Merritt British Columbia Canada tourism and travel adventures in and around the Nicola Valley.

Merritt Snowmobile Club

Sledding and Snowmobiling in Merritt BC 

All snow sledders welcome to the Nicola Valley!

Are you a certified snowmobile addict who looks forward to snowmobiling in Merritt BC? Then you are on the right track if you are reading this. Sledding in Merritt BC Canada is truly a fantastic adventure for snow chasers.  They tell us. Furthermore, the local snowmobile club takes great care providing well groomed backcountry sled trails. Not to mention that the Nicola Valley offers a wintery mix of weather which is good for hitting the trails by sled.

Snowmobiling in Merritt BC Canada

Starting point. Photo by Tania Stewart

Snowbound when snowmobiling in Merritt BC 

Talking with Adam McDonald, President of the Merritt Snowmobile Club in the Nicola Valley, truly gives a person incentive to get involved in the snowmobile industry. Starting with purchasing a sled. Followed by paying club membership fees. Then comes the extreme sledding experience. Becoming an official “Sled Head” is quite the honour! Lastly, to ensure a future in the local snowmobile scene, joining the Merritt Snowmobile Club ensures that future generations will have a wide range of trails to explore.  

Merritt Snowmobile Club Out and About in Nicola Valley

Merritt Sledding. Photo by Tania Stewart

Snowmobile Club in the Nicola Valley

The Nicola Valley has been rewarded with some of the best trails on this side of the Coquihalla Summit. For this reason, the club attracts  members from all over BC and even from the USA. Notably, the local sledding club hosts 3 poker runs a year along with a chili & hot dog day. At the same time hosting a “Wind Up” banquet in April.  The participation and the list of business supporters truly speaks volumes about the Merritt Snowmobile Club. 

Sledding trails in merritt bc

Snowmobiling on Thyme Mountain – Winters in Merritt, BC, Canada

Sledding in Merritt BC 

With a membership of around 94. This club truly takes care of their members. With 4 warming sheds to warm up in, re-group, snack and take a toilette break. All provided for members to use with a supply of firewood. Additionally clubs create tourism, jobs, and support local businesses with economic benefits. Our local adventure travel website as well, has a great section on snowmobiling in the Nicola Valley.

Snowmobiling in the Nicola Valley

Snowbound Club. Photo courtesy of Merritt Snowmobile Club

“In a relationship with sledding”

Merritt Snowmobile Club in the Nicola Valley has some prime sledding areas including the “Honeymoon”, “Thyme”, with a bit of “Andes Lake”. In addition,  they have some warming sheds as well to keep you toasty on your breaks or to hide from some nasty weather. However, before you jump on your sled and ride away, learn the basic parts of your machine. Knowledge keeps you safe and secure in the backcountry. Rocky Mountain Snowmobile advises you to learn the “ins-and-outs” about your machine before heading out on the trails.  

Merritt Snowmobile Club in the Nicola Valley.

Adam McDonald in Brookmere. Picture by Tania Stewart

Merritt Snowmobile Club

Trail maps provided by Merritt Snowmobile Club. Pic by Tania Stewart

Instead of hibernating during the winter months, become a mountaineer who laughs in the face of Old Man Frost by conquering  on a snowmobile! 

Behind the scenes  with the Merritt Snowmobile Club

Merritt Snowmobile Club spends countless hours applying for funding, planning, and building trails. They also sell maps and ads, keep track of memberships, maintain groomer drags and tractors, and recruit groomer drivers.

Sledding the trails in Merritt

Outdoor fun for all ages! Photo courtesy of Merritt Snowmobile Club

Snowmobiling heading out on teh trails

Snow trackers. Photo courtesy of Merritt Snowmobile Club

Trail maintenance doesn’t end when the snow is gone. Maintenance crews at snowmobile clubs say that grooming never stops. Summer time is the time for filing grants for maintenance of machinery and talking to private landowners to see if trails can be extended out into their property. It is also a great time to check out the trails, see what changes need to be made and keep the existing trails available for snowmobilers.

