Arts council 2017 a burst of creativity

With a full slate of officers and directors, four of them new, the Oliver Community Arts Council is ready for a creative 2017. The council starts the year with several new arts projects already in the works, a high rating of their year-end finances, and the highest ever performance award from the BC Arts Council with the operating grant totalling over $13,000. A local government grant of $4000 will be added to this total later in 2017.

In 2016, the arts council disbursed funds locally to arts and music programs in local schools ($5,000), contracted services for nine local arts events ($4500), and offered two bursaries to graduating SOSS students ($1000), in addition to administering its own arts events and maintaining the Quail’s Nest Arts Centre.

At their Annual General Meeting on Monday February 13, the arts council membership acclaimed directors Janet Bednarczyk, Andrea Gunnlaughson-Furlan,  Brian Mapplebeck, Bernice Myllyniemi, Lillian Sim, JoAnn Turner, Caroline Whyte, and officers  Penelope Johnson (President), Janice Goodman (Vice President), Diane Gludovatz (Treasurer) and Nathan Linders (Secretary). The gathering gave their appreciation for retiring directors Terry Irvine and Christine Seibeck, and also expressed their gratitude for departing Treasurer Arleyene Farnworth. Farnworth has been contracted for service as the external bookkeeper, maintaining the computerized system for the council.

The council has just completed a smooth transition to the new BC Societies Act and, at the AGM, approved a full set of new by-laws, based on the government’s Model By-laws.

During the meeting, plans for the Wine Capital Art Walk (May 11) and the Canada 150 Mosaic Mural Project (May 30 – June 1) were announced. A committee of arts council members, Oliver Tourism, Oliver-Osoyoos Winery Association, and the Oliver Business Association are already preparing for an evening art extravaganza on Main Street this spring, including exhibits, live demonstrations, wine tastings, live music, and other performance art.  The evening concludes with art draws and refreshments at Medici’s. The arts council is also supporting the Town of Oliver in a community arts initiative to celebrate Canada’s sesquicentennial. This spring, all residents will be invited to paint one of 600 tiles in a mosaic mural, to be mounted in the downtown area later this year.

Following the business of the AGM, representatives from member arts groups shared their news for upcoming arts events. Three choral concerts, several music and dance performances, fibre workshops, a theatrical production, and some exciting Canada 150 exhibits are already being planned this spring.

The arts council has set dates for all its 2017 events. In addition to the Wine Capital Art Walk and the Mosaic Mural Project, the arts council will present the following events: Showcase of Talent (May 3), Music in the Park (every Thursday evening in July and August), the Fall Art Show & Sale (Sept 30 – Oct 1) and the Community Christmas Concert (November 26).

Membership in the arts council is a great way to keep current with local arts news, stay connected with artists, and show support for the arts. Membership at the group and business level includes free advertising in monthly newsletters, on the website, and at their public events. More information is at and olivercac @

Green thumbs with community spirit make plans for 2012

contributed by Heather Whittall

Gardeners everywhere are looking at seed catalogues and dreaming of the day when they can start planting their gardens. The fun of planning just doesn’t compare with the smell of fresh earth and the feel of soil in your hands and the sun on your back.

Workshops and presentations for gardeners of all ages will be the big focus at this year’s Annual General Meeting of the Oliver Community Garden Society. “Of course we also have raised-bed garden boxes available for rent,” says Luke Whittall, president of the Garden Society. “Not everyone has the space to build a garden. Our raised beds are easy to access and easy to work. You can have tomatoes growing in no time.”

Flowers, peppers, herbs, peas, beans, and pumpkins, have also done well in the past at the Community Garden. “Any crop suitable for raised bed gardening will work great here,” says Whittall. “Our plan this year is to provide totally automatic irrigation for the whole garden site. If you’re away for a couple weeks on vacation, you won’t have to worry about your garden getting watered.”

We have big plans for the Oliver Community Garden this year! Not only do we want to make it lusher and greener and more of the enchanted space we’ve been dreaming of over the winter, but we want to awaken the sense of community a garden can bring.

The Oliver Community Garden Society will be holding its Annual General Meeting on Monday, March 12th at 7 pm at the Quail’s Nest Arts Centre, Studio Building on Airport Street which has also been the location of the Garden since the 2011 growing season. Though it is less visible than the previous location on Main Street, Whittall does not see it as an issue. “It’s makes for a much more serene gardening experience. On Main Street, it was loud with all the traffic noise and there was no shade. At the Quail’s Nest, it’s much more quiet and we have great shaded areas.”  The society welcomes all to attend and contribute to the discussion of what you would like to see the Community Garden do this summer and over the coming years. We are already planning a number of workshops and welcome your input on their topics.

