacuations and regional, community, and personal devastation, we put a call out for a show about our pets and creatures, Creature Comforts. I heard so many stories about the care that our people took to save their pets and their livestock in our ranch and rural community. The stories were harsh, or sweet, and once again, inspirational. The art submitted gave people an opportunity to tell their stories of  flood and fire experiences when they came in to see the show. 

Those stories are still going on. Lasting effects.

Youth Art in Meritt BC

Coming Home Show, Youth Art. Photo Credit Kim Leclair

Our Merritt High School Seniors Art Shows in Merritt BC

The Youth POV…

Every year now, the local High School, Merritt Senior Secondary has a spring show with us, put together from their art class projects with teacher, Shannon Dunn.

This year the show, Coming Home, was a poignant mix of art and writing, expressing the experiences of the students during the fires and floods of 2021, most experiencing weeks-long evacuations and many the destruction of their homes. Still ongoing displacement…

Quotes from the students, about their art, and life…

“There is whimsy in everyday still life…”

“Children shouldn’t have to sacrifice their childhoods to survive.”

“I enjoy drawing simple things that bring me joy and peace.”

“People can feel isolated from each other even when being surrounded.”

“…to fly without boundaries, to explore without obligations.”

“Look closely, can you see starts on the window of her eye? They represent calmness and curiosity.”

“…that nostalgic feeling which envelops you in a warm blanket of comfort and reminiscence.”

Art Show Fun

We love to include the creative expressions and talents in different areas that are not always recognized in a small town gallery. 

Like the shoe show, Shoe Fabulous! Fun! It was inspired by Jean Kiegerl and her fab collection of shoes. We learned, during the call out for that show. who in our community has amazing shoe collections! Gorgeous and fun displays of shoes as well as shoe paintings, 3d mixed media on the paths we take, bronzed baby shoes, and firemen’s boots. We even had a little shoe shop in the back… Unforgettable!

Our Body Art: Living Art of Tattoo and Body Adornment art shows in Merritt BC displayed the work of our two tattoo artists in town, as well as airbrush, hair and makeup art. We posted body art images from around the world. I was inspired to take the plunge and designed arm band tattoos for myself that summer. Definitely fun!

Showcasing Different Talents in our Community

Art Shows in Merritt BC

Artof Sound Poster by Kim Leclair. Photo
by Jano Howarth

We enjoyed putting on a show, Wild! Flies, Skins, and Skulls, for the amazing fly tie artists in our fishing community. The beautiful work of internationally known fly tier Peter McVey (now past) of Corbett Lake Lodge, and others, brought in a whole different audience to our art show. We combined the fly tieing submissions with a bit of local taxidermy and skulls from a variety of creatures found in our surrounding valleys. We held a skull painting workshop around Halloween for that show! Fun!

Another fun show was our Art of Sound. We asked artists, musicians, creatives to express this theme in a variety of ways. So besides art of painting and drawings, we had Amrit Ahuja’s sound wave of the phrase “I love you.” framed. People brought interactive instruments and the Gallery was filled with sound, visual and literal.

I brought in a record player to play our fav LP’s. And I traded artist Robert Moretti my Janis Joplin vinyl for his jukebox painting. A great trade…

Jukebox Art

Got this in trade for a Janis Joplin vinyl Photo Credit Jano Howarth

Individual Artist Shows

My first individual artist show, in June 2017, was Leonard George, a very creative indigenous artist I had known for years. It was a retrospective show, with work he had done over the years collected from various private collections, with a few new works mixed in for purchase.

Art Shows in Merritt

Local Artist Jean Kiegerl and Twin Willows Photo Credit Kim Leclair

Other shows featuring a single artist: Wyatt Collins, a young artist working on big canvases, Libby Dybikowski, whose Sun. River. Mountain piece takes up a big space on one of my home walls, and Fred Tomlin, who’s stunning wood and mirror work surprised the community. Most of it.

Artist Michelle Lonsdale, with her show Wondernatural, also plays for us at Open Mic Nights and has taken up delicate tattoo art.

 And Jean Kiegerl, Cassandra Dolen and Shirley Reynolds, all experienced and dedicated artists we are fortunate to have in our community. 

So many I have been fortunate to work with. Inspiring artists in our small town community…

Living Legends…

Art Shows in Merritt BC

Living Legends Art Show. Photo credit Kim Leclair

A fav young graffiti style artist, Joel Reid, helps me put up a lot of the art shows. At 6′ 4″ if he’s there, I don’t need a ladder. He named one of our art shows in BC Merritt, when I told him who was coming, Living Legends. Long time artists instrumental in guiding our arts community for years, Pius Chong, Evelyn Armstrong, and Doug Strand were joined by inspired music and art supporter and artist in her own right, Jackie Stibbards. 

Living Legends for sure, in any community. And I know that many of our up and coming artists, expressing their creativity and sharing their art with our community, will take their place as well known inspirations in our Nicola Valley.

Gratifying. It’s a blessing to pull together the fun, thoughtful, inspired work of the many artists who have participated in all of these 55 shows over the last five years.

And we are almost booked for the next two years, art shows we can all look forward to, from community themed shows to feature artists to interactive and challenging shows. 

List of  55 Art Shows in BC Merritt below, May 2017 to August 2022.

What’s happening in the Arts Council?

Jano Howarth, Arts Gallery Curator and talent fan.’

Facebook and Instagram: Jano Howarth

Facebook: Creative Community 

Website: Meme Dreams 

55 Art Shows in Merritt BC from May 2017 to August 2022

2017

1. May 6- June 3  The Poetic Language of Landscape with Patricia Peters…

2. June 8- 24   In the Siege of Roots: A Retrospective with Leonard George

3. July 5-July 31 Art Walk with Bruce Walter and Ellen Miller

4. Aug 3- 31   Art Walk Artist’s Show 

5. Sept 1- 23   Bev Veale: A Retrospective

6. Sept 28- Oct 28   Ekphrastic: The Fibre Art Network

7. Nov 3- 18   Shoe Fabulous: A Collection from Collections Community Show with Jean Kiegerl

8. Dec 1- Jan 13   2nd Winter Artisan Show

2018

9. Jan 18- 27   Lifestyle: Clothes and Colours Community Show

10. Feb 1- Mar 3   Form, Figure, Faces Community Show

11. Mar 15-Apr 7   Wyatt’s World: An Abstract Expressionist’s Unique Perspective in Fluid Imagination with Wyatt Collins

12. Apr 19- May 12   Our Story: SD 58 Arts Festival 2018 with MSS Seniors

13. May 24- June 16   Into the Valley: Spirit, Energy, and Life with Pauline Ouelette and Natalie Rostad-Desjarlais

14. July 3- 31   Art Walk 2018 with Cindilla Trent and Pat Tombe

15. Aug 2- Sept 1   Art Walk Artists’ Show Community Show

16. Sept 6- 29   Merritt to Marrakech with Libby Dybikowski

17. Oct 11- Nov 4   Wild! Flies, Skins & Skulls Community and Invite Show

18. Nov 8-24   Wabi Sabi: Art in Imperfection with Vickie Strom

19. Nov 30- Dec 22   3rd Winter Artisan Show

2019 Art Shows in Merritt BC

20. Feb 1- Mar 2   Art of Sound: The Creative Expression of Sound Through Sound and Art Mediums

21. Mar 8- 30   Living Legends: Four Nicola Valley Artists with Pius Chong, Evelyn Armstrong, Doug Strand, Jackie Stibbards

