Council supports arts in Alberni

Rollin Art Centre administrator Gareth Flostrand

Rollin Art Centre administrator Gareth Flostrand

May is membership month for the Community Arts Council of Port Alberni. It’s time for people to come out and support the arts, said Bonnie Brandner, chair of the council’s membership committee.

Last year, the council had 250 members. They would like to see more this year, arts administrator Gareth Flostrand said.

Although memberships can be purchased throughout the year, there is added incentive to sign up or renew in May: members will have their names put into a draw for one of three prizes, which include gift certificates and a gift basket from the Alberni Valley Museum. A membership also gets patrons a discount at the Rollin Art Centre gift shop and puts them on the e-mail list for notification of upcoming events.

Personal invitations to exhibit receptions are also a perk.

Brandner is a photographer specializing in landscape and art photography. She joined the arts council two years ago in order to support the arts in Port Alberni. “We’re not just the Ultimate Fishing Town,” she said. “We are also an arts town.”

She was surprised, she said, to talk to many artists on the Days With the Arts Studio Tour last month who weren’t aware of the arts council and the role it has in supporting artists in the region.

“It’s a very uplifting feeling to know we have so many wonderful artists here in Port Alberni,” Brandner said.

Membership in the arts council gives artists an opportunity to have a show at the Rollin too.

Memberships have a practical use as well, Flostrand said. The B.C. Arts Council looks at how relevant an arts council is to a community when it issues operating grants. And the BCAC grant is the main support for Port Alberni’s council.

“They look at (membership) and they look at the diversity: individuals, businesses and groups,” she said. Community support of projects also plays into whether they get their grant, which is the only one of its kind from the BCAC. It is never the same amount, which makes it difficult to set a budget.

“Everything else is pretty much project-oriented.”

Having the public support such projects as the Rotary Arts District and the annual banner project is vital to the local arts council’s sustainability, she added. So is the public’s support in the arts council’s many fundraisers, such as the biennial studio and garden tours and the annual book sale (which is coming up Saturday, May 14 at Echo Centre).

“There are 77 or 79 arts councils in B.C. There are cultural places that are also eligible (for grants),” Flostrand said. “You’re fighting for every dollar. So the more members you have, the more relevant you become.”

Partnerships such as the one the local arts council enjoys with Rotary are important, she said, adding that they would not be able to operate without those relationships.

Arts are important to a community, Flostrand added. “Art makes everybody very well-rounded. You’ve got to know who you are and where you come from to be successful, and art does that. The majority of us have that arts and culture background,” from playing in a school band to the simple act of a child drawing a picture that is hung on a refrigerator.

“That’s an early expression of art,” she said.

Anyone wishing to join the arts council can pick up a membership package at the Rollin Art Centre, located at the corner of Argyle Street and Eighth Avenue. The cost is $10 for seniors, $15 for adults and $20 for families. Group, small business and corporate rates are also available.

Volunteers will also have tables set up at three consecutive Saturday community events: May 7 at the Heritage Fair at Echo Centre; May 14 at Echo Centre at the giant book sale; and May 21 at the Harbour Quay Farmer’s Market.

For more information, go online to www.portalberniarts.com or phone the Rollin Art Centre at 250-724-3412.

editor@albernivalleynews.com

Just Posted

The Co-op gas station at Whiskey Creek is burning after a camper van burst into flames just before 4 p.m. on Thursday, June 17, 2021. (FACEBOOK PHOTO)
Exploding camper van torches Highway 4 gas station between Qualicum Beach and Port Alberni

Highway traffic blocked after Whiskey Creek gas station erupts into flames

Kids from a MOSS Sailing Camp sail just off Canal Waterfront Park in Alberni Inlet during a day camp in August 2014. (AV NEWS FILE PHOTO)
MOSS Sailing camps return to Alberni Valley

One-week camps designed for kids will take place at Sproat Lake

Robert Gunn of Alberni Climate Action loads garbage discovered in the Alberni Inlet around Cous Creek into his canoe during a recent ocean shoreline cleanup. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)
Alberni Climate Action group creates NIC scholarship

Students attending college full time may apply through NIC

Two ambulances and a medevac helicopter are on scene at Taylor River Flats rest area on Highway 4 due to a serious motor vehicle incident. (PHOTO COURTESY MAGGIE BROWN)
Highway 4 reopens after accident at Taylor River Flats

Multi-vehicle crash had closed highway to west coast

The Rollin Art Centre is holding children’s art camps this summer. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)
ARTS AROUND: Celebrate art in the garden

Rollin Art Centre will host art event on Saturday, June 26

People line up to get their COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre, Thursday, June 10, 2021 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Vaccines, low COVID case counts increase Father’s Day hope, but risk is still there

Expert says people will have to do their own risk calculus before popping in on Papa

Helen Austin performing with Trent Freeman at the 2018 Vancouver Island MusicFest. Austin is one of the many performers listed for the 2021 event.
Vancouver Island MusicFest goes virtual for 2021

Black Press to stream 25 hours of programming July 9-11

Greater father involvement in the home leads to improved childhood development and increased marital satisfaction, says expert. (Black Press Media file photo)
Vancouver Island researcher finds lack of father involvement a drag on gender equality

Working women still taking on most child and household duties in Canada: UVic professor

FILE – A science class at L.A. Matheson Secondary in Surrey, B.C. on March 12, 2021. (Lauren Collins/Surrey Now Leader)
Teachers’ union wants more COVID transmission data as B.C. prepares for back-to-school

BCTF says that details will be important as province works on plan for September

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry outlines B.C.’s COVID-19 restart plan, May 25, 2021, including larger gatherings and a possible easing of mandatory masks on July 1. (B.C. government photo)
B.C. records 120 new COVID-19 cases, second vaccines accelerating

Lower Pfizer deliveries for early July, Moderna shipments up

A Heffley Creek peacock caught not one - but two - lifts on a logging truck this month. (Photo submitted)
Heffley Creek-area peacock hops logging trucks in search of love

Peacock hitched two lifts in the past month

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The Calgary skyline is seen on Friday, Sept. 15, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
2 deaths from COVID-19 Delta variant in Alberta, 1 patient was fully immunized

Kerry Williamson with Alberta Health Services says the patients likely acquired the virus in the hospital

The first suspension bridge is the tallest in Canada, with a second suspension bridge just below it. The two are connected by a trail that’s just over 1 km. (Claire Palmer photo)
PHOTOS: The highest suspension bridges in Canada just opened in B.C.

The Skybridge in Golden allows visitors to take in views standing at 130 and 80 metres

Most Read