The theme of this year’s Heritage Week in BC — Main Street: At the Heart of the Community — could hardly be more appropriate for Nelson.
The heritage revitalization of Baker Street in the 1980s was a key factor in the city’s recovery from a series of devastating economic blows.
Heritage Week, February 16 to 22, celebrates the history and evolution of communities as embodied by their downtowns.
“Centres of commerce, civic institutions, and events, Main Streets embody the history and evolution of a community,” Heritage BC says.
Nelson’s heritage working group has several activities planned.
• On Tuesday at 7 p.m. at Expressions Cafe, catch three different presentations: the Nelson Star’s Greg Nesteroff offers a slideshow of historic postcards of Baker Street; Stephanie Fischer speaks on the adaptive reuse of heritage resources; and Matthew Stanley presents The Fine Balance: A local architect explores the union of contemporary design and heritage structures, with works from Spain to Cowtown. Julien and Peter Locke’s short documentary, Off Track, about the Nelson diesel shop will also be screened. Admission is by donation.
• Public tours are being offered of two recently-renovated Nelson heritage buildings. On Wednesday at 1 p.m., take a peak at Cartolina (652 Baker Street), originally part of the Tremont Hotel, which was transformed last year following an extensive restoration into a retail card shop.
On Thursday at 2 p.m., get a behind-the-scenes look at the 117-year-old Hume Hotel. This heritage landmark is in the midst of second-floor renos. Meet in the lobby.
• Join local historian Ron Welwood for an historical walking tour of Baker Street on Saturday, Feb. 21. The tour is free and departs from the lobby of Touchstones Nelson at 11 a.m.
• Canada’s maple leaf flag made its first official appearance on Feb. 15, 1965. Touchstones Nelson is celebrating the 50th anniversary with a display in its lobby of newspaper coverage of this historic occasion.
• The Nelson Business Association is supporting Heritage Week and asking members to take part with historical window displays.
“Heritage is an important aspect of visitors’ experience of Nelson and the heritage working group is happy the business community has an opportunity to participate in Heritage Week celebrations this year,” said chair Laureen Barker.