22. Apr 5- 27   Wondernatural with Michelle Lonsdale

23.   Apr Joel Reid Art Show

24. May 2- 11   Create-Communicate-Connect with MSS Seniors

25. May 17- June 22   Forever West: A Lifestyle That Gas Never Changed with Faye Gustafson

26. June 27- July 31   Murray Church Show Community Show with Linda Baird and Peter Samra

27. Aug 9- Sept 7   Upcycle: Have Some Fun! Get Inspired! Save the Earth! Community Show

28. Sept 13 -Oct 5   Swing Into Fall Community Show

29. Oct 11- Nov 9  Fractured Reflections: The Art of Fred Tomlin

30.  4th Pop Up Winter Artisan Show and Shop

2020

31. Feb 7- Mar 14   Children in Art, Art for Children Community Show

32. Apr 5- June 13   I Love Painting! The Robert Moretti Show

33. May28 -June 13   Landscapes of the Nicola Valley with Dave Barber

34. June 19 – July 11   From the Earth Invite Show

35. July 17- Aug 22   The Bee Show Community Show with local apiarists

36. Sept 4- 26   Memories and Mandalas NVCAC Members Invite Show

37. Oct 15- Nov 14   Art for the Love of It with Jean Kiegerl and Twin Willows

38. Nov 20- Dec 4   5th Annual Winter Artisan Show & Sale

2021

39. Jan 13-31   Street Art! Community Show

40. Feb 3-Mar 7   Art During Covid: Creativity Persists Community Show

41. Mar 10- Apr 11   Looking Forward Now with Cindilla Trent and Kim Leclair

42. Apr 14- May 2   Unmasked: MSS Graduating Show

43. May 5-23   Clubhouse Art Show with Members of CMHA

44. May 26- June 27   Pencil Paintings with Judy Young

45. June 30- Aug 1   Body Art: Living Art of Tattoo and Body Adornment Community Show

46. Aug 4- Sept 5   Art of Clothing: Creative Fashion Community Show

47. Sept 8- Oct 10   Merritt Naturally: Discover Nature at Our Doorstep with Frank Ritcey and Bruce Walter

48. Oct 13- Nov 7   Baskets and Bowls with Evelyn Armstrong and Andrew Ruigrok

49. Nov 13- Dec 24   6th Annual Winter Artisan Show & Sale

And this year, 2022 Art Shows in Merritt BC

50. Jan 26- Mar 13   Creature Comforts Community Show

51. Mar 16- Apr 10   Kevin Griffiths: Flora, Fauna, Facility

52. Apr 13- May 1   Bev Veale: Reminiscences

53. May 5- June 5   Shirley Reynolds: Colour Personified

54. May 8-26   Coming Home with the MSS Seniors

55. June 29- Aug 7   Food for Thought Community show

56. Aug 11 – Sept 11   Show of Shows Curated by Jano Howarth, Posters by Kim Leclair

Art Shows in Merritt BC

Artists, Artisans, Art Gallery in the Nicola Valley

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“Experience Community Program” is a small and rural community authentic content marketing program.  Therefore it is a product of the EH? Canada Marketing Group.  Contact us today to bring this award winning community program to your region. 

 

Artists in Merritt BC – Bev Veale

Bev Veale, Local Artisan and Homesteader

Kinnikinic Homestead LTD

Bev Veale, Artist and Homesteader. Photo Credit Jano Howarth.

Bev Veale, local artist and homesteader, and a creative and committed contributor to our Nicola Valley community for decades…

Artists in Merritt BC – Bev Veale. Bev has created art and supported other artists in the Nicola Valley for decades.

She was a part of the Valley Visual Artists Group and is an Honorary Member of the Nicola Valley Community Arts Council. Bev frequents the Arts Centre, participating in gallery shows and contributing art books, supplies and her experience. Bev has been painting the landscapes of the Nicola Valley for many years.

Artists in Merritt BC focus

Drawing and painting, especially with watercolours and water based oils, are Bev’s focuses. She also draws and sketches with pencil and watercolour pencil crayons. But over the years, Bev has immersed herself in trying different mediums, like wood carving. Her favourite subjects are our Nicola Valley landscapes, our flowers and wildlife – depicting the golden hills, meadows, mountains, streams and flowers around us. 

Artists in Merritt BC – Bev Veale has an impressive collection of art books and magazines, a lifelong passion. Bev continues to study art, draw and paint. Her latest Gallery show was at the Nicola Valley Arts Centre in April 2022, Bev Veale Reminiscences.

Artists of Merritt

Bev Veale Reminiscences Art Show. Photo Credit Jano Howarth.

Artists of Merritt, BC

The Veale family here in the Nicola Valley since the early 1900’s.

The Veale family has lived in our Nicola Valley since the early 1900’s. Bev’s grandfather, John Veale, homesteaded at a property on Skuhun Creek, west of Merritt, while Bev’s family, parents Jack and Curly Veale and their five children, settled at Okanagan Landing near Vernon.

Bev’s story of art …

Bev specialized in art and aquatics during her school years and spent four years in the Air Cadets. That led to nine years with the Canadian Air Force as a Recreation Specialist. Bev spent time at bases in Canada, and then 3 years in Germany, during the 1st Cold War.

After she left the military in the mid 60’s, Bev spent the next years in the Nicola Valley and at her family’s homestead, then at the University of Victoria, and worked as a Recreation Supervisor with the City of Vernon for seven years. In 1978, Bev came back to our valley and took over and managed the Veale homestead for over twenty years.

Bev Veale, artist

Bev as a girl, middle. Photo credit Bev Veale.

Kinnikinic

Bev’s Business, the Kinnikinic Homestead. Photo credit Bev Veale.

Kinnikinic Homestead

Most of Bev’s years there were spent setting up and running the Kinnikinic Homestead LTD, a business inviting people from all over BC and beyond, to experience homestead life in the Nicola Valley.

With help from family, friends and the people from the nearby Shackan Reserve, Bev ended up over time with a log lodge, a cottage, three cabins, a root cellar, a shop, and campsites, all around The Field, which was home to her own horses and horses arriving with Kinnikinic guests.

Bev's Family

Photo credit Bev Veale.

Log Cabin in Merritt, BC

Kinnikinic Cabin in winter. Photo credit Bev Veale.

Bev Veale, Merritt Resident and Artist

Bev, at times, helped to keep the Kinnikinic Homestead going with part time employment at Chataway Lakes and subbing as a teacher in the local schools. When the Homestead property passed out of her hands, Bev moved right into the town of Merritt, where she worked with the Merritt News until she retired.

Currently Artists in Merritt BC – Bev Veale has a family homestead and art display at the Nicola Valley Museum and Archives.

