Using 19th century technology, Tekoa Predika prepares to photograph two guests at the gala. Photo: Bill Metcalfe

Touchstones Nelson gala draws a crowd

The multi-faceted event was a fundraiser for the Diefenbunker Project.

A tintype photographer took portraits of the guests with a huge vintage camera in a makeshift 19th century photo studio.

Three artists created live paintings while the 150 wandering guests watched, gourmet food in hand, sometimes chatting with the painters as they worked. The canvasses were later auctioned off.

Tours of the Diefenbunker departed every half hour. Works by prominent artists Carol Reynolds and Brent Bukowski were raffled off. There was wine.

Harpist Toinya Fominoff played. Singer Naomi Cromwell sang. Archival photos and artifacts were displayed, discussed, marvelled at, and sold.

This was History Mashup, Touchstones Museum’s gala $50-per-ticket fundraiser on Sunday. The main purpose was to fund the Diefenbunker Project.

The Diefenbunker is a Cold War nuclear fallout shelter, similar to more than 50 others built across Canada by the government of Prime Minister John Diefenbaker in the 1960s. It’s located in the basement of the Post Office, adjacent to Touchstones. The museum plans to lease the space and use part of it for community programming and to house some of its collection.

“We are preserving the heritage site, recognizing that it is a piece of history and we really don’t want to lose that,” said Touchstones executive director Astrid Heyerdahl.

“So we are rehabilitating the space and re-purposing it, but when you walk in, you will feel as though you are walking back in time. So what we are going to do is create an exhibition space around the bunker.”

She said the new space will also be used for events such as workshops and film screenings.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here


Stephanie Myers of Kootenay Co-op Radio with Touchstones executive director Astrid Heyerdahl, backed by a historic photo of Nelson’s former Kootenay Forest Products mill. Photo: Bill Metcalfe

Tekoa Predika

Bryn Stevenson, one of three live painters at the gala. Photo: Bill Metcalfe

Painter Tyler Toews live-painted a reproduction of the door to the Diefenbunker.

The crowd. Photo: Bill Metcalfe

Historian Ron Welwood. Photo: Bill Metcalfe

The food was supplied by the Hume Hotel. Photo: Bill Metcalfe

Singer Naomi Cromwell. Photo: Bill Metcalfe

Just Posted

VIDEO: Not business as usual as Nelson slowly reopens

Local owners talk about the pandemic has changed how they operate

City of Nelson takes over farmers’ markets from EcoSociety

Markets start June 13 and will be run by the Nelson and District Youth Centre

School District announces Rick Hansen Foundation difference-maker award winners

Creston student Alexis Folk and Nelson teacher Chris Mieske recognized by the Rick Hansen Foundation

Nelson offers financing for homeowners to purchase electric bikes

Loan payments will be applied to hydro bills as part of the EcoSave home retrofit program

Pay guarantee removed for some Kootenay on-call paramedics

Guarantee phased out as BCEHS introduces a new “scheduled on call” model

VIDEO: B.C. dentist gets grand welcome home after two months in hospital fighting COVID-19

Michael Chow was given a surprise send off by hospital staff and ‘welcome home’ from neighbours

Help the Nelson Star continue its mission to provide trusted local news

Black Press is now accepting donations to keep its papers operating

‘Like finding a needle in a haystack’: Ancient arrowhead discovered near Williams Lake

The artifact is believed to be from the Nesikip period between 7,500 BP to 6,000 BP

Friends, family mourn Salt Spring Island woman killed in suspected murder-suicide

A GoFundMe campaign has been launched for Jennifer Quesnel’s three sons

PHOTOS: Anti-racism protesters gather in communities across B.C.

More protests are expected through the weekend

Indigenous chief alleges RCMP beat him during arrest that began over expired licence plate

Athabasca Chipewyan Chief Allan Adam calling for independent investigation

‘I’m pissed, I’m outraged’: Federal minister calls out police violence against Indigenous people

Indigenous Minister Marc Miller spoke on recent incidents, including fatal shooting of a B.C. woman

Indigenous families say their loved ones’ deaths in custody are part of pattern

Nora Martin joins other Indigenous families in calling for a significant shift in policing

UPDATED: Pair accused of ‘horrific’ assault at Vancouver’s Oppenheimer Park arrested

Police say Jason Tapp, 30, and Nicole Edwards, 33, did not show up to meet their bail supervisor this week

Most Read