The  community garden willl be holding monthly workshops on second Saturdays of each month starting in May as well as getting the youth of the community more involved and educated in the wonders of gardening. The kickoff is a great big Plant Sale and Garden Warming Party on Saturday, May 26th at the Oliver Community Garden at the Quail’s Nest Art Centre.

Visit the Oliver Community Garden Society online at

We’re on Twitter!

Now on Facebook!

For more information:  olivercommunitygarden @

AGM for Quails

All Oliver Community Arts Council members and visitors are welcome to the OCAC’s  Annual General Meeting on Monday February 27 at 9:30 a.m. at the Quail’s Nest Arts Centre, 5840 Airport Road.  Renewing and new memberships are welcomed at the meeting. Coffee, tea, and refreshments provided.  The AGM is kept short, with a financial year-end report from the Treasurer, a report from the president, and the election of 2012 officers and directors.

Nominations for officers are: Penelope Johnson (President), Esther Brown (Vice President), Diane Gludovatz (Secretary) and Arleyene Farnworth (Treasurer). Ten additional nominees will stand for eight positions as directors of the Board, assuring a democratic election.  Additional nominees for all positions are welcomed.

The 2011 Board gave a vote of thanks at its recent meeting for retiring directors Marilyn Marsel, Steve Staresina, and Roger Ulasovetz, and for officers Jack Bennest, treasurer,  and secretary Shirley Corley-Rourke.  Bennest and Corley-Rourke are both running  for director positions in 2012.

Following the AGM is Arts Jam! the monthly gathering to share local arts news and views. Meet the creative crowd, and find out what’s coming up in the local arts scene!


Seats or Smiles?

an editorial by Penelope Johnson

As a representative from the arts council, I was recently invited to attend a joint meeting of School Board #53, the Town of Oliver, Oliver Parks and Recreation, RDOS, and community groups who all had a vested interest in the rebuilding of the auditorium at Southern Okanagan Secondary School. The architect and structural engineer were also in attendance to present some early designs, based on the existing footprint of the previous auditorium. While many of the financial details are still in negotiation and not yet released, there were some illuminating threads in the discussion. Here are some of my personal reflections.

A Multi-Use Facility: There was a strong desire for a space that could serve many purposes and thus attract not only theatre, dance, and concerts but also weddings, funerals, and corporate events. A large airy lobby is proposed, including display areas, concession, kitchen, washrooms,  and a box office. Behind the stage are dressing rooms and a “black box” style performance space intended as a drama classroom, rehearsal area, or even a “green room” area for shows with large casts.  Many of these proposed areas can fulfill more than one function.

An Accessible Facility?: The present theatre design incorporates stairs rather than ramps, as had been present in the old Venables Auditorium. The rationale is that the theatre can be fitted with more seats if the rake (angle of  the floor) is steeper. As the angle increases, ramps become unsafe. Long,  shallow steps descending to the stage are the alternative. The stairs prompted much discussion about universal design and access. An elevator could take patrons to disability seating at the top level (back) of the theatre, but such seating will be limited and could separate families and groups. After community user groups expressing the need to accommodate the large percentage of senior patrons, the architectural firm agreed to consider some minor design changes.

Seats, Seats and More Seats! … or Not?: The current theatre design has about 12 rows of 30 seats, or 364 in total. While most users agreed that figure was plenty for current needs, some discussion focussed on how to increase the number of seats to 400 without compromising the proposed generous legroom between the rows. The consensus was that, to do so, “something’s gotta give”. If  even one more row were to be added, the theatre would lose space somewhere: at the front (the orchestra pit, the false proscenium, the depth of the stage, or the backstage and dressing rooms) OR at the back (the lobby area).

The concern was that Oliver needed the option to have “more bums in seats”, especially for big events attracting big bucks such as business conferences, weddings, or touring professional performers.  The crux of the discussion came down to … What is more important?  What is the chance that the difference between 364 seats and 394 seats would determine whether an event was booked at all? What attracts client bookings and patrons anyway — the number of seats? or having an overall space that balances seating with technical equipment and proper lobby, stage, and backstage dimensions?

A point I raised at the meeting was that, having talked to theatre managers and touring professionals, I have found that performers  overwhelmingly choose a venue based on three things:

1. Technical Specifications : The venue needs to have good lighting and  sound equipment, stage, backstage area, and acoustics.

2. Knowledgeable and Friendly Staff: The rental agent, theatre manager and stage technician need to be welcoming, accommodating, and well-trained. If there are time-consuming hassles, performers go elsewhere.