"<yoastmark    Bev Veale, Museum Display

Bev’s homestead and art display. Photo Credit Nicola Valley Museum.

Bev Veale’s Museum Reception, Family and Friends

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Bev’s Family at her Museum Reception. Photo Credit Jano Howarth.

Artist of Merritt BC, Bev Veale

Family and friends, at Bev Veale’s Homestead display. Photo Credit Jano Howarth.

Thanks Bev!

Be sure to visit the museum in Merritt. Lots to see…

It’s summer! Last year’s summer art shows at the Gallery.

Jano Howarth, Arts Gallery Curator and talent fan.’

Facebook and Instagram: Jano Howarth

Facebook: Creative Community 

Website: Meme Dreams 

Artists of Merritt, BCBev Veale with artist Shirley Reynolds. Photo credit Jano Howarth. Bev Veale, Artist of Merritt, BCNicola Valley Snake Fence, Private Collection. Photo credit Jano Howarth. Art Gallery Reception, Merritt, BCBev’s Art Show Reception with friends and fans. Photo credit Jano Howarth.

Thanks to the Nicola Valley Museum and Archives for putting on this great display of Bev Veale’s art and homesteading history in the valley. 

And thanks to all of Bev’s supporters, recognizing her art and contributions to the valley.

Nicola Valley Museum and Archives

Museum Manager, Cameron Bridge. Photo Credit Jano Howarth.

Bev Veale, Artist of Merritt BC

Bev with Suzanne, local patron of the arts, who acquired a Bev Veale painting years ago. Photo Credit Jano Howarth.

Artists in Merritt BC – Bev Veale

Celebrating local art in the Nicola Valley

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“Experience Community Program” is a small and rural community authentic content marketing program.  Therefore it is a product of the EH? Canada Marketing Group.  Contact us today to bring this award winning community program to your region. 

 

Art Show in Merritt BC

Artist Shirley Reynolds

Home is Where the Art Is

Show Poster

Show Poster-Merritt Printing design

 

 

Colour Personified

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

An Art Show in Merritt BC will be held from May 5, 2022 to June 5, 2022 at the Nicola Valley Arts Centre.  

Artist Shirley Reynolds

Shirley Reynolds

Shirley Reynolds-Tom Reynolds Photo

Shirley Reynolds Art Show in Merritt

Shirley got her art career off to a great start when she was just a toddler.  Her dad had painted her bedroom but apparently it was a little too boring for her so she took an indelible pencil and drew on the wall.  As you can imagine Shirley’s father was not impressed but took the time to explain to her that drawing on the wall was not appropriate. After this discussion he repainted the offending wall. However, awhile later he came back to find that his artist daughter had “improved” the wall again. From that point on she was hooked with painting and has spent over six decades perfecting her craft.

Landscapes in the Art Show in Merritt BC

Many artists over the years tend to develop a signature style that is associated with them.  While her paintings have grown in complexity over the years she has not settled into a specific style.  Each painting is unique, just like the artist, herself.  When we go camping she loves to bring paints so she can capture the scenery where ever we may be.

Tree at the lake

Reynolds Photo

Harmon Lake

Harmon Lake-Tom Reynolds Photo

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Still lifes ” in the Art show in Merritt BC

As I said before, Shirley’s style is different for nearly every painting.  However, there is one aspect to her paintings that is consistent and that is the use of brilliant colours.  This definitely comes out when she does a “still life” as you can see in the examples below.

Flowers in Pot

Flowers in Pot-Tom Reynolds Photo

F

Flowers-Tom Reynolds Photo

 

Abstracts in the Art Show in Merritt BC

As I said earlier Shirley does not have just one style that identifies her work.  I believe her paintings come from her soul so you never know what you are going to get until she puts her inspiration to paper.  While she does a large part of her work on landscapes she has begun to dabble in abstracts.  However her use of colour flows through these as well.

Geometric abstract

Geometric Abstract-Tom Reynolds Photo

movement abstracts

Movement Abstracts-Tom Reynolds photo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Impressionism Style is at the Art Show in Merritt, BC

Sometimes the inspiration for a subject matter requires that the objects are less defined but you get the sense of the painting.  Below are examples of Shirley using this style.

Fall Colours

Fall Colours-Tom Reynolds Photo

Fall Tree

Fall Tree-Tom Reynolds Photo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Painting is not all she does

While her primary artistic endeavor is painting, her creativity is expressed  in almost everything she does. On several occasions she has set her hand to doing mosaics.  Apparently it is handy to save your broken cups and saucers because you never know when the need to do a mosaic will come. Also you may come across something that would make a great base for your project such as a ball.

Mosaic Globe

Mosaic Globe-Tom Reynolds Photo

 

 
Mosaic Tea Cups

Mosaic Tea Cups-Tom Reynolds Photo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

She still hasn’t finished  experimenting with different mediums as she and her daughter, Andrea are going to try their hand at pottery.  

Her artistic talents have also stirred her interest in interior decorating.  Along with the items she is displaying, she has upped the ambiance of the show by providing colourful props that support the art work.

Support the Art Show in Merritt BC

Supporting the art show is one way of ensuring that the arts will be alive and well in Merritt.  When you sign the register this provides evidence to the funding partners that the activity is valued by the community and tourists alike. While you are at the show you can browse the gift shop and help support local artists and the Arts Council.  It is also a good time to check out the programs that are offered.  

 

Art Show in Merritt BC

Artist Shirley Reynolds

Home is Where the Art Is

 

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“Experience Community Program” is a small and rural community authentic content marketing program.  Therefore it is a product of the EH? Canada Marketing Group.  Contact us today to bring this award winning community program to your region. 

 

 

BC Flood and Fire Relief

Hell or Highwater Concert Help-a-thon

Donate to help the Victims

BC Flood and Fire Relief – It has been awhile since the disastrous floods and fires in Southern BC.  At this point in time it seems that the plight of the people affected by these events have been forgotten. However there still is a significant need. Provincial disaster relief is slow in coming and in all likelihood will not be sufficient to cover all the costs incurred.  As well, many people who thought they were insured weren’t.

BC Fire and Floods a Reminder

They say a picture is worth a thousand words so I want to remind everyone what happened in Merritt, Lytton, Princeton, and Abbotsford. 

Merritt Flood Nov 2021

Merritt Flood Nov 2021  – Photo Courtesy of  Global News

Abbotsford Floods – Photo Courtesy of Lindsay Lockhart

Lytton Fire 2021

Lytton Fire 2021 – Photo Courtesy of CTV News

Recovery from these events is a long ways away but the people need your help now.

Hell or Highwater Concert Help-a-thon

The Hell or High Water concert/help-a-thon is a massive undertaking. The organizing  group has put together an amazing group of artists to entertain you and to encourage you to help out.  For the 12 hour period, starting on March 13, 2022 at 10:00AM there will be appearances of over 50 Artists and another 25 or so dignitaries. To see where you can tune in to watch the Hell or High Water Fundraiser please go to the website. You can follow along and donate on participating websites, social media and, maybe even, TV. 