Snowmobiling Merritt BC Club

Trail groomer. Pic by Tania Stewart

Merritt Snowmobile Club

Parking for all your toy’s! Picture by Tania Stewart

Club volunteers also check out the trails and review the trail signs to make sure they are readable during the snow season. Clubs enlist volunteers who put in thousands of hours to maintain the trails.

Merritt Snowmobile Club BC

Warming sheds provided by Merritt Snowmobile Club. Pic by Adam McDonald

Hard at work grooming trails. Photo by Adam McDonald

  • While snowmobiling can be a heck of a lot of fun for all. Safety is key when outdoors. Some key safety tips are:

    1- Never ride alone.
    2- Always carry a safety pack with you. Beacon’s, shovel, depth probe and a radio or walkie talkie.
    3- Additional safety packs include an air pack that can be manually pulled. Like a car air bag. Air packs are to help bring you to the surface or help create an air bubble.
    4- Always set up a meeting area. And let the family know where your group will be sledding.
    5- Always check the weather!  Avalanche Trip Planner.
    6- Carry extra essentials. Water, warm clothing, fire starter, flare guns, trail food and blankets.
    7-  Carry a GPS device that will be useful for maneuvering the snowmobile trails and knowing your exact location.

Merritt Snowmobile Club

An Oldie but a Goodie! 1992. Photo Tania Stewart

Snowmobiling Merritt BC

Snow chaser. Photo by Tania Stewart

Snow drifting on a blustery day around Merritt BC

To be sure snowmobiling thrills many enthusiasts to get out and enjoy vast scenic snow capped mountains. Many snowmobile lovers enjoy this sport to the full extent. But it can be a risky sport if proper care is not taken when you are riding the machine. Therefore, you must ensure to follow certain things for ensuring maximum safety while snowmobiling. Proper preparation with up-to-date weather reports are a no brainer. Truly safety = fun. 

Snowmobiling Merritt BC

Pre-trip inspection. Picture Tania Stewart

Follow the Trail

Dedicated trials are drawn after a thorough analysis and examination. Therefore, they prove to be safe and not exposed to any serious concerns. If you take a risk and go off  the trials at any point, then you might be inviting any unwanted danger. Following the trials is not just important for the safety of yourselves but also for the safety of other riders who drive on the trails. Study the weather and the condition of the trail. 

Merritt Snowmobile Club Canada

Team up. Photo courtesy of Adam McDonald

Merritt Snowmobile Club. Pic by Adam McDonald

Mainly safety is “Key!”

Before leaving for the ride, you need to thoroughly know the weather and the trail conditions. If they aren’t appropriate, it is advised to cancel the plan, since it will be very risky riding out in the snowmobile in extreme weather conditions.

To put it more simply, don’t go beyond your limits. Given the fact that this recreational activity gets your adrenaline pumping throughout your body, it is one of the best feelings in the world. Going at fast speeds and zipping past trees is truly something else.

Snow attire. Pic by Tania Stewart

Snowmobiling Merritt BC Canada

Round up time! Photo Tania Stewart

At the same time!

It is quite common to forget about your limits while you’re having so much fun riding your snowmobile. But you should never try to go beyond your abilities as it increases the chances of getting hurt. If you go too fast and you don’t have the skills to bring the snowmobile under control, you are putting your life in danger. Always be aware of your limits so that you can be safe while having the time of your life.

Snowmobiling Merritt Nicola Valley

My ride! . Picture by Tania Stewart

Snowmobiling Merritt  Canada

Snow Bike! Photo by Tania Stewart

Never Drink and Ride

Snowmobiling Nicola Valley

New meaning to being a “Snowbird” Pic by Tania Stewart

Several snowmobile enthusiasts believe that drinking before going out is cool. 