3. Warm Receptive Audiences: Size doesn’t matter. I’ve talked to performers who will play happily to an audience of 40 or 50, and return over and over again. Why? Because they love the people. Not the seats. The people IN them.  Many pros prefer the intimacy of a smaller venue because the “feel” is totally different.

Now, not even a week after this meeting, a comment arrives at Oliver Daily News, the popular blog “where Oliver gathers to chat”, as its banner headline reads. The comment is from Catherine Laub, a member of the Kallisto Trio who performed here on November 25 as part of the South Okanagan Concert Society series.  The temporary venue was the Oliver Alliance Church. Good sound system, elevated stage, and adequate lighting for a musical concert. “Intimate” seating, seating maybe 300 in a pinch. Here’s what Catherine writes, in response to reading a review of their performance on Oliver Daily News:

“Fabi, Karen and I are in Calgary this week, continuing to perform the music we sang first in Oliver. We just discovered this wonderful and very touching review and would like to thank the whole community for your attendance and support. This was one of the best concerts we have ever sung, and we’ve been talking ever since about how much we enjoyed our trip. Everyone was so kind, genuine and enthusiastic. Furthermore, you really understood what we were doing, and that makes an incredible difference. We loved our time with you so much that we were discussing moving to the Okanagan, and we’re certainly looking forward to coming back to sing again as soon as you’ll have us.”

Now THAT is what draws performers, not once but repeatedly.   Can we provide good technical equipment for most needs? With support from the Ministry of Education, Town and RDOS, and good fundraising by Adopt-a-Seat, yes we can. Will we have a good theatre manager and stage technician in place? I, for one, hope so. Will we have warm receptive audiences that ensure bums in seats (even if only 364 of them at a time)? You betcha!

Come with Your Questions: All-Candidates Meeting Nov. 2

The Oliver Community Arts Council hosts the

All-Candidates Meeting for School Trustees
Wednesday November 2
7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Quail’s Nest Arts Centre
34274 – 95th Street, across from the airport

The public is invited to this moderated event.






All candidates will be asked an initial set question from the arts council, followed by their brief speeches  and questions from the public. Please bring your concerns! Refreshments provided.

Pictured are incumbent Tamela Edwards, Martin Cattermole, Tracy Hunt and Robert Zandee. Two positions are open for election.






For more information on the nominees, please visit

and search under candidates’ names.




Don’t Forget Monday’s Arts Jam!

Come out and “jam” with us at this informal arts gathering as we share arts news and views.

Visitors and all members are welcome. Share your arts group’s news, learn about events and programmes for the fall, hear some Board news. and contribute ideas about local arts. There’s always something happening in the community, something new to learn, and something to nibble on!

Arts Jam!
Monday August 22
9:30 a.m.
Quail’s Nest Arts Centre
34274 – 95th Street, Oliver



Don't Forget Monday's Arts Jam!

Come out and “jam” with us at this informal arts gathering as we share arts news and views.

Visitors and all members are welcome. Share your arts group’s news, learn about events and programmes for the fall, hear some Board news. and contribute ideas about local arts. There’s always something happening in the community, something new to learn, and something to nibble on!

Arts Jam!
Monday August 22
9:30 a.m.
Quail’s Nest Arts Centre
34274 – 95th Street, Oliver



New faces, new positions on 2011 Board

The arts council held its annual general meeting on Monday February 28 at the Quail’s Nest Arts Centre. Despite the snowy morning, there was a good turnout and the membership was rewarded with a tight electoral race, some exciting local art news, and a coffee social.

OCAC President Esther Brown stepped down from the position she’s held for the last two years,  and was replaced by Penelope Johnson. Also acclaimed to the executive positions were Darryl MacKenzie as Vice President, Jack Bennest as Treasurer, and newcomer Shirley Corley-Rourke as Secretary.

Eight directors were elected to the Board from a slate of eleven after a close race.  One position required a second ballotting process.  New faces in the directorship are Marilyn Marsel, Leann Parrent,  and Roger Ulasovetz.  Returning to their seats are Sally Franks, Brian Mapplebeck, Jennifer Mapplebeck, and Steve Staresina. Past president Esther Brown also won a director’s seat.

In her annual report, outgoing president Esther Brown highlighted some of the arts council’s most notable achievements in the last year. She credited partnerships with other organizations as helping the arts council stay vibrant and “front and centre” in the community. Among the partnerships she named were two fund raising concerts with the Penticton Concert Band, the “Best Bloomin’ Garden Contest”  (part of the Oliver Communities in Bloom programme), an spring exhibit at the Burrowing Owl Estate Winery, a collaborative meeting with the arts councils from the Thompson-Okanagan region (TONAC), an historical display courtesy of the Oliver and District Heritage Society at the Fall Art Show and Sale, the Oliver Kiwanis mural project, and a budding partnership with the Oliver Community Garden Society.  Esther Brown received loud applause for her report.