The great thing about this concert is that the overhead has been kept as low as possible so your donation goes to the fire  and flood relief victims.  The organizers  are donating their time and expertise, the artists are donating their performances and all prizes have been donated.

You may want to know who is behind the fund raiser for fire and flood relief. The “Brothers of Tourism” at EH Canada Travel, Kenny Hess (Founder of Rockin’ River Music Festival), the Citxw Nlaka’pamux Assembly, Tourism Nicola Valley, Experience Nicola Valley and the Rotary Club of Merritt are all proud to step up and present the “Hell or High Water Fundraiser”.

Hell or Highwater Entertainers

Obviously with over 50 performers I won’t be covering them all but you can be sure that everyone is a top caliber performer and you will enjoy every minute of it.

The lineup includes musicians from all genres with a large tribute to Country and Western.  This is not surprising because this fire and flood relief concert originated from the Country Music Capital of Canada, Merritt BC.  For the full list of Artists you can go to www.hellorhighwater.ca .

Just to get you excited here is but a few people performing for you, George Canyon, Patricia Conroy, Big and Rich, Kenny Hess, Karen Lee Batten, David Gogo, Jackson Hollow, Lisa Brokop,  Duane Steele and Beverley Mahood.  If old time rock and roll is more your thing then you can stay tuned for Chilliwack or Loverboy.

Fire and Flood Relief Prizes

To encourage you to donate to the fire and flood relief concert, Hell or High Water, you can win a valuable prize.  When you donate you can pick the prize that you want to win. You will automatically get 3 chances at the draw and then you get to earn other chances at your draw.  So it is actually better to donate early so your chances of winning become a little bit better.

What can you win?  There are prizes for every taste from Canucks tickets, Rockin River Tickets or a stay at a beautiful cabin on Glimpse Lake near Merritt, BC.

I am an art fan and have to say there is an amazing painting by Canadian Artist, David Langevin that has a retail value of over $8,000. So this will not only be a great addition to your home but also be a great investment in one of Canada’s foremost artists.

Melting at Moraine

Melting at Moraine-David Langevin Art

The Flood and Fire Relief Victims Need Help!

The crisis is not over!  The victims of the fire and flood need your support. The Hell or High Water Concert help-a-thon is the perfect place to provide that support.  You are not only helping your neighbours but you’re a getting a great day of music.  Also you will be entertained plus have the chance to win a great prize.  You can also direct your donation to a specific community.  Let’s all get on board.

 

Flood and Fire Relief

Hell or Highwater Concert Help-a-thon

Donate to help the Victims

 

 

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“Experience Community Program” is a small and rural community authentic content marketing program.  Therefore it is a product of the EH? Canada Marketing Group.  Contact us today to bring this award winning community program to your region. 

 

Clearwater Speedway

Merritt Speedway Brings New Life to Sister Dirt Track

What happens when you are a member of a race track during a pandemic?

Clearwater Speedway – With no racing in 2020 anywhere including Merritt BC Canada, many racers were just vibrating, waiting, hoping, and dreaming racing. Well, good news for racing fans, the Merritt Speedway “the home of dirt track racing in the Nicola Valley”  helped resurrect a track that has been shut down since about 2006. That race track is the Clearwater Speedway.

clearwater speedway in bc

Clearwater Speedway. Photo credit: Susanne Snider

How does Clearwater Speedway happen?

A few Merritt Speedway racers attended an event in Rimby, Alberta called The Covid Cup in 2020. They travelled 12 hours to the event and almost got rained out for the weekend.  Consequently, the Merritt racers were caught, at times, waiting the rain out, under a tarp in a torrential downpour. The question going around circles was, “Why are we here?” Followed by, “there must be a closer venue”. Almost unanimously “Clearwater!” was said out loud. These five members got busy and had a soft opening of the dirt racing track in Clearwater, British Columbia, Canada in July of 2021. 

merritt speedway crazt times on a dirt race track

Chills and Thrills at Merritt Speedway Photo by Ken Beckett

Clearwater Speedway was once a busy, fun dirt track

Located at  75 Camp Two Rd, Clearwater, BC, the race track came on hard times in 2006. At the time the support just wasn’t there 15 years ago. In other words non-profit race tracks are a lot of hard work, insurance is expensive and there are never enough volunteers. Therefore it seemed like the right thing to do for the Merritt Speedway, who has been running consecutively for 30 years, to lend a hand and make it happen. 

dirt track race car racing in BC

#33 Ryan Sorenson & #13 Dennis Smith. Photo credit by Ken Beckett

Dirt Track Circuit in Pemberton, Merritt and Clearwater BC Maybe?

Currently there are quite a few Clearwater racers and their families that travel to Merritt to race. With a devoted racing community and more joining yearly, it’s the right time to get things started. The property has a new owner who is truly on board with the restoration as he remembers attending events years ago. Clearwater Mayor and council passed the final adoption of the rezoning application for the speedway.

Clearwater Dirt Track 2021

#89 Colin Reimer Street Stock Clearwater Invitational Champion Photo by Meghan Reimer

Clearwater Speedway is a sister track to Merritt Speedway, and ran 6 races this year.
In particular there were three classes competed – Late Model, Street Stock and 4 Cyl Bomber.

While in Merritt we ran the regular amount of races this season – Late Model, Street Stock, 6&8 Cyl Bomber, 4 Cyl Bomber and Junior 4 Cyl Bomber. B.C. Micro Mini Sprints came out to play four races as well. This years race season is complete, the enthusiasm from racers and fans, even with Covid 19 safety protocols and restrictions, was very promising. The community support has been amazing, but local volunteers are still very much needed.

 

 

Contact:  Clearwater Speedway
Website: www.merrittspeedway.ca  or  www.clearwaterspeedway.ca
email:  merrittspeedway@outlook.com

Clearwater, British Columbia, Canada Dirt Race Track

Merritt Speedway, Merritt BC, Canada

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Canada Country & Blues Musician 

Canadian “Living the Dream” in country music

Crystal Shawanda is a Canadian Blues and Country Music Artist who grew up on the Wiikwemkoong First Nation, Manitoulin Island, Ontario.  However, today, Crystal is also producing Indigenous music, or as she likes to refer to them,  storyteller songs. That suits us just fine, as we are storytelling bloggers who have deep roots in country living and the country lifestyle.  No wonder we proudly celebrate Crystal  Shawanda with a Merritt Mural in Downtown Merritt BC Canada.  

Crystal Shawanda Canadian Blues Country Music Artist

The Beginning of Crystal Shawanda as a Canadian Blues and Country Music Artist

Little do people know that Shawanda was surrounded by country and blues music throughout her childhood. Often, she was sitting back as a child  observing her family singing and playing instruments. However, as she aged Crystal’s parents noticed her keen interest in singing and instruments. Therefore , there were little options available but to teach her to sing and play guitar from her home on the lands of an Wiikwemkoong First Nation

Shawanda used to go with her mother when she cleaned houses. To make the time pass, she would be the DJ.

“I would spin the records while she cleaned and we would both sing at the top of our lungs,” Crystal Shawanda. I remember holding up a Loretta Lynn record and saying, ‘Whatever she does, that’s what I want to do.”