However, you should never indulge in this practice which only adds to the risk of meeting with an accident. Alcoholic beverages increase the chances of suffering from hypothermia. They also slow your reaction time, making it harder to avoid obstacles. On top of that, you won’t be in the right state of mind to make snap decisions. Put all these together and it becomes the perfect recipe for disaster.

Fact : Being Snowed in is not the same as  being Snowbound

Snowmobiling is surely an exciting sport but it could prove risky if you do not keep the above-mentioned things in mind while snowmobiling. Wear all the required safety gear and appropriate riding apparel for getting a safe ride. Dressing in multiple layers and wearing clothes that are best suited for your size is very important for maximum safety. Above all neglecting any of the ride policies may lead to tragedies and could prove to be extremely dangerous. At the same time wearing appropriate riding gear that will keep you safe and warm while providing a more enjoyable experience. 

Snowmobiling Merritt BC Canada

Look what Santa brought me!

snowmobiling airtime winter sports

Nothing like getting a little air while snowmobiling

Firstly,  invest in a good helmet. It is your brain after-all. Your helmet is the top one for safety, choose and ensure proper size. Select a snowmobile goggle along with the helmet to enhance your visibility via snow and dense fog. Due to variant temperatures, choose your boots well.  Warm toes make happy legs. With this in mind look for boots  made up of items like rubber, the synthetic upper portion, and waterproof bottom for successfully repelling the snow. Equally important are gloves.  They are an important element of the riding gear since they always are with the rider and ensure to keep his hand warm from the snow, water, and wind.

In conclusion

Merritt Snowmobile Club is the beginning to your perfect adventure in the outback snow covered peaks. With ideal trails for beginners and pro’s, all groomed and maintained by Merritt snowmobile club. The Nicola Valley has some of the best trails along with breathtaking scenery.   

City of Merritt-Snowshoeing

City of Merritt-snowshoeing. Photo by ?

Outdoor sledding. Photo by Tania Stewart ?

Snowmobiling in Merritt British Columbia Canada

Nicola Valley Sledding

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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. 

Nicola Valley Parks and Playgrounds for Families 

Hiking, biking, horseback riding, mountain biking trails in Merritt

Parks in Merritt BC Canada – One of the most important things we look for when relocating to a different community in Canada besides a house, retail, safety,  are family parks. Merritt B.C. has much to offer when it comes to out-door enthusiasts. Moreover if you are thinking of moving to Merritt B.C. rest assured our community holds a certain standard to providing a wide variety of parks for all ages. Furthermore one can walk a short distance to most parks.  Truly there is a lot to experience in the Nicola Valley when considering play time in the outdoors in Merritt B.C. Canada. 

Parks in Merritt BC Canada with Experience Nicola Valley blogger Tania Stewart

Path through Rotary Park. Photo credit Tania Stewart.

Rotary Bike Park – Parks in Merritt BC Canada

The Rotary Bike Park is one of the most visited parks in Merritt B.C. Canada for mountain biking.  The community park has a bike park, skate board park, playground park, also includes a walking trail. Rotary Bike Park was originally built in 2006 while receiving upgrades in 2018. Therefore with the introduction of this bike park, the sport of mountain biking in Merritt BC got a boost.  

Rotary Bike Park

Rotary Bike Park and Skateboard Park in Merritt BC Canada

“Ride As Much Or As Little Or As Long Or As Short As You Feel, But Ride!” – Eddy Merckx

Mountain Biking Parks in Merritt B.C.

Place to meet friends. Bike Park. Photo by Tania Stewart.

Mountain biking in the Nicola Valley BC

Adrenalin jumpstart! Photo Credit Tania Stewart.

Thinking of moving to Merritt B.C.

Watch me, I will get this jump! Photo Credit Tania Stewart.

Merritt Skate Board Park

Adjacent to the bike park is a well maintained skate board park. It is for all ages, being safe, and has a community friendliness about the park. Personally I have brought my son there since he was 7yrs old. What made me love our community even more were the older kids who were always on hand to teach new tricks or help dust my son off when he bit it. Social interaction is so important for children’s development and self-confidence.  