Treasurer Jack Bennest was pleased to announce that 2010 was a well-managed fiscal year.  OCAC programme committees worked hard to trim expenses and reach a cost-neutral outcome. Several small fund raising  projects offset government and gaming cutbacks to the arts. A successful BC Arts Council application in the fall netted a $1500 basic grant (based on population), plus $3500 matching grant (added to $3500 provided by Oliver Parks and Rec ),  plus a performance award bonus of $2000 recognizing meritorious actvity in 2010. 

A vibrant Arts Jam! gathering followed the AGM. Representatives from several arts groups were in attendance , announcing their spring events. Information about the 2011-12 concert series, a choir concert, a fibre workshop, a quilt exhibit, a fine art show, the upcoming SOAP comedy and other arts celebrations can be found elsewhere on the blog. Stay tuned! There’s lots of exciting stuff in the works!

The arts council thanks Esther Brown for her dedication to the OCAC during her presidency. The council also thanks outgoing secretary Penny Ruddy and 2010 directors Shirley Nilsson, Hella Prochaska, and Craig Rusinek  for their service on the Board.

Arts Jam! November 22 and December 20

Are you ready to JAM?

Join the Oliver Community Arts Council on the fourth Monday of each month for an informal gathering to share news and views on all things artistic.

Monday November 22
9:30 a.m.
Quail’s Nest Arts Centre
34274 95th Street
(across from the Oliver airport)

Find out what art-y events are coming up in Oliver and the area. Learn more about the activities of all Oliver’s arts and culture groups.   Share your opinions about the arts council’s role in promoting art.  Propose some new ideas. Meet new friends. This is not a business meeting, but definitely a place to let your voice be heard and to keep current on the Oliver art scene.

Coffee, tea, and nibbles  are provided.

December’s Arts Jam is always a little different: It’s a little earlier in the month, and the nibbles are potluck. Bring half a dozen holiday goodies to share!

Monday December 20
9:30 a.m.
Quail’s Nest Arts Centre
34274 95th Street
(across from the Oliver airport)

Coffee and Board Games On Us! says Friends of the Oliver Library

Coffee Morning
Tuesday November 16
(every third Tuesday of the month)
10:00 a.m.
Oliver Branch
Okanagan Regional Library

Want a coffee with your morning paper or new book? Drop in on third Tuesdays of the month at 10:00 a.m.  to noon.

Want your say? Come at 9:00 every third Tuesday of the month  to join the FOTOL society. Stay and socialize over coffee afterward.

The Library is setting up a corner for board games, and wonders if anyone could donate a nice chess set, backgammon, cribbage board, or other quiet boardgame to provide another social facet to our beautiful library. Check at the library if you’d like to donate, or email and we’ll forward your offer to a library rep.

We Appreciate You!

Please join us at the OCAC Volunteer Appreciation celebration at the Arts Jam! gathering immediately following the

Oliver Community Arts Council
Annual General Meeting
Monday February 22, 2010
9:30 a.m.
Quail’s Nest Arts Centre


Thank you for the many ways you dedicate your time and energy to the arts council: all the various committees, OCAC programme volunteers, plant operations, repairs and cleaning, administration, and donations. Join us for a special cake and lots of toasting!

Interested in playing a leadership role? Nominations for all Board positions are still being accepted. Email and a member of the Nominating committee will contact you immediately.

OCAC Board Minutes – September 2009



Wednesday, September 16, 2009.
Quail’s Nest Arts Centre

Present: Esther Brown (President), Stephanie Salsnek (Vice President/ FCA Liaison), Jack Bennest (Treasurer/FOTOL Liaison); Linda Blaschuk (Rotary Auction, Oliver Arts and Crafts Sale Liaison), Heather Fink (Sage Valley Voices Liaison), Sally Franks (Rentals, Desert Sage Spinners & Weavers Liaison), Jan Kreut (Membership), Penny Ruddy (Finance Committee, Double O Quilters Liaison), Steve Staresina (Operations, Oliver Sagebrushers Liaison)

Regrets: Penelope Johnson (Secretary/SOCS Liaison), Brian Mapplebeck (Country Market A-Fair Liaison), Jennifer Mapplebeck (SOAP Liaison)

Guest: Dorothee Birker (Assembly of BC Arts Councils)

1. CALL TO ORDER: E. Brown called the meeting to order at 5:30 p.m.
Guest speaker Dorothee Birker outlined possibilities for a new way of thinking on the acquisition of funding for the arts. Her 20 minutes presentation was much appreciated and she was thanked for coming so far to see us. She attended the entire meeting. Birker serves as Arts and Cultural Officer for the Central Okanagan’s Economic Development Commission in Kelowna.