The Younger Years of  Country Music

Crystal Shawanda is a Canadian Blues and Country Music Artist who started singing on stage when she was 6, and getting paid gigs by the time she was 10. Consequently, this was the beginning of  touring with a theatre company when she was 9.

When Crystal was 12, because her dad was a truck driver, she started taking frequent trips to Nashville. As a result she would walk through downtown Nashville, by all the honky-tonks.

“I’d get up to sing at everyone of them and then we’d get back in the truck and leave. It always kept me wanting more.”

Music School to Music Capital to No Music 

After dropping out of music school, Crystal moved to Nashville. Even though, she did not know a soul, and was all alone, she was determined to make something happen. She met a well respected music executive, who told her there was no room for her in country music. She tried to find a positive in the critique as well as take it with gracefulness, but the words stung too much which resulted in her moving back home, and giving up on her dream.

“I just don’t know if Native Americans make sense in country music, I don’t know if fans would be receptive, and I wouldn’t even know how to market you” (respected music executive)

The Low Notes of Country and Blues Music

She started travelling down a dark road on a self destructive path. Somehow that road always had enough light to lead her back to the stage and microphone. Albeit, it was blessing that would help her see and come to terms with what she was dealing with.

The Rise of a Canadian Country and Blues Artist

All things considered, Crystal moved back to Nashville in 2008, with a mission, and a purpose. She played at Tootsie’s Orchid lounge 6 days a week, 3 shifts a day. She created a buzz and landed a production deal with Scott Hendricks. After hearing Crystal cover B.B.King and Janis Joplin a record deal was landed with RCA records by Joe Galante. It was the beginning of Crystal Shawanda Canadian Blues Country Music Artist.

Crystal Shawanda in Nashville

Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge in Nashville. Photo credit: iStock Photos

Crystal Shawanda burst onto the country music scene with her hit single, “You Can Let Go,” and her debut album, “Dawn Of A New Day”. September 6th, 2008 marked the Grand Ole Opry debut of this Canadian First Nation songstress.

Dawn of the Day Release Her Inner Country Music

Shawanda’s first album, “Dawn of a New Day”, was released in Canada on June 24, 2008. It would release on Aug 19, 2008 in the United States. The album would chart at number 2 on the Top Country Albums in Canada, and number 16 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart in the United States. Her album was released in stores internationally, resulting in a top 16 song on the American Billboard Chart.

Her story,  female artist who travels to Nashville with a single suitcase, is a common one. However big dreams, and even a bigger voice struck a chord and landed her a ton of success. Following the path of many females before her, Shawanda did not give up. 

 Aboriginal Awards 2008

  • Artist of The year
  •  Album of The Year (Dawn of A New Day)
  •  Best Single of The Year (You Can Let Go)

Canadian Aboriginal Awards 2008

  •  Artist of The year
  •  Album of The Year (Dawn of A New Day)
  •  Country Album of The Year
  •  Music Video of The Year (You Can Let Go)
  • Best Single of The Year (You Can Let Go)

CCMA Awards

She won Female Artist of The Year at the 2008 Canadian Country Music Awards as well as Best New Country Artist at the Canadian Radio Music Awards.

The Junos

Crystal Shawanda Canadian Blues Country Music Artist, was nominated for a Juno Award,  five consecutive years since 2009, winning Aboriginal Album Of the Year.

Living The Dream

“I want to inspire people to just take chances, “she said. “It’s not about being perfect, if you love something, go after it.” (Crystal Shawanda)

CMT documented Crystal Shawanda’s, rise to fame in a six-part series Crystal: Living the Dream, which aired in February 2008.

The music scene loves Crystal Shawanda. The realization of how far she’s come, manifested when her feet touched down on Nashville’s country music epicentre- the Grand Ole Opry. “It was definitely the highlight of my whole journey,” she said.

Phyllis Ellis, writer and director of Crystal Shawanda: Living the Dream, said working with Shawanda and visiting her First Nation roots was a benefit to her work and life. “When I first heard her sing, I almost fell over. She is one of the most talented artists I think I’ve ever heard.”

Ellis believes Shawanda is a role model for all young people- Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal alike. She said the songs provoke insight, experience and humour. “Her music is direct. It is not obscure. She addresses things.” Calling Shawanda an “old soul,” Ellis described her as having the “knowledge of a 80-year-old. She is complex, honest and has integrity.”

Country Music Scene and Artists

In light of everything, Shawanda said, it was at the CMT Music Awards, when she shared the stage with such country stars as Martina McBride, Brooks and Dunn and Carrie Underwood, that she realized she had reached her Country goals and dreams. 

From time ot time Shawanda toured with various artists across Canada and the northern United States in 2008. She toured Canada and the United States with Brad Paisley and Dierks Bentley as a special guest on the Paisley Party 2009 Tour.

In spite of her success on the country music scene, she released one more country album “Just Like You” in 2014 that resulted in a Juno Award, and a top 20 hit in Canada. In addition the opportunity to perform for millions in New York City for the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, televised internationally.

Blues and/or Country Music Artist

As the format of country music started to change Crystal found the feedback to be a resounding “your too bluesy”, and this had her chasing her sound.  For this reason, while working on her third country album, she made the decision to abandon the project and take some time off.

“You’re too bluesy. I so wanted to be what everyone wanted me to be” (Crystal Shawanda)

One day during her hiatus while watching the news and feeling overwhelmed by the headlines, she wrote “The Whole World’s Got The Blues”. Finally, this was the inspiration to her first blues album. Furthermore it was a modern take on the blues, but deep rooted. It captures the resilience of the human spirit, much like the way Crystal does.

All in With the Blues

The album garnered a Juno nomination, and received mixed reviews, with moderate airplay, but it opened a whole new world to Crystal. During this time some of the feedback was that Crystal was a country music artist, and couldn’t know the blues. This had her feeling like a fish out of water, which would result in being the inspiration behind her second blues album “Fish out of water  in October 2016. Consequently the album was nominated for a Juno award, and  received some of the best reviews from the critics since her debut album.

The Dream Continues To Grow

“Voo Doo Woman”, produced by Crystal and her long time guitarist and husband Dewayne Strobel, was released in October, 2017. To clarify Voodoo Woman is Crystal’s third blues album – and the first to be released outside of Canada. This album was a declaration, an affirmation, Crystal Shawanda is a true blues singer.  

Crystal Shawanda is a soulful little powerhouse, and will make you feel every word. In particular, she has a voice that’s not like anyone you’ve ever heard, it’s pure and precise, yet at the same time gritty and gutsy .

“I can’t help but feel like I’m home, no longer holding back.” (Crystal Shawanda)

Crystal Shawanda Merritt BC Mural 

Crystal Shawanda Canadian Blues Country Music Artist, sometimes referred to as the next Shania Twain, tops the Canadian country music charts with “My Roots are Showing”, and at that time also graced the main stage of The Merritt Mountain Music Festival in 2009.

“I was just blown away and touched.” (Crystal Shawanda)

I was worried because it was starting to get cold and starting to rain right before our show. My band thought, oh no, they’re all going to start heading to their campers and their motorhomes, and to my surprise I came out — at this point it was pouring rain — and everybody was just sitting in their seats.

