Here comes Culture Days, Kootenay-style

Summer students Emma Borhi and Sawyer Thor-Larsen spearhead project.

Nelson summer students Emma Borhi and Sawyer Thor-Larsen are helping organize the upcoming Culture Days event being held in the Kootenays from Sept. 30 to Oct. 2.

Nelson summer students Emma Borhi and Sawyer Thor-Larsen are helping organize the upcoming Culture Days event being held in the Kootenays from Sept. 30 to Oct. 2.

Culture Days is coming to the Kootenays.

Starting on Sept. 30, Nelson and the surrounding area will host a series of events over the course of the three-day as part of the national volunteer collaborative. That could mean everything from art exhibits, to poetry workshops, open houses and tours.

“Nelson hasn’t really had a prominent Culture Days event before, so we’re trying to really get out there and our goal is to offer the most events for our population category,” Emma Borhi, a summer student at the Nelson Civic Theatre, told the Star.

That means Nelson will be pitted against communities that have less than 50,000 people nation-wide.

Borhi has teamed up with fellow summer student Sawyer Thor-Larsen, who is working for Nelson Kootenay Lake Tourism, to raise awareness about the event, which will be help Sept. 30 to Oct. 2.

“The idea is to promote the behind-the-scenes arts and culture scene of your city. We’re very focused on Kootenay culture. We don’t want to only do traditional things like museums, we also want to see bike shops participating and ski shops. We want to see hiking and biking trails being promoted,” said Borhi.

And from their hub in Railtown’s new visitor centre, the pair plan to mobilize artists and interested residents through a new Facebook page and innovative new marketing materials.

“There are going to be different hubs around town, like the library. There’s the visitor centre, the Civic [Theatre] has space for performances… we’re looking at all the different options.”

And they’re actively looking for more businesses to get involved.

“The Kootenays are unlike anywhere else,” said Thor-Larsen. “We’re hoping that through Culture Days more people will learn how awesome it is to live here, and to come visit. Everyone here is really friendly, there’s always a sense of community, and then there’s the nature.”

She also believes “the free-spirited people are the best part.”

Borhi said there are currently 18 events planned for Culture Days, and they want to see that number climb.

“We’re looking for upwards of 50,” said Borhi. “Everyone from Castlegar to Meadow Creek.”

Anyone interested in participating in this year’s Culture Days should contact Borhi at emma@civictheatre.ca. They’re also launching a hashtag: #KootenayCulture.

“We want people to show us what they think Kootenay culture is and stick that hashtag on any pictures or articles, or anything you want to share,” said Thor-Larsen.

To learn more visit culturedays.ca.