MOTION: That the agenda for the Board meeting of September 16, 2009 be accepted as circulated. written.
Moved: P. Ruddy Seconded: S. Franks Carried

MOTION: That the minutes of the Board meeting on Wednesday, August 19, 2009 be adopted

Moved: P. Ruddy
Seconded: S. Salsnek

MOTION: That the minutes of the Special General Meeting on Monday, August 24, 2009 be accepted as circulated.

Moved: J. Bennest
Seconded: J. Kreut


J. Bennest distributed his report to the end of August with total value in all accounts of $29,605.31. One error was noticed and corrected.

MOTION: That the Treasurer’s report dated August 31, 2009 be approved as amended and further that the actions taken by the Treasurer on behalf of the Society be authorized and the bills be paid.

Moved: J. Bennest
Seconded: L. Blaschuk

(a) Board Retreat: Dates, Topics: Location deferred. Dates of Tues Nov. 17th and Wednesday Nov. 18th were chosen. Proposed facilitator will confirm if she can come in early October.

(b) Power Point Presentation: Tabled.

(a) Finance Committee: A letter received from the BC Government has refused to grant the Direct Access Program funding request for $13,000 for Quail’s Nest renovations, as part of sweeping cuts to arts and culture.

Most of the material for the BCAC grant application is complete. E. Brown, H. Fink and P. Ruddy will get together and put on the finishing touches.

(b) Fundraising: Ladies’ Wine and Life Workshop raised $180 for the Quail’s Nest Arts Centre. Thanks to the efforts of Beth Garrish, Life Coach for her entertaining program.
ACTION: S. Franks will submit bills for wine.

Kiwanis Market signage has been completed and Kiwanis is happy with the work to date. Murals are to be completed soon. J. Kreut indicated that Kiwanis would like to pay out the obligation by September 30th.

(c) Operations:
Three security doors have arrived for installation. Approx Cost: $3000 approved previously.
MOTION: That the OCAC purchase screening for all windows up to $2200.

Moved: S. Staresina
Seconded: H. Fink

(d) Publicity: The Board agreed to delay work on creating a regular Arts Page in the Oliver Chronicle until a new Chronicle editor has been hired .

MOTION: That the OCAC purchase a $350 full colour page ad in the Oliver Business Magazine.

Moved: J. Kreut
Seconded: S. Staresina

Deadline for commitment is October 7 and publication date is October 21. Penelope and Jack were offered as volunteers to write and prepare the ad.
ACTION: H. Fink will contact Esther Seidel, advertising, at the Oliver Chronicle.

(e) Performance: Music in the Park report tabled to November Board meeting.

(f) Fall Art Show:
ACTION: J. Kreut will contact V. Friesen and work with him on a OCAC visual display

(a) Tree Planting: J. Kreut volunteered her husband Wayne to clean up front yard at Quail’s Nest with weed-whacker and environmentally safe weed killer. Sally reported that the Oliver Sagebrushers will then install four trees in pots to give the front a new look.
(b) New Member Groups: Tabled.

Arts Jam!
Monday September 28
9:30 a.m.
Board Meeting
Wednesday October 21
5:30 p.m.

Esther Brown will not be here for next Board Meeting October 21/09 and the meeting will be chaired by Vice President Stephanie Salsnek.

Arts Jam!
Monday October 26
9:30 a.m.

MOTION: That the meeting be adjourned, at 8:00 p.m.
Moved: E. Brown          Carried. 


OCAC Special General Meeting Minutes – August 2009

Monday, August 24, 2009
Quail’s Nest Arts Centre
9:30 a.m.

