Tour of the Arts returns for a fourth year

The Columbia Valley Arts Council prepares for the fourth annual Tour of the Arts event.

As spring is fighting its way into the Columbia Valley plans have started for the fourth annual Tour of the Arts.

This year the art show will be held on July 31 from 10 a.m. to  4 p.m.  and will give residents and guests to the valley a chance to take part in a self-guided tour showcasing Columbia Valley artists in unique settings. The tour raises funds to support the programs of the Columbia Valley (CV) Arts Council who host the event.

The tour passport book is your admission to all five tour sites and the Celebrate the Arts reception. Passports will include the tour map, along with artist photos and biographies.

This year the passports will go on sale on June 25, at a cost of $25 if purchased before the day of the event. If you buy your passport on the day of the tour it will be $30, $10 for students aged 13-18. Children are free. Passports stamped at all sites will be eligible for the special draw prize.

This year there will be five new tour sites that will highlight beautiful properties near Windermere and Fairmont.

Each location will include juried works of several artists. Sites this year will be the Swansea Ranch, McBlaine property on Windermere Loop Road, Gratton property on Kootenay #3 Road along with the Stewart and Nichols properties in Fairmont Hot Springs.

There will be works of art by 45 Columbia Valley artists and guests will have the chance to enjoy demonstrations, discussions with artists and opportunities to purchase art.

A Celebrate the Arts reception is sponsored by Fairmont Hot Springs Resort on July 31, from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Fairmont Hot Springs Resort.

All tour patrons are invited to the resort for light snacks and a cold drink in what should be the perfect ending to a wonderful day of experiencing art in the Columbia Valley.

This year will also see a special draw prize which is sponsored by Canadian Mountain Holidays. If you visit all five tour sites you will be eligible to win a day of Heli-hiking in the Bugaboos for two people, including lunch and dinner.

Each site will also feature a Muskoka Chair transformed into a work of art by a tour artist. Guests will be able to bid on the chairs at the sites and enter their final offer at the Celebrate the Arts reception.

Local musicians will perform at each site, adding to the festive atmosphere. Residents can also get involved with the tour and become a 2011 Tour of the Arts Volunteer.

For more information about any aspect of the tour call 250-342-4423 or email