Smiling Crystal  called out if everyone was feeling rowdy tonight? Not so much. They were getting soaked out there. The result was her biggest ovation for her “You Can Let Go Now Daddy” hit. 

However, it was after this performance at the 2009 Merritt Mountain Music Festival that, Crystal had her mural painted by Michelle Loughery as part of the 2005 Merritt Mural Project.  In other words the Merritt BC Murals were part of a successful program called, the “Merritt Youth Mural Project”. A project designed for working with local young artists and “ youth at risk”.  

The Crystal Shawanda mural is included on The Canadian Country Music Mural Walk in downtown Merritt, BC. Hence, Crystal’s mural can be found in Spirit Square on the corner of Granite Avenue and Voght Street, in a row of murals near the stage.  

Back To Merritt, BC For The Rodeo

Shawanda came back to play The North America’s Richest Indian Rodeo held in Merritt at the Nicola Valley Rodeo Grounds on May 22, 2010

While she was keeping busy on a North American radio tour, she said she was excited to be playing Merritt again, where she will be able to meet up with old friends and hopefully make some new ones.

She played songs from her albums as well as songs she loves to sing from what she calls her heroes.  “I’ll cover Prince, Tina Turner, Johnny Cash, Hank Williams. In other words, it’s just like, what do I feel like singing tonight?”

Welcome the Rockin’ River Music Festival

Crystal Shawanda’s show at the 17th annual Merritt Mountain Music Festival in 2011 was a treat as she played Prince’s Little Red Corvette. Lastly, Crystal has left her mark in Merritt and did return  for the 2017 Rockin River Music Fest held every August long weekend in Merritt, BC.

For This Reason Follow
Crystal Shawanda Canadian Blues Country Music Artist on:

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Summer Art Shows in Merritt BC

Clothing and Body Art Shows Liven Up Gallery

Body Art Shows in Merritt BC

Poster for Body Art Show

Body Embellishments and Wearable Art 

Summer Art Shows in Merritt, BC, at the Nicola Valley Arts Gallery, brought out the creativity of different artists in our community. They were just another great example of how resilient artists are during Covid

Body Art Shows in Merritt

For our Body Art Show in July, our tattoo, airbrush, and henna artists displayed their work with flair and personality. The hair stylists and makeup artists pushed the boundaries even further which just upped the level of fun in the show.

The Talent

During our fun opening reception several guests had hand henna art done by Prianne Dhesa, or temporary body art by Amy Maclaren. Photos of celebrities, famous people, and locals with tattoos and wild hairstyles livened up the gallery as well. And of course we had art by several of our Nicola Valley creatives.

We enjoyed music by guitarist Steve Atlas of the local group Stratosphere. Steve had an impressive and enjoyable two hour playlist and also chatted with the art show guests. (Photo of Steve Atlas below)

Tattoo Artist

Brian Wheeler of Sin on Skin Tattoos Merritt. Photo credit: Jano Howarth

Thanks to local tattoo artists Brian Wheeler of Sin on Skin Tattoo, and Marco Merulla of Mom’s Tattoos. Beautiful, thoughtful, and fun work! I now have tats in progress from both of these tattoo masters…. (Photo of Marco Merulla below)

Art of Clothing, Creativity in Merritt BC

For our Art of Clothing Show that followed, well over a dozen local weavers, clothes designers, embroiderers, upcyclers and artists provided us with a creative display, from trench coats to hats to felted vests. We had lots of OOAK (one of a kind) pieces of clothing as well as art pieces depicting fashion. 

Wearable art for the people of the Nicola Valley and for all the visitors who stopped in to see the show.

Fires in the Valley, Art anyway…

Art of Clothing Show

Art of Clothing Show. Photo credit: Jano Howarth

From the beginning of the summer art shows in Merritt BC, until the end of our Art of Clothing show, the Nicola Valley and surrounding areas were under threat from wild fires, out of control. Artists of our two shows, our workshop instructors and Gallery volunteers were on alert and many were evacuated from their homes for days and weeks.

But we had lots of visitors through the Gallery! Despite the danger of fire and heavy smoke people traveled to the Interior of BC, risking road closures and extended stays.  People enjoyed the distraction of our local creativity and these unique shows. 

Thank you to Artists and Creative Help

Thanks to our Art of Clothing artists! Several created work just for our show. 

Thanks to our student volunteer, artist Olivia Nendick. She helped with our shows, or kids art events, and submitted pieces herself. (Photo of Olivia below)

And special thanks to our stellar summer worker, just graduated and an artist also, Karianne Kroeker. Kari tackled any job given to her, from mundane to creative.

Merritt Art Shows

Karianne Kroeker, Artist and Clothing Upcycler. Photo credit: Jano Howarth

Kari put together photo collages for the Body Art show, submitted pieces she had sewn, painted, and blinged for the Art of Clothing show. She came made up and dressed ever day for our creative space, chatted with guests and visitors, and participated in Kids Art classes. 

What Creativity is Next?

The summer art shows in Merritt BC have come to a close, but there’s no stopping creativity. In hard times or good, creativity flows. We are happy at the NVCAC to inspire and be inspired. What’s the next inspired show?

Watch here for a blog post or read a bit about it and our other art shows this year on my site on creativity, learning, and journaling Meme Dreams

Click to my blog here on Experience Nicola Valley about our move to a new location last fall, and art in Merritt, BC.

Thanks for stopping by! Remember, express yourself!

Jano Howarth

Nicola Valley Arts Centre Gallery Curator

Visit our Nicola Valley Arts website

Facebook Gallery and Gift Shop

Merritt Gallery ShowsArt of Clothing, Cindilla Trent’s felted vest Summer Art Shows MerrittArt of Clothing, Olivia Nendick Tattoo ArtistBody Art Show, Marco Merulla of Mom’s Tattoos
Body Art Show MerrittBarb Tomkinson, Maureen Lisle at Body Art Show Body Art  Steve Atlas MusicMusic Steve Atlas, Body Art Show Art of Clothing Show MerrittRichard Lepinsky Music, Art of Clothing Show
All photos provided and credit goes to Jano Howarth

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Living in Merritt BC

Exploring Near Merritt in the Nicola Valley

Living life in the Shuswap Lake region of British Columbia Canada

Living in Merritt BC  – For the better part of two years Experience Nicola Valley has been providing an amazing amount of information on what Merritt and the Nicola Valley has to offer.  Do you want to know about camping in the area?  We have many stories that will spike your interest in our local camping such as Harmon Lake in the Kane Valley or Paska Lake off of Hwy 97D.

With so much to do when living in Merritt BC I could not possibly cover it all in this article.  However the good news is that you came to a key document that will provide you access to all the great things going on.  After you have read this story you can zip over to Experience Nicola Valley for more information.

For booking information and other information on events, etc visit Experience Merritt.