Thinking of moving to Merritt B.C.

Helmet is key! Photo credit: Tania Stewart

Moving to Merritt B.C.

Skate Boarding for all ages. Photo credit Tania Stewart.

“Children will learn coordination, movement control and confidence at the skateboard park” Tania Stewart.

Merritt Skateboard Park

Learning the ropes at the Merritt Skateboard Park. Photo credit Tania Stewart.

Children’s Playground Park

Within this area is a playground park. It was built as part of a community and not affiliated with a school at all. The equipment is soft padded to help prevent injuries. There is a slide, swing, merry go round and more.  See… lots of activity and playground parks in Merritt BC Canada. And we are just getting started. 

Merritt bc playground park

Surrounded by “Nature!” Photo credit Tania Stewart

Nicola Valley Parks

Playground fun. Photo credit Tania Stewart.

Valley Kitchen 

Hungry? We have that covered too. Located beside the Rotary Bike Park you can feed your hunger with a great burger at Valley Kitchen. With a kid’s menu as well as drinks, ice-cream, coffee, and one of the best burgers I have ever had. One of my blogger cohorts had an opportunity to sit down and have a chat with these young entrepreneurs. Below is the short interview.  

“Playing promotes social interaction without biases while developing imagination.”  Tania Stewart

Parks in Merritt BC Canada Have Health Benefits

Albeit exercise is key for our children! Therefore, it is safe to say, being exposed to sunlight and fresh air provides a healthy dose of the “sunshine vitamin D” when playing in our parks in Merritt BC Canada.  Who would’ve of thought that swings can help provide children with physical development. Some of the skills research shows swings have include grasping, balance, landing, pushing, while getting into a rhythm of the swing. Moreover the memories that are gained at the playground are priceless as there is no limit to a child’s imagination. Moreover this is one of the few places a child has control of play with little adult interference. 

Playground in Merritt bc

Bench School Playground. Photo by Tania Stewart.

Nicola Valley park and playground

Super slides. Photo credit: Tania Stewart.

Merritt Bench Elementary School

Located at Bench Elementary School are 2 playgrounds. One for younger aged children interested in playing hop-scotch, , and a second one for intermediate aged ones interested in playing basketball hoops within a forest setting.  Although I do believe there is no age requirement to take part in the adventure and fun enjoyed on playgrounds. 

Bench Elementary School

Bench Elementary School. Pic by Tania Stewart.

Child Development Is Supported by Parks and Playgrounds

Moreover playgrounds and parks can help stimulate our child’s cognitive development while helping with problem solving skills. Going across the monkey bars truly takes thought, with space, distance with a lot of bravery. Making it across that first time gave me the confidence to tackle everything at the playground. 

 

Merritt school playgrounds.

Playground team ship. Pic by Tania Stewart.

Smith Pioneer Park  Lower Nicola

Parks in Merritt BC Canada includes Smith Pioneer Park, which is really a Thompson-Nicola Regional District community park, located in the heart of Lower Nicola.  Let me assure you that this is an amazing recreational park for all.  Firstly, the equipment will surely  keep them interested and invigorated for hours.  Secondly, adjacent to the park is a arena for horse lovers who may want to train in a safe arena.

Horse riding arena next to parks in Merritt BC

Horse riding arena. Picture by Tania Stewart.

Playground Amenities

Many of our parks in Merritt B.C. offer a person a chance to cool down or have a family picnic while enjoying the beautiful scenery.  Moreover, many recreation areas are suited for parents who would like sit in the shade, relax while your children play. All is good when one knows their children are having fun, exercising while being where they should be “outside.” Truly because of the many benefits children gain playing outside only makes the need for playgrounds that more important when looking to relocate. The  “Annual Garlic Festival” is hosted in Smith Pioneer Park in late September. 

