Creating Whistler’s gift 

If you're a local artist with a knack for capturing the essence of Whistler's beloved black bears, the municipality may have a project for you.

With the Olympics just around the corner, the Resort Municipality of Whistler is looking for an artist, preferably one from the Sea to Sky area, to create a new piece of artwork - in this case, an original painting of a black bear - which will be added to the municipal art collection, and as part of Whistler's ceremonial gift. They've selected the black bear as a subject because of the animal's regional significance and "the visitor's typical fascination with Whistler's bears."

A limited series of prints and postcards will be created for the RMOW's gift program, and the image may also be used as a book cover or as part of a calendar program. While the RMOW will retain copyright and intellectual rights to the work, the artist will be allowed to include the image in their portfolio.

The value of the commission is $3,500. The deadline for applications is Tuesday, July 28. For more information on the opportunity, contact Heather Aspden at .

Chill on the Hill with The Stills

This weekend, Whistler Blackcomb plays host to a special, free party put on by the folks at Nestea.

Dubbed Chill on the Hill, this one-day event features a concert by Montreal rockers the Stills and the punk rock stylings of Protest the Hero, set against a backdrop of snowboarding on a specially-created terrain park, and beach volleyball.

Best of all, the event, which starts at 10 a.m. on Saturday, July 25, is free if you're a season pass holder (the only expense is a lift ticket). Don't have a pass? Visit Whistler Blackcomb's website to snag a voucher for $5 off your ticket.

A literary masterpiece

The community's book club, Whistler Reads, is getting in on the artistic action this summer with an event on Thursday, July 30.

They're hosting a panel discussion of Sarah Thornton's book, Seven Days in the Art World , which explores the world of contemporary art from the perspective of collectors, artists, curators, and the realm of art fairs and auctions. Panelists for the discussion include Susan Almrud, an art consultant, Stephanie Friedrich, Chapter Director of the National Museum for Women in the Arts, Michella Frosch of Vancouver Biennal, Reid Shier, Director of Presentation Gallery, and Wendy Wacko, nationally renowned artist and owner of Mountain Galleries in Whistler, Banff and Jasper. Anyone interested in attending the discussion should e-mail to be added to the guest list.

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