Fernie & Elk Valley Culture Guide Fernie Cultural Guide FALL 2018 - Page 14

The Arts Station Where Art, Culture & History Converge A vibrant and engaging space for the creative community in Fernie featuring all disciplines of the arts for visitors and locals alike. The Arts Station has a varied program of entertainment and activities throughout the year including live concerts, film screenings, pottery workshops, community theatre, gallery shows, and creative classes for all ages. LIVING HISTORY IN A HERITAGE BUILDING From 1898 to 1964, the Canadian Pacific Railway station was the economic and social hub of the community. The current station building was completed in the spring of 1909 after an earlier incarnation burned down in the Great Fire of 1908. The CPR donated the disused building to the City of Fernie and in 1987 the Fernie Arts Council began the four-year process of moving the building onto a new foundation and completely renovating the dilapidated structure. The former waiting room became the foyer gallery and every other space found new life as studios, event space, and even a restaurant. The Arts Station opened in 1990 as an indispensable base for artists in the Elk Valley. 14 A HARDY TOWN – PERMANENT SCULPTURE In the grounds of the Arts Station, a new permanent sculpture has been installed to commemorate the 1908 Fire. A Hardy Town is a collaborative effort from Michael Hepher of Clawhammer Press and metalwork artist Paul Reimer. Although the devastating fire of August 1908 razed the town in just 90 minutes, no lives were lost. The artwork reflects the impact the fire had on Fernie’s architecture and the City ordinance that followed, directing all future construction to be of fireproof material. This commemorative sculpture is a testament to the tenacity of the people of Fernie who rose up through the ashes to rebuild and endure, and a reflection of the town that fell but was not fallen. The sculpture is on permanent display and is illuminated at night. UPCOMING EVENTS AND FESTIVALS The Arts Station is a cultural hub for Fernie and features a lively program of entertainment and events throughout the fall. Tickets can be found on Eventbrite.ca or contact the Arts Station for more information.