Thinking of moving to Merritt B.C.

Playtime is paramount for a child’s imagination. Pic by Tania Stewart.

Lower Nicola Park.

Picnic in shade. Photo credit Tania Stewart.

Lower Nicola Merritt B.C.

Adventure time! Photo by Tania Stewart.

“Defending castles and slaying dragons were my playground adventures.” Tania Stewart.

Moving to Nicola Valley.

Arena for horse riders. Pic by Tania Stewart.

Fun for hours. Pic by Tania Stewart.

Rotary Water Park

So when all is said and done. A great way to cool down in those hot summer days is Merritt’s only water spray park, Rotary Park.  Located within walking distance from downtown is our only water park. Truly a place for children to cool down while parents can rest assure that this is a safe child zone. Furthermore, this park has been visited by the Easter Bunny, with an annual egg hunt, host to “Aboriginal Day”, “Canada Day Festivities” as well as “Music in the Park”. Along with having an amazing bandshell for live entertainment this park gives a unique venue for a family park.  

Merritt bc spray park - water park playground

With a children’s playground there is a small rose garden dedicated to Princess Diana.

Rotary Park Playground

Adjacent to the water park is a playground full of adventure for every age. Proving slides, swings, jungle time apparatus and more. Safely built with a child’s imagination in mind. Providing tons of fun with a short hop to the water park to cool off. 

Rotary Park. Pic by Tania Stewart.

Parks in Merritt BC slides and swings

Fun n play. Photo credit Tania Stewart.

Parks in Merritt BC

Also beside the Rotary Park flows the Nicola River.  With safety and adult supervision a world of nature can be explored. Spotting some ducks, tadpoles, occasional frogs, chipmunk or a beaver swimming by is not unusual. More than often my son and I have come across a sleeping deer. What could be better than this, nature at your fingertips.

chipmunk in merritt bc - wildlife sighting

Spot a chipmunk. Photo by Tania Stewart.

wildlife sighting and self guided tour in merritt bc

Spot a sleeping deer. Pic by Tania Stewart.

 

Catching frogs. Photo by Tania Stewart.

In Conclusion

Knowing that one of the most important things we look for when relocating to a new community are family parks and child playgrounds.  The Nicola Valley  offers everything from a water park to skate boarders, bike park, and countless playgrounds. Ideal for all out-door enthusiasts.    With a wide range of different parks that provide unique experiences in the community of Merritt enables families to enjoy the outdoors.  

Parks in Merritt BC sunsets

Merritt B.C. sunset. Photo by Tania Stewart.

Parks in Merritt BC Canada

Moving to Merritt BC for Parks 

Nicola Valley Travel and Tourism Guides

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

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:

Facebook Website You Tube Instagram

 

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Halloween in Merritt BC

Trick-or-Treating in The Nicola Valley

 

Celebrating Halloween Oct 31 in Merritt BC

Halloween in Merritt BC – Halloween is celebrated annually on October 31. While being one of the world’s oldest holidays. The community of Merritt additionally recognizes Halloween as one of the most important nights of the year for children including  many adults.  Although it’s derived from ancient festivals and religious rituals,  Halloween is still widely celebrated today in a number of countries around the globe. In countries such as Ireland, Canada and the United States. Celebrating “Halloween” in Merritt is a memorable experience. 

Halloween Merritt BC

Scary little people! Photo by Tania Stewart.

Merritt BC Halloween

Zombie Night! Photo Tania Stewart.