Board: Esther Brown (President), Stephanie Salsnek (Vice President/ FCA Liaison), Jack Bennest (Treasurer/FOTOL Liaison), Penelope Johnson (Secretary/SOCS Liaison), Linda Blaschuk (Rotary Auction, Oliver Arts and Crafts Sale Liaison), Heather Fink (Sage Valley Voices Liaison), Sally Franks (Rentals, Desert Sage Spinners & Weavers Liaison), Jan Kreut (Member Group Publicity), Brian Mapplebeck (Country Market A-Fair Liaison), Jennifer Mapplebeck (SOAP Liaison), Penny Ruddy (Finance Committee, Double O Quilters Liaison), Steve Staresina (Operations, Oliver Sagebrushers Liaison)

Member Group Representatives: Diane Gludovatz (SOAP), Gail Erickson (Desert Sage Spinners and Weavers), Kurt Hutterli (South Okanagan Concert Society)

Individual/Family Members: Arvie Bourgeault, Claudette Chabot, Dot Cranston, Val Friesen, Barb Levant, Phyllis Lowenberg, Evie New, Leo Pedersen, Colleen Polychroniou, Russell Work

Guests: Diana McKinnon, Donna McLean, Roy McLean, Anthea McLean

1. CALL TO ORDER: E. Brown called the meeting to order at 9:35 a.m. A quorum of at least 25% membership was established. Guests were welcomed and introductions made.

Currently, ByLaw 3: Fiscal Year reads:
“The Fiscal Year of the Society shall end on the 31st day of August in each and every year.”

Rationale for By-Law Amendment:
With the fiscal year end on August 31, the preparation and audit of annual financial statements occurs in the middle of the busy programme season when both sides of the profit and loss sheet are very active. An annual statement at this time does not fairly assess the yearly cash flow. Also, financial preparation during the programme season is onerous for volunteers.

Granting bodies have received an unrealistically rosy picture of our cash flow, when revenue is high and the bills have not yet been paid. Moving the fiscal year end to a quieter time of year when much of our annual resources have been spent will give granting bodies a clearer understanding of our need for funds.

MOTION: That the OCAC amend ByLaw 3: Fiscal Year to read:
“The Fiscal Year of the Society shall end on the 31st day of December in each and every year.”
Moved by: J. Bennest
Seconded by: J. Mapplebeck

Currently, Bylaw 7.1 Meetings reads:
“The Annual General Meeting of the Society shall be held in the month of October in each and every year, upon a date and at a time to be set by the Board of Directors.”

Rationale for By-Law Amendment: Changing the month from October to February will allow roughly six weeks from year end to prepare and audit the financial statements.

MOTION: That the OCAC amend Bylaw 7.1 Meetings to read:
“The Annual General Meeting of the Society shall be held in the month of February in each and every year, upon a date and at a time to be set by the Board of Directors.”
Moved by: L. Blaschuk
Seconded by: J. Kreut

ACTION: J. Bennest (Treasurer) will submit a 12-month financial report (to August 31, 2009) to the BC Arts Council in lieu of the audited statement, and submit an audited financial statement four months later upon completion of the new fiscal year end (to December 31).

MOTION: That the Special General Meeting be adjourned, at 9:46 a.m.
Moved by E. Brown.

Welcoming Potters, Photographers and Writers

potter-and-clayThe Oliver Community Arts Council hopes to foster three new arts groups this fall.

Over the years, several locals have expressed their interest in pottery, photography or writing, but no groups exist to support their creative endeavours, and no single individual has taken on the task of starting a group from scratch. To meet the need, the OCAC has decided to take on a facilitative role in getting these groups started.

aa040053The arts council is putting out a call to any people wishing to join a pottery, photography, or writing group to add their names to a contact list. In late fall, the arts council will co-ordinate and host an introductory meeting for each group at the Quail’s Nest Arts Centre. They hope to “seed” each new group with arts council members who have special talent in the art form. These facilitators could provide some basic artistic instruction, offer guidance in starting a new club, and be a liaison with the arts council. Although still under discussion, the OCAC Board is hoping to offer some incentives to new groups, such as free rental for initial meetings at the Quail’s Nest Arts Centre or a free one-year membership in the arts council. 482203

Currently member groups include the Desert Sage Spinners and Weavers, Double O Quilters, Federation of Canadian Artists, Friends of the Oliver Library, Oliver Arts and Crafts Sale, Oliver Country Market A-Fair, Oliver Sagebrushers, Sage Valley Voices Community Choir, South Okanagan Amateur Players, and South Okanagan Concert Society.

 Other ideas for arts groups are welcome.

Interested in being part of a brand new arts group in Oliver? Contact the Oliver Community Arts Council at or at OCAC, P.O. Box 1711, Oliver, BC   V0H 1T0 

Let us get you jump-started!