Other Reasons for Living in Merritt BC

Besides all the great things to do in Merritt and the Nicola Valley you are only a hop, skip and jump away from many great tourist destinations.  For example, the Okanagan is only one hour away or Kamloops is only 45 minutes away. Whereas other destinations such as the Shuswap (2 hours), the Cariboo (3 hours) or Vancouver(3 Hours) are within a comfortable reach.

The North Shuswap

This summer we spent our vacation in Magna Bay.  This area is on the north side of the lake at the west end.  We were very lucky and scored the best value in all of the Shuswap. We were able to rent a cabin for a very reasonable price.

Magna Bay Cabin - Living in Merritt BC Canada

Magna Bay Cottage- Photo credit: Magna Bay Vacations

Like wise, the inside of the cabin was very comfortable as well.

Cottage Living Room at Magna Bay Vacations

Cottage Living Room- Photo credit: Magna Bay Vacations

The place was very clean and the kitchen was reasonably equipped.  However it was not the ritz.  Some upgrades to the wall paper and some of the painted areas would help.  However these minor imperfections did not stop us from enjoying our stay.

Things to Do in the Shuswap

We were visiting the Shuswap during the height of the forest fire season and encountered a great deal of smoke.  However, this did not deter us as we made the best of the various breaks in the smoke and did the following things:

The Beach

The beach was just across the street which made it  just a short walk of about 200 meters.  Therefore we were able to  enjoy the warm lake with swimming and using our floaties.

Ross Creek Community Park

Ross Creek Community Park – Photo credit: Magna Bay Vacations

Hiking

There are many places to hike in the North Shuswap.  Of the many choices we did three spots.  The first one was at Tsutswecw Provincial Park.  This park is home to the viewing for the famous Adams River Salmon Run.

Tsutswecw Provincial Park

Tsutswecw Provincial Park – Photo credit Tom Reynolds

Adams River

Adams River – Photo credit Tom Reynolds

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our second choice was Scotch Creek Provincial Park where we walked the lake shore trail.  The Beach at this park is a real treat.

Scotch Creek Provincial Park

Scotch Creek Provincial Park – Photo credit Tom Reynolds

Golfing

The North Shuswap is home to the Talking Rock Golf Course.  The course is actually on the shores of Little Shuswap Lake at the Quaaout Lodge.

The setting is truly spectacular and the course provides a nice challenge.

Golf at Talking Rock

Golf at Talking Rock. Photo credit – Tom Reynolds

Besides a regular golf course we took in the Mini Golf at Scotch Creek.  While we had fun the course was in need of some serous repair.

Mini Golf at Scotch Creek

Mini Golf at Scotch Creek – Photo credit – Tom Reynolds

Quality Cabin Time

We actually spent most of our eating at the cabin.  Each of the five adults took a turn cooking a meal.  Therefore if you did the cooking you didn’t have to clean up.  This way the work load was spread out.  It made for great meals that were not burdensome on one person.

However, we did go out twice.  The first time to the Hub Pub in Scotch Creek.  We were entertained by the Dueling Keyboards while eating delicious unique pub food.

The second time we actually didn’t go out for dinner but ordered pizza from Roosters Pizzeria in Anglemont BC.  We expected the shop to be on the main road but it actually was high up the hillside in a residential subdivision.  The drive was well worth it as the pizza was delicious and it went well with watching the BC Lion’s game.

Good Things Come to an End

Despite the smoke we had a great time and were sorry to be leaving.  On the other hand we are thankful for living in Merritt BC Canada because we have quick access to many fun locations.

Living in Merritt BC

Exploring Near Merritt

Shuswap Lake BC

The blogs are part of a comprehensive marketing program sponsored by Tourism Nicola Valley.  The program was developed by Eh! Canada Travel . 

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Summer Outdoor Activities in Merritt BC

Summer Adventures and Activities in The Nicola Valley

Outdoor summer activities in Merritt BC , offers a wide range of sunshine fun.  200 lakes, mountain biking trails and more makes the Nicola Valley a great choice for your next destination spot in the summer. Merritt’s  slogan says it all “A Lake A Day For As Long As You Stay”.  And we have rivers too! I guarantee when it comes to experiencing summer outdoor activities in the Nicola Valley,  it will make you wish you planned for more time so to go kayaking, boating, hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding and viewing wildlife.   

“I don’t need therapy, I just need my boat.” Unknown

Summer Activities Merritt BC.

Gone Fishing! Photo by Tania Stewart.

Summer Activities Merritt BC

Outdoor Activities Merritt BC.

Swimming fun! Picture courtesy Tania Stewart.

Outdoor Activities Merritt BC.

Nature’s poolside, were you can find me. Photo by Tania Stewart.

Summer Activities in Merritt BC Includes Lundbom Lake 

Lundbom Lake is truly one of my favorite Summer Activities in Merritt BC. A beautiful lake which is located only 10 minutes from downtown Merritt BC. Moreover  Lundbom Lake  is a great location for camping, fishing and horseback riding. While the surrounding area also provides excellent mountain biking and ATV/dirt bike riding. Along with having sunny and shady sites. Open from Apr 26, 2019 – Oct 14, 2019. Outdoor  

Summer Activities Merritt BC.

Julie Pollard “Is that the big one?” Photo Tania Stewart.

 

Summer Activities Merritt BC.

Enjoying the dock. Photo by Tania Stewart.

Outdoor Activities Nicola Valley.

View of Lundbom Lake. Photo TS.

 

“I camp here until the end of October most years.” Unknown Tourist.

 

Kayaking on Lundbom. Photo by ehCanadaTravel.com.

EhCanadatravel

Fall camping Eh! Photo courtesy ehCanadaTravel.com

 

“Lundbom Lake is very quiet and peaceful. Little noise pollution during all 3 of our visits. That is all we have to base it on. So it works for us.” Eh Canada Travel Website

Outdoor Summer & Fall Activities in the Nicola Valley BC. Canada.

Lake Trout. Photo Greg Girard.

Outdoor Summer & Fall Activities in the Nicola Valley BC. Canada.

Lundbom Lake Fall night. Photo by Greg Girard.

“THE FISHING ROCKS! Had to get that one out.” Greg Girard.

Outdoor Activities Merritt BC

Horse back riding has to be one of the best summer  activities everyone can enjoy. A great opportunity to take in all of Mother Nature’s beauty. Trail riding is truly a Summer & Fall activity everyone can enjoy together in Merritt B.C. Offering a few choices, the Nicola Valley provides a day of adventure with nature in a saddle.  

Horse Camping at Lundbom Lake. Photo by Tania Stewart.

Outdoor Activities Merritt BC.

A-P Guest Ranch. Photo by Tania Stewart.

Fall Fly Fishing in the Nicola Valley

Fly Fishing being a popular sport, Merritt BC has it made with 200 lakes.  There is no wonder to why Corbett Lake Lodge is an anglers dream during the fall months. For all your supplies that you may need, surely drop by Ponderosa Sports located downtown Merritt.  

Summer Activities Merritt BC

Dragon Flies. Photo TS.

Summer Adventure on Nicola Valley’s Lakes

Fishing for bait. Picture by Tania Stewart.

 

Best Fishing Lakes Near Merritt

It should be noted that the Nicola Valley boast’s some of the best fishing in the World! There are over 200+ lakes in the region. Many are prime lake fishing destinations, including Garcia Lake, Marquart Lake, Hamilton Lake, Edna Lake, Mathew Lake, Morgan Lake, Roth Lake, Gwen Lake, Lundbom Lake and Lily Lake. Located just outside of Merritt, Marquart Lake is a small, clear lake which offers good rainbow trout fishing, camping and other outdoor activities nearby. 

Were to Start Planning Your Summer Activities

One place to start is our travel website Experience Merritt. Once you have your bearings than check out some of the fishing experiences on this blog site. Last, but not least, ask a local or visit Ponderosa Sport’s downtown Merritt.

 

Kennedy Lake Hike

Kennedy Lake Hike. Photo Credit: Tania Stewart

Mountain Biking Outdoor Activities Merritt BC

Outdoor adventure mountain biking on the many trails surrounding the Nicola Valley provide endless days of exploring the backcountry.  No crowds. Lots of trails. Mouth-dropping scenery. Therefore to enjoy the trails in our backcountry all you need is a water bottle, the right gear and your ride. Nature and the adrenaline rush provides the rest. In reality the Nicola Valley provides the beautiful backcountry scenery, the wildlife sightings, the remote wilderness lakes and forested rolling hills. A nature enthusiasts dream space. Questions? You can drop a line with Merritt Mountain Biking Association

Mountain Biking Fun

Mountain Biking Fun. Photo by Jordan Pinto.

Mountain Biking - Merritt BC

Scenic trails. Photo by Jordan Pinto.

Moreover Hiking/Backpacking 

Truly enjoying the fall weather while hiking in the Nicola Valley is a must. Making sure to have your compass, water, picnic basket and a camera to capture your adventure. With the City of Merritt being located in a valley surrounded by mountains makes this an ideal destination place for avid backpackers and hikers. Generally having on the average sunny warm fall days makes it a pleasant day of hiking and adventure for the whole family. Reminder to always tell someone were you will be hiking if alone.

merritt bc camping

Harmon Lake. Photo courtesy of Experience Nicola Valley Blogger Tom Reynolds.

Scenic nature. Photo by Tania Stewart.

Summarizing Outdoor Activities in The Nicola Valley

Outdoor Activities in Merritt BC truly will have you smiling and knowing that you just had the best summer.  While Merritt can boast over 200 lakes with desert-like weather truly makes this your next vacation spot. “ A Lake A Day as Long as You Stay” has been it’s local slogan for decades. Equally making this your next destination place for activities such as kayaking, boating, mountain biking, hiking, paragliding or just lazily strolling lake trails.  Truly making this your next destination vacation spot!

Summer Fun in The Nicola Valley

Come and Experience the Adventure

 

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Desert Hills Ranch

What better way to get your summer bucket list started off right than spending a day with an awesome summer adventure. 

Spending a day at Desert Hills Ranch with family.

A day at Desert Hills Ranch. Seriously hands down this is a hidden gem located in heart of  Ashcroft B.C.  A beautiful slow paced community that has so much charm to offer with old school western desert vibes. Ashcroft has a museum, well stocked grocery store, lovely tourist worthy location for community information. Lastly…  you could also bring your swim suits and check out our community pool to cool off.

desert hills ranch ashcroft bc canada

Goats at Desert Hills Ranch. Photo Credit: Jennifer Schell

mexican store ashcroft bc canada

Delish! Mexican Delights! Photo Credit: Jennifer Schell

History in Ashcroft BC

Of course my oldest son Logan, age 13, says his favorite thing to see is all of the tractors. He loves to see the historical and ancient farming machines. Secondly if you fancy yourself an avid gardener or aspire to be. The options for making that dream a reality is beyond belief. Think Garden of Eden meets tacos and you have a pretty good idea of what its like on the ranch.

Going Mexican Food in Ashcroft

Speaking of tacos… if you crave Mexican food and fare. This is the place to be for all sorts of chips, beans, hot sauces and salsas. I love stocking up on all the essentials for the best taco Tuesday meal items. In conclusion you do not want to forget to mark on your calendar for salsa weekend if you are keen to make your own.

plants gardening ashcroft bc

Plants!  Photo Credit: Jennifer Schell

ashcroft bc family fun

Family fun in Ashcroft BC. Photo Credit: Jennifer Schell

Fun Times at Desert Hills Ranch

A day at Desert Hills Ranch is fun for everybody! They have lots to see and do. Children,  I think,  have an especially great time here. As a Mom I appreciate the measures that the ranch takes to allow people to view the animals but also how clean they keep it. Along with the areas  to clean and sanitize hands often, and easy access to use the rest rooms. The barn is such a fun treat to explore every time and it is fun to see all the animal friends inside! Of course feeding the goats is so much fun! 

Fruits and more 

My daughter Amelia age 11 says her favorite thing to enjoy is the food. She loves to buy different fruits each week to try with the family and she loves the ice-cream. I feel zero regret buying ice-cream here for my family of 10! The price is right when it comes time for a cool treat. What a fun and affordable way to make the day that much more memorable! 

 

cows farming ranch ashcroft bc

Calf in Ashcroft

An Educational Opportunity 

Machines, where our food comes from, biology and botany are just a few subjects you will encounter on the ranch. As a homeschooling mama this place has educational field trip written all over it. And that is another perfect reason to come check out the ranch. This hasn’t been my first time blogging about my favorite ranch. You can read that post HERE . There is so much to see and do here, it really is a very enriching experience. My son Zach who is 6 absolutely loves that he got to see his favorite animal when he visited the barn. A baby cow was such a adorable treat for him to see so close.

kyle schell ashcroft canada plants

Lots Of Selection To Keep Any Green Thumb Happy

Flowers in Ashcroft BC Canada

This has to be one of my favorite parts of coming to the ranch. I love the huge selection of flowers, shrubs and trees they always have here. It makes adding curb appeal easy with the huge selection that they always have! I love that I can even dabble at pretending I am a homesteader with there great assortment of garden items. Cue the Little House On The Prairie theme song. I am so excited to try making a few different jams this season and give some canning  a try. We love getting our tomatoes and strawberries here. And filling up our garden rows with lots of other goodies as well. Corn, peppers, cauliflower to name a few! 

ashcroft flowers plants

Impeccable Selection Of Many Garden Items

Covid Pregnancy

Delicious Produce Awaits At The Ranch

In Conclusion 

A day at Desert Hills Ranch is never a day wasted. This place is really such a hidden gem. Surrounded by desert mountains. It has beautiful weeping willows to offer shade as you stroll around. They are always so kind and courteous. It truly offers an exceptional summer experience in the heart of British Columbia.

Therefore, if you are looking for more great all year around ideas for what to do in BCs interior. Please follow the Experience Nicola Valley Bloggers. And keep your eyes on the Blog for some more great Summer Bucket List ideas! Thanks for reading! Have a great summer and stay safe. 

CONTACT INFO

Desert Hills Ranch

250 Elm Street, Ashcroft, BC

250.453.9876

deserthillsfarmmarket@gmail.com

www.deserthillsranch.com

 

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