Lake-to-Lake Studio Tour this Summer

Wondering what to do to please yourself—-or your guests—in the sunny summer days ahead? A visit to an artist’s studio can make a great outing, paired with a day of wine touring or just savouring the spectacular landscape we enjoy here in the South Okanagan.

A group of 12 local artists, including encaustic artist Thea Haubrich, a member of the Oliver Community Arts Council,  have teamed up to offer a Studio Tour. They will open their studios to the public from May till October. Taking their cue from the successful self-guided studio tour offered last year by artists on the Naramata Bench, the South Okanagan “Lake-to-Lake” artists are extending the possibilities for everyone to explore art in the place where it is created. (And, by the way, the “Art on the Naramata Bench” Studio Tour is up and running again this year, so with the addition of this new Tour Route, there are studios lined up all the way from Naramata to Vaseux Lake, just waiting for you to come in and say hello!)

In the new “Lake-to-Lake” Studio Tour Route, the twelve artists offer a journey along the ‘Corkscrew Drive Wine Trail’, which takes you from Penticton along hauntingly lovely Skaha Lake via Eastside Road and the Oliver Ranch Road, to Vaseux Lake.

Studio visits are an unusual and colourful way to meet the artists and their work ‘on home ground’. You can meet the artists, see how they use their tools and work-space — and witness for yourself the work behind the works!

You’ll encounter artists working in a wide variety of media. Besides Thea’s work in hot beeswax, there are painters, a potter, a sculptor, a photographer, one working with gourds and another encaustic artist! They are all keen to welcome you and happy to share with you how they do what they do.

To get you started: you’ll find brochures at your nearest visitors’ centre, wineries, hotels/motels, bookstores, local libraries and galleries. You can also download the brochure and tour map from http://bit.ly/jC39sp The tour map (part of Google maps) lists all participating artists, their locations, contact information, and links to websites.

It’s simple to plan your tour. Decide which studios you’d like to see, check the hours of opening, and set out. As you travel the route, watch for the Studio Tour signs telling you that the artist is “In” (or call ahead). Visiting an artist in the special atmosphere of a working studio is a wonderful way to explore the Valley’s treasures. Enjoy your valley touring, and expand your art collection through personal connections with the artists.

In other news, Haubrich has recently won the competition for the cover art in Okanagan Art Work magazine’s fifth anniversary issue (May 2011).  Go to this link for more information and to see her winning submission: http://www.s2sartworks.com/MayCoverArt.html

To top it off, she won second place as well! Congratulations Thea!

More about Thea Haubrich’s encaustic art can be found at these sites:

Web: http://www.encaustic.ca
Online store: http://www.encaustic.ca/shop/html/
Fine Art: http://www.theahaubrich.com
Blog: http://encausticcanada.wordpress.com/

Vaseux Lake Celebrated in Heritage Week

The Oliver and District Heritage Society celebrates BC’s Heritage Week in the third week of February (21st – 27th). This year the provincial theme is “A Century of Conservation: Parks and Cultural Landscapes”, selected in honour of the centennial of BC Parks. “Whatever its size, makeup or purpose, every park is a testament to the culture of conservation which unites the values of heritage and environmental protection.” says the Heritage BC website (http://www.heritagebc.ca/events/heritage-week)

The ODHS festivities include an evening celebrating the local heritage of the Vaseux Lake Migratory Bird Sanctuary. The evening will include some fascinating history of conservation at the sanctuary, and some remarkable facts about its ecosystem. Adding a visual dimension to the evening will be a display of artisitic impressions of the Vaseux Lake area and its wildlife. The Oliver Sagebrushers have volunteered to showcase some of their artwork. Other arts groups are invited to exhibit pieces reflecting the natural heritage of this local park. Contact

The Oliver and District Heritage Society presents
“A Century of Conservation: Vaseux Lake Bird Sanctuary”
Thursday February 24
7:00 p.m.
Quail’s Nest Arts Centre,
34274 95th Street, Oliver BC
Information:, 250-498-0490

More information about the park: The park protects 10 red listed plant ecosystems the cover the whole spectrum from desert to wetland. Including Antelope brush, Big sage, Bluebunch wheatgrass, Balsamroot, and Red osier dogwood.

There is an astounding number of rare wildlife species in this small park. There are seven blue and two red listed mammals known in the park, including California bighorn sheep, badger and Pallid bat.  The park is a birder’s paradise with 11 red listed species and 9 blue listed species present. Five blue listed reptiles are found in the park, as well as the red listed Night snake, the rarest snake in Canada. Common waterfowl are Canada geese, trumpeter swans, blue-winged teal, widgeons and wood ducks. Lazuli bunting are spotted in the spring – sharing the area with toads, turtles, beavers, muskrats, rabbits and deer.

Come discover things you never knew about Vaseux Lake and celebrate 100 years of conservation with the Oliver District Heritage Society!