OCAC Board Minutes – August 2009

Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Quail’s Nest Arts Centre

Present: Esther Brown (President), Stephanie Salsnek (Vice President/ FCA Liaison), Penelope Johnson (Secretary/SOCS Liaison), Jack Bennest (Treasurer/FOTOL Liaison), Linda Blaschuk (Rotary Auction, Oliver Arts and Crafts Sale Liaison), Heather Fink (Sage Valley Voices Liaison), Brian Mapplebeck (Country Market A-Fair Liaison), Jennifer Mapplebeck (SOAP Liaison), Penny Ruddy (Finance Committee, Double O Quilters Liaison), Steve Staresina (Operations, Oliver Sagebrushers Liaison)

Regrets: Sally Franks (Rentals, Desert Sage Spinners & Weavers Liaison), Jan Kreut (Membership)

Guests: Aaron Lester (Sunridge Landscapes)

1. CALL TO ORDER : E. Brown called the meeting to order at 5:36 p.m.

That the agenda for the Board meeting of July 15, 2009 be adopted as written.
Moved: J. Bennest Seconded: P. Ruddy Carried

That the minutes of the Board meeting on Wednesday, July 15, 2009 be adopted
Moved: J. Bennest Seconded: P. Ruddy Carried

(a) Dorothee Birker, Assembly of BC Arts Councils representative for the Thompson Okanagan.
Request for submission of news/issues/concerns to take to the September Assembly of BC Arts Councils.
The OCAC has responded with an update of our programs and new business.

(b) Dorothee Birker, Arts Cultural Tourism Officer for Central Okanagan Economic Development Commission
Forwarded two sample letters written by the Central Okanagan EDC for use by other arts councils in responding to government cuts to arts and culture funding.
ACTION: P. Johnson will draft a letter from the OCAC Board, based on these samples, to be sent to various government representatives protesting the cuts in funding.
The Board will review before the letter is sent.

(a) Financial Statement
At the bottom of the Year-to-Date page: the BCAC will need to see that approximately $7219 is carried forward for the 2009-10 year. This reflects the amount they have granted to the OCAC for that period.

MOTION: That the Treasurer’s report dated July 31, 2009 be approved and further that the actions taken by the Treasurer on behalf of the Society be authorized and the bills be paid.
Moved: J. Bennest Seconded: L. Blaschuk Carried

The Treasurer asked for all receipts and revenue to be submitted to him before the end of the 12 month period, August 31, 2009.

(b) GST: Tabled to September

(a) Landscaping Presentation: Aaron Lester of Sunridge Landscapes presented a landscaping proposal. (Photos, layout and budget to be placed on file in office). His proposal focussed on the area south of Big Blue, but could be adapted for any space. He proposed installing a low-maintenance desert landscape including a pseudo- “dry creek bed” (using our round rocks), 3/8″ crush rock pathways (in a variety of natural colours), large boulders, and desert plants including yucca, sagebrush, antelope brush, rabbit brush, prickly pear cactus, and native grasses, or other silver-leafed plants with lacy foliage.

For the area south of Big Blue he proposed lowering the level of the ground between Big Blue and the parking lot and cutting a 2% slope sloping away to the south to drain water away from the building.

Landscaping could be done with or without drip irrigation. Watering is only important for the first year as plants become established. Watering could be done by hand once a week for the first year as an alternative to irrigation. Lester recommended early spring or fall to plant.

Budget for the proposed area with drip irrigation is $16,000 but he is prepared to be very flexible on price depending on size of area to landscape and plants installed.

The Board discussed removing the parking lot tarmac and replacing with crush rock for better drainage.

(b) Landscaping Invoice:
MOTION: That the OCAC Board draft a letter to John Birnie and that the OCAC pay the $200 invoice to accompany the letter.
Moved: S. Salsnek Seconded: P. Ruddy Carried

(a) Finance Committee:
DAP Status: the government has unfrozen funds from the Gaming Commission as of today, but no groups will receive 100% of funds requested, and some groups will not receive anything.
BCAC Grant Application: P. Ruddy, S. Staresina, and B. Mapplebeck are applying for the BCAC grant with assistance from the Treasurer and Secretary. Next Meeting: Tues Aug 25
Deadline: September 30.

ACTION: Esther will email Russell Work re: creating a 3 – 5 minute Power Point “advertisement” for the OCAC. she will then email the board for their opinions on his proposal.

(b) Fundraising:
(i) Kiwanis Market Mural: Progress is slow. The Sagebrushers will assist with repainting the sign. Scaffolding has been donated by Southside Builders. One or two volunteers will be required in September to paint the mural.

(ii) Ladies’ Wine and Life Workshop: Wednesday September 9 at 7:00 p.m. at Quail’s Nest Arts Centre, with life coach Beth Garrish. Entrance by Donation. All proceeds to the Quail’s Nest Arts Centre renovations. Val Stretch is placing posters.

(c) Operations:
(i) Security
MOTION: That the Board spend up to $500 on security lighting for Big Blue and the Studio Building.
Moved: J. Bennest Seconded: B. Mapplebeck Carried.
ACTION: S. Staresina will address the issue of the lack of security lighting from the street-side pole with the Town of Oliver.
ACTION: S. Staresina will check current outside lighting on the Studio Building and replace with photocell light bulbs.

To replace outside doors will cost $3000 for three emergency doors with panic bars, or $1000 for three outside house doors.
MOTION: That the Board spend up to $3000 total on three crash (panic) doors for the Studio and Big Blue Buildings.
Moved: P. Johnson Seconded: P. Ruddy Carried.

Covering windows with an angle iron frame and 1″ screening will cost approx. $100 per window. There are 16 windows in Big Blue and 5 in the Studio Building.

The Mapplebecks have offered some screening. S. Staresina will check its usability and report with his recommendation.

(ii) Volunteer Hours:
ACTION: P. Johnson will contact Marion Trimble (Cleaning Crew)re: new sheet for recording volunteer hours.

(iii) Big Blue Cleanup: Sunday August 23, 1:00 – 4:00 p.m. and Monday August 24, 12:00 – 4:00 p.m. SOAP has been cleaning out Big Blue. OCAC volunteers are requested to help load and unload at the dump. A possible free home has been found for the pallets of Sonax cardboard. SOAP will request financial support for items dumped belonging to the OCAC and a contribution towards the Kiwanis donation for use of their truck and forklift.

(d) Publicity:
(i) Oliver Chronicle:
E. Brown, H. Fink and P. Johnson met with Ray Wangen (Editor) and Susan Valentine (Publisher).The paper has agreed to enhance the arts coverage with a regular and consistent page dedicated to local arts. They require two 350 word articles or one 750 word article per arts page. The addition of a photo with cutline will reduce that word limit. This will require one co- ordinator to write or collect submissions.
Discussion about starting slowly with one monthly page on a specific week every month.
ACTION: E. Brown will seek clarification about space dedicated to the arts council vs other submissions from the wider community dealing with the arts.

(ii) Signage:
P. Johnson proposed a winter project of replacing the three sandwich board signs with new, uniform QNAC signs to match the colour and style of the existing sign on Big Blue. Two would be used at the gate, and one placed at the Fire Hall corner. Discussion of the possibility of installing a fourth arts centre sign on the municipal land at 97th and 346th.

She also suggested forming a joint committee with reps from other public services to propose directional street signs to the Town Council for all public facilities off Highway 97.
ACTION: P. Johnson will send a draft letter re: public signage proposal to the Board for review.
ACTION: H. Fink will contact the provincial government about the possibility of installing an arts centre sign on the highway.

(e) Performance: Tabled.

(f) Summer Studio
Due to illness and surgery the last week of Summer Studio has been cancelled. An advertising glitch at the Oliver Chronicle (lost/forgotten ad insertion) was also a factor in cancelling the week.

(g) Fall Art Show: A list for volunteers was circulated and will also be circulated at the upcoming Arts Jam!

(h) Nominating Committee: None.

(i) Membership:
General public interest has been expressed in forming Photography, Pottery, and Creative Writing groups.
ACTION: P. Johnson will write an article and notice for the Oliver Chronicle in September re: establishing new member groups.
ACTION: P. Johnson will provide signup sheets for new groups at the Fall Art Show membership table.
Discussion re: ways in which the OCAC can nurture new groups: e.g. free vouchers for QNAC rental, seeding groups with OCAC members for startup support and advice, locating workshop leaders and instructors skilled in those arts who are willing to assist with start up and training.

(a) Policy Setting:
Members have been borrowing property from the Quail’s Nest Arts Centre. This has caused some disruption of programs and events at the arts centre.
MOTION: That the OCAC shall not lend any property belonging to the arts council unless consent has been granted by the Board.
Moved: J. Bennest Seconded: S. Salsnek Carried.

The OCAC has acquired many unsolicited, donated items which are not useful to the organization and which take up space.
MOTION: That the OCAC will not accept acquisitions except by approval from the Board.
Moved: P. Johnson Seconded: J. Mapplebeck Carried.

(b) Board Retreat: To be held on either:
Tuesday November 17 + Wednesday November 18
Wednesday November 18 + Thursday November 19
ACTION: Board members will contact Esther re: their preferred adjacent dates for the retreat.

Special GM / Arts Jam!      Monday August 24                  9:30 a.m.      QNAC
Board Meeting                       Wednesday September 16    5:30 p.m.      QNAC
Arts Jam!                                 Monday September 28           9:30 a.m.      QNAC

MOTION: That the meeting be adjourned, at 8:31 p.m.
Moved: E. Brown Carried.