Cypress Point Winter Carnival makes its debut 

Alta Lakeside festival has outdoor shinny, curling, dinner, band and much more

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The ice is cut for the sculptors, the weather has turned colder and the sun has promised to be shining brilliantly for the first Cypress Point Winter Carnival at the Point on Alta Lake in Whistler on Saturday, Feb. 8.

"We wanted to do something that celebrates winter, and involves the community and the artists and brings them all together. It has been one of those winters where the skiing hasn't been great but there has been a lot of skating. It puts the focus in the valley and on the lakes," says organizer Stephen Vogler.

"We'd like to do it every year, starting this year."

The afternoon will be full of free events with ongoing games of shinny (for-fun ice hockey for the uninitiated), curling, snow sculpting, lantern and igloo making for kids and adults. The day ends at 6 p.m. with a lantern procession on the lake or around the point.

Local painters will be capturing scenes throughout the day and their handiwork will be auctioned off that evening.

There is a ticketed event in the evening, with a performance by Fernie Celtic folk rockers Shred Kelly and skits by Bushwoman Productions. Tickets for Shred Kelly plus dinner cost $22/$12 for the show only.

Tickets are available at Armchair Books, Hempire and online at www.thepointartists.com.

DJ Rich-A happy for collaborator SonReal's Juno nod

Busy Pemberton and Whistler DJ Rich-A, longtime DJ for rapper SonReal, is part of the Vancouver performer's team now up for a Juno Award.

SonReal was nominated in the category of Best Rap Recording for Everywhere We Go. Rich-A played a starring role in the accompanying video for the song, which has had over 900,000 hits on YouTube.

Currently on tour with the rapper and Down With Webster, Rich-A said in an interview they were performing at South by Southwest for the first time. They were "stoked" by the nomination, he added.

The rapper has long ties to the resort.

"I used to bring him up to Whistler with me quite often and we've done quite a few shows in Pemberton," he said.

Johnny Cash tribute band plays Merlin's

With what he calls "a voice in the lower registers," David James had a long musical career, mostly as a guitar player and backup singer; a movie about country legend Johnny Cash changed his life.

"When the movie Walk the Line came out I started singing along and my girlfriend was horrified and said 'Oh my God, do that again!' and I said 'Do what again?'" he recalls. "I sang 'Ring of Fire' and this and that and she said, 'Wow, you should be doing that.' I put the band together and never looked back."

James and his band Big River cover the full range of Cash's career and have played all over Canada and the U.S., though they haven't quite made it to Las Vegas, that centre for impersonators.

"We specialize in turning people into Cash fans who weren't Cash fans prior," James laughs. "He has 1,500 songs, so we can't do it all, but we start in the 50s and we take it all the way through to the end of his career."

The band plays Merlin's on Feb. 8. Tickets are $10 in advance or $15 at the door.

Painter Laura Harris holds 13th solo show at Adele Campbell

Thirteen is Victoria-based painter Laura Harris's lucky number, with the opening of her 13th exhibition at Adele Campbell Fine Art Gallery at the Westin Resort in Whistler.

"Every February, it's my tradition, it almost feels like my coming home," she says in an interview.

"Adele Campbell took me on as an emerging artist and they stuck with me all the way through. It really has built my career and from there my work has gone all over the world."

The show, which opens with a special launch on Saturday, Feb. 8, from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., has 25 new works by Harris.

Called Taken by Water, Harris's show is about the common thread through all of her work.

"Whether I do landscapes or florals... I drag it home and put it on canvas," she says.

"The show is a unique show this year because they supported me in my latest video project, too, as well as a solo project."

The new video, made by Beth Dillman, shows Harris at work on Taken by Water, and gives a clearer idea of her layering technique, which includes multiple coats of paint to create a sense of depth. In terms of technique, Harris describes American painter Mark Rothko as an inspiration.

"The video shows me at work on the first layer, my favourite layer. It's where I am most free," Harris says.

The resulting painting will be the central piece of the exhibit, she added.

Venue change for literary ski race social

The venue and time for the social following Whistler's first literary ski race has changed, says organizer Paula Shackleton.

A private residence will now host the event on Saturday, Feb. 15; from 4 p.m.to 6 p.m. Registered participants will be given the location.

Sponsored by Whistler Writers and Whistler Reads, the race will take place on Blackcomb Mountain with prizes for best teams, beginning at 10 a.m.

The fee is $55 per racer, $35 for social only. For tickets visit www.bookbuffet.com or Armchair Books.

Gobo 3.0 project seeks art submissions

The Whistler Arts Council (WAC), in partnership with the Resort Municipality of Whistler, is seeking submissions for the Gobo. 3.0 Project. The project is part of Whistler Village 3.0, a village enhancement program.

A gobo is a template made of glass or steel that is inserted into a lighting fixture to create an image that can be projected onto any surface. Five artworks selected by the WAC will be transferred on their own gobo and then projected throughout the year onto the southwest side of Maurice Young Millennium Place.

The first of the images will be projected on May 1.

Submissions must be two-dimensional and can include digital work, oil or acrylic paintings, pen and ink art, photographs, poetry or mixed media compositions.

Chosen artists will receive $400 per slide.

Submission deadline is Friday, March 7. For more information and to apply, visit artswhistler.wufoo.eu/gobo-project-application-form/.

Fire and Ice Show Olympic opener

A special Fire and Ice Show will take place to coincide with the opening ceremony of the Sochi Winter Olympics on Friday, Feb. 7 and B.C.'s Family Day weekend.

Some of Whistler's best skiers and snowboard riders make daring big-air jumps through rings of fire during the show, which takes place at Skier's Plaza in Whistler Village, between Whistler and Blackcomb gondolas. There are also firespinners and fireworks.

Three other Fire and Ice shows have been added later in February. They take place on three consecutive Thursdays, Feb. 13, 20 and 27.

These four shows are in addition to the regular Sunday night Fire and Ice events. For more information, visit www.whistler.com.

Pre-school story time at Spring Creek Elementary

Children aged up to six and their caregivers are welcome to a pre-school story time at Spring Creek Community School in Whistler on four consecutive Mondays, February 17 and 24, and March 3 and 10.

The sessions runs from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m., and will include stories and songs and a chance to look at the school library's pre-school collection.  

For more information contact Sara Leach at sleach@sd48.bc.ca.

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