Ghoul Night is Halloween in Merritt BC

Growing up in Merritt B.C., truly was a child’s dream. To say nothing of the excitement with dressing up in costumes spending the night “Trick-Or-Treating”. Moreover ending the night with a bonfire while watching the fireworks is a great finish to a scary night.  After trick-or-treating, most people attend parties with neighbors and friends.  Furthermore many downtown businesses have treat’s for all the Goblins. What a great way to Experience Nicola Valley

Trick-or-Treat Merritt

Faceless ghouls! Photo by Tania Stewart

Merritt Halloween night

Is that you Batman? Photo by Tania Stewart

Hallows Night

Halloween is celebrated every year on the evening of October 31st. Together being a Celtic historical festival which also marked the division between the time of year when days are longer than nights and when nights are longer than days. Correspondingly believed to be the day when the border between the world of the dead and the world of the living narrows.  Interesting to note is the date of Halloween is almost in the middle of the time interval between the fall equinox and the winter solstice. 

Halloween Merritt B.C.

Scary things will knock at your door!

Take all the candy! Photo by Tania Stewart

Halloween Origin

Halloween evolved from the ancient Celtic holiday of Samhain. Over the centuries, Halloween transitioned from a pagan ritual to a day of parties, costumes, jack-o-lanterns and trick-or-treating for kids and adults.  In addition to dressing up as ghosts, demons and other malevolent creatures, children may perform antics in exchange for food and drink. 

Fun times in Merritt B.C

Carving time! Photo credit Tania Stewart

Get your Pumpkin and carve away. Even if you have to hire a Vampire with sharp teeth.

Vampires bring teeth! Picture by Tania Stewart.

Moreover “Spiders” and “Crows” are always welcome on Halloween night in Merritt B.C.

Nicola Valley Halloween

Spiders are always welcome! Photo credit Tania Stewart

Night for the crows. Halloween Photo credit Tania Stewart

Halloween Folklore 

In Ireland and Great Britain, the first jack-o’-lanterns were turnips or  beets.  Carved with demonic faces that are lit inside by a candle.  Then placed in a window or on the doorstep to scare Stingy Jack and other evil spirits. Irish and Scottish immigrants brought the custom to Canada and the United States. Adapting the jack-lantern to a North American native  vegetable,  the pumpkin. 

Friendly Ghoul. Photo Credit Tania Stewart

Such fun! Photo Credit Tania Stewart

Halloween Party Games in the Nicola Valley

At the parties, many games are played, including “snap-apple,” a game in which an apple on a string is tied to a doorframe or tree and players attempt to bite the hanging apple. In addition to bobbing for apples, parents often arrange treasure hunts, with candy or pastries as the “treasure.” Or try out “Halloween Snack Board” with Jennifer Schell. Children are also known to play tricks on their neighbors, such as “knock-a-dolly,” a prank in which children knock on the doors of their neighbors, but run away before the door is opened. Sounds very familiar. A little warning to all goblins, witches’, ghouls, and monsters. You may never know when a hand or zombie may pop out of a dark corner or behind a tree .

Halloween costumes

Halloween is truly for the young! Photo credit Tania Stewart

Halloween in Merritt B.C

Pumpkin carving competition has been won! Photo credit Tania Stewart

Halloween Safety

Firstly remain safe. Pair up with friends, and younger children with parents or guardians. Secondly stick to one side of the street, not running across the street to other houses. Thirdly, carry a flashlight or go out before it gets dark. Fourth, try to stick to areas you are familiar with. Wear appropriate clothing. Importantly let your parents check your candy haul. Just get out and “Trick-or-Treat.” when enjoying Halloween in Merritt BC Canada.

In Conclusion

Moreover just enjoy Halloween Night in Merritt BC or wherever you live. A little warning to all goblins, witches’, ghouls, and monsters.  It is the one night we can all dress up and be whatever we want with a lot of imagination and creation. I may just dress up as a spider this year. Boo!

Halloween in Merritt BC Canada

Nicola Valley Trick-or-Treating

 

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A tasty way to enjoy Halloween Treats!

You are going to feel like the ghostess with the mostest when you try this Halloween Snack Board.

This Halloween snack board is just the thing you need to try. Snack boards are so multi-purpose. I do them for lunches and I do them for birthdays. This board was created last year when Covid hit and we were all in lock down. It was such a somber season for for the entire Nicola Valley and the world.  As a result I decided we would have our own little party.

Halloween Snack Board and Treats in Merritt BC

Halloween Puns Are So Corny. Photo credit: Jennifer Schell.

Halloween Snack Boards are Spooktacular Treats!

 I had never made one for Halloween and wanted to boost the kids spirits. We assembled this easy enough and I am sure you could definitely simplify it by only picking a few elements to recreate. Furthermore, I wanted the kids to be quite hands on with this and have a great experience. Based on the snack board we created as a family for Valentine’s Day, I had some ideas on what I wanted to do. 

Hot Dog Dinner for Halloween

Lets Give Them Pumpkin To Talk About! Photo credit: Jennifer Schell.

Spooky Season is upon us 

Getting spooky like this is easy with a quick trip to Walmart. They always have such a great assortment of cookies and cupcakes seasonally. So putting something like this Halloween snack board can be as easy as 1,2,3! You can make your board a mixture of sweet or savory, like I chose to.  Or you can choose to keep it completely on the sweet side with gummy candy, cookies, and candy bars.  This Halloween snack board has some homemade items and some bought items. Don’t burn yourself out. Let your creative juices flow. Lastly and most importantly have fun and take a lot of photos of your creative eating masterpiece like we did. !

Treats for Halloween Snacking Board

We’re Here For A Gourd Time! Photo credit: Jennifer Schell.

Mummy Dog How To! 

Interested in making your own mummy hot dogs? They come together easily enough. And can make your own Halloween snack board totally stand out. All you need are your favorite hot dogs. Then some canned crescent roll pastry.  You then simply place the crescent roll pastry on to your cutting board. Cut into strips and then wrap them around your hot dog. Place on a parchment lined cookie sheet and bake for 12-15 mins or so at 350 degrees. You can then use mustard to make eyes. Lastly theses were so fun for all of my kids to make. So easy and very tasty! 

Baking and making Halloween treats

Let the Halloween Treats begin. Photo credit: Jennifer Schell.

Halloween Mummy Hotdogs

You Will Win The Award Of “Mummy Of The Year” With These Guys! Photo credit: Jennifer Schell.

Halloween Looks So Beautiful and Yummy

Healthy Snacks for Halloween

Cavities Beware. Photo credit: Jennifer Schell

Hocus pocus its no joke, candy helps me to focus. Lets zero in on some of these spooky treats. For this Halloween snack board we first have an easy addition with red pepper hummus.  Add in some pumpkin type lines and the top of a cucumber and you have an adorable pumpkin. Can you find the black olive spiders? They came together quick and easy. Just slice open 1 black olive lay it flat and with the opposite side make the legs. The peeled oranges and if you take a closer look you will also spy pumpkin deviled eggs. We used some turmeric and mustard to get a more orange hue. Crackers, gummy worms, tiny spooky cupcakes all round this tray out. Lastly make this your own and let your creativity flow. 

 

Healthy Halloween Treats

Life Is Gourd Photo credit: Jennifer Schell.

Have an eek-tastic Halloween

“Fa-boo-lous!

You are going to feel like the ghostess with the mostest when you try this Halloween Snack Board. I promise you it comes together easy enough. There is so much inspiration online. As a busy mom of 8, I can say that we all had so much fun. I had little ones making spiders, snacking and laughing. All gathered around my table.. This was honestly one of our biggest highlights from lockdown, and I’m so thankful I get to be in a space that lets me share our families experiences Being able to share our stories with. Experience Nicola Valley fills my heart with gratitude. In conclusion from my family to you, we wish you a happy and safe fall season. 

Family halloween treats and sweets

#Squadghouls. Photo credit: Jennifer Schell.

And finally, just a teaser, for the next big holiday after Thanksgiving here is a sneak peek into our  Christmas themed snack board. 

Halloween Snack Board in the Nicola Valley

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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 vestSummer Art Shows MerrittArt of Clothing, Olivia NendickTattoo ArtistBody Art Show, Marco Merulla of Mom’s Tattoos
Body Art Show MerrittBarb Tomkinson, Maureen Lisle at Body Art ShowBody Art  Steve Atlas MusicMusic Steve Atlas, Body Art ShowArt 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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Camping  Treats for All Seasons

Smores is delicious snack for any time of the year in British Columbia 

Easy Smores Dip –  Summer treats when in Canada brings on so many amazing experiences. A huge part of summer in British Columbia is R&R, and a big part of that relaxing could be sitting around a campfire enjoying smores. Our beautiful  province is blanketed in lush mountains and heavily forested areas, and not many things comes close to the joys of sitting around a campfire, enjoying family and friends under the stars, snacking on smores.  It just might be the unofficial food of camping for kids. 

Easy Smore Dip - Campfire treat

Snacking Board Pretty – Betty Crocker Easy

Easy Smores Dip Helps With Fire Safety

However, smores is not just a campfire treat, no…  you can have smores anywhere and anytime. And if you live anywhere where campfire bans are usually in effect, and for good reason, there are alternatives. This summer was one to remember for so many people who were displaced during evacuations. For this reason we even had the children’s Great Grampa stay with us during the Logan Lake fires. 

Graham Wafer, Marshmallow, Chocolate

Smores Deconstructed

Crackling Fires And Warm Summer Nights 

So how do you enjoy this tasty seasonal delight? Pop it in the over of course! As a result you can now enjoy it for all 12 months of the year. Easy Smore dip satisfies that deep craving crackling fires and warm summer nights. Smores are decidedly  a flavor of a Canadian summer that can make a place for so many happy memories. It’s so easy and a great dip to have kids help in the kitchen with. With a little supervision kids can easily make this easy smores dip quickly and safety of home. This dip goes from prep to table in 20 mins or less.

Still Sticky, But With The Comforts Of Home

Smores Can Be Quite Sticky If You Aren’t Prepared

Easy smores dip is almost a cheater meal. First off if  you are new to the world of smores let me give you an idea of what these are to you. Smores are a gooey fire roasted marshmallow and chocolate square smooshed together between a cookie or graham wafer cracker. The method is usually quite simple. But can be a very exciting food item to make, especially if you have any child under the age of 4 around the campfire awaiting a delightfully sticky snack. To make this treat in theory so simple yet super tricky.

 

Easy smores dip ingredients and tips and tricks.

Directions

Lightly grease whatever sized pan of your choice. I used my tiny cast iron for a more camp like theme.

Coarse chop roughly 3 cups of chocolate. We ended used a giant frozen Toblerone we had saved since Christmas. 
Then you can lay the marshmallows on top. Enough to cover the pan.

Ingredients for Smores

Easy Smores Dip Baking Instructions

Oven temp – 400
Place in oven for 5-7 mins. Watching the marshmallows closely
While that’s baking assembly is a breeze for this easy smores dip. Simply place graham crackers on a board or tray. In addition you can dip and dunk cookies, pretzels, or fresh fruit. Be cautious if you are dipping straight from the pan. It holds the heat and can burn. Parental supervision is a great idea.

 

In Conclusion 

I would personally like to thank everyone involved in our summer and the fire efforts made here in our beloved province. Thank you to everyone doing your part and helping us all grow in being fire smart. Our hearts go out to those that have lost so much and to those brave men and women working tirelessly to help keep us all safe. Additionally making small tweaks as we practice fire safety  doesn’t mean we can’t still enjoy experiences. Easy smores dip certainly makes #nocampfirenoproblem! Exploring the great outdoors and making plans is easy when you follow the Experience Nicola Valley Crew! As always if you recreate this recipe give us a tag. The family and I would love to see your creations and connect.

Willing Taste Testers

Easy Smores Dip – Camping Treats in BC Canada

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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

 

Nicola Valley Travel and Tourism Guides

nicola